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VIII Bomber Command 88

31 August 1943

Official description

Not yet known

Description

This mission is composed of two elements. The first element is composed of 170 B-17s from: 91BG (16); 92BG (19); 303BG (20); 305BG (18); 306BG (18); 351BG (21); 379BG (21); 381BG (19); and 384BG (18). The primary target for this element is German airfield at Romilly-sur-Seine, France, but the target is obscured by clouds preventing 306BG and 384BG from bombing. The Commanding Officer of this 1st Bomb Wing element orders the formations to attack the German airfield at Amiens/Glisy instead making use of VHF radio communications to coordinate the attack. This is the first use of VHF in this manner. 105 aircraft hit the Amiens/Glisy airfield. 3 B-17s Failed to Return (FTR) 20KIA 6POW 3EVD 1RTD (rescued by ACR). 2 of the FTRs were involved in a mid-air collision and ended up crashing into the English Channel on the way to the target. 5 other airmen were KIA in aircraft that returned to base along with 8WIA. 1 aircraft was damaged bu debris from the 2 B-17s that collided but managed to make it back to England but crashlanded at Polebook. 8KOM 2RTD 1 RAF Observer also killed. The bomber gunners claim 5-1-3 of attacking German fighters.

The second element was a combined group of 149 B-17s from: 94BG (21); 95BG (22); 96BG (21); 100BG (19); 385BG (21); 388BG (22); and 390BG (23) despatched to bomb the Meulan aircraft factory at Rouen, France. The target was obscured by clouds and only 1 aircraft managed to bomb a target of opportunity - the railway NE of Rouen. There are no losses or claims but 19 aircraft are damaged.

Mission details

1. AMIENS/GLISY (Last resort)

Description

AIRFIELD

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

306th Bomb Group and 384th Bomb Group despatch does not effectively hit the target. The 306th Bomb Group/367th Bomb Squadron has incurred the heaviest losses of any Bomb Squadron in 8th Air Force between October 1942 and the end of August 1943. First use of VHF radio communications to coordinate an attack improvised by the Commanding Officer of 8th Air Force/1st Bomb Wing when the primary target at Rommilly-sur-Seine airfield was obscured by clouds. Previous to this the 8th Air Force had maintained radio silence (as per RAF) procedures.

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...

  • 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 310.00
Number of aircraft Sent 170
Number of aircraft Effective 105
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 3
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 35
Number of people Killed In Action 33
Number of people Wounded in Action 8
Number of people Evaded 3
Number of people Prisoners of War 6
Number of people Returned To Duty 3
Enemy aircraft claimed as Destroyed by Bomber Command 5
Enemy aircraft claimed as Probably Destroyed by Bomber Command 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 3

2. MEULAN/ ROUEN (Primary)

Description

AIRCRAFT FACTORY

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

Target obscured. One B-17 hits Rouen rail junction instead.

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...

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • 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 3.00
Number of aircraft Sent 149
Number of aircraft Effective 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 19
Number of people Wounded in Action 1

Service

People

  • Allan Alford

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Tail Gunner | 381st Bomb Group
    Tail gunner, Loftin crew. 381st BG, 534th BS. Shot down 9 October 1943 in B-17 #42-29958 'Battlin' Bombsprayer'. Mission #37 to the Arado Aircraft components at Anklam, Germany. MACR 886. Killed in Action (KIA). Buried in the Ardennes AMC. ...

  • Hyman Beckerman

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 381st Bomb Group
    Navigator, Loftin crew. 381st BG, 534th BS, 8th AF. Shot down 9 October 1943 in B-17 #42-29958 'Battlin' Bombsprayer'. Mission #37 to the Arado Aircraft components at Anklam, Germany. MACR 886. Prisoner of War at Stalag Luft III and Stalag XIIID. ...

  • Charles Bein

    Military | Sergeant (Technician Fourth Grade) | Waist Gunner | 388th Bomb Group
    Shot down 20 December 1943 in B-17 #4231084. Killed in Action (KIA). AM w/ 2 Oak Leaf Cluster

  • Louis Benepe

    Military | First Lieutenant | Co-Pilot | 303rd Bomb Group
    Assigned to 358BS, 303BG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) mission to Amiens-Glisy, France in B-17 42-29635 'Augerhead' on 31-Aug-43; Flak hits slowed ship down then enemy aircraft struck. Crashed Northeast of Dieppe, France. Prisoner of War (POW)...

  • Charles Bliss

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    Retired from the USAF with the rank of Colonel

  • Neil Brennan

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Air Gunner, Togglier/Bombardier | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Shot down 26 November 1943 in B-17 #4230832. Prisoner of War (POW). He was a Prisoner of War (POW) from 26 Nov. 1943 to 04 May 1945. He was at Stalag 17B, Krems, Austria. Prisoner of War (POW) no. 100388. POW

  • Alfred Buinicky

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Ball Turret Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    Alfred Buinicky was a bench worker in a machine shop in Claremont, New Hampshire when he enlisted in August 1942. Sent overseas, he was assigned as a Ball Turret Gunner in the 303rd Bomb Group/358th Bomb Squadron in England. Shot down 31 August 1943 in...

  • Cecil Clore

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 381st Bomb Group
    Pilot, Clore crew. "B" Flight Commander. 381st BG, 534th 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'. Originally buried with the entire crew at Cambridge...

  • James Comer

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Left Waist Gunner | 303rd Bomb Group
    S/Sgt James Comer Jr was Left Waist Gunner on B-17 "Augerhead" # 42-29635 of 303rd Bomb Group/358th Bomb Squadron when it was shot down on the 31 August mission to the Amiens/Glisy airfield. Prisoner of War (POW) - Missing Air Crew Report - MACR 470.

  • Chester Cornell

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Co-Pilot ; Pilot | 381st Bomb Group
    Co-pilot, Loftin crew. 381st BG, 534th BS, 8th AF. Shot down 9 October 1943 in B-17 42-29958 'Battlin Bombsprayer'. Mission #37 to the Arado Aircraft components at Anklam, Germany. MACR 886. Prisoner of War at Stalag Luft III and Stalag XIIID. ...

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Aircraft

  • 41-24560 'Little Audrey'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned 368BS/306BG [BO-D] New Castle 4/10/42; Thurleigh 26/10/42; transferred 369BS [WW- ]; transferred 544BS/384BG [SU-A] Grafton Underwood 5/9/43; 1 Base Air Depot, Burtonwood 15/3/44; Returned to the USA Homestead 14/5/44; Reconstruction Finance...

  • 41-24561 The Duchess, "Sure Stuff"

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned 359BS/303BG [BN-T] Bangor 10/9/42; Molesworth 16/10/42; 59m transferred 1 Base Air Depot (sic),* Burtonwood 7/7/44; Returned to the USA Altus 18/8/44; Reconstruction Finance Corporation (sold for scrap metal in USA) Altus 14/8/45. Over...

  • 41-24587 Bad Check

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned 427BS/303BG [GN-P] Bangor 5/10/42; Molesworth 25/10/42; Missing in Action 45m Oschersleben 11/1/44 with George McClellan, Co-pilot: Bill Fisherex B-26 pilot on his 1st mission, Flight engineer/top turret gunner: Dave Tempesta, Radio Operator:...

  • 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...

  • 42-29635 Augerhead

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 24/1/43; Salina 7/2/43; Assigned 358BS/303BG [VK-M] Molesworth 26/3/43. 18 missions. Missing in Action on the mission to bomb the airfield at Amiens-Glisy, France on 31 August 1943. Pilot: William J. Monahan; Co-pilot: Louis M....

  • 42-29816 'The Eager Beaver'

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Denver 22/2/43; Salina 3/3/43; Assigned 401BS/91BG [LL-K] Bassingbourn 19/4/43; Missing in Action Amiens Glisy 31/8/43 with Buster Peek, Co-pilot: Bill Edwards, Navigator: Merlen Crist, Bombardier: Roger Fuller, Flight engineer/top turret...

  • 42-30033 "Little America"

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 2/4/43; Sioux City 13/4/43; Kearney 4/5/43; Bangor 20/5/43; Assigned to the 547BS/384BG [S0-G] Grafton Underwood 24/5/43, then the 546BS [BK-G]; Missing in Action Leverkusen 1/12/43 with Maj Maurice Stanley Dillingham, Co-pilot:...

  • 42-30193 Hard Luck

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 24/4/43; Sioux City 8/5/43; Smoky Hill 9/6/43; Dow Fd 14/6/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG Knettishall 15/6/43. ...

  • 42-30213 Lil' One

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 29/4/43; Gore 9/5/43; Sioux City 10/5/43; Smoky Hill 11/6/43; Dow Fd 15/6/43; Assigned 562BS/388BG Knettishall 1/6/43; crashed on take off for Bremen after encountering mechanical problems 13/11/43 with Bob Simons, Co-pilot: Alvin...

  • 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...

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Revisions

Date Contributor Update
10 May 2017 19:36:23 ThomBear Changes to aircraft associations
Sources

Added a/c 41-24560 per post-mission report.

Date Contributor Update
28 May 2015 23:34:01 Lee8thbuff Changes to event
Sources

Lee Cunningham 28-May-2015. Added bomber gunner claims on enemy aircraft to Amiens/Glisy statistics per "The Mighty Eight War Diary", Roger A. Freeman

Date Contributor Update
28 May 2015 23:32:20 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 28--May-2015. Added Mission Narrative based on "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman; "Losses of the 8th & 9th AIr Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey MBE.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:43:18 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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