WWII Gunner Bill Pace

To be able to sit down with one of our Greatest Generation’s heroes is an extreme honor.

92-year-old Bill Pace served as a gunner aboard a B-17 during WWII. His job was to man the guns from a ball turret on the belly of the plane. Bill shared with us the story of the night he earned his Purple Heart. When Bill’s bombing mission over Germany came under attack, another B-17 capsized mid-air and crashed onto his own, splitting the flying fortress in half. Unable to properly wear a parachute because of the confined space of the ball turret, Bill jumped from 38,000 feet into enemy territory without an oxygen mask and only half strapped into his chute.

Upon landing, he was badly physically beaten by the German villagers who had watched him and his comrades fall from the sky. He narrowly avoided being executed, and spent the rest of the war in two German POW camps. Most of the other crew members died during the raid.

Today, Bill is very active in the veteran community of Bonita Springs. We are incredibly grateful to Bob Gillette, one of our Executive Producers, for connecting us with this incredible gentleman.

A big thank you to the Trianon Hotel at Bonita Bay for hosting us for our week of filming. Your accommodations were wonderful.

To see a trailer for the film and other production stories, visit www.enlistedfilm.com.