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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 764: Freezing fog at bases in the UK restrict operations but 641 bombers and 390 fighters are dispatched against rail targets in W Germany in support of the battlefront in the Bulge; they claim 29.5-1-9 Luftwaffe aircraft; 2 bombers and 5 fighters are lost:

1. 227 B-17s are sent to hit marshaling yards at Fulda (118) and Andernach (63) and the rail bridge at Neuwied (7); 13 others hit a target of opportunity; 1 B-17 is damaged beyond repair and 45 damaged; 9 airmen are KIA. The escort is 44 of 46 P-51s; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA).

2. 182 B-24s are dispatched to hit marshaling yards at Neunkirchen (57), Homburg (46) and Kaiserslautern (33) and the rail bridge at Kaiserslautern (19); targets of opportunity are the marshaling yard at St Wendel (9) and the rail junction at Enkenbach (8); 1 B-24 is lost, 5 damaged beyond repair and 60 damaged; 18 airmen are KIA, 11 WIA and 6 MIA. Escorting are 88 of 96 P-51s; 2 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA).

3. 232 B-17s are sent to hit the marshaling yard at Euskirchen (72), the Gerolstein rail junction (58) and rail bridges at Bullay (34) and Altenahr (25); targets of opportunity are Hillesheim (12) and Eckfeld (1); 1 B-17 is lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 83 damaged; 9 airmen are KIA, 6 WIA and 9 MIA. Escort is provided by 46 of 48 P-51s without loss.

4. 163 P-47s and P-51s fly a fighter sweep and engage about 200 Luftwaffe fighters; they claim 29.5-1-9 aircraft; 2 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA).

5. 15 of 15 P-51s fly a scouting missions without loss. Mission 765: A night leaflet mission is flown over Germany.

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