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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 508: 1,291 bombers and 432 fighters are dispatched to attack airfields, bridges and tactical targets in France; 5 bombers and 4 fighters are lost:

1. 193 of 195 B-17s drop 2,281 containers of supplies to French Resistance forces (Operation Buick) at four locations in SE France, i.e., Chalon-Sur-Saone, the Savoie area, Haute-Savoie and W of Geneva; 5 B-17s are damaged; 3 P-51 groups furnish escort.

2. 76 of 100 B-17s bomb Tours Airfield; 1 B-17 is lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 5 damaged; 6 airmen are WIA and 10 MIA. Escort is flown by 51 of 53 P-51s; 2 P-51s are lost and 2 damaged beyond repair.

3. 400 of 416 B-17s attack 5 airfields and a railway bridge in the area S and SW of Paris; 112 hit Orleans/Bricy Airfield, 108 hit Chateaudun Airfield, 59 hit Melun Airfield, 58 hit Chartres Airfield, 36 hit Chartres Bridge, 15 hit targets of opportunity, and 12 hit Etampes/Mondesir Airfield; 3 B-17s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 32 damaged; 9 airmen are KIA and 27 MIA. Escort is provided by 138 P-38s and P-51s; 3 P-51s are damaged and 1 pilot is KIA.

4. 284 of 389 B-24s is dispatched to bomb targets in the Paris environs; bad weather causes 100+ aborts; 66 hit Rouen, 47 hit Melun Airfield, 44 hit Nogent Bridge, 33 hit targets of opportunity, 29 hit Orleans/Bricy Airfield, 24 hit Montereau Birdge, 12 hit Nanteuil Bridge, 12 hit Villeroche Airfield, 11 hit Coulommiers Bridge, and 6 hit Chartres Airfield; 1 B-24 is lost, 3 are damaged beyond repair and 85 damaged; 20 airmen are MIA. Escort is provided by 127 P-47s and P-51s; they claim 3-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft on the ground; 2 P-47s are lost, 1 P-51 is damaged beyond repair and 3 P-47s are damaged.

5. 191 B-24s, sent against 8 V-weapon sites in NW France, runs afoul of bad weather which causes multiple aborts; 61 of the planes manage to bomb 3 sites; 5 B-24s are damaged; escort is provided by 81 of 84 P-47s.

Mission 509: 6 of 6 B-17s drop leaflets on France and Belgium during the night.

In Aug, HQ 95th Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) moves from Halesowrth to Ketteringham, England.

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

Mission Reports

303BG Mission Report - Target: Airfield at Orleans/Bricy, France. Crews Dispatched: 39 (358BS - 10, 359th - 10, 360th - 9, 427th - 10). Length of Mission: 5 hours, 55 minutes. Bomb Load: 10 x 500 lb G.P. M43 bombs. Bombing Altitudes: 20,900, 20,000 & 19,000 ft. Ammo Fired: 0 rounds.

Poor visibility at Molesworth delayed the take-off for two hours, but weather had no other effect on this mission. There were no clouds over the target and visibility was unlimited. No aircraft returned early.

Thirty-seven aircraft dropped 390 500-lb. G.P. M43 bombs. Two aircraft flew with other Groups and dropped 20 500-lb. M43 bombs on the Tours Airdrome. Bombing results were effective. There was no flak and no enemy aircraft. Friendly fighter support was good and all aircraft returned safely to Molesworth.

More info on this mission at the 303BG website

source: 303rd Bomb Group web page http://www.303rdbg.com/
34th BG Mission Report - Mission #48 Foret de St. Saens, Val des Joucs, Betreville, St. Oun. Command Pilot: TAVASTI. Buzz bomb targets. 39 planes were dispatched. 24 planes dropped 54 tons on the primary target and 15 failed to bomb. 24 Credit Sorties. source: 34th Bomb Group Mission List compiled by Gary L. Ferrell http://valortovictory.tripod.com
351BG Mission Report - 36 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 169. Primary Target: Bridge - Chartres, France

42 aircraft assigned to this mission: Completed Mission - 36. Aborted - 1. Scrubbed - 1. Spare, Returned As Briefed - 1. Ground Spare, Unused - 2. Crashed - 1
42-97072 Harris, Robert - Crashed in Allied Territory HGrp Flying Spare; at 1145 hrs, one mile due west of Deenethorpe, plane crashed and exploded from causes unknown; sal; Robert Harris.

source: 384th Bomb Group web page http://384thBombGroup.com/
388BG Mission Report - The B 17's of the 3rd Air Division were sent on a special mission deep into France. The 388th put up three Groups plus the lead squadron of a third in the 45th A Combat Wing. The A Group led with the B Group as low, and the C Group was led by the 388th with the 96th BG as the high squadron, and the 452nd BG as the low squadron.

All of our a/c were airborne between 0940 and 1008 hours. There were no abortions. After assembly all aircraft flew across the Channel and into France on the briefed course to the target area. Our a/c carried Item "C" 300 pound projectiles with supplies to the Maquis. The drop was carried out on a visual run with the projectiles away at 1504 hours.- Strike photos show excellent results..

We had excellent fighter support on this mission. General Kissner, 3rd Bomb Division Chief of Staff, accompanied this mission.

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 flying 9 aircraft in the Lead and High Squadron positions. Bombing results of the Low Box was fair, the MPI being to the left of the aiming point. Weather was 2/10 to 3/10ths in the target area, tops at 2,500 to 4,000 ft. Boxes returned individually. There was no air opposition and flak encountered was meager and inaccurate and at the target area only. Crews participating were: Shackleford, Kuta, Lippert, Lockhart, Thomason, Jennings, Fox, Hanson, Irwin.source: 613th Bombardment Squadron History
401BG / 612BS Mission Report - For a start in August the Group went out to bomb a tactical target, the airdrome at Chartres, France. The 401st was to furnish three 12 aircraft boxes for the 94th "A" CBW on this date, August 1st. The purpose of the bombing was to cover the landing ground and runways with craters (posthole them) and so the M.P.I.s were on the runway areas. The target turned up visually and all three groups went in for a visual run. The Lead Box synchronized on its M.P.I. but an electrical malfunction caused the bombs not to release. Then the bombs released themselves unexpectedly about 3 minutes after the target and hit harmlessly in a field. The Low and Lead Boxes both bombed okay obtaining fair results in relation to their M.P.I. The whole trip was uneventful in way of enemy opposition with the exception of meager and exceedingly accurate flak encountered in the target area. This flak caused no damage to the returning aircraft although apparently it caused the loss of two aircraft when one took a direct hit cutting off its tail and this tail hit another aircraft flying close formation and both went down colliding again. This mid-air collision was the first in the Group's operational or training experience. Both crews were from the 615th Squadron.source: 612th Bombardment Squadron History
401BG / 614BS Mission Report - The Group furnished 36 aircraft in three Boxes of twelve to form the 94th "A" CBW under the leadership of Major Maupin. The target was an airfield in France, Chartres, which was being made ready to take jet aircraft. The runways were the main target but the whole field was Post-Holed to make it unsuitable for aircraft. This meant cratering the whole of the area. Captain V.K. Cammack led the 614th as the High Box with the other two Boxes ready to bomb as he released on a visual run. The bombardier then synchronized on its MPI but an electrical fault caused the bombs to hang up. About three minutes after passing over the target the bombs released themselves and landed harmlessly in the open countryside. The Low and Lead Boxes bothed bombed their MPI's with fair results. Meager but accurate flak was encountered over the target. Crews: 44-6132 Gruman, 42-31891 Cammack, 42-97478 Filemyr, 42-102957 Rozzell, 42-102659 Evans, 42-97869 La Fevor, 42-31963 Taylor, 42-102394 Finney, 42-107151 Silverstein. This was Lt. Filemyr's first mission since bailing out over Spain on 19th June and returning to Deenethorpe.source: 614th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
401BG / 615BS Mission Report - The Group was briefed for an operational mission at 0630 hrs, and, after some delays, they were all airborne by 1150 hrs. The weather ship was IY-K. Ten minutes after the last aircraft had taken off a B-17 crashed just outside the base near the Weldon - Stamford road. The bomb load exploded on impact killing all the crew and it was some time before its identity became known. It turned out to be an aircraft from 544th Sqdn. that had just taken off from its base at Grafton Underwood, home of the 384th B.G. (H). The 401st furnished three 12 ship Boxes with Major J. Maupin as the Wing Leader and Capt. V.K. Cammack and Lt. J.F. Irwin as the other Box Leaders. Bombing was fair by two Boxes and poor by the other. Air opposition was encountered, and meagre inaccurate flak was encountered at the target, yet one lucky burst resulted in two ships going down. Aircraft IY-Q, Serial No. 42-39873, piloted by Lt. G.J. Melofchik, was hit by flak and collided with IY-D, Serial No. 43-37859, piloted by Lt. R.B. Sproul, cutting its tail assembly off. Both ships went down and only one chute was seen to come out of the tail section of one of the aircraft, but as far as the later records show there were no survivors from either crew. The 615th loading list was as follows: Stegemann, Melofchik (KIA) Wingard, Duckworth, Heenan, Mann, Sproul (KIA), Ferdyn, Konze.source: 615th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
44BG Mission Report - Corbie Railway bridge was the ordered Primary today, with the 44th BG leading the 14th Combat Wing. Although the Group put up 12 ships each from the three Squadrons (no 66th PFFs) only the first section (67th) bombed. Adverse weather in the form of 9/10th cloud cover obscured the target denied us the opportunity to attack the Primary. However, the first squadron did drop on a last target of opportunity, a railway junction at 4936N - 0040E, but with not too good results. The second section of 12 68th planes failed to bomb due to the weather and mechanical trouble in the lead ship. The third section of 12 506th ships did not bomb and brought their "eggs" (8 x 1000 lb) back to base except for one plane that became separated from the formation and who hit a target of opportunity. No enemy resistance was encountered and we incurred no losses. Bombing results were rated from fair to good. 2nd Lt. Bartlett promoted to 1st Lt. effective 29 July. 1st Lt. Kyle E. Jones assigned from 50th Sta. Comp. Sq., and was assigned duties as Asst Sq. S-2 under Lt. Owens. EM promotions: To M/Sgt. Otis E. Nelson; to T/Sgt. Frank J. Chowanski; to S/Sgt. Martin J. Vodinelich; to Sgt. Kenneth R. Laughton. Combat crews assigned: To 66th Sq. 1st Lt. A.F. Leghorn and Capt. H.S. Kimball, Jr. To 67th Sq.: 2nd Lt. S.C. Harris. To 68th Sq. 2nd Lt. R.M. Boggs. To 506th Sq. 2nd Lt. O.K. Hill and 2nd Lt. Hal C. Tyree, Jr.source: 44th Bomb Group web page http://www.8thairforce.com/44thbg
446th Bomb Group Mission Report
Orleans/Bricy/Melun, France

Several airfields and oil tanks were bombed with fair to good results.

source: 446th Bomb Group www.446bg.com
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 / 322nd BS Mission Report - Chartres A/F. This squadron furnished 12 crews which flew as the High Group of a 36 ship CBWE, attacking the A/F at Chartres. It is believed that the GAF is preparing this field for the use of jet-propelled ME-262's. Hangar and dispersal areas were well covered with hits and the landing field received numerous bursts At the target the flak was meager to moderate but accurate for the high group. Lt. Arthur L. Stevens' A/C #879 was observed receiving a direct hit under the pilot's compartment. This A/C went down in a tight spin and was seen to crash. Four chutes were seen to open. Lt. Brown flying A/C 298 aborted over mid-channel due to failure of generators and vacuum system. Lt. Hamilton in A/C #996 jettisoned his bombs just before the I.P. due to mechanical failure of #3 engine, leaving the formation at that time and returning home. source: 322rd Bomb Squadron / 91BG Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/
91st BG / 324th BS Mission Report - Target: Chartres Airfield Photos show that the assigned MPI's on the field itself were not hit but hangars and dispersal areas were well covered. A/C #879 was hit by flak over target and was seen to spiral down and crash. Four chutes reported.source: 91st BG / 324th BS Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/
91BG / 401BS Mission Report - On the 1st of August we dispatched 10 A/C and 12 crews on Chartres, France. We flew the Lead Group of the 1st C CBW, with Maj. Lord flying as Acting Commander. All A/C but two attacked target with generally good results. A/C 504 aborted due to Mech. Failure of No. 2 engine, A/C 993 brought bombs back due to malfunction in bomb bay.source: 91st BG / 401st BS Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/

Non-Combat Accident Reports

Aircraft: B-17G (#42-107219).
Organization: 711BS / 447BG of Rattlesden, Suffolk.
Pilot: Phillips, Louis (NMI).
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Rattlesden, Suffolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: B-17G (#42-97072).
Organization: 544BS / 384BG of Grafton Underwood, Northamptonshire.
Pilot: Harris, Robert (NMI).
Notes: killed in mid air collision.
Location: Grafton Underwood England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: F-5E (#43-29016).
Organization: 22PRS / 7PRG of Mount Farm, Oxfordshire.
Pilot: Windsor, Robert D.
Notes: killed in a landing accidnet due to engine failure.
Location: Culham A/D England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B15 (#42-106784).
Organization: 505FS / 339FG of Fowlmere, Cambridgeshire.
Pilot: [ground crew].
Notes: ground accident destroyed by fire.
Location: Fowlmere, Cambridgeshire England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B15 (#43-24794).
Organization: 335FS / 4FG of Debden, Essex.
Pilot: Green, George D.
Notes: bailed out due to explosion.
Location: Albury/ 1mi N England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51C10 (#43-25040).
Organization: 384FS / 364FG of Honington, Suffolk.
Pilot: Pushcar, Carl J.
Notes: bailed out due to mid air collision.
Location: Honington/10mi WSW S375 England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51D5 (#44-13598).
Organization: 368FS / 359FG of East Wretham, Norfolk.
Pilot: Cavanaugh, Cornelius J.
Notes: bailed out-engine failure.
Location: Colchester/Earls Colne England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51D5 (#44-13975).
Organization: 384FS / 364FG of Honington, Suffolk.
Pilot: Baker, Neil T.
Notes: killed in mid air collision.
Location: Honington/10mi WSW S375 England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 5
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: UC-61A (#43-14480).
Organization: Hq / 1CCRG of Bovindon, Hertfordshire.
Pilot: Buford, James D.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Bovindon, Hertfordshire England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/

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

Mission "Night Leaflet Operation"
Night leaflet operation; August 1, 1944
August 01, 1944

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

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Leaflet drop
Leaflet drop
Leaflet drop
Leaflet drop
Aircraft Groups

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OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)
Aircraft Losses

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OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)