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VIII Bomber Command 191

24 January 1944

Official description

Not yet known


The primary target of this mission was the Zukunft power station at Eschweilier, Germany. The mision was composed of 563 bombers three elements from 1BD, 2BD and 3BD. The despatch from 2BD was recalled doe to weather before it could take off. Mission summary as follows:

3rd Bomb Division: 272 B-17s were despatched from: 94BG; 95BG; 96BG; 100BG, 388BG, 390BG and 447BG. Weather hampered bombing and only 56 of this formation were effective on the target. 2 aircraft Failed to Return (FTR) - 5KIA 12POW 3EVD. 1 aircraft crashed on takeoff - 1 KIA 9RTD. 1 airman was KIA in a returning aircraft. The bomber gunners claimed 1-0-3 of attacking German aircraft.

2nd Bomb Division - element recalled before takeoff.

3rd Bomb Division: 291 B-17s are despatched from: 91BG; 351BG; and 381BG. 1 aircraft was Damaged Beyond Repair (DBR) in a crash landing at Ickelton Abby, UK - 4KIA 6RTD. There were no other losses or claims.

Mission details

1. ESCHWEILER (Opportunistic)



Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress


All groups in this element were recalled, but 56 managed to bomb the power station.


  • 100th Bomb Group

    100th Bomb 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...

  • 388th Bomb Group

    388th Bomb 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...

  • 390th Bomb Group

    390th Bomb 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

    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

    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

    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...

  • 96th Bomb Group

    96th Bomb Group

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

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 272
Number of aircraft Effective 56
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 2
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 2
Number of people Killed In Action 10
Number of people Evaded 3
Number of people Prisoners of War 12
Number of people Returned To Duty 15
Enemy aircraft claimed as Destroyed by Bomber Command 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 3

2. Eschweiler, Germany



Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress


A combined force of B-17s and B-24s were despatched to bomb industrial targets around Frankfurt. However, weather frustrated form-up and only 563 of the force were despatched. Eventually all groups were recalled. Only two aircraft from this element managed to drop bombs on the power station.


  • 351st Bomb Group

    351st Bomb 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...

  • 381st Bomb Group

    381st Bomb 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...

  • 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars

    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...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 143.00
Number of aircraft Sent 291
Number of aircraft Effective 2
Number of aircraft Damaged 5

3. Frankfurt, Germany



Aircraft type

B-24 Liberator


All the B-24s were recalled before leaving the ground.


  • 389th Bomb Group

    389th Bomb 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

    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 an adaptation ...

  • 445th Bomb Group

    445th Bomb 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

    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...

  • 448th Bomb Group

    448th Bomb Group

    The 448th Bomb Group was a B-24 Liberator Group that flew out of Seething, Norfolk. The Group flew their first mission on the 22nd December 1943 and over the next eighteen months the air crews flew 262 missions over occupied Europe. These bombing...

  • 44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs

    44th Bomb Group The Flying Eightballs

    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

    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 0.00
Number of aircraft Sent 0
Number of aircraft Effective 0



  • 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

  • Clifford Barker

    Military | Sergeant (Technician Fourth Grade) | Left Waist Gunner | 401st Bomb Group
    Barker, a native of Yorktown, Ind., was a burly 6-foot-2 inch forward on the 1948 Kentucky team that finished the season with a 36-3 record, the national title and the nickname of the Fabulous Five. The other starters were Wallace (Wah Wah) Jones at...

  • 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,...

  • Julian Chandler

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Radio Operator | 381st Bomb Group
    Radio operator, 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. Prisoner of War at Stalag Luft I. Rockmart, GA

  • Harold Cyr

    Military | Sergeant (Technician Fourth Grade) | Tail Gunner | 401st Bomb Group
    Shot down during bombing mission over Brunswick, Germany 30 Jan 1944 in B-17G #42-37856 'Fancy Nancy III. ' Prisoner of War (POW). POW

  • Joseph Fabianski

    Military | Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 381st Bomb Group
    TG, 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. Sgt Fabianski was wounded in the arms. S/Sgt Chandler (radio operator) pulled Sgt Fabianski from the...

  • Clarence Flinn

    Military | Technical Sergeant | Radio Operator | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    29 missions, December 1943 - May 1944 DFC/ Air Medal w/ 3 Oak Leaf Cluster

  • John Gardner

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 95th Bomb Group

  • Mario George

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    Retired from the USAF with the rank of Captain

  • Lawrence Goldstein

    Military | Technical Sergeant (2nd Grade) | Radio Operator | 388th Bomb Group
    Flew 25 missions--first day raid on Berlin--crew name 'Worry Wart'--on 25th mission, returned to base, last plane to land, chased to channel by Fw 190--shooting continously until we escaped. As RO was able to obtain position report from rescue not...

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  • 42-31115 Hells Belles

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  • 42-3307 Skipper

    B-17 Flying Fortress
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  • 42-37756 Roarin' Bill

    B-17 Flying Fortress
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    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Long Beach 2/11/43; Kearney 14/11/43; Assigned 324BS/91BG [DF-K] Bassingbourn 21/1/44; detailed Eschweiler but mission called off through bad weather while forming up, then fire broke out in top turret 24/1/44, with Marco De Mara, Co-pilot:...

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Date Contributor Update
12 January 2016 22:50:56 Lee8thbuff Changes to aircraft associations

Lee Cunningham 12-Jan-2016. Corrected aircraft associations of FTRs and DBRs per "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

Date Contributor Update
12 January 2016 22:16:20 Lee8thbuff Changes to event

Lee Cunningham 12-Jan-2016. Added bomber gunner claims to statistics of 3BD element per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
12 January 2016 22:11:35 Lee8thbuff Changes to description

Lee Cunningham 12-Jan-2016. Added Mission Narrative per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
28 May 2015 09:48:54 jdossetter Changes to event

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

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'.