Sgt Edward J. Potkay, tail gunner of the B-17 42-97136, took off from Station 106 Grafton Underwood, Northamptonshire, UK on a bombing mission over a suspect Sottevast installation under construction after a 0400 briefing. The plane is one of 307 others that plan to drop 1261 tons of bombs. The plane successfully dropped its bombs on target but came under heavy flak fire at 1051, taking a direct hit on its left wing. This started a fire in the cockpit which spread rapidly to the rest of the fuselage. The plane started spiraling out of control before a violent explosion killed everyone on board. Their bodies were found around the Rocheville church. They were initially buried in the Cherbourg cemetery on April 29th 1944.