RETURN OF THE BELLE by Robert Taylor signed by the full crew of The Memphis Belle.
On Wednesday 19 May 1943 one particular B-17 and its crew entered the history books when, skippered by Bob Morgan,
the Memphis Belle was the first B-17 in the 91st Bomb Group to complete their prescribed tour of 25 combat missions.
Since 7 November the previous year, the Belle and her crew had flown 150 hours of combat and shot down eight enemy fighters, and possibly five more.
Once she returned riddled with machine-gun bullets; another time with most of her tail shot away; but she and her crew – who had been decorated 51 times
- always came back for more.
When Bob Morgan and his crew returned to the United States, the story of the Memphis Belle became a national legend and the stuff of Hollywood movies.
It was a story that encapsulated the deeds of thousands of airmen who flew with the Eighth Air Force in Europe to defend the world from the tyrannies of the Nazis.
Published in 1991, this impressive work shows the Memphis Belle returning to her base at Binbrook in Lincolnshire, and was the first release in Robert Taylor’s great ‘Masterwork Series’.
Signed by the eight surviving crew - all of whom have sadly now passed away - the signatures, of course, included Colonel Bob Morgan
whose leadership had welded his men into one of the best fighting units in the Mighty Eighth;
his co-pilot Jim Verinis, Navigator Charles Leighton, Flight Engineer and top gunner Harold Loch, and the Radio Operator Bob Hanson.
Not forgetting the waist gunners Bill Winchell and Casmir Nastal, and the ‘Sting in the Tail’, Johnny Quinlan.
Long sold out, there can be few more collectible items than Return of the Belle, which is probably why so few good copies appear on the secondary market.
Signed by: (See crew photo - Left to Right)
Tech. Sgt. Harold P. Loch, top turret gunner; (29 Nov 1919 - 12 Nov 2004 aged 84)
Staff Sgt. Cecil H. Scott, ball turret gunner; (18 Mar 1916 - 6 Jul 1979 aged 63) ***
Tech. Sgt. Robert J, Hanson, radio operator; May 25, 1920 - October 1, 2005 age 85) Was the last surviving member
Capt. James A. Verinis, co-pilot; (23 Oct 1916 - 3 Mar 2003 aged 86)
Capt. Robert K. Morgan, pilot; (July 31, 1918 – May 15, 2004 aged 85)
Capt. Charles B. Leighton, navigator; (22 May 1919 - 22 Apr 1991 aged 71)
Staff Sgt. John P. Quinlan, tail gunner; (June 13, 1919- December 18, 2000 age 81)
Staff Sgt. Casimer A. Nastal, waist gunner;1 with MB (7 October 1923 - 10 August 2002 age 79)
Capt. Vincent B. Evans, bombardier (6 September 1920- 20 April 1980 - age 59) ***
Staff Sgt. Clarence E. Wichell, waist gunner. (4 November 1916 - 16 July 1994 age 77)
Note: *** Did not sign.
Comes with original Limited Edition COA.
Comes with our own Devon Autographs COA, and Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee.
Devon Autographs [ UACC Registered Dealer #RD336 ]
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