Lorenzo G. Smith, Jr. was born on July 16, 1922. He served in the 849th Bomber Squadron, 490th Bomber Group, Heavy as a 1st Lieutenant and Co-Pilot of the B-17 #43-38078 "Little Red's Wagon" aircraft. On April 19, 1945, during a combat mission at Aussig, Czechoslovakia, the plane had lost its number two engine, dropped out of the group formation and the crew was ordered to bail out. However, Lt. Norvell (pilot) and the engineer stayed with plane, jettisoned the bombs and flew eighty miles before they parachuted.
The rest of the aircraft crew was then captured and all members were taken to the Konopiste castle area, to the former hotel "Zamecka", where at that time was the headquarters of the SS-Truppenübungsplatz Beneschau / Böhmen. There they also met during the interrogation with the remaining members of the other bomber, B-17 43-38701, who was also shot down that day. Shortly before midnight on April 19, 1945 the SS troopers took their bodies away from the castle in a truck. These men were prisoners of war and should have been protected under the rules of the Geneva Convention, but they were murdered and buried in a mass grave.
On January 15, 1947, the bodies of the eight murder victims were exhumed by US troops and was transfered to the Ardennes American Cemetery at Neuville en Condros, Belgium. 1LT Smith's final resting place is in the Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA.
Source of information: www.findagrave.com, www.lovecpokladu.cz, The Boys in the B-17: 8Th Air Force Combat Stories of WWII
Source of image: www.ancestry.com