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Thread: Lest We Forget: November 14, 1944

  1. #121

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    March 13, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    AIRBORNE OPERATIONS (IX Troop Carrier Command): HQ 61st Troop Carrier Group and the 14th and 15th Troop Carrier Squadrons move from Barkston, England to Abbeville, France (ALG B-92) with C-47s.

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 16 P-51s based at Chievres, Belgium (ALG A-84) (352nd Fighter Group) fly an uneventful aircraft sweep in the Remagen-Koblenz, Germany area; 17 F-5s fly photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force): In Germany, 450+ A-26s, A-20s, and B-26s, bomb 3 marshalling yards, 2 airfields, rail sidings, and several targets of opportunity in the continuing interdiction campaign; fighters fly escort, patrols, and armed reconnaissance, attack assigned targets, cover the US First Army area in general along the Rhine River from Dusseldorf to Linz/Rhine, support the US 9th Infantry Division around Hargarten, cover the Remagen bridgehead, and support the XX Corps as it opens an offensive southeast from the Saarburg bridgehead.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map

    352nd History

    The massacre of 2 March sent the long suffering Luftwaffe back into hiding, and during the period of 3-13 March, the 352nd FG only encountered one enemy aircraft (a Bf 109 on the 3rd) in the air, and it was shot down near Dresden by Lt William H Sanford of the 328th FS.
    Last edited by 352nd Oscar; 03-11-2020 at 02:28 PM.
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  2. #122

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    March 14, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 3 missions are flown.

    Mission 886: 1,262 bombers and 804 fighters are dispatched to hit oil, rail and industrial targets in Germany; they claim 17-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft in the air; 3 B-17s and 2 fighters are lost:

    1. 526 B-17s are sent to hit oil refineries at Nienhagen (58) and Misburg (56), the Gebruder munitions plant (75) and Maschnbau (61) and Eisenwerke (74) factories at Hannover and the Seelze marshalling yard (80); secondary targets hit are Osnabruck (29) and the marshalling yard at Hannover; attacks were made visually and with H2X radar; 2 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 188 damaged; 3 airmen are KIA, 6 WIA and 19 MIA. 192 of 204 P-51s escort; 2 are damaged.

    2. 449 B-17s are dispatched to hit the bridges at Vlotho (72) and Bad Ostenhausen (114), the marshalling yard and road junction at Lohne (144) and industrial plants at Hildesheim (60); 39 hit Osnabruck, a secondary target; targets of opportunity are the marshalling yards at Hameln (12) and Wetzlar (1) and Diemonde (1); all but one target is bombed visually; 1 B-17 is lost and 56 damaged; 1 airman is WIA and 9 MIA. Escorting are 182 of 194 P-51s; they claim 1-0-1 aircraft.

    3. 272 B-24s are sent to hit the marshalling yards at Holzwickede (31) and Gutersloh (126); 110 others hit the secondary target, the marshalling yard at Giessen; attacks are made visually and with H2X radar; 4 B-24s are damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 5 WIA. The escort is 185 P-47s and P-51s; they claim 3-0-0 aircraft; 1 P-47 is lost (pilot MIA).

    4. 6 B-17s fly a screening mission without loss.

    5. 29 of 33 P-41s escort Ninth AF bombers.

    6. 50 P-51s fly a sweep of the Stein-Huder-Kassel area claiming 11-0-0 aircraft without loss.

    7. 82 P-51s fly a sweep over the Remagen bridgehead; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA) and 1 damaged beyond repair.

    8. 20 P-51s escort 33 F-5s and 3 Spitfires on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany and Czechoslovakia.

    9. 26 of 27 P-51s fly a scouting mission claiming 1-0-0 aircraft.

    Mission 887: 9 B-17s use DISNEY rockets weapons on the Ijmuiden submarine pens without loss.

    Mission 888: 7 B-24s bomb the marshalling yard at Wiesbaden by PFF during the night without loss.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force):

    In Germany, 350+ A-20s, A-26s and B-26s hit 3 airfields, 4 rail bridges, a junction, 5 towns, and 3 targets of opportunity as the interdiction operations continue; fighters escort the bombers, attack railroads and other special targets, fly patrols, sweeps, and armed reconnaissance, cover the Remagen area, and support the US XII Corps as it begins a drive from the Mosel River to the Rhine River, and the XX Corps operations west of Trier and Saarburg.

    HQ 367th Fighter Group moves from St Dizier (ALG A-64) to Conflans, France (ALG A-94).

    The 410th Fighter Squadron, 373d Fighter Group, moves from Le Culot, Belgium (ALG A-89) to Venlo, the Netherlands (ALG Y-55) with P-47s.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map

    352nd History

    When the German fighter force did decide to return to the skies on the 14th, Eighth Air Force fighters further reduced its inventory – 17 enemy aircraft fell during the day, four of them jets. One of the latter was credited to 13.333-kill ace Capt Don Bryan, who used his combat experience to the utmost in order to outwit the German pilot. The Arado Ar 234 had just pulled up from an abortive bomb run on the bridge at Remagen when Bryan noticed a flight of P-47s on the north-west side of the Rhine. He figured that the Arado would turn eastward to avoid them, and anticipating the German pilot’s manoeuvre, Bryan turned in a north-easterly direction and waited to spring his trap. The co-operative Ar 234 pilot did the expected, flying right into the path of Bryan’s guns. On his first pass Capt Bryan knocked out the right engine, and then followed the aircraft as it tried some mild evasive turns. With the jet again in his sights, Bryan knocked out the left engine, and the Arado began trailing smoke. The ace completed his encounter report with these remarks; ‘At about the time I finished firing the Ar 234 rolled over on its back and dived straight into the ground and exploded. Just before hitting the ground the pilot of the enemy aircraft jettisoned his canopy, but he did not get out.’
    Last edited by 352nd Oscar; 03-11-2020 at 02:30 PM.
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  3. #123

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    March 15, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 2 missions are flown.

    Mission 889: 1,353 bombers and 833 fighters are dispatched to hit German Army HQ and a marshalling yard at Oranienburg; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 9 bombers and 4 fighters are lost:

    1. 308 of 372 B-24s and 276 of 300 B-17s hit the Germany Army HQ at Zossen, near Berlin visually; targets of opportunity for the B-24s are the Gardlingen rail center (31), the rail bridge at Parey (11) and other (3) and for B-17s, the marshalling yard at Stendal (13) and other (3); 1 B-24 is lost, 1 B-24 is damaged beyond repair and 32 B-24s and 20 B-17s are damaged; 4 airmen are KIA, 8 WIA and 21 MIA. Escorting are 397 P-51s and P-47s; they claim 1-0-0 aircraft in the air; 3 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA).

    2. 612 of 675 B-17s attack the marshalling yard at Oranienburg visually; targets of opportunity are Wittenberg (31), Havelberg (12), the marshalling yards at Durstadt (1) and Mellendorf (1), Schmarsau (1) and Dedelstorf Airfield (1) some of which are hit with H2X radar; 8 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 288 damaged; 8 airmen are WIA and 66 MIA. 320 of 352 P-51s escort; 1 is lost.

    3. 6 B-17s fly a screening mission without loss.

    4. 29 of 30 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

    5. 9 P-51s fly a sweep of the Bonn-Koblenz area.

    6. 9 of 12 P-51s escort 24 F-5s and 4 Spitfires on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

    Mission 890: 14 of 16 B-24s bomb the rail station at Munster during the night using PFF methods.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force):

    In Germany, 9th Bombardment Division A-20s, A-26s, and B-26s attack communications centers at Neunkirchen and Pirmasens, marshalling yards at Turkismuhle and Erbach, 3 flak positions, and several other targets, as well as dropping leaflets on Koblenz; fighters hit the Overberge marshalling yard and other targets, escort the bombers, fly sweeps and armed reconnaissance, and support the US XII Corps crossing the Mosel River in an offensive toward the Rhine River, and the XX Corps east of Trier and Saarbrucken.

    HQ 10th Photographic Group (Reconnaissance) and the 15th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron move from Doncourt Airfield, Conflans and Giraumont, France respectively to Evren Airfield, Trier, Germany with F-6s; the 393d and 394th Fighter Squadrons, 367th Fighter Group, move from St Dizier to Conflans, France with P-47s; and the 411th Fighter Squadron, 373d Fighter Group, moves from Le Culot, Belgium to Venlo, the Netherlands with P-47s.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map
    Last edited by 352nd Oscar; 03-11-2020 at 07:37 PM.
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  4. #124

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    March 16, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): During the night of 16/17 Mar, 12 B-24s drop leaflets in Germany and the Netherlands and 20 of 22 B-24s fly CARPETBAGGER missions.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force):

    In Germany, 280+ A-20s, A-26s and B-26s hit the Landau barracks area and communications center, the Niederscheld town area and rail bridge, 6 other town areas, a marshalling yard, rail junction, crossroads, and also drop leaflets; fighters escort the bombers, fly patrols, sweeps, armed reconnaissance, and cover the VIII, XII, and XX Corps in an assault across the Mosel River from west of Koblenz and north of Boppard, at one point, as far east as Bad Kreuznach, and as far south as Merzig.

    HQ 365th Fighter Group moves from Juzaine Airfield, Florennes, Belgium (ALG A-78) to Aachen (ALG Y-46); the 153d Liaison Squadron, IX Tactical Air Command (attached to Twelfth Army Group), moves from Duren to Euskirchen with L-5s; and the 392d Fighter Squadron, 367th Fighter Group, moves from St Dizier (ALG A-64) to Conflans, France (ALG A-94) with P-47s.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map
    Last edited by 352nd Oscar; 03-11-2020 at 07:35 PM.
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  5. #125

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    March 17, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 2 missions are flown.

    Mission 892: 1,328 bombers and 820 P-51s are dispatched to hit oil, industrial and rail targets in Germany; clouds extend from 1,000 to 15,000 feet (305 to 4,572 m) and over the targets there is 9/10 to 10/10 cloud cover necessitating PFF methods for bombing; 5 B-17s and 2 P-51s are lost:

    1. 527 B-17s are sent to hit the oil refinery at Ruhland (214); 138 hit the secondary target, the Bittefeld oil refinery; targets of opportunity are the Vomag munitions factory at Plauen (125), Fulda (19), Cottbus (11) and other (3); H2X radar is used; 4 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 46
    damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 1 WIA and 35 MIA. Escorting are 252 of 280 P-51s; 1 is lost (pilot MIA).

    2. 449 B-17s are dispatched to hit the oil refinery at Bohlen (152) and the oil refinery and power station at Molbis (127); secondary targets are the Zeiss works at Jena (71) and the marshalling yard at Erfurt (51); targets of opportunity are Altenburg (36) and other (3); bombing is by H2X radar; 1 B-17 is lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 15 damaged; 9 airmen are MIA. 266 of 283 P-51s escort; 1 is lost (pilot MIA).

    3. 346 B-24s are dispatched to hit the marshalling yard at Munster (170) and the Hanomag tank factory at Hannover (146); 9 other hit Herford, a target of opportunity; Gee-H and H2X are used to bomb; 3 B-24s are damaged. The escort is 122 of 128 P-51s.

    4. 6 B-24s fly a screening mission.

    5. 79 of 86 P-51s fly a freelance sweep without loss.

    6. 28 of 32 P-51s fly a scouting mission without loss.

    7. 9 of 11 P-51s escort 2 F-5s and 1 Spitfire on a photo reconnaissance mission over Germany.

    Mission 893: 9 B-24s drop leaflets in Germany, the Netherlands and France during the night.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force): In Germany, 650+ A-20s, A-26s, and B-26s bomb 5 marshalling yards, 2 communications centers, an ordnance depot, 3 city areas, and several targets of opportunity; the attacks are to impede the enemy movement of troops, equipment, and supplies in the face of the advancing Allied forces; fighters fly escort, patrols, and armed reconnaissance, cover the Remagen bridgehead, support the US III Corps [b]northeast of Remagen[‘b], cooperate with the XII Corps which has penetrated several miles east of Bad Kreuznach at one point, and operate with the XX Corps which at one point reaches as far east as Birkenfeld.

    The 386th Fighter Squadron, 365th Fighter Group, moves from Juzaine Airfield, Florennes, Belgium (ALG A-78) to Aachen, Germany (ALG Y-46) with P-47s.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  6. #126

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    March 18,1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 2 missions are flown.

    Mission 894: 1,329 bombers and 733 fighters are dispatched to hit railway stations and tanks plants in the Berlin area; the attacks are made both visually and with H2X radar; the Luftwaffe makes it's most concentrated and successful attacks with Me 262s to date; the AAF claims 21-1-5 Luftwaffe aircraft; 13 bombers (8 to flak) and 6 fighters are lost:

    1. 421 of 450 B-17s hit the Schlesischer rail station in Berlin; 13 hit the secondary target, Zehdnuk; and 1 hits Vechta, a target of opportunity; they claim 6-0-0 aircraft; 5 B-17s are lost, 8 damaged beyond repair and 268 damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 18 WIA and 49 MIA. 179 of 199 P-51s escort; they claim 4-0-2 aircraft; 2 P-51s are lost.

    2. 495 of 530 B-17s hit the Nord rail station in Berlin; targets of opportunity are Ludwigslust (3) and other (3); they claim 1-1-1 aircraft; 7 B-17s are lost, 6 damaged beyond repair and 319 damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 12 WIA and 79 MIA. Escorting are 219 of 238 P-51s; they claim 7-0-1 aircraft; 2 P-51s are lost.

    3. 347 B-24s are sent to hit the Tegel (225) and Henningsdorf (80) tank factories in Berlin; targets of opportunity are Oranienburg (9), Uelzen (9) and other (3); 1 B-24 is lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 127 damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 1 WIA and 11 MIA. The escort is 254 P-51s; they claim 3-0-1 aircraft; 2 P-51s are lost.

    4. 2 B-17s fly a scouting mission.

    5. 27 of 30 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

    6. 1 of 12 P-51s escort 5 F-5s on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

    Mission 895: 10 of 12 B-24s drop leaflets in France, the Netherlands and Germany during the night without loss.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS

    First Tactical Air Force (Provisional): The 415th Night Fighter Squadron, 64th Fighter Wing, moves from Ochey (Toul) (ALG A-96) to St Dizier, France (ALG A-64) with Beaufighters.

    Ninth Air Force: In Germany, 660+ A-20s, A-26s and B-26s hit the marshalling yards at Wetzlar, Worms, Kreuztal, and Bad Durkheim, a communications center at Bad Durkheim, and 4 town areas with the aim of hampering enemy movement; fighters escort the bombers, attack assigned targets, fly patrols, and armed reconnaissance, and cooperate with the US III Corps at Remagen, with the XII Corps as it begins an assault towards the Mainz-Worms sector of the Rhine River, and with the XX Corps as it moves rapidly eastward through the Sankt Wendel area toward Kaiserslautern.

    HQ 70th Fighter Wing moves from Verviers, Belgium to Bruhl, Germany.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map

    352nd History

    On 18 March Maj Bill Halton led the 352nd on a freelance fighter sweep to the Berlin area and encountered a mixed flight of Me 262s and Bf 109s. After a brief and indecisive encounter with an Me 262, another Messerschmitt jet fighter and two Bf 109s were spotted near Wriezen on what appeared to be a reconnaissance mission over the Russian front. Maj Halton led the 487th down and attacked the leader of the Bf 109s. The German tried to dive away, but he could not evade Halton’s pursuit and was quickly shot down in flames. Lt Ray Littge followed the second Bf 109 down to the deck, where he and Lt Jim Wood took turns at shooting up the fleeing Messerschmitt and claimed it as a shared kill. The final victory of the day was a reconnaissance Bf 109 shot down by Flt Off James White of the 487th FS. Several minutes later a number of the ‘Bluenosers’ began encountering flights of Russian Yak fighters, and in the confusion the 487th’s Lt Albert Peterson was shot down by some over-anxious Soviet pilots. Fortunately he survived the incident and was returned to the group on 1 May 1945. Lt Joe Vickery was not so lucky, for the 487th pilot was killed when his Mustang was hit by flak near Schweibus.
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  7. #127

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    March 19, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 2 missions are flown.

    Mission 896: 1,273 bombers and 675 fighters are dispatched to hit airfields and industrial targets in Germany visually and with H2X radar; clouds force 2 of the 3 forces to hit secondaries; 100+ Luftwaffe fighters including 36 Me 262s in formation (largest number of jets seen as a unit) are encountered; the AAF claims 41-3-19 Luftwaffe aircraft (including 3 Me 262s); 6 bombers and 10 fighters are lost:

    1. Cloud cover prevents 496 B-17s from hitting the primary targets; secondaries hit are the optical works at Jena (197) and the motor vehicle plant at Zwickau (177); targets of opportunity are Plauen (32), the marshalling yards at Fulda (44) and Saalfeld (10) and other (4); bombing is by H2X radar with some visual attacks; they claim 1-1-2 aircraft; 4 B-17s are lost, 4 damaged beyond repair and 121 damaged; 9 airmen are KIA, 5 WIA and 49 MIA. Escorting are 183 of 198 P-51s; they claim 2-0-3 aircraft; 4 P-51s are lost.

    2. Cloud cover forces 404 of 436 B-17s to hit the industrial area at Plauen, the secondary target using H2X radar; targets of opportunity, bombed visually, are the Fulda marshalling yard (20) and Prissig (1); 1 B-17 is lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 4 damaged; 9 airmen are KIA, 3 WIA and 9 MIA. The escort is 141 of 153 P-51s.

    3. 341 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Neuburg (125) and Leipheim (84) and jet aircraft plant at Baumenheim (126) visually; 1 B-24 is lost; 11 airmen are MIA. 175 of 194 P-51s escort; they claim 5-0-0 aircraft without loss.

    4. 95 of 98 P-51s fly a freelance sweep for the bombers; they claim 33-2-14 aircraft; 6 P-51s are lost.

    5. 2 of 4 P-51s escort 15 F-5s and 2 Spitfires on a photo reconnaissance mission over Germany.

    Mission 897: 11 of 12 B-24s drop leaflets in the Netherlands and Germany during the night.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS

    First Tactical Air Force (Provisional):

    HQ 27th Fighter Group and the 522d, 523d and 524th Fighter Squadrons move from St Dizier (ALG A-64) to Ochey Airfield, Toul, France (ALG A-96) with P-47s.

    Ninth Air Force: In Germany, the 9th Bombardment Division strikes 2 marshalling yards, 5 rail bridges, a communications center and several casual targets as part of the interdiction program to impede enemy movement; fighters escort the bombers, fly patrols and armed reconnaissance, support the US III Corps west of Remagen, cooperates with the XII Corps' 4th Armored Division east of Kaiserslautern as it drives toward the Rhine River; fighter-bombers of the XIX Tactical Air Command, on a special mission, bomb the HQ of Commander-in-Chief West (Field Marshall Gerd von Rundstedt) at Ziegenberg.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  8. #128

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    March 20, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 3 missions are flown.

    Mission 898: 451 bombers and 355 fighters are dispatched to hit the shipyard and dock area at Hamburg and an oil refinery; they claim 14-3-17 Luftwaffe aircraft; 4 bombers and 2 P-51s are lost:

    1. 13 of 152 B-17s hit the Blohm & Voss U-boat yard at Hamburg; 133 others hit the secondary, the port area at Hamburg; bombing is visual; they claim 1-0-3 aircraft; 1 airman is KIA and 2 WIA. Escorting are 70 of 79 P-51s; they claim 0-0-2 aircraft.

    2. 149 of 162 B-17s hit the secondary target, the Hamburg port area, using H2X radar; 1 other hits the Nordholz Airfield, a target of opportunity; they claim 5-3-2 aircraft; 3 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 54 damaged; 27 airmen are MIA. The escort is 72 of 75 P-51s; they claim 0-0-2 aircraft.

    3. 114 of 129 B-24s attack the oil refinery at Hemmingstedt; 1 B-24 is lost and 9 damaged; 12 airmen are MIA. 75 P-51s escort; they claim 2-0-1 aircraft in the air and 1-0-2 on the ground; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA).

    4. 6 B-17s fly a screening mission without loss.

    5. 2 B-17s and 26 of 27 P-51s fly scouting missions.

    6. 78 of 82 P-51s fly a strafing mission in the Bremen-Hannover area; they claim 2-0-3 aircraft in the air and 3-0-2 on the ground; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA).

    7. 17 P-51s escort 11 F-5s and 2 Spitfires on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

    Mission 899: 1 B-17, escorted by 4 P-51s, bombs Oberursel at 1650 hours from 25,000 feet (7,620 m); this is the first operational test of Micro-H Mk II radar.

    Mission 900: 12 B-24s drop leaflets in the Netherlands and Germany and 2 A-26s fly CARPETBAGGER missions (1 A-26 is lost).

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force):

    In Germany, 360+ A-20s, A-26s, and B-26s bomb the Geisecke marshalling yard, Sythen ammunition-filling plant, the town of Gronau (including a rail bridge), and several casual targets in or near 9 other towns; fighters escort the bombers, fly patrols and armed reconnaissance, support the US III and VII Corps just E of the Rhine River between Bad Honningen and the Sieg River, and the XII and XX Corps as they push to the Rhine River at Worms and at a point N of Mannheim.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  9. #129

    Default

    March 21, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 5 missions are flown.

    Mission 901: Preparatory air operations for the forthcoming (23 Mar) crossing of the lower Rhine River by Allied ground forces begin. 1,408 bombers and 806 fighters, in conjunction with Ninth Air Force and RAF aircraft, attack jet fighter bases; with one exception, all attacks are visual; they claim 58-3-49 Luftwaffe aircraft; 7 B-17s and 9 P-51s are lost:

    1. 107 of 152 B-17s hit the secondary target, the tank factory at Plauen; targets of opportunity are Reichenbach (34) and other (1); they claim 3-3-3 aircraft; 5 B-17s are lost and 48 damaged. The escort is 273 of 314 P-51s; they claim 9-0-0 aircraft in the air and 3-0-0 on the ground; 3 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA) and 1 damaged beyond repair.

    2. 129 of 151 B-17s attack Hardorf Airfield; 14 others hit Vorden Airfield, a target of opportunity; 1 B-17 is lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 71 damaged. Escorting are 94 of 98 P-51s; they claim 0-0-2 aircraft in the air.

    3. 214 B-17s are sent to attack the airfields at Zwischenahn (57), Marx (77) and Wittmundhafen (74); casualties for 1., 2. and 3. above are 7 WIA and 56 MIA. 108 of 109 P-51s escort and claim 2-0-8 aircraft on the ground; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA).

    4. 518 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Ahlhorn (61), Hesepe (165), Achmer (180) and Mulheim Airfield at Essen (90); 21 B-24s are damaged. Escorting are 95 of 99 P-51s; they claim 35-0-30 aircraft on the ground; 3 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA).

    5. 373 B-17s are sent to hit airfields at Hopsten (159 using Gee-H) and Rheine (180); targets of opportunity are the airfields at Hesepe (13) and Achmer (12); 1 B-17 is lost and 49 damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 3 WIA and 9 MIA. 97 of 102 P-51s escort; they claim 6-0-0 aircraft on the ground.

    6. 36 P-51s fly a sweep over Giebelstadt Airfield and claim 0-0-6 aircraft on the ground.

    7. 13 P-51s escort 9 F-5s, 1 P-38 and 1 Spitfire on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany.

    8. 35 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

    Mission 902: In a DISNEY operation, 3 B-17s attack the E-boat pens at Ijmuiden, the Netherlands with rocket bombs; 6 P-51s escort.

    Mission 903: 1 B-17 bombs Oberursel in a Micro-H Mk II radar test; 4 P-51s escort.

    Mission 904: During the afternoon, 90 of 92 B-24s attack Mulheim Airfield at Essen; 60 are damaged and 1 airman is WIA.

    Mission 905: 8 of 9 B-24s drop leaflets in the Netherlands and Germany during the night.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force):

    In Germany, 580+ A-20s, A-26s, and B-26s strike 6 communications centers and a marshalling yard E of the Rhine River, along with several casual targets, in the interdiction campaign to obstruct enemy movement; fighters fly patrols and armed reconnaissance, attack railroads and bridges, support the US VII Corps as its units reach the Sieg River near Siegburg, cooperate with the XII Corps as more of its elements reach the Rhine River at various points between Boppard and Worms, and support the XX Corps as additional units reach the Rhine between Worms and Mannheim.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map

    352nd History

    Three days later, on 21 March, the 487th lost yet another pilot when Lt Ervin Pryor was killed attempting to crash-land his flak-damaged P-51D at Chiévres.
    Last edited by 352nd Oscar; 03-23-2020 at 10:08 AM.
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

  10. #130

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    March 22, 1945

    EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)

    STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 2 missions are flown.

    Mission 906: Air attacks in preparation for the lower Rhine River crossing
    by Allied ground forces continue; 1,331 bombers and 662 fighters attack
    barracks and military encampments in the Ruhr and airfields in Germany
    visually; they claim 27-1-12 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 B-17 and 3 P-51s are lost:

    1. 99 of 114 B-17s hit Ahlhorn Airfield; 13 others hit the marshalling yard at Oldenburg, a target of opportunity; 1 B-17 is lost; 9 airmen are MIA. Escorting are 95 of 99 P-51s.

    2. 457 B-17s are sent to hit military camps at Bottrop (36), Dorsten (74), Barningholten (111), Westerholt (116), Feldhausen N (74) and S (39); 3 B-17s are damaged beyond repair and 111 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA and 8 WIA. The escort is 95 of 99 P-51s.

    3. 297 B-17s are sent to hit military camps at Hinsbeck (67), Geresheim (73), Ratingen (75) and Mulheim (74); 114 B-17s are damaged and 3 airmen are WIA. 48 P-51s escort; they claim 0-0-1 aircraft on the ground.

    4. 342 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Kitzingen (168), Giebelstadt (75) and Schwab Hall (82); 8 others hit Wurzburg, the secondary target; 1 B-24 is damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged; 8 airmen are KIA. The escort is 138 of 153 P-51s; they claim 3-0-1 aircraft in the air and 13-0-7 on the ground.

    5. 109 of 113 B-17s hit the Rhein Main Airfield at Frankfurt; 31 B-17s are damaged. Escorting are 56 P-51s.

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

    7. 19 of 22 P-51s escort 19 of 22 F-5s on photo reconnaissance missions over Germany; they claim 11-1-3 aircraft in the air.

    8. 2 B-17s and 31 of 32 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

    9. 150 of 153 P-51s escort Fifteenth AF bombers from Italy.

    Mission 907: 9 of 10 B-24s drop leaflets in the Netherlands and Germany.

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force):

    In Germany, nearly 800 A-20s, A-26s, and B-26s bomb 9 communications centers and a marshalling yard east of the Rhine River (plus 7 towns, flak positions, and a target of opportunity) as part of the interdiction program to impede the movement of supplies and troops; fighters escort the bombers, attack railroads and other assigned targets, fly patrols and armed reconnaissance, support the US 1st and 9th Infantry Divisions southeast of Honnef and along the Wied River, cooperate with the XII Corps as it begins crossing the Rhine River in the Mainz-Oppenheim areas and with the XX Corps which begins an attack on Ludwigshafen.

    HQ 69th Tactical Reconnaissance Group and the 10th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron arrive at Nancy, France from the US with F-6s; HQ 474th Fighter Group moves from Florennes, Belgium to Strassfeld, Germany; the 31st Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, Ninth AF [attached to 9th Tactical Reconnaissance Group (Provisional)], arrives at Maastricht, the Netherlands from the US with F-6s; the 72d Liaison Squadron, Ninth Air Force (attached to Sixth Army Group), moves from Buhl to Sarreguemines, France with L-5s.

    Locations in RED are on the Bodenplatte Map
    "War has a grim purpose and is extremely complex. Sophisticated planning and doctrine are present at every level. Yet at the point of fire battle is the essence of chaos and violence."

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