Eventually it was assigned to the 492nd Squadron of the 801st (Provisional) Bomb Group, based at Harrington Airfield, USAAF 8th Air Force, designated Station 179. The aircraft was one of several Liberators that were modified for classified missions with the OSS (Office of Strategic Services) under the code name "Operation Carpetbagger", supplying friendly underground forces and partisan fighters throughout occupied Europe.
The belly turret was removed and the 44 in (1.12 m) opening was used to drop supplies and agents, hence the opening became known as the "Joe hole". The nose turret was replaced with a "greenhouse" in which the bombardier has improved visibility allowing easier location of the drop zone at night. The markings have been de-emphasized by judicious use of glossy black anti-searchlight paint black paint, the waist windows were blacked out and teardrop blisters were added to both cockpit windows.
Because 42-51211 is listed in Missing Air Crew Reports over the English Channel on August 4, 1944, some sources state this aircraft went missing on that date. This is incorrect, as explained by Mike Stowe of Accident-Report.com:
"Not all of the Missing Air Crew Reports represent a missing aircraft, in the case of 42-51211 it was a single crew member. A waist gunner was thrown from the aircraft during a sudden evasive maneuver just off the French coast. The aircraft returned to England and continued combat operations. On October 18, 1944, with a different crew, it was involved in a taxiing accident at Glatton Airfield, USAAF 8th Air Force, designated Station 130, near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, UK."
In that accident the aircraft was completely destroyed."