Mission

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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 883: 1,355 bombers and 797 fighters are dispatched to hit marshalling yards in Germany by PFF; they claim 4-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 B-17 and 4 fighters are lost:

1. 220 of 227 B-24s and 441 of 450 B-17s attack the marshalling yard at Swinemunde; 1 other hit the marshalling yard at Husum, a target of opportunity; all attacks are made with H2X radar; 1 B-17 is lost, 6 B-17s are damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 10 MIA. Escorting are 412 of 452 P-51s; they claim 4-0-1 aircraft in the air; 4 P-51s are lost (3 pilots MIA).

2. 154 B-24s are sent to hit the marshalling yards at Friedberg (75) and Wetzlar (74) using Gee-H; 2 airmen are WIA.

3. 298 B-17s are dispatched to attack the marshalling yards at Siegen (141) and Marburg (113); 24 hit the secondary target, the marshalling yard at Frankfurt using Micro H; 4 B-17s are damaged.

4. 226 B-17s are sent to bomb the marshalling yards at Betzdorf (116) and Dillenburg (110) using Gee-H without loss.

5. The 2nd, 3rd and 4th forces above are escorted by 192 P-47s and P-51s without loss.

6. 97 of 108 P-51s fly a sweep to support the bombers without loss. 7. 10 P-51s escort 5 F-5s and 2 Spitfires on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

8. 23 of 24 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

Mission 884: 11 of 12 B-24s drop leaflets in the Netherlands and Germany during the night and 4 of 10 B-24s fly a CARPETBAGGER mission.

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: Railway Center at Betzdorf, Germany. Crews Dispatched: 39 (358BS - 13, 359th - 13, 360th - 0, 427th - 13). Length of Mission: 6 hours, 15 minutes. Bomb Load: 21 x 100 lb H.E. M30, 6 x 250 lb M57 Incendiary, & 4 x 500 lb M17 Incendiary bombs. Bombing Altitudes: 24,000, 23,700, & 25,300 ft. Ammo Fired: 1,240 rounds.

Thirty-nine aircraft were dispatched to attack: First Betzdorf, Germany railway center (visual) Second Betzdorf, Germany railway center (GEE-H) Third Frankfurt, Germany marshalling yard (visual) Fourth Frankfurt, Germany marshalling yard (H2X)

The 303rd BG(H) attacked the second priority target with 844 100-lb. H.E. M30, 232 250-lb. M57 incendiary, and 76 500-lb. M17 incendiary bombs and 10 units of leaflets. Bombing was by GEE-H equipment through a solid undercast with unobserved results. All Gee-H navigators reported good bomb runs bombs were believed to have hit the aiming point areas.

Crews reported seeing only a few of the 144 supporting P-51s, no enemy aircraft or flak was seen, and there was no battle damage or casualties.

More info on this mission at the 303BG website

source: 303rd Bomb Group web page http://www.303rdbg.com/
306BG Mission Reportsource: 306th Bombardment Group website www.306bg.org/
34th BG Mission Report - Mission #141 Sweinmunde. Command Pilot: CRABTREE. 38 planes dispatched. 37 planes dropped 89.5 tons on the secondary target and 1 plane failed to bomb. 37 Credit Sorties. source: 34th Bomb Group Mission List compiled by Gary L. Ferrell http://valortovictory.tripod.com
351BG Mission Report - 38 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 287. Primary Target: City - Betzdorf, Germany

41 aircraft assigned to this mission: Completed Mission - 38. Returned To Base - 1. Ground Spare, Unused - 2
42-37822 Turner, Willard J - landing accident RAF Ringway, UK 3/16/45 - u/c collapse; sal AFSC 3/19/45

source: 384th Bomb Group web page http://384thBombGroup.com/
388BG Mission Report - Over 1350 8th Air Force heavy bombers attacked central German transportation targets accompanied by over 650 escort fighters. The 3rd Air Division had the largest force attacking targets at Swinemunde, Siegen and Frankfurt. 525 of the 3rd AD B-17's took part. The 388th furnished 38 a/c including 4 PFF a/c composing the 45th B Combat Wing. One other a/c flew with the 96th Bomb Group.

All of our a/c were airborne by 1001 hours with no aborts. Formations were effected and the briefed route to the target was followed. Bombs were away at 1256 hours from 23,700 feet using PFF methods. Our a/c with the 96th dropped his bombs at 1259 hours from 24,200 feet.

No enemy a/c were encountered and along with no flak, this was a milk run. All a/c returned to base by 1532 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/
398th Bomb Group Mission reportsource: 398th Bomb Group web page http://www.398th.org/
401BG / 613BS Mission Report - The 401st furnished the 94th "C" Group of the Wing formation and the 613th Squadron put up the Lead Squadron of the group formation. Squadrons made individual bomb runs by H2X on the target, t~e naval docks and installations at Swindemunde. All of the runs were excellent instrument runs and there was every reason to believe that good results were obtained. This type of target, being located on a coastline was one that is particularly suited to H2X bombing. There was no enemy air or ground opposition of any kind on this operation and all the crews returned safely to base. The following 613th crews took part on this mission: 44-6313 Cracraft, 43-38788 Eglin, 43-38458 Scheller, 43-38607 Vermeer, 42-102947 McKenny, 43-38862 Carey, 44-6588 Litchfield, 44-6132 Geren, 42-31730 Levy, 43-38425 Young, 42-38160 Jones.source: 613th Bombardment Squadron History
401BG / 614BS Mission Report - This mission began with a 0440 hrs briefing and 0830 hrs take-off of 38 aircraft plus two spares. The Group furnished the aircraft for the 94th "C" Group of the Wing formation with Captain F.A. Kalinski as the Air Commander. The target, Swinemunde, was on the Baltic and a very long haul. It contained docks, shipping facilities and there were ships at anchor but the weather again proved to be unkind with 10/10th's cover over the whole area. However, being a port, the Mickey operators found it to be an ideal target for the PFF equipment, and subsequent plotting and evaluation by the 1st Air Division seemed to agree with this view. There was only meager and inaccurate flak to hamper this very successful mission, with only one aircraft MIA and six damaged out of the 650 aircraft from the three Air Divisions attacking Swinemunde. Crews: 43-38565 Park, 43-38677 Holmes, 42-97931 Ayre, 42-107151 Djernes, 42-97478 Fondren, 42-97322 Cameron, 42-97395 Salisbury, 43-38330 White, 43-38738 Viehman, 43-38646 Jordan.source: 614th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
401BG / 615BS Mission Report - 38 crews, plus two spare crews for the 94th "c" Group, were briefed at 0440 hrs. Pilots were briefed for a low visibility take-off, but all were airborne by 0832 hrs in a manner that pleased the control tower personnel. The target was the shipping facilities, docks and ships at anchor in the Swinemunde harbour. This was a very long trip because the town of Swinemunde lies on the shores of the Baltic Sea. The weather was the type the crews now considered as normal for the ETO - 10/10th's clouds - and the Group went in on a PFF run. However, being on the coast meant that a good picture and an excellent run could be made with the H2X screen and good results were reported by the subsequent Air Division plotting and evaluation reports. The lack of flak over the target and en route can be judged by the fact that only 10 aircraft out the the 1,355 despatched sustained battle damage. Cfrews: 44-8550 Dempsey, 44-8653 Kochel, 44-8648 Aschenbach, 44-8153 Tausig, 44-6947 Hart.source: 615th Bombardment Squadron History www.401bg.org
44BG Mission Report - Lt. Pellow was credited with a Group deputy lead backing up Capt. Mack, 506th, who led the 44th's thirty-three aircraft to the Marshalling Yards at Wetzlar, Germany. Lt. Kleiderer led the high right squadron with the 11 67th aircraft. Captain Overstreet, as usual, led the 491st, along with another 44th ship to attack the M/Y at Frieburg, bombing on Gee-H with unobserved results. The 44th attacked their target through 10/10th undercast on Gee-H, with results unobserved. Enemy opposition continues to be nil and our fighters furnished good support all returned safely. S/Sgt. Chaffin continues: "The target was hit visual and I saw the bombs burst. Results were good. We carried 44 x 100 lb GPs" The following personnel completed their tour: Capt. Rommelfanger; 1st Lts. Pellow, Condray, Murray, Curry; T/Sgts. Cole, Pacewitz, Peck; S/Sgts. Loder, Gill, Snyder, Weaver, Gentile, Giardina and Calden.source: 44th Bomb Group web page http://www.8thairforce.com/44thbg
445BG Mission Report - Target: Swinemunde, Germany - Railroad Marshaling Yard. A/C Took Off: 33. A/C Bombed Target: 33. A/C Lost: 0source: 445th Bomb Group http://445bg.org
446th Bomb Group Mission Report
Swinemunde

The group flew to this Baltic sea city to aid the Russian ground troops there. Navy and port installations were hard hit, with excellent results reported.

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/
91st BG / 322nd BS Mission Report - Primary Target: Dillenburg M/Yds. Again bombing was done by Gee-H methods with unobserved results due to cloud cover. The target was the Railway M/Yds at Dillenburg about 40 miles northeast of Coblenz. Capt. Goodrich flew in the lead ship of the high squadron with Lt. Kranch as his pilot. No flak damage was suffered. source: 322rd Bomb Squadron / 91BG Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/
91BG / 401BS Mission Report - On the 12th of March we dispatched 9 A/C and 12 crews to attack the RR Marshalling Yards at Dillenburg. The target was bombed by means of instruments with unobserved results. Our Squadron flew the Lead Squadron in the Group formation. The Group furnished the 1st "A" Group. A/C 959, 151 and 889 were furnished by the 324th Squadron. AA fire was nil. Fighter support was good. All Squadron A/C and crews returned safely.source: 91st BG / 401st BS Mission Report http://www.91stbombgroup.com/

Non-Combat Accident Reports

Aircraft: A-20G (#43-9924).
Organization: / 325SrG of Greencastle, Northern Ireland.
Pilot: Townsend, Richard E.
Notes: killed in crash due to engine failure.
Location: Greencastle, Northern Ireland Ireland.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: B-17G (#43-38993).
Organization: / 5SAD of B53.
Pilot: Bek, Thomas G.
Notes: take off accident.
Location: Merville, France France.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: F-5E (#43-28311).
Organization: 27PRS / 7PRG of Denain/Prouvy, France.
Pilot: Clark, Floyd R Jr.
Notes: crash landing engine failure.
Location: Denain/Prouvy, France France.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51D-20NA (#44-72214).
Organization: 83FS / 78FG of Duxford, Cambridgeshire.
Pilot: Johnson, Dean C.
Notes: unknown.
Location: Orslev/NW {55.13N-11.25E} Denmark.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51D10 (#44-14578).
Organization: 436FS / 479FG of Wattisham, Suffolk.
Pilot: Mead, Frederick M.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Wattisham, Suffolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 4
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51D10 (#44-14591).
Organization: 436FS / 479FG of Wattisham, Suffolk.
Pilot: Palson, Richard C J.
Notes: landing accident.
Location: Wattisham, Suffolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/
Aircraft: P-51D20 (#44-72406).
Organization: 368FS / 359FG of East Wretham, Norfolk.
Pilot: Hanzalik, Frank (NMI).
Notes: landing accident.
Location: East Wretham, Norfolk England.
Damage (0-5 increasing damage): 3
source: Aviation Archaeology http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/

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

Mission "8th AF 883"
Marshalling yards
March 12, 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
135513153003.00-0-00-0-01-0-101-2-1092BG aircraft landed in Sweden
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Mission Targets

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SWINEMUNDE, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard220 A/C
SWINEMUNDE, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard223 A/C
SWINEMUNDE, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard218 A/C
WETZLER, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard74 A/C
FRIEDBERG, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard75 A/Cphotos (2)
MARBURG, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard113 A/Cphotos (1)
SIEGEN, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard141 A/Cphotos (1)
FRANKFURT, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard24 A/C
BETZDORF, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard116 A/C
DILLENBURG, GERMANY
Railroad
marshalling yard110 A/Cphotos (1)
Aircraft Groups

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1ST AIR DIVISION
303BG
305BG
306BG
351BG
379BG
381BG
384BG
398BG
401BG
457BG
91BG
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
3RD AIR DIVISION
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
7977340.04-0-10-0-04-0-10-0-3339FG crash-lands Soviet-held territory
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Mission Targets

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Escort
614 A/C

Sweep
97 A/C

Reconnaissance
scout23 A/C
Aircraft Groups

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1ST AIR DIVISION
20FG
352FG
359FG
364FG
2ND AIR DIVISION
4FG
56FG
355FG
361FG
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
4FG (1 a/c)
3RD AIR DIVISION
55FG (1 a/c)
78FG (2 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
56560.00-0-00-0-01-0-00-0-1
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Mission Targets

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GERMANY
Reconnaissance
photo7 A/C

Chaff
4 A/C

Reconnaissance
monitor1 A/C
AZORES/ATLANTIC/UK
Reconnaissance
weather4 A/C

Air Sea Rescue
12 A/C

Communications
radio countermeasures5 A/C

Communications
radio-relay18 A/C
BALTIC / CONTINENT / UK FRANCE
Reconnaissance
weather5 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
2ND AIR DIVISION
3RD AIR DIVISION
OTHER (IX AF, HQ, etc)