Last Known Activity
Robert K. Anderegg was born in West Bend, Iowa in 1922. His parents were Ernest C. and Nora M. Dewitt Anderegg. The US Census 1940 lists the family in West Bend.
Anderegg was drafted, probably in 1942 according to his crew training record. No NARA Enlistment Record has been located for him, but it is known that he was assigned to the Army Air Forces, trained as an aerial gunner, and sent to crew training in 1943. The crew went to England, arriving there in November, 1943. According to award code and tradition, the crew flew at least 15 combat missions.
On February 4, 1944, the crew was assigned to bomb the railway works in Frankfurt, Germany. Over the target, the formation came under attack by numerous German fighters as well as flak. A flak shell hit the aircraft, and one or more engines began smoking. The aircraft pulled out of formation, under control, and headed back to England.
Several fighters followed the straggler, but failed to shoot it down. Flak batteries on the Dutch Coast opened up, but were inaccurate. The aircraft proceeded out over the North Sea, where it crashed just off the coast.
Several bodies washed ashore to the Dutch islands in the next few days. Anderegg washed ashore on February 6 on Oudderp Island. He was recovered and buried in a local cemetery. After the war, his remains were retrieved, and moved to the Ardennes American Cemetery in Belgium, where he lies in Plot D, Row 8, Grave 49.
US Census 1940
Headstone and Interment Record for U.S. Military Cemeteries on Foreign Soil.
SSgt Robert K. Anderegg was acting as the ball turret gunner on B-17G # 42-37975, unnamed, assigned to the 418th Bomb Squadron. (The crew's regular aircraft, B-17G # 4203508, named "Bastard's Bungalow," was in maintenance for an engine change, and unavailable.)
Missing Air Crew Report 2343 was issued for this loss. Crew rosters and personnel files show the crew as:
1 Lt William E. Green p
2 Lt Jack P. Jensen c-p
2 Lt John S. Hamilton nav
2 Lt John J. Joyce bomb
SSgt Roman B. Beran eng/tt gun
SSgt Robert W. Vanderlik r/o
SSgt Robert K. Anderegg btg
SSgt Sanford Tisdale wg
SSgt Harry J. Waskewicz wg
SSgt Larry R. Leist tail gun
Ranks and grades as of mission date.
SSgt Vanderlik replaced SSgt Tom Sasser before the crew left for overseas.
The entire crew was killed.
In the crew training photo, Anderegg is in the back row, 2nd from left.
In the combat crew photo, Anderegg is in the front row, 2nd from left.