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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 772: 1,327 bombers and 785 fighters hit both strategic and tactical targets in Germany; they encounter about 150 Luftwaffe fighters, mostly in the Hamburg area, and claim 88.5-11-21 aircraft; 27 bombers and 10 fighters are lost:

1. 526 B-17s are dispatched to hit oil industry targets at Hamburg (68), the Wilhemsburg refinery at Hamburg (92), the Grassbruk refinery at Hamburg (71) and the Misburg refinery (96), and the industrial area at Wenzendorf (62) and Hamburg (72); targets of opportunity are Stade (13) and Nordholz (9) Airfields, Heligoland Island (1) and other (17); they claim 26-8-16 aircraft; 27 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 288 damaged; 5 airmen are KIA, 29 WIA and 248 MIA. 316 P-47s and P-51s escort and claim 59.5-2-5 aircraft in the air and 1-0-0 on the ground; 2 P-47s and 7 P-51s are lost (pilots are MIA).

2. 418 B-17s are sent to hit marshaling yards at Neuss (109) and Krefeld-Urdingen (83), the Kordel railroad at Ehrang (69), communications targets at Buzburg (34), Prum (37), and Blumenthal (34), the Lutzweiler Bridge at Koblenz (48) and the Remagen Bridge (54); 22 hit the secondary target at Monchen-Gladbach; and 2 hit a target of opportunity; 2 B-17s are damaged beyond repair and 29 damaged; 1 airman is WIA. Escorting are 162 of 171 P-51s; they claim 1-0-0 aircraft without loss.

3. 371 B-24s are sent to hit bridges at Engers (60) and Irlich (56) and the Gus Rail Bridge at Koblenz (62) and the rail junction and rail bridge at Euskirchen (30); 10 hit the secondary, the Bingen marshaling yard and 36 hit a target of opportunity; they claim 0-1-0 aircraft; 3 B-24s are damaged beyond repair and 49 damaged; 1 airman is WIA. Escort is provided by 198 of 211 P-51s; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA) and 1 damaged beyond repair.

4. 13 of 16 P-51s escort 7 F-5s and 2 Spitfires on a photo reconnaissance of the Berlin area without loss.

5. 32 of 33 P-51s fly a scouting mission claiming 1-0-0 aircraft. Mission 773: 8 B-24s and 2 B-17s drop leaflets in France, Germany and Belgium.

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