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VIII Bomber Command 101

23 September 1943

Official description

Not yet known

Description

This mission was actually flown by two different formations as two missions but it only went into the records as a single 8th Air Force mission. The combined force was composed of 91 B-17s from 92BG (17); 303BG (19); 306BG (18); 379BG (19) and 384BG (18) despatched to bobm the port area of Nantes, France and the German airfield of Rennes/St. Jacques, France. 61 of the 91 were affective on the Nantes port area. No aircraft were lost from the Nantes formation but one aircraft was Damaged Beyond Repair (DRB) in a crash landing upon return 10RTD. 10 airmen were wounded. 19 of 91 were effective on the airfield at Rennes/ St. Jacques, France. Two aircraft Failed to Return (FTR) 17POW 3EVD. 2 airmen were wounded. 26 aircraft were damaged.

Mission details

1.

Description

DIVERSION

Aircraft type

B-24 Liberator

Notes

Diversion for raids on Nantes and Rennes/St. Jacques, France.

Units

  • 392nd Bomb Group

    392nd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 392nd Bomb Group flew B-24 Liberators out of Wendling, Norfolk from August 1943 until April 1945. They were the first Group allocated B-24H Liberators, the first B-24 series fitted with a nose turret on the production line. The adaptation increased...

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 26

2. NANTES (Primary)

Description

HARBOUR INSTALLATION

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

First occasion that two Heavy bomber missions are flown in the same day.

Units

  • 303rd Bomb Group

    303rd Bomb Group

    Group
    The 303rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated on 3-Feb-1942 at Pendleton Field, Oregon. They assembled at Gowen Field, Idaho on 11-February 1942 where it conducted flight training until 12-Jun-1942. The Group then moved to Alamogordo Field, New...

  • 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    Group
    Constituted as 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942. Activated on 1 Mar 1942. Trained for combat with B-17's. Moved to England, Aug-Sep 1942, and assigned to Eighth AF Eighth Air Force in September 1942 Station 111 Thurleigh. During combat,...

  • 384th Bomb Group

    384th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 384th Bomb Group flew B-17s from Grafton Underwood, Northamptonshire, between May 1943 and June 1945. They were engaged in daylight bombing missions over Germany as part of the Allies' efforts to destroy the effectiveness of the Luftwaffe by...

  • 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    Group
    The 92nd Group sometime after arrivial in the UK converted to the role of in-theater combat crew indocrination and training. For this role, the Group traded its B-17F complement and obtained the B-17E, mostly from the 97th BG which was departing for...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 174.00
Number of aircraft Sent 72
Number of aircraft Effective 61
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 1
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 16
Number of people Killed In Action 3
Number of people Evaded 7
Number of people Prisoners of War 7
Number of people Returned To Duty 7

3. RENNES/ST. JACQUES (Opportunistic)

Description

AIRFIELD

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

Not yet known

Units

  • 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    Group
    Constituted as 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942. Activated on 1 Mar 1942. Trained for combat with B-17's. Moved to England, Aug-Sep 1942, and assigned to Eighth AF Eighth Air Force in September 1942 Station 111 Thurleigh. During combat,...

  • 379th Bomb Group

    379th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 379th Bomb Group (H) (heavy), based at Kimbolton, flew more sorties than any other Bomb Group in the Eighth Air Force and dropped a greater bomb tonnage than any other Group. The B-17 Flying Fortress Group was awarded two Distinguished Unit...

  • 384th Bomb Group

    384th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 384th Bomb Group flew B-17s from Grafton Underwood, Northamptonshire, between May 1943 and June 1945. They were engaged in daylight bombing missions over Germany as part of the Allies' efforts to destroy the effectiveness of the Luftwaffe by...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 57.00
Number of aircraft Sent 19
Number of aircraft Effective 19
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 10
Number of people Killed In Action 7
Number of people Evaded 4
Number of people Prisoners of War 9

Service

People

  • Philip Higdon

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 384th Bomb Group
    Shot down 23 September 1943 in B-17 42-3459. Prisoner of War. Co-pilot Louis E. Ritt was the pilot of a newly assigned crew, flying his first orientation flight.

  • Louis Ritt

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot, Co-Pilot | 384th Bomb Group
    Shot down in B-17 42-3459 BK-F, JOLLY ROGER on Mission 101, 23 September 1943. Missing Air Crew Report #748. POW

  • Richard Scharch

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner/Radioman | 303rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 358BS, 303BG, 8AF USAAF. 26 x combat missions. ETD Awards: DFC, AM (3OLC), WWII Victory, EAME.

Aircraft

  • 41-24605 Knock-out Dropper

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned to the 359BS/303BG [BN-R] Bangor 22-Sep-42; Molesworth 22-Oct-42; First 8th Air Force aircraft to complete 50, then 75 missions- 27-Mar-44; with M/Sgt Buford Pafford as crew chief; 1 Base Air Depot, Burtonwood 5-Jun-44; Reconstruction Finance...

  • 42-3131 Winnie The Pooh, Flak Wolf

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 20/2/43; 19/4/43; Assigned 427BS/303BG [GN-U] Molesworth 4/6/43; RWG Leon Kesky Killed in ActionSchweinfurt 17/8/43; 40m Missing in Action Oschersleben 11/1/44 with John Carothers, Co-pilot: Chas Frost, Radio Operator: George Rajcula...

  • 42-3459 JOLLY ROGER

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered to Cheyenne 26/6/43; Dow Field 29/7/43; Assigned to the 546th BS, squadron code BK-F, 384th BG, Station 106, Grafton Underwood, UK on 9/8/43; Missing in Action Nantes 23/9/43 with Philip E. Higdon, Co-pilot: Louis E. Ritt, Navigator: Meyer...

  • 42-5177 Fast Worker Mk II, Fast Woman

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 6/10/42; New Castle 19/10/42; Assigned 359BS/303BG [BN-U] Molesworth 1/2/43; battle damaged Bremen 28/11/43 with Harry Bolsover, Co-pilot: Chas Rice, Navigator: Byron Clark, Bombardier: Chas McLain, Flight engineer/top turret gunner:...

  • 42-5221 Son

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 14/10/42; Salina 31/1/43; Morrison 4/3/43; Assigned 427BS/303BG [GN-Z] Molesworth 8/4/43; 25m Missing in Action Anklam 9/10/43 with Bernard Clifford, Co-pilot: Chas Jahn, Navigator: Chas Stata, Bombardier: Bob Bruce, Flight engineer/top...

  • 42-5360 Old Faithful, War Bride

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 20/11/42; New Castle 13/12/42; Assigned 358BS/303BG Molesworth [VK-N] 8/1/43; Missing in Action [35m] Oschersleben 11/1/44 with Harry Schwaebe, Co-pilot: Harry Dumse, Navigator: Paul Degnan, Bombardier: Wilburn Wiley, Flight engineer...

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
28 June 2015 20:19:17 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 28-Jun-2015. Added Mission Description based on "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:43:16 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Lee Cunningham, 8th Air Force missions research database / Stan Bishop's 'Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces', the Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces and the work of Roger Freeman including the 'Mighty Eighth War Diary'.

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