Ray Peter DziaDzia

S/Sgt    11101178    612th
1923 - 1944

Ball Turret Gunner aboard 42-39979


Ardennes cemetery, Belgium
Plot : D , Row : 8 , Grave : 45.

              Raymond was born Nov 19, 1923 Milford Connecticut.
              Raymond was born to Joseph and Eva Dziadzia (Poland) who came to the United States in 1910.
              His father Joseph was a farmer and the family lived in Orange, Connecticut on Orange Avenue.

              In 1942 he enlisted to the air corps.

              In 1944 he arrived in England to join the 401st BG
              His last mission, Apr 11, 1944, Target: Sorau, Politz, there was terrific Flak.
              Their plane peeled out of formation to the left and turned back towards England.
              Gas was seen coming out of right wing.

              Raymond was injured in his leg by a 20 mm shell and the crew had to bail out.
              All were POW's but Ray died of his wounds in a hospital, one day later...

              He was awarded with an Air Medal and a Purple Heart Medal

                       In 1944, when Raymond died on the age of 20 he left behind his family :

                           His father, Joseph Dziadzia , age 58
                           His mother, Eva Dziadzia, age 54
                           His sister, Emma Dziadzia, age 32
                           His sister, Helen Dziadzia, age 31
                           His sister, Sophia Dziadzia, age 27
                           His brother, Anthoney Dziadzia, age 27
                           His brother, Theodore Dziadzia, age 25
                           His sister, Louise Dziadzia, age 23
                           His sister, Caroline Dziadzia, age 18
                           His brother, Louis Dziadzia, age 15

Mission to Politz, Poland, after being hit by flak, the plane had no 2 engine on fire.
They turned back to England but crashed near Vechta, Germany.

Standing : K. Rister - E. Shaw - C. Robinson - ? - R. Funk - DziaDzia
Front Row : A. Sussman - F. Kuhl - E. Czurryk - W. Urry

              Why, when and how Raymond died.....

              April 11 was a Maximum Effort day when all available planes would be sent out.
              The day started at 0400 hours with runners waking the airmen up by announcing that they
              had 30 minutes to eat before briefing started.

              After breakfast, the airmen were briefed on the essential details of the mission.
              Today's target would be the oil refinery at Politz, Germany.

              After about an hour of briefing the men synchronized their watches and went to prepare
              the plane for take-off.
              Once in the air, they would join up with other squadrons to form groups.
              Thousands of airplanes as far as the eye could see with no other goal than to destroy the
              forces of evil.

              The mission had begun.

              In the beginning the mission went right as planned.
              The bombers crossed the Channel without incident and even got as far as western Germany
              having only faced light Flak.
              Then, as the plane got nearer its target, the flak got heavier.

              The pilot, Lt. Frank Kuhl had to manoeuvre the plane with quick, jerky movements to avoid
              the deadly bursts.
              The bumpy ride made the B-17 a most uncomfortable place.
              As the Flak got heavier, it became more and more difficult to dodge.

              And now there was the added danger of German fighter planes---Focke Wolf 190's---which
              had begun circling up.
              Suddenly one of the Fort's engines burst into bright orange and yellow flames, probably hit
              by the Flak.
              Fortunately getting an engine shot out was not enough to make a plane crash.
              Kuhl made the decision--the crew was going to turn around and try to make it back to England.
              If continuing the mission was dangerous, turning back was not any less so; the crew would
              have to face the same anti-aircraft fire they had just flown through.
              But they got as far as Hanover okay.

              Then, the plane was hit again.
              This time Kuhl was hit in the arm by the shrapnel.
              Lt. Urry looked back from his position in the nose of the plane to see the injured pilot and
              rushed back to help.
              Getting a bandage from somewhere he commenced bandaging Kuhl's wounds.
              While still in the process of bandaging, Bill heard his co-pilot 2nd. Lt. Edward Czupryk tell
              the crew to prepare to bail out.
              The plane was going to blow up.

              They went to the midsection of the plane and opened the bomb bay doors.
              Once it was open, Bill and Czupryk grabbed Kuhl and pushed him out and watched his
              parachute open.
              Then the crew started to jumped free from plane.

              Sometime during the ordeal Sgt. Ray Dziadzia, had been wounded by two 20 mm shells,
              while defending his plane and his fellow crew members.
              He managed to jump out of the plane and once on the ground the entire crew was captured.

              Not much later the plane exploded mid air.
              His crew members found him in a heavy shock condition and compound fracture on his right leg.
              The Germans transferred Raymond to a hospital in Bissel, Germany.

              The men had put on a tourniquet to stop the flow of blood, but the Germans took off the
              bandage and left him in a room.

              The Germans gave no medical aid for around 9 hours, until they took him in an ambulance
              to the hospital around 2000 hours, but Raymond died from loss of blood due to the fact.

              The Germans were entirely at fault in letting Raymond die as a doctor could have stopped the
              flow of blood or given a transfusion since two American officers and one British Sgt all had
              "A" type blood, the same as Raymond.

              Raymond was buried on 14 April 1944 at the Russian prisoner-Cemetery Vechta/Oldenburg,
              Germany, number of grave "302" untill the end of the war.

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