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8th Air Force 174

4 January 1944

Official description

Not yet known

Description

The port area of Kiel, Germany and the railroad marshalling yards at Munster, Germany are the Primary targets of this Mission which is organised as two elements: one going to Kiel and the other to Munster. Roger A. Freeman begins to designate aircraft despatched by Bomb Division rather than by individual Bomb Groups as follows:

Kiel Element - Bomb Groups participating
1BD = 91BG, 92BG, 303BG, 305BG, 306BG, 351BG, 379BG, 381BG and 384BG
2BD = 44BG, 93BG, 389BG, 392BG, 445BG, 446BG and 448BG
3BD = 94BG, 95BG, 100BG, 385BG, 390BG and 447BG
Kiel Element - Aircraft despatched - total 569 despatched - 486 effective as follows:
1BD = 263 B-17s despatched - 205 effective
2BD = 176 B-24s despatched - 166 effective
3BD = 130 B-17s despatched - 115 effective

Munster Element - Bomb Groups participating
3BD = 96BG and 388BG
Munster Element -Aircraft despatched - total despatched 75 - 68 effective.

NOTE: Some sources claim that this was the last bombing mission flown under the VIII Bomber Command designation and some claim that it was the first mission flown by bombers under the 8th Air Force designation. The official designation of 8th Air Force as an autonomous unit of the of the United States Army Air Forces will come on 22-Feb-44, but mission designation as "8th Air Force" begins 1-Jan-44.

Mission details

1. KIEL (Primary)

Description

PORT AREA

Aircraft type

B-24 Liberator

Notes

34 B-24s drop on Targets of Opportunity around Kiel, Germany. Bomber Gunner claims are recorded on this entry for statistical purposes. The totals are combined for all Air Divisions that attacked Kiel on this date.

Units

  • 389th Bomb Group

    389th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 389th Bomb Group, known in more familiar terms as "the Sky Scorpions", flew strategic bombing missions in B-24 Liberators from Hethel, England. They also sent detachments to join bases in North Africa at Benghazi No. 10, Libya, between 3 July 1943...

  • 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 to be given B-24H Liberators, the first B-24 model that was fitted with a nose turret on the production line, an adaptation...

  • 445th Bomb Group

    445th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 445th Bomb Group flew B-24 Liberators from Tibenham, Norfolk. The crews' first mission was bombing U-boat installations at Kiel on 13 December 1943. The Group continued to hit strategic targets in Germany, including the aircraft components factory...

  • 446th Bomb Group

    446th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 446th Bomb Group, who came to be known as "the Bungay Buckaroos" after the name of their Suffolk base, flew B-24 Liberators on strategic, support and interdictory missions over Europe. The Group led the Eighth Air Force and 2nd Bomb Division on the...

  • 449th Bomb Group

    449th Bomb Group

    Group
    The group was constituted as 449th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 6 April 1943 and activated on 1 May at Davis-Monthan Field, Arizona.[2] its original components were the 716th,[3] 717th,[4] 718th,[5] and 719th Bombardment Squadrons.[6] ...

  • 44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs

    44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs

    Group
    The 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated 15-January-1942 at McDill Field, Florida and equipped with B-24Cs. The Group moved to Barksdale Field, Louisiana and acted as a training unit for the 90th 93rd and 98th Bomb Groups and flew anti...

  • 93rd Bomb Group

    93rd Bomb Group

    Group
    93rd Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated 1-March-1942 at Barksdale Field, Louisiana. On 15-May-1942 the Group moved to Ft. Myers, Florida to continue advanced flight training and also to fly anti-submarine patrols over the Gulf of Mexico; they...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 253.00
Number of aircraft Sent 130
Number of aircraft Effective 115
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 6
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 2
Number of aircraft Damaged 16
Number of people Killed In Action 41
Number of people Wounded in Action 13
Number of people Evaded 4
Number of people Prisoners of War 20
Number of people Returned To Duty 10
Enemy aircraft claimed as Destroyed by Bomber Command 4
Enemy aircraft claimed as Probably Destroyed by Bomber Command 12
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 4

2. KIEL(Primary)

Description

BOMB TARGETS OF OPPORTUNITY

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

Not yet known

Units

  • 100th Bomb Group

    100th Bomb Group

    Group
    "The Bloody Hundredth", so-called because of a reputation for losing a high number aircraft and crews, flew B-17s from Thorpe Abbotts, Norfolk. Their losses were not the highest of any Eighth Air Force Group but on several occasions the Group lost many...

  • 385th Bomb Group

    385th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 385th Bomb Group, who took the nickname "Van's Valiants" after their first Commanding Officer Col. Elliot Vandevanter, flew B-17s from Great Ashfield, Suffolk. The Group led the famous attack on the Focke-Wolfe aircraft factory at Marienburg on 9...

  • 390th Bomb Group

    390th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 390th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses from Framlingham, Suffolk, between July 1943 and the end of the war in Europe. The Group was engaged in strategic missions until the invasion of Europe when its role became more of a tactical one. This...

  • 447th Bomb Group

    447th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 447th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses on strategic bombardment missions out of Rattlesden, Suffolk. With their first mission coming on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1943, their main focus was hitting sites that would weaken enemy forces...

  • 94th Bomb Group

    94th Bomb Group

    Group
    Activated 15 June 1942 at MacDill Field, Florida. Initial organization and training at Pendleton Field, Oregon on 29 June 1942; Primary flight training at Davis-Monthan Field in Arizona from 28 Aug. 42 to 31 Oct. 42; then at Biggs Field, El Paso, Texas...

  • 95th Bomb Group

    95th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 95th Bomb Group was the only Eighth Air Force Group to be awarded three Distinguished Unit Citations. The first, shared by all four Bomb Wing Groups, was for the bombing of an aircraft factory under intense enemy fire at Regensburg on 17 August...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 365.00
Number of aircraft Sent 176
Number of aircraft Effective 166
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 4
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 29
Number of people Killed In Action 15
Number of people Wounded in Action 6
Number of people Prisoners of War 27
Number of people Returned To Duty 10

3. KIEL(Primary)

Description

PORT AREA

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

7 B-17s drop on Targets of Opportunity around Kiel, Germany.

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...

  • 305th Bomb Group Can Do

    305th Bomb Group Can Do

    Group
    The 305th Bombardment Group (Heavy), nicknamed "Can Do" was activated 1-March-1942 at Salt Lake City Air Base, Utah which was their primary training base until 11-Jun-1942 when they relocated to Geiger Field, Washington until 29-Jun-1942, then on to...

  • 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,...

  • 351st Bomb Group

    351st Bomb Group

    Group
    The 351st Bomb Group flew strategic bombing missions from their base at Polebrook, Northamptonshire from April 1943 to June 1945. The Group's most famous member was Hollywood actor Clark Gable, who flew four/ five missions with them as an observer...

  • 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...

  • 381st Bomb Group

    381st Bomb Group

    Group
    The 381st Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses from Ridgewell, Essex between June 1943 and April 1945. The Group was awarded two Distinguished Unit Citations, the first for bombing shipyards at Bremen, whilst under heavy attack, on 8 October 1943 and...

  • 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...

  • 401st Bomb Group

    401st Bomb Group

    Group
    The 401st Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses from Deenethorpe, Northamptonshire, from November 1943 to June 1945. Starting their missions at that time meant the focus was very much on the coming invasion attempt of France planned for the following...

  • 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    Group
    The 91st Bombardment Group (Heavy) was activated at Harding Field, Louisiana on 15-April-1942 and went to MacDill Field, Florida for the first phase of training from 16-May-1942 to 25-June-1942. The Group was then assigned to 2nd Air Force at Walla...

  • 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 451.00
Number of aircraft Sent 263
Number of aircraft Effective 205
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 5
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 2
Number of aircraft Damaged 82
Number of people Killed In Action 27
Number of people Wounded in Action 34
Number of people Evaded 1
Number of people Prisoners of War 38
Number of people Returned To Duty 8

4. Münster, Germany

Description

MARSHALLING YARDS

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

Not yet known

Units

  • 388th Bomb Group

    388th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 388th Bomb Group flew strategic bombing mission from Knettishall, Suffolk from June 1943 to the end of the war. During this time, though, detachments were sent to Fersfield, Norfolk to conduct Aphrodite missions. In these Aphrodite missions veteran...

  • 96th Bomb Group

    96th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 96th Bomb Group flew B-17 Flying Fortresses to targets across occupied Europe from May 1943 to April 1945. ...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 192.00
Number of aircraft Sent 75
Number of aircraft Effective 68
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 2
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 35
Number of people Killed In Action 17
Number of people Wounded in Action 1
Number of people Prisoners of War 3
Number of people Returned To Duty 10

Service

People

  • Athen Anagnos

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 381st Bomb Group
    Navigator, Nason crew. 381st BG, 533d BS, 8th AF. Shot down by fighters on mission #59 to the aircraft factories at Oschersleben, Germany on 11 Jan 1944 in B-17F #42-37719 'Hellcat/Dinah Mite'. Plane crashed in Zuider Zee. MACR 1881. Killed in Action...

  • George Ayers

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 381st Bomb Group
    BTG, Mickow crew. 381st BG, 534th BS, 8th AF. Shot down by fighters on mission #61 to Frankfurt, Germany on 29 Jan 1944 in B-17G #42-37884. MACR 2241. Killed in Action (KIA). Groves, TX

  • John Baudoin

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner, Waist Gunner | 305th Bomb Group Can Do
    Shot down 5 January 1944 in B-17 #4230724. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Kenneth Betts

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 388th Bomb Group
    Shot down in a frontal attack by fighters on the return from a mission to Klein Machnow, Berlin on 6 Mar 1944, B-17G #42-31135 'Suzy Sagtitz' crashed near Schoonebekerveld, Holland. Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Raymond Beus

    Military | Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner | 381st Bomb Group
    RWG, Nason crew. 381st BG, 533rd BS, 8th AF. Shot down by fighters on mission #59 to the aircraft factories at Oschersleben, Germany on 11 Jan 1944 in B-17F 42-37719 'Hellcat/Dinah Might'. MACR 1881. Plane crashed in Zuider Zee. Killed in Action (KIA)....

  • Frank Bisagna

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 381st Bomb Group
    Navigator, Zeman crew. 381st BG, 532nd BS, 8th AF. Shot down 5 January 1944 in B-17 #42-30676 'Baby Dumpling'. Mission #57 to the airfield at Tours, France. Hit by an air to air rocket. MACR 1962. Prisoner of War at Stalag Luft I. New Hamburg, NY POW

  • Salvatore Bozzette

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 381st Bomb Group
    Radio operator, Clore crew. 381st BG, 532nd BS, 8th AF. Killed in Action (KIA). Crashed shortly after TO near Hedingham on mission #56 to Kiel, Germany in B-17G #42-31278 'Mix Master'. T/Sgt Bozzette was a former ground crew member who took gunnery...

  • Harold Brassfield

    Military | Staff Sergeant (Technician Third Grade) | Tail Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    On the return from a mission to Klein Machnow, Berlin on 6 Mar 1944, B-17G #42-37886 'Blitzing' Betsy' was severely damaged by attacks from several FW190s causing it to collide with another 388th B-17, exploding in mid-air and crashing near Emmen,...

  • Hoyt Burckhalter

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 381st Bomb Group
    Tail gunner, Evans, Rowland crew. 381st BG, 535th BS, 8th AF. Crashed landed on 4 January 1944 in B-17F #42-29923 'Lucky Strike' near Nolfolk due to low fuel, iced windshield. Attempted to land in a filed and hit a ditch. 2 crewmembers KIA. Mission #56...

  • Joseph Byser

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 381st Bomb Group
    Co-pilot, Nason crew. 381st BG, 533rd BS, 8th AF. Shot down by fighters on mission #59 to the aircraft factories at Oschersleben, Germany on 11 Jan 1944 in B-17F #42-37719 'Hellcat/Dinah Mite'. Plane crashed in Zuider Zee. MACR 1881. Killed in Action ...

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Aircraft

  • 42-29923 Pappy's Hellions III, Lucky Strike

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 13/3/43; Casper 28/3/43; Tinker 10/4/43; Assigned 364BS/305BG [WF-K] Chelveston 18/5/43 PAPPY'S HELLIONS III; ...

  • 42-30212 Quarterback

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 29/4/43; Sioux City 14/5/43; Smoky Hill 11/6/43; Dow Fd 16/6/43; Assigned 562BS/388BG Knettishall 17/6/43; transferred Aphrodite project, Missing in Action V-sites, Watten 6/8/44 with Lt Joeseph P Andrecheck & T/Sgt Raymond Healy (2...

  • 42-30298 Ragin Red II

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 11/5/43; Gore 24/5/43; Smoky Hill 29/5/43; Dow Fd 3/6/43; Assigned 525BS/379BG [FR-M] Kimbolton 13/6/43 TENDER TIT TILLIE, then RAGIN' RED II; transferred 837BS/487BG [4F] Lavenham 15/7/44; 78th Fighter Wing 24/10/44; transferred...

  • 42-30595 'Gremlin Gus II' "Olin's 69'ers"

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 26/6/43; Smoky Hill 13/7/43; Kearney 16/7/43; Dow Fd 19/7/43; Assigned 560BS/388BG Knettishall 20/7/43; (34m) transferred Aphrodite project as OLIN'S 69'ERS; when War Weary, fuselage cut down and vehicle windshield fitted before open...

  • 42-30778 Old 66/Lady Margaret

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 28/7/43; Gore 6/8/43; Pendleton 12/8/43; Reno 14/8/43; Pierre 16/8/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG Knettishall 3/9/43; crashed on take off for France 13/8/44 with Leon Sutton, Co-pilot: Harlan Thompson, Navigator: George Healy, Bombardier:...

  • 42-31083 Tenny Belle

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 15/9/43; ...

  • 42-31115 Hells Belles

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 21/9/43; Gr Island 6/10/43; Assigned 562BS/388BG Knettishall 25/10/43; Missing in Action Brunswick 10/2/44 with Jim Feeneynot found till 25/2/44, Radio Operator: Norman Kajut, Waist gunner: Marion Forbis,Tail gunner: Lou LeFevre (4...

  • 42-31222 Lazy Daisy

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 4/10/43; Gr Island 17/10/43; Memphis 24/10/43; Assigned 545BS/384BG [JD-D] Grafton Underwood 546 [BK-D] 23/11/43; Missing in Action Magdeburg (Berlin) 28/9/44 with Jim Brodie, Co-pilot: Lloyd Vevle, ng-Byron Atkins, Flight engineer/top...

  • 42-31278 Mix Master

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 14/10/43; Gr Island 29/10/43; Memphis 5/11/43; Assigned 532BS/381BG [VE-A] Ridgewell 20/12/43; crashed on take off 2m Kiel 4/1/44 with Cecil Clore, Co-pilot: John Newell, Navigator: Ralph Waldman, Bombardier: Marvin Dille, Flight...

  • 42-3291 Miss Mac

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 30/4/43; Dow Fd 13/6/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG Knettishall 14/6/43; on training mission 12/7/44 with Major Boardman Reed, Co-pilot: Major Melvin Buckner, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Paul Weathers, Radio Operator: Ora Kelsey, pass...

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Revisions

Date Contributor Update
06 January 2016 23:53:24 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 6-Jan-2016. Removed Note to Viewers and transferred it to 8th AF PHOTO RECCE operation of 2-Jan-44.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 19:11:52 Lee8thbuff Changes to name
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Changed title to 8th AF mission, per "Losses of the 8th & 9th AIr Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey, MBE.

Date Contributor Update
09 February 2015 20:21:18 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 9-Feb-2015. Added Note referencing mission designation changes from VIII Bomber Command to 8th Air Force.

Date Contributor Update
09 February 2015 20:13:29 Lee8thbuff Changes to event
Sources

Lee Cunningham 9-Feb-2015. Completed entry and Bomber Gunner statistics based on "The Mighty 8th War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
09 February 2015 01:06:49 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Feb-2015. Defined Kiel and Munster elements per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
08 February 2015 23:14:57 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Feb-2015. NOTE to VIEWERS added per Mr. Lee Cunningham.

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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