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Thanks to Allen Beay, son-in-law of S/Sgt Gordon W. Kirchner, radar mechanic on “Flak Alley Sally”.

The Airplane

“Flak Alley Sally” refuels at Iwo in March 1945.  Note the volcanic steam vents.  Also note that the plane number is “33”, not “53”.
Photo from USAAF files

SI Neg. 2003-18706. Date: na.
Left side view of the cockpit section of a Boeing B-29 Stratofortress, “Flak Alley Sally”. Nose art is the pirate insignia of the 6th Bomb Group. Aircraft also shows the victor number 53. Tinian, c.1945.
Credit: George E. Staley (Smithsonian Institution)

53. “Flak Alley Sally”
Source: George E. Staley, Smithsonian Institution

The Air Crew

The original crew of “Flak Alley Sally” was crew #4012.

The Ground Crew

Photo courtesy of Allen Beay

S/Sgt Gordon W. Kirchner gets a break from working in the hot plane to look outdoors.

The  ground crew included S/Sgt Gordon W. Kirchner and Sgt Lee W. Davis.

In Memoriam

Lee Wilson Davis, High Point, N.C., died Nov. 17, 2002.  He was a ground crew mechanic with the 40th Squadron and worked  on the B-29s Flak Alley Sally and Virgin Surgeon.  After World War II, he worked in sales for Jefferson Pilot Life Insurance.  “Dad enjoyed his time in the service,” recalled his son, Dan Davis.  “He believe in what he was doing.”  His wife, Jean, and two grandchildren also survive him.  [6BG Newsletter, Jan 2003, p. 7]

Last updated 09/17/2010