TSgt FORREST T. VOSLER (Air Mission)
358th Bomber Squadron, 303d Bomber Group
U.S. Army Air Corps.
Over Bremen, Germany
20 December 1943
T/Sgt Vosler was serving radio operator-air gunner on a heavy bombardment aircraft flying a mission over Bremen, Germany, on 20 December 1943. His aircraft was severely damaged by antiaircraft fire forcing it out of formation, immediately leaving the crippled aircraft to repeated attacks by enemy fighters. A 20-mm. cannon shell exploded wounding T/Sgt. Vosler in the legs and thighs.
A second direct hit on the tail of his ship wounded the tail gunner and rendered the tail guns inoperative. T/Sgt. Vosler, knew that the aft of his aircraft was undefended and vulnerable and with grim determination, he focused his fire on that area.
Another 20-mm shell exploded, wounding T/Sgt. Vosler. Pieces of metal lodged in both eyes, impairing his vision to such an extent that he could only distinguish blurred shapes.
Displaying remarkable tenacity and courage, he kept firing his guns and declined to take first-aid treatment. The radio equipment had been rendered inoperative during the battle, and when the pilot announced that he would have to ditch, although unable to see and working entirely by touch, T/Sgt. Vosler finally got the set operating and sent out distress signals despite several lapses into unconsciousness.
When the ship ditched, T/Sgt. Vosler managed to get out on the wing by himself and hold the wounded tail gunner from slipping off until the other crewmembers could help them into the dinghy. T/Sgt. Vosler’s actions on this occasion were an inspiration to all serving with him. The extraordinary courage, coolness, and skill he displayed in the face of great odds, when handicapped by injuries that would have incapacitated the average crewmember, were outstanding.