Awards of the Distinguished Flying Cross

2 December 1944

Headquarters 1st Bombardment Division
Office of the Commanding General
APO 557

2 December 1944

No. 317

Awards of an Oak Leaf Cluster to Distinguished Flying Cross Section II

II. Under the provisions of the Army Regulations 600-45, 22 September 1943, as amended and pursuant to authority contained in letter, HQ Eighth Air Force, File 200.6, 4 August 1944, subject, “Awards and Decorations”, an OAK LEAF CLUSTER is awarded to the following named Officer, for wear with the DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS previously awarded [Editor's note: presumed missing text on available copy].

PHILIP H. STAHLMAN, JR., 0-699463, First Lieutenant, Air Corps, United States Army. For extraordinary achievement while serving as Co-Pilot of a B-17 airplane on a bombing mission over Germany, 15 October 1944. On this date the airplane in which Lieutenant Stahlman was flying was struck by a direct burst of flak. A shell pierced the chin turret and exploded in the nose, killing the Bombardier immediately and completely destroying the nose section. All instruments except the altimeter and a magnetic compass were rendered inoperative. An icy blast of wind coming through the open nose compelled the Pilot and Lieutenant Stahlman to descend to a lower altitude. The nose covering peeled back as a result of the explosion and covered almost all of the windows, making visibility very limited. Lieutenant Stahlman went through the airplane, informing the crew to prepare to bail out. Upon returning to the cockpit he observed that the Pilot was working desperately to maintain control, which was becoming increasingly difficult due to the suction of air through the open nose. He immediately went to the controls and aided immeasurably in completing the return flight to home base, despite the numerous difficulties involved. The courage, coolness and skill displayed by Lieutenant Stahlman reflect the highest credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of the United States. Entered military service in Pennsylvania.

By command of Major General TURNER

Brigadier General, U. S. Army,
Chief of Staff

Lieut. Colonel, A.G.D,
Adjutant General


GO576, this headquarters c/s, given distribution "H" only.


The above is an extract of 398th personnel from General Order 317.

Transcribed October 2007 by Elaine Stahlman Jurs.

See also:

  1. 398th Individual Awards - an index to all 398th Individual Awards
  2. 398th Bomb Group Distinguished Flying Cross Awards List
  3. 398th Bomb Group Oak Leaf Cluster to the DFC Awards List

If you have photos of the awards presentation or have citations not listed, or if you are aware of errors in our listing, please contact Jeff Vicha, our 398th Awards Coordinator.