USAAF Nose Art Research Project


 

Bad Brew
B-29-40-BW 42-24594

497th Bomb Group



Nose art painted by
Lindsey DECKER, 497th Bomb Group, 869th Bomb squadron
497th Bomb Group
Pacific Region

Bad Brew

Assigned to the 869rd Bomb Squadron, this Superfortress was embellished by Lin Decker with a foaming beer mug. The name and art was a link to the original aircraft's commander John Brewster who had flown the B29 out from the US mainland to arrive on Saipan on 20 October 1944.

Brewster's crew flew several missions in this Superfort, commencing on 28 October to the submarine base on Dublon Island. On his return from attacking the airfields on Iwo Jima on 5 November, Brewster's crew were lucky to survive an engine fire as they landed which could have brought an early end to the aircraft's career and the lives of the crew.

But it was Jack McGregor's crew who were the ones unlucky when forced to ditch "Bad Brew" on 23 January 1945. Heading for Nagoya, the #4 engine overheated and began to trail smoke so the bomb load was jettisoned. Soon after, two more engines began to loose power and the air speed dropped dramatically, as did their altitude. "Bad Brew" hit the water several miles short of Saipan. Five of the crew survived and scrambled into life rafts as the crumpled B29 slid below the surface. Three hours later, they were hauled on board a destroyer.





 


© Ray Bowden 2 December 2021