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VIII Bomber Command 92

7 September 1943

Official description

Over 100 Heavy Bombers strike industrial area and airfield at Brussels while smaller number of Heavy Bombers bomb targets (including NOBALL site) at Watten, and shipping off Texel Island.

Description

Two German airfields, one at Brussels, Begium and the other at Bergen, Holland, and the V-Weapons sites around Watten, France are the primary targets for this mission.

The first element of 144 B-17s from: 303BG (14); 382BG (14); 379BG (14); 306BG (12); 305BG (12); 92BG (12); 351BG (19); and 381BG (17) are despatched to bomb the German airfield at Brussels/Evere, Belgium. 105 are effective on the target. There are nolosses or claims but 1 aircraft makes a crashlanding at Polebrook, damaging the aircraft but all 10 airment are OK, another10 aircraft are damaged. The formation receives good fighter escort support by 8th AF P-47s.

The second element is a formation of 29 B-24s from: 44BG (13) and 389BG (16) dispatched to bomb Leeuwarden in the Netherlands. This is the first bombing mission for these Groups following their Temporary Duty (TDY) assignments and return from North Africa. Bombing does not take place at Leeuwarden, and the secondary target: the German airfield of Bergen/Alkmaar in the Netherlands is attacked by 3 effective aircraft. 19 aircraft of this formation end up bombing the opportunistic target of a German shipping convoy near Texel Island on the return. There are no losses or claims. This element also receives fighter escort by 8th AF P-47s.

The third element is a formation of 147 B-17s from: 385BG (21); 94BG (21); 95BG (21); 100BG (18); 390BG (26); 388BG (18) and 95BG (22) despatched to bomb suspected V-Weapon sites in and around Watten, France. Weather hampers most bombing with only 58 of this formation being able to drop on a target. 94BG, 385BG, and 388BG are unable to bomb at all. There are no losses or claims but 39 aircraft are damaged and 7 airmen are Wounded in Action. This element receives fighter escort by the RAF.

Mission details

1. BERGEN / ALKMAAR (Opportunistic)

Description

AIRFIELD

Aircraft type

B-24 Liberator

Notes

19 aircraft bomb a ship convoy off of Texel Island, Holland with 102 X 500GP and 1,140 X 20 F. Only 3 aircraft hit the primary at Bergen

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...

  • 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...

Mission Statistics

Tonnage dropped 45.90
Number of aircraft Sent 29
Number of aircraft Effective 22

2. BRUSSELS/EVERE (Primary)

Description

AIRFIELD

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

1 B-17 from 92nd Bomb Group attacked a target of opportunity. One aircraft from 351st Bomb Group crash-landed at the base.

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...

  • 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 310.75
Number of aircraft Sent 114
Number of aircraft Effective 105
Number of aircraft Damaged Beyond Repair 1
Number of aircraft Damaged 10

3. WATTEN

Description

V1 MISSILE SITES

Aircraft type

B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes

94th Bomb Group, 385th Bomb Group and 388th Bomb Group prevented from bombing due to cloud cover. RAF provided escort for this element.

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 116 X 2000GP
Number of aircraft Sent 147
Number of aircraft Effective 58
Number of aircraft Damaged 39
Number of people Wounded in Action 7

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. ...

  • Richard Bailey

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

  • 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. ...

  • Barclay Beeby

    Military | Captain | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group

  • 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

  • Charles Bliss

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

  • 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...

  • 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. ...

  • Henry Cox

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 388th Bomb Group
    Henry Jr. was a graduate of the 1940 class of Cumberland County High School. Two classmates, and football team members, graduating from CCHS in 1938, Ben H. West Jr. and Cecil G. Buttram were killed in action. AMM 3rd Class Ben H. West Jr. enlisted Dec...

  • John Crawbuck

    Military | Staff Sergeant | Right Waist Gunner, Left Waist Gunner | 381st Bomb Group
    LWG, Larson crew. Original member of the Tucker crew. Member of the Hagarty crew. 381st BG, 534th BS, 8th AF. Shot down 11 January 1944 in B-17 #42-3118 'The Green Hornet'. Mission #59 to the aircraft factories at Oschersleben, Germany. Struck by an...

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Aircraft

  • 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...

  • 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. ...

  • 42-30207 Big Red

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 29/4/43; Sioux City 11/5/43; Smoky Hill 9/6/43; Dow Fd 12/6/43; Assigned 561BS/388BG [ -T] Knettishall 14/6/43; Missing in Action Bordeaux 27/3/44 with Julius Lederman, Co-pilot: Waite Law, Bombardier: John Luzell (3 Prisoner of War)...

  • 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...

  • 42-30213 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...

  • 42-30412 Mischief-Maker II

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Plane Mischief Maker II entered combat approximately Jun43 under command of Capt V.L. Iverson after the original Mischief Maker was damaged beyond repair. After this crew completed 25 missions Maj. Iverson was retained for HQ USSTAF, the crew...

  • 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...

  • 42-3064 Stardust

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 5/2/43; Assigned 353BS/301BG Morrison 25/3/43; transferred 100BG Thorpe Abbotts /43; 358BS/303BG [VK-O] Molesworth 13/7/43; battle damaged Bremen 26/11/43 with Bill Fort wia-frostbite, Co-pilot: McDonald Riddick, Bombardier: Chas...

  • 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
03 April 2020 13:29:30 Emily Changes to official description and description
Sources

USAAF Combat Chronology. 389th Mission reports supplied by http://www.ww2historyproject.org/

Date Contributor Update
02 June 2015 20:21:55 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 2-Jun-2015. Added Mission Narrative based on "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

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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