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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 481: 1,394 bombers and 476 fighters are dispatched to hit targets in Germany and tactical targets in France; 3 bombers and 3 fighters are lost:

1. 644 B-24s are dispatched, in conjunction with Ninth Air Force and RAF Bomber Command, to bomb enemy equipment and troop concentrations in support of the assault by the British Second Army in the Caen area; 249 hit Solier, 146 hit Frenouville, 139 hit Troarns, 23 hit Hubert la Folie and 12 hit the Mezidon marshaling yard; 1 B-24 is lost, 2 are damaged beyond repair and 182 are damaged. 90 RAF Spitfires fly uneventful support for the B-24s.

2. Of 291 B-17s, 107 hit the Kiel port area, 55 hit the Hemminstedt oil refinery and 54 hit Cuxhaven; 21 B-17s are damaged. Escort is provided by 48 P-38s and 84 P-51s without loss.

3. Of 459 B-17s, 377 hit the Peenemunde experimental establishment, scientific HQ at Zinnowitz, and marshaling yards at Stralsund; 3 B-17s are lost and 64 damaged. Escort is provided by 297 P-38s and P-51s; they claim 21-0-12 Luftwaffe aircraft; 3 P-51s are lost (2 pilot are MIA) and 1 is damaged beyond repair.

25 B-24s fly CARPETBAGGER missions in France during the night; 1 B-24 collides with an RAF aircraft over France and is lost.

Source: THE ARMY AIR FORCES IN WORLD WAR II: COMBAT CHRONOLOGY, 1941-1945 by Carter / Mueller, the Office of Air Force History,

Mission Reports

Carpetbagger Casualty Report
Donald C Boyde , ASN# 0-703598, Navigator; of Beaver, PA: KIA - MACR 7551

William J Hovanec , ASN# 35533579, Radio Operator; of Youngstown, OH: KIA - MACR 7551

Arnold Marinoff , ASN# 32787037, Dispatcher; of Brooklyn, NY: KIA - MACR 7551

David R Michelson , ASN# 0-807758, Pilot; of Daytona Beach, FL: KIA - MACR 7551

Duncan L Patterson , ASN# 12072733, Engineer; of Rochester, NY: KIA - MACR 7551

John P Shaw Jr, ASN# 0-551161, Co-Pilot; of Haddon Heights, NJ: KIA - MACR 7551

Melvin Weiss , ASN# 0-695572, Bombardier; of New York, NY: KIA - MACR 7551

Enoch K Wooten Jr, ASN# 34604500, Tail Gunner; of Yadkinville, NC: KIA - MACR 7551

Joseph P Bova , ASN# 0-703846, Navigator; of Cattaraugus Cty, NY: KIA - MACR 5911

Fred H Lowery , ASN# 18163220, Engineer; of McIntosh Cty, OK: KIA - MACR 5911

source: The Carpetbaggers http://www.801492.org/
303BG Mission Report - Target: Experimental V-Rocket Station, Peenemunde, Germany. Crews Dispatched: 39 (358BS - 10, 359th - 9, 360th - 10, 427th - 10). Length of Mission: 8 hours, 40 minutes. Bomb Load: 10 x 500 lb G.P. M43 bombs. Bombing Altitudes: Group A - 25,100 ft; Group B - 23,300 ft. Ammo Fired: 0 rounds.

Peenemunde, Germany was the target. Thirty-nine 303rd BG(H) aircraft, plus a 305BG PFF B-17, took off to visually bomb the V-weapon experimental station. Col. Kermit D. Stevens led the 41st CBW-A which included the 303rd BG(H) lead and low Group formations. Peenemunde was important in the production of high concentration hydrogen-peroxide.

Thirty-six aircraft dropped 360 500-lb. G.P. M43 bombs from 25,100 and 23,300 feet. All the way to the target there was practically a solid undercast. In the target area it broke to 3/10. Visibility was 15 to 20 miles. Bombing results were difficult to determine due to smoke from previous bombing. Most crews, however, claimed good results. Many bomb bursts were spotted in the target area and explosions were seen in the built-up area along the east coast. With considerable fire and smoke target area buildings were hit. One aircraft dropped twenty 500-lb. bombs on the marshalling yard at Stralsund, Germany, and one dropped ten 500-lb. bombs on Finnowitz, Germany. Five 303rd BG(H) B-17s failed to join the 303rd BG(H) formation and bombed with other Groups.

No enemy aircraft attacked the 303rd BG(H), but a few were seen in the distance. Friendly fighter support was very good. Moderate to intense and fairly accurate flak appeared at the target. Chaff had some beneficial effect. One Fortress sustained major damage and three minor damage. There were no casualties.

More info on this mission at the 303BG website

source: 303rd Bomb Group web page http://www.303rdbg.com/
306BG Mission Reportsource: 306th Bombardment Group website www.306bg.org/
34th BG Mission Report - Mission #37 Prenouville. Command Pilot: TAVASTI. 43 planes were dispatched. 31 planes dropped 88.5 tons on the primary target and 12 planes dropped 33.6 tons on targets of opportunity. 43 Credit Sorties. source: 34th Bomb Group Mission List compiled by Gary L. Ferrell http://valortovictory.tripod.com
351BG Mission Report - 34 aircraft were sent on this mission. source: 351st Bomb Group web page http://www.351st.org/ken.harbour
384BG Mission Report - 384th BG Mission Number 160A. Primary Target: Rocket R&D - CROSSBOW (V-Weapons) Peenemunde, Germany

22 aircraft assigned to this mission: Completed Mission - 18. Scrubbed - 2. Ground Spare, Unused - 2

source: 384th Bomb Group web page http://384thBombGroup.com/
384BG Mission Report - 384th BG Mission Number 160B. Primary Target: Rocket R&D - CROSSBOW (V-Weapons) Zinnowitz, Germany

19 aircraft assigned to this mission: Completed Mission - 19

source: 384th Bomb Group web page http://384thBombGroup.com/
388BG Mission Report - On this day, the 1st Air Division was assigned targets in the Peenemunde area, the 2nd Air Division was assigned the Caen area of France, while the 3rd Air Division was sent to Kiel. The 388th furnished two Groups. The A Group was the high Group in the 45th A Combat Wing while the B Group was the high Group in the 45th B Combat Wing.

17 a/c of the A Group and 18 a/c of the B Group were airborne between 0428 and 0501 hours. 1 a/c from each Group aborted. Formations were effected and the briefed course to the target was followed. After the Wing left England, 10/10th clouds prevailed over the entire route. The PFF equipment in the lead a/c of the A Group was not functioning and the Wing did not get into position to bomb on the markers of the preceding Wing. Our A Group returned with their bombs. The B Group attacked the primary target with bombs away at 0842 hours from 25,300 feet.

No enemy fighters were seen. Flak over the target was moderate.

All of our a/c returned to base by 1123 hours.

source: 388th Bomb Group web page http://www.388bg.info
392nd Bomb Group Mission Reportsource: 392nd Bomb Group web page http://www.b24.net/missions/
398th Bomb Group Mission reportsource: 398th Bomb Group web page http://www.398th.org/
401BG / 613BS Mission Report - The 613th flew 9 aircraft. Weather was described as solid undercast to a point halfway across Denmark and at the target 4/10 undercast with broken clouds. Bombing was visual and strike photos disclosed full coverage of MPIs. No enemy air opposition was encountered and flak was meager to moderate over the target, fair to good for accuracy. The following crews took part in the mission:- Hanson, McKeon, Etters, Connolly, Hammond.source: 613th Bombardment Squadron History
401BG / 612BS Mission Report - After four consecutive days to Munich, Germany the Group changed directions and went to bomb Peenemunde, Germany on the Baltic Sea. The 401st was to furnish the lead and low box on this date, 18th July 1944. Each box consisted of 18 aircraft each and the Group was leading the 1st Bomb Division in the 94th A CBW. This proved to be a very successful mission with CAVU weather for bombing which found Captain Kuenning, the Group's and Air Forces hottest bombardier, getting another shack for the lead Group while the Low Box bombed with good results also. Flak was only encountered at the target and this was of moderate and fairly accurate variety. Battle damage was sustained by seven of our aircraft but it was not serious. All of our aircraft re-turned safely.source: 612th Bombardment Squadron History
401BG / 614BS Mission Report - After four attacks on Munich the 1st Air Division, with the 36 401st aircraft in the lead position under the command of Colonel Rogner, set out to attack the experimental base at Peenemunde on the Baltic Coast. Besides the testing of jets and rockets the base also produced large quantities of Hydrogen peroxide, the fuel for many of the new type of aircraft and rocket, so it was classed as a very important target. The weather was clear and ideal for visual bombing, and the lead aircraft carried one of the best bombardiers in the 8th Air Force, Capt. Arnold Kuenning, who got another "shack" on this occasion. Flak was encountered over the target and proved to be moderate and fairly accurate causing damage to a number of aircraft. After the mission the Group received a commendation from General Spaatz, General Doolittle and General Williams on what they described as the finest example of precision bombing they had seen. Crews: PFF Ship 638 Gruman, 42-97602 La Fevor, 42-102394 Lipka, 42-97145 Harasym, 42-97872 Rozzell, 42-107151 Mercer, 42-97395 Koons, 42-97780 Taylor, 42-97869 Carroll, 42-102659 Risher, 43-37551 Cammack, 42-107084 Fisette, 42-31369 Kovach.source: 614th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
401BG / 615BS Mission Report - The mission briefing was at 0100 hrs for 36 crews, which included four spare crews, and after the take-off time had been put back twice, the 36 aircraft taking part on this mission were airborne by 0533 hrs. While the 2nd Air Division attacked tactical targets in France and the 3rd Air Division attacked oil targets in Germany the 1st Air Division went after the Luftwaffe experimental station at Peenemunde. This was where they conducted trials with the V-1 and produced hydrogen peroxide for jet aircraft and the V-Z. Strike photos disclosed the accuracy of the bombing on the MPI. For Captain A.C. Kuenning, 615th Lead Bombardier who flew with Colonel H.E. Rogner, who led the Division, it was another "Shack" or "bull's eye". Captain R.F. Causey, Lead Navigator, again displayed his special talents for taking the Lead aircraft directly on to the I.P. and the MPI for the bombardier. The 401st furnished the lead and Low Boxes of 18 aircraft each for the 94th "A" CBW. Meagre to moderate flak was encountered over the target, it was the type referred to as black flak. Fighter support was described as unusually effective. Seven of the Group's aircraft received minor battle damage. The following crews flew on this mission: Wingard, Duckworth, McIlraith, Haskett, Ferdyn, Konze.source: 615th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
44BG Mission Report - With the plan of aiding the British troops in their big push in the Caen area of France, the Group sent 38 aircraft (no PFFs) over to bomb troop concentrations in the Troarn area. Both the 67th and 68th sent 13 ships each and 12 by the 506th. The 67th's Lt, Ward led the 3rd section which attacked the last resort target of Mezidon, France, and strike photos indicated that good bombing resulted - good to excellent. General Johnson led the first wave. Intense flak, and accurate to boot, was encountered. Again, Lt. Herring was forced to turn back due to mechanical malfunctions. Lt. Duwe sustained slight flak damage; the 506th had 10 ships damaged even with their lead position. Lt. Leonard of the 506th was lead pilot and Gen. Leon Johnson was in his ship. 1st Lt. Cloxton, Supply officer of the 67th, returned to duty while J. Van Koten, 1st Lt. was assigned to the 467th BG. A second mission for the day was planned for Rotterdam, Holland for their oil storage facilities but it was later scrubbed.source: 44th Bomb Group web page http://www.8thairforce.com/44thbg
446th Bomb Group Mission Report
Caen, France

43 planes in 4 squadrons bombed in support of ground troops with good results.

source: 446th Bomb Group www.446bg.com
447BG Mission Report - Briefing was at 0200 hours. The target were oil targets in the Kiel, Germany area on the Baltic side of the Danish peninsula. The weapons were 500 lb. GP bombs and take off started at 0430 hours. As the Group reached the German coast, the bombing altitude of 24,000 feet was reached. Scouting Forces relayed that the target was cloud covered, so a decision was made to attack a coastal target at Cuxhaven on the north side of the Danish peninsula. There were no losses and landing started at 1100 hours. source: 447 Bomb Group Association http://www.447bg.com
457th Bomb Group Mission Link source: 457 Bomb Group http://www.457thbombgroup.org
467th Bomb Group Mission reportsource: 467th Bomb Group web page http://www.467bg.com/
486th Bomb Group Flimsy reportsource: 486th Bomb Group web page http://www.486th.org/
492nd Bomb Group Mission Linksource: 492 Bomb Group Mission Links http://www.492ndbombgroup.com
91st BG / 323nd BS Mission Report - Aircraft works at Peenemunde, Germany was attacked. This is considered an important aviation center for the enemy. Bombing results were good and the target is listed as partially destroyed. Ten ships from 323rd squadron participated. All ships returned safely to base. There was one abortive. Ship #7563 aborted. No. 2 engine was exceedingly rough, threw oil and oil pressure dropped to 40. Smoke poured out of engine. Engine was feathered while at 6,000 ft. Climb had not been started. Ground inspection showed one of the cylinders was badly damaged by failure of piston rod. No. 2 engine blew a cylinder. On this mission, enemy flak was found intense and accurate. source: 323rd Bomb Squadron / 91BG Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/
91st BG / 322nd BS Mission Report - Peenemunde. The hydrogen peroxide plant in the large establishment at Peenemunde was the primary target for this mission. Lt. Suther and Lt, Malone led the high group of this A CBW which bombed slightly short but with several direct hits on the MPI. source: 322rd Bomb Squadron / 91BG Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/
91st BG / 324th BS Mission Report - Target: Peenemunde. Photos show that our A Group attacked target with some hits on M.P.I., but with main concentration short on Eastern side. B Group had more hits on M.P.I.. Target was well hit and terrific fires and damage resulted. Our missing A/C 467 was last seen in the target area heading Southeast with one engine feathered, under control in a gradual descent. Flak was rather accurate. No E/A opposition.source: 91st BG / 324th BS Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/

Non-Combat Accident Reports

Aircraft: B-17G (#42-31382).
Organization: 729BS / 452BG of Deopham Green, Norfolk.
Pilot: [parked aircraft].
Notes: destroyed by fire on ground.
Location: Deopham Green, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-47D (#42-26271).
Organization: 360FS / 356FG of Martlesham Heath, Suffolk.
Pilot: Leathers, Wayne E.
Notes: mid air collision.
Location: Woodbridge BS/1mi NE England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-47D (#42-26300).
Organization: 61FS / 56FG of Boxted, Essex.
Pilot: [parked aircraft].
Notes: ground accident fire.
Location: Boxted, Essex England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-47D (#42-26565).
Organization: 360FS / 356FG of Martlesham Heath, Suffolk.
Pilot: Green, Shirley J.
Notes: killed in mid air collision.
Location: Woodbridge BS/1mi NE England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-47D (#42-75094).
Organization: Hq / 3BD of Troston, Suffolk.
Pilot: Dwyer, Lawrence P Jr.
Notes: crash landing engine failure.
Location: Snetterton Heath/ W S138 England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B (#43-12171).
Organization: 555FTS / 496FTG of Goxhill, Lincolnshire.
Pilot: Maclay, Alfred B Jr.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Goxhill, Lincolnshire England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B15 (#42-106914).
Organization: 328FS / 352FG of Bodney, Norfolk.
Pilot: Powell, Robert H Jr.
Notes: take off accident due to engine failure.
Location: Bodney, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B5 (#43-6845).
Organization: 358FS / 355FG of Steeple Morden, Cambridgeshire.
Pilot: Harrington, James C.
Notes: crashed belly landing.
Location: Honington, Suffolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/

Mission Stats (Targets, Aircraft, Casualties, etc.)

Mission "8th AF Photo Reconnaissance "
Photo, weather recon; scouting
July 18, 1944

Primary source for mission statistics: Mighty Eighth War Diary by Roger A. Freeman
Bomb TonnageEnemy
(on gnd)
Mission Targets

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weather7 A/C
weather2 A/C
photo30 A/C
weather2 A/C
Aircraft Groups

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OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)
7th Photographic Group (Recon)
802nd Reconnaissance Group
Aircraft Losses

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OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)