m a r k e r i c k s o n p a i n t i n g s Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson Air Corps 1942 - 1945
Click to view Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson's complete thirty five mission list and twelve B-17 Flying Fortresses flown between March 27th thru August 26th, 1944 out of Horham Airfield, England.
My grandmother Clara Amelia (Nelson) Erickson took this photograph of her children in October of 1943 outside their home on Jefferson Avenue in Bismarck, ND.
It's cute shot of Clara's three year old daughter Dian Marcella and her twenty year old son, Lt. Ernest Anders Erickson.
Ernest Anders was visiting his folks on leave after graduating from Advanced Flight Training at Blackland Field and having received his wings just weeks before this photo was taken. In two months he would be off to Horham Airfield in England to begin his combat flying with the 95th Bomb Group aboard a B-17.
In March of 1944 my father would complete his first mission over Cazaux, France, bombing Luftwaffe Airfields. By the time he received the DFC (Distinguished Flying Cross) in late June of 1944 the crew had completed their 25th mission. The raid was a No-Ball raid on V-1 and V-2 rocket installations hidden in the forest along the French coast.
If you compare the two photographs below, you will notice how much Ernest Anders aged in just eight months. Quite startling to say the least. Every year in March I think of my dad as he began his combat flying over Nazi occupied Europe.
A second thought on all this goes out to my grandmother Clara. She told me often of her constant worries about her son while he was in England. He wrote dozens of letters home trying to comfort her fears. In some most likely stoked her fears when he described many of the more distressful missions he had completed. In the end after 35 missions he was done with combat or so his mother imagined.
Lt. Erickson put in a transfer to fly the B-29 Super Fortress, something he never told his mother. Ernest Anders eventually did return home for a visit in October of 1944 all in one piece. That reunion I am sure was quite emotional from the look of the photograph below.
So to my grandmother Clara Amelia (Nelson) Erickson I post this photograph of her and her son beaming at their first of two reunions.
By late August of 1944 my father and crew awaited the day they would complete their last
and final 35th mission. The cards laid out for that mission on August 26th, 1944 took a very
uncertain last minute diversion. The full story you can read here:
Also below is an article in the Bismarck Tribune dated October 5th, 1944 titled:
h o m e