February 20, 1944

Coming off bombing a target in Europe, 1st Lt. William R. Lawley Jr.’s Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress is attacked by 20 enemy fighters, is heavily damaged, and falls out of formation. With eight wounded crew members, a dead copilot, one engine on fire, and severe personal injuries, Lawley brings the bomber under control. Two crew members are too severely wounded to bail out, so Lawley attempts to land the aircraft. He evades additional enemy fighters, remains at his post, and refuses first aid until he collapses and is revived by the bombardier. Coming over the English coast, one engine runs out of fuel, and another starts to burn. Lawley manages to crash land at a fighter base. He is later awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions and goes on to complete a career in the Air Force.