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384th Bombardment Group (Heavy)

Aircraft:B-17
Group Emblem:
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Wing:41st Combat Bombardment Wing
Division:1st Bombardment Division
Airfield(s)
Squadrons:544th Bombardment Squadron
545th Bombardment Squadron
546th Bombardment Squadron
547th Bombardment Squadron
Tail Marking:
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Details:Trained for combat with B-17's. Moved to England, May-Jun 1943, and assigned to Eighth AF. Functioned primarily as a strategic bombardment organization, concentrating its attacks on airfields and industries in France and Germany.

Targets included airdromes at Orleans, Bricy, and Nancy; motor works at Cologne; a coking plant at Gelsenkirchen; an aircraft component parts factory at Halberstadt; steel works at Magdeburg; and ball-bearing plants at Shweinfurt.

Made a damaging raid on aircraft factories in central Germany on 11 Jan 1944 and received a DUC for the action. Took part in the campaign of heavy bombers against the German aircraft industry during Big Week, 20-25 Feb 1944.

Received another DUC for the mission of 24 Apr 1944 when the group, although crippled by heavy losses of men and planes, led the 41st Wing through almost overwhelming opposition to attack an aircraft factory and airfield at Oberpfaffenhofen. The group also bombed ports, communications centers, oil facilities, and cities, attacking such targets as oil storage plants in Leipzig and Berlin, ports at Hamburg and Emden, and marshalling yards at Duren and Mannheim.

At times it flew interdictory and support missions. Attacked installations along the coast of Normandy prior to and during the invasion in Jun 1944 and then bombed airfields and communications beyond the beachhead. Supported ground troops during the breakthrough at St Lo, 24-25 Jul, by bombing enemy strong points just beyond Allied lines. Hit tank and gun concentrations north of Eindhoven to assist the airborne assault on Holland in Sep. Struck enemy communications and fortifications during the Battle of the Bulge, Dec 1944-Jan 1945. Aided the Allied assault across the Rhine in Mar 1945 by attacking marshalling yards, railroad junctions, and bridges to cut off enemy supplies.

Remained in the theater after the war as part of United States Air Forces in Europe. Carried American soldiers to Casablanca for return to the US, returned Greek soldiers to their homeland, and moved Allied troops to Germany. Inactivated in France on 28 Feb 1946.

    Commanders:
  • Col Budd J Peaslee, 2 Jan 1943
  • Col Lucius K Lacey, c. 6 Sep 1943
  • Col Dale O Smith, 23 Nov 1943
  • Lt Col Theodore E Milton, 24 Oct 1944
  • Lt Col Robert W Fish, 17 Jun 1945

Air Force Combat Units of World War II, Maurer, Maurer: USAF, 1986

Accident Reports:Number of Non-Combat-Related Accident reports for this group: