Flak Bait

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Flak-Bait
Flak Bait (Udvar-Hazy).JPG
Flak-Bait at the Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar, Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, National Air and Space Museum (2014)
Type Martin B-26 Marauder
Manufacturer Glenn L. Martin Company
Serial 41-31173
First flight April, 1943
Owners and operators United States Army Air Force (USAAF)
In service April, 1943 to December 1946
Fate Museum display
Preserved at Under preservation at Smithsonian Institution's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center.

Flak-Bait is a Martin B-26 Marauder aircraft that holds the record within the United States Army Air Forces for the number of bombing missions survived during World War II. Manufactured in Baltimore, Maryland as a B-26B-25-MA, by Martin, it was completed in April, 1943 and christened Flak-Bait by its first assigned pilot, James J. Farrell, who adapted the nickname of a family dog, "Flea Bait". Flak-Bait was assigned to the 449th Bombardment Squadron, 322d Bombardment Group stationed in eastern England.[1][2]

During the course of its 202 (207 if one includes its five decoy missions[2]) bombing missions over Germany as well as the Netherlands, Belgium, and France, Flak-Bait lived up to its name by being shot with over 1,000 holes, returned twice on one engine and once with an engine on fire, lost its electrical system once and its hydraulic system twice, and participated in bombing missions in support of the Normandy Landings and the Battle of the Bulge.[1][2][3]

Flak-Bait returned to the United States in December 1946. The aircraft is currently undergoing preservation and conservation at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum.[3]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Spenser, Jay P., "Flak Bait: Biography of an Intrepid Marauder," Airpower (vol. 8, no. 5, Sept. 1978), pp. 36-57.
  2. ^ a b c Crosby, David (June 12, 2006). "B-26B Marauder: American Bomber in World War II". Historynet. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  3. ^ a b "Martin B-26B-25-MA Marauder "Flak-Bait"". Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 

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