On the 23rd. April 1945 a few short weeks before the war in Europe ended, a Boeing B17-G of the 534th. Bombardment Squadron of the United States 8th. Army Air Force was flying from its base at RAF Ridgewell, Essex carrying 31 passengers and crew for a weeks leave in Northen Ireland.
In thick cloud it crashed into the hillside of North Barrulle, Isle of Man. All 31 occupants of the aircraft were killed instantly.
On Sunday 23rd. April 2017 a small group of Manx Scouts from ‘Viking’ Troop, 1st. Malew Scout Group and ‘Wolf Pack’ – Southern Explorer Scout Unit, leaders and parents hiked up to the crash site.
The Hike was organised by Malew Scout, Carter Melnick. Carter is from the United States and was formerly with BSA Troop 39, Forest Hill, North Carolina. He is now living in the Isle of Man with his family.
Whilst living in the Isle of Man Carter is still working towards his Eagle Scout Award (The American version of the Queen’s Scout Award) To this end he researched the history of the event and did a presentation to fellow Scouts. He also planned the hike route.
At the crash site the Scouts raised a new American flag after which Carter then read out the names of the 31 casualties before ending the remembrance with the poem,
They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old,
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.