Mission

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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 785: 1,073 bombers and 700 fighters attack communications centers, rail targets, bridges and an oil storage depot in W Germany using PFF methods; 3 bombers and 1 fighter are lost.

1. 265 B-17s are dispatched but hit secondary targets, the marshalling yard at Hamm (109), Paderborn (74) and Bielefeld (74); 2 hit a target of opportunity; all attacks made using H2X radar; 5 B-17s are damaged. Escorting are 197 of 204 P-51s; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA).

2. 351 B-17s are dispatched to hit communications centers at Blankenheim (39), Kall (39), Bitburg (110) and Euskirchen (75); 35 hit the Lutzel Bridge at Cologne; all attacks made using Gee-H and H2X; 3 B-17s are damaged; 2 airmen are WIA. Escort is provided by 159 of 160 P-51s.

3. 147 B-17s are dispatched to hit the bridge at Hohenzollern (14) and the highway bridge at Rodenkirchen (22); 80 hit the secondary target, the Kalk marshalling yard at Cologne; targets of opportunity are Limburg (11), Koblenz (11) and other (1); all attacks are made using Micro H and H2X; 2 B-17s are lost and 10 damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 19 MIA. The escort is 91 of 95 P-51s.

4. 304 B-24s are dispatched to hit the marshalling yards at Landau (54), Zweibrucken (64) and Rastatt (99), the rail and communications center at Achern (31) and the railway at Kaiserslautern (26); all attacks made using Gee-H; targets of opportunity hit visually are Durrmenz (8) and Karlsuhe (1); 1 B-24 is lost and 10 damaged; 1 airman is WIA and 9 MIA. Escorting are 94 of 102 P-51s.

5. 6 of 6 B-17s fly a screening mission.

6. 88 P-47s and P-51s fly a fighter sweep without loss.

7. 12 of 12 P-51s escort 2 F-5s and 2 Mosquitoes on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

8. 33 of 33 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

Mission 786: 2 B-17s and 5 B-24s drop leaflets during the night in SE Belgium and France.

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

Mission Reports

306BG Mission Reportsource: 306th Bombardment Group website www.306bg.org/
34th BG Mission Report - Mission #109 Bielefeld. Command Pilot: BRUNK. 38 planes dispatched. 36 planes dropped 104 tons on the primary target and two failed to bomb. 36 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 252. Primary Target: Blankenheim, Germany

43 aircraft assigned to this mission: Completed Mission - 39. Returned To Base - 1. Ground Spare, Unused - 3

source: 384th Bomb Group web page http://384thBombGroup.com/
388BG Mission Report - All three Air Divisions attacked German communications to disrupt enemy supply lines. 1st Division forces attacked in the Bonn area while the B-24's of the 2nd Division attacked Strasbourg. The 3rd Air Division Wings attacked targets in the Altenbeken, Bielefeld and Cologne Area. The 388th put up two Groups, one each in the low position of the 45th A and 45th B Combat Wings.

The 388th A Group, which flew in the 45th A Combat Wing had 13 a/c including 1 PFF a/c. Our B Group flew with the 45th B Wing and furnished 12 a/c plus 1 PFF a/c. All of our a/c were airborne between 0730 and 0826 hours with no one aborting. Formations were effected and all planes attacked their targets. The mickey equipment went out in our lead a/c of the A Group, so they bombed on the lead of the 45th Combat Wing.

Bombs were away at 1137 hours from 25,400 feet using PFF methods. Meager, inaccurate flak was encountered in the target area but our a/c received no battle damage. All of our a/c returned by 1533 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/
401BG / 613BS Mission Report - Further co-operation with the ground forces by attacking the supply Routes of the enemy was evident in the selection of the target for January 7th another transportation center at Bitburg. Solid undercast prevented the 94th "C" Group from bombing visually and the Box run was made. Neither flak or fighters was encountered and all aircraft returned safely to base. Crews from the 613th on the mission were: Kelso, Douglas, Cox, Carey, Nielson, Tausig, Scheller, Curran, Campbell.source: 613th Bombardment Squadron History
401BG / 614BS Mission Report - The 8th Air Force went after communication centers, rail targets, bridges and oil storage depots to give ground support to the US Army. The Group furnished the aircraft to form the 94th CBW "C" Group with Major C.A. Lewis as Air Commander, the briefed target of the 401st B.G. being the communication center at Bitburg. The 401st were without G-H equipment so they had to bomb the target on the smoke marker bomb of the Group that went in before them. The Lead Navigator was Captain R. Causey and subsequent PFF plotting showed that he had scored a "shack". There was hardly any opposition and only 28 out of a total of 985 aircraft over the various targets received battle damage. The 614th made up the Low Squqdron and was led by Lt. J.J. Brown Jr. making a total of ten crews as following: 44-8259 Brown, 42-31991 Seder, 42-97602 King, 44-6508 Sisson, 42-107151 Morton, 43-38646 Richardson, 42-97395 St. Aubyn, 43-38738 Hoemann, 43-38677 Cole, 42-38565 Fondren.source: 614th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
401BG / 615BS Mission Report - This was an attack on the communications center at Bitburg with the briefing for 39 crews at 0500 hrs. All aircraft were away by 0921 hrs after four crews had been forced to change to ground spares by mechanical faults. In the case of the 615th Squadron IY-A was replaced by IY-P. The 401st flew as the 94th "CU Group with Major C.A. Lewis as the Air Commander; the other leaders were Lt. J.J. Brown and Capt. R.M. Fowler. As there was no G-H aircraft with the 401st Group, Major Lewis instructed the formation to bomb on the smoke markers of the two preceding Groups. However, conditions were such that the 401st Group Navigator, Captain R.F. Causey, of the 615th Squadron, was able to set up and accomplish a bombing run using only his Gee Box. From later photos it was highly successful. This was another mission without opposition of any kind and all aircraft and crews returned safely to Deenethorpe. The 645th put up the following crews: 42-97636 Dempsey, 43-38779 WF Grimm, 42-97664 Deen, 42-31730 Wolf, 42-102468 Djernes, 42-31485 McKay, 43-38077 Turk, 44-8449 Kochel, 42-31983 Jordan, 43-38425 AR Grimm, 43-38758 Jones.source: 615th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
44BG Mission Report - The 44th dispatched 35 aircraft, 33 with the Group's formation and one each to the 392nd and 491st. Capt. Clements, 506, led the 491st BG, Gee-H results unobserved; Lt. Propper, 66th, led the 392nd and bombed the same target as the 44th - Landau, a rail and road junction. The 44th ships made up the "C" Group of the 14th Combat Wing, leading the Wing in the Division column. However, five ships did not attack, four for mechanical reasons and one because of weather and losing the formation. 67th's Lt. Lavitt flew Group lead, attacking the target on Gee-H through 10/ 10th cloud cover, with unobserved results. Enemy resistance was nil; fighter support was very good. No losses, no damage.source: 44th Bomb Group web page http://www.8thairforce.com/44thbg
445BG Mission Report - Target: Zweibrucken, Germany - Railroad Marshalling Yard. A/C Took Off: 22. A/C Bombed Target: 22. A/C Lost: 0source: 445th Bomb Group http://445bg.org
446th Bomb Group Mission Report
Rastatt

The marshalling yards were hit with unobserved results.

source: 446th Bomb Group www.446bg.com
457th Bomb Group Mission Linksource: 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/

Non-Combat Accident Reports

Aircraft: A-26C (#44-22500).
Organization: 654BS / 25BG of Watton, Norfolk.
Pilot: Walker, Robert P.
Notes: crashed belly landing.
Location: Watton, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: B-17G (#44-6115).
Organization: 534BS / 381BG of Ridgewell, Essex.
Pilot: Houk, Charles F.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Ridgewell, Essex England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: B-17G (#44-6131).
Organization: 413BS / 96BG of Snetterton Heath, Norfolk.
Pilot: Larsen, Peder V.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Snetterton Heath, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: B-24H (#42-7587).
Organization: 704BS / 446BG of Bungay, Suffolk.
Pilot: Gigstead, Elman W.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Bungay, Suffolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: L-5 (#42-98998).
Organization: 13PRS / 7PRG of Mount Farm, Oxfordshire.
Pilot: Kendall, Ralph D.
Notes: forced landing.
Location: Oxford/ 4mi NW England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B (#43-6934W).
Organization: OT / 55FG of Wormingford, Essex.
Pilot: Nease, Robert F Jr.
Notes: take off accident.
Location: Wormingford, Essex England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51B5 (#43-6736W).
Organization: 83FS / 78FG of Duxford, Cambridgeshire.
Pilot: Bradley, William E.
Notes: taxiing accident.
Location: Stansted/Sta 169 England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51K5 (#44-11654).
Organization: 486FS / 352FG of Bodney, Norfolk.
Pilot: Wallace, Alton J.
Notes: take off accident.
Location: Bodney, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: UC-64A (#44-70291).
Organization: / 93BG of Hardwick, Norfolk.
Pilot: Hurr, Arthur P.
Notes: ground looped.
Location: Hardwick, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/

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

Mission "8th AF 785"
Comm centers, rail targets, bridges and oil depots in western Germany
January 07, 1945

Primary source for mission statistics: Mighty Eighth War Diary by Roger A. Freeman
 
Aircraft
Sent
Aircraft
Effective
Bomb TonnageEnemy
Aircraft
X-P-D
Enemy
Aircraft
(on gnd)
X-P-D
USAAF
Aircraft
X-E-D
USAAF
Personnel
KIA-WIA-MIA
Notes
10739852907.20-0-00-0-03-0-281-3-28
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Mission Targets

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HAMM, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard109 A/Cphotos (2)
PADERBORN, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard74 A/C
BIELEFELD, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard74 A/C
BLANKENHEIM, GERMANY
Communications
39 A/C
KALL/BLANKENHEIM, GERMANY
Transportation
chokepoint39 A/C
BITBURG, GERMANY
Transportation
chokepoint110 A/C
EUSKIRCHEN, GERMANY
Communications
75 A/C
KOBLENZ, GERMANY
Lutzel Railroad
bridge35 A/C
COLOGNE, GERMANY
South Railroad
bridge22 A/C
COLOGNE, GERMANY
Kalk Railroad
marshalling yard80 A/C
LIMBURG, GERMANY
Railroad
bridge11 A/C
LANDAU, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard54 A/C
ACHERN, GERMANY
Communications
31 A/C
KAISERSLAUTERN, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard26 A/Cphotos (1)
ZWEIBRUCKEN, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard64 A/C
RASTATT, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard99 A/Cphotos (1)

Screen
6 A/C
Aircraft Groups

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1ST AIR DIVISION
303BG
305BG
306BG
351BG
379BG
384BG
401BG
457BG
92BG
2ND AIR DIVISION
44BG
93BG
389BG
392BG
445BG
446BG
448BG
453BG
458BG
466BG
467BG
491BG
3RD AIR DIVISION
94BG
100BG
34BG
385BG
388BG
390BG
447BG
452BG
486BG
487BG
490BG
493BG
95BG
96BG
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)
Aircraft Losses

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1ST AIR DIVISION
2ND AIR DIVISION
448BG (1 a/c)
3RD AIR DIVISION
95BG (1 a/c)
96BG (1 a/c)
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)

Aircraft
Sent
Aircraft
Effective
Bomb TonnageEnemy
Aircraft
X-P-D
Enemy
Aircraft
(on gnd)
X-P-D
USAAF
Aircraft
X-E-D
USAAF
Personnel
KIA-WIA-MIA
Notes
7006740.00-0-00-0-01-0-00-0-1
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Mission Targets

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Escort
553 A/C

Sweep
88 A/C

Reconnaissance
scout33 A/C
Aircraft Groups

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1ST AIR DIVISION
20FG
356FG
359FG
364FG
2ND AIR DIVISION
4FG
56FG
355FG
479FG
3RD AIR DIVISION
55FG
78FG
339FG
353FG
357FG
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)
Aircraft Losses

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1ST AIR DIVISION
2ND AIR DIVISION
3RD AIR DIVISION
55FG (1 a/c)
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)

Aircraft
Sent
Aircraft
Effective
Bomb TonnageEnemy
Aircraft
X-P-D
Enemy
Aircraft
(on gnd)
X-P-D
USAAF
Aircraft
X-E-D
USAAF
Personnel
KIA-WIA-MIA
Notes
45440.00-0-00-0-01-0-00-0-125BG aircraft crash-lands base
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Mission Targets

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GERMANY / HOLLAND
Reconnaissance
photo2 A/C
GERMANY
Reconnaissance
photo2 A/C

Escort
4 A/C

Communications
Red Stocking2 A/C

Communications
radio countermeasures7 A/C

Air Sea Rescue
20 A/C
CONTINENT
Reconnaissance
weather5 A/C
AZORES/ATLANTIC/UK
Reconnaissance
weather3 A/C
Aircraft Groups

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1ST AIR DIVISION
25BG
2ND AIR DIVISION
3RD AIR DIVISION
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)
7th Photographic Group (Recon)
5th Emergency Rescue Squadron
36th Bomber Squadron
Aircraft Losses

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1ST AIR DIVISION
25BG (1 a/c)
2ND AIR DIVISION
3RD AIR DIVISION
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)