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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 514: 1,307 bombers and 746 fighters are dispatched to strategic targets in Germany; 15 bombers are lost:

1. Of 358 B-17s, 181 hit Hamburg oil refineries, 50 hit Bremen oil refineries, 23 hit Nordhof Airfield, 22 hit Ostend, Belgium coastal defenses, 14 hit Einswarden and 7 hit targets of opportunity; they claim 0-4-2 Luftwaffe aircraft; 8 B-17s are lost, 8 damaged beyond repair and 196 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA, 8 WIA and 63 MIA. Escort is provided by 234 P-47s and P-51s; they claim 38-1-5 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air and 9-0-1 on the ground; 2 P-47s and 3 P-51s are lost (pilots are MIA) and 2 P-47s and 2 P-51s are damaged.

2. Of 425 B-27s, 221 hit Peenemunde, 110 hit Anklam Airfield and 70 hit Anklam aircraft factories; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 3 B-17s are lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 94 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA, 2 WIA and 40 MIA. Escort is provided by 223 of 250 P-51s; they claim 4-0-4 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground; 9 P-51s are lost (pilots are MIA) and 1 is damaged beyond repair; 1 pilot is KIA.

3. Of 446 B-24s, 148 hit Rostock aviation factories, 89 hit Kiel, 88 hit Schwerin aviation factories, 71 hit Wismar aviation factories, 12 hit Schlutup, 11 hit Warien and 1 hits a target of opportunity; 4 B-24s are lost and 114 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA, 2 WIA and 40 MIA. Escort is provided by 209 P-38s and P-51s; 1 P-51 is lost and 1 P-38 is damaged; 1 pilot is KIA.

4. Of 78 B-24s, 39 hit Husum Airfield and 29 hit Hemmingstedt/Heide oil refinery without loss.

Mission 515: The first APHRODITE mission is flown using 4 radio-controlled war weary B-17s as flying bombs; targets are Mimoyecques, Siracourt, Watten, and Wizernes V-weapon sites but none are hit; 1 drone B-17 crashes killing 1 crew. Escort is provided by 16 P-47s and 16 P-51s.

Mission 516: In France, 154 B-17s and 36 fighters are dispatched to hit V-weapon sites in the Pas de Calais and coastal defenses at Middelkerke and Gravelines:

1. Of 95 B-24s, 24 hit the Pas de Calais, 12 hit Achiet Airfield, 11 hit Gravelines, 11 hit Middelkerke, 6 hit Lens marshaling yard and 6 hit Villy/Montigne marshaling yard; 17 B-24s are damaged.

2. Of 59 B-17s, 13 hit targets of opportunity, 12 hit Lille/Vendeville Airfield and 11 hit a bridge at Gravelines; 12 B-17s are damaged. Escort for the two groups above is provided by 35 P-47s and P-51s.

67 of 69 P-47s fly a fighter-bomber mission against Plantlunne Airfield; they claim 30-0-5 aircraft on the ground; 1 P-47 is lost (pilot is MIA), 1 is damaged beyond repair and 8 damaged.

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