Skip to main content
Edit entry 

VIII Fighter Command FO-212 BOMBER ESCORT

4 January 1944

Official description

Not yet known

Description

A combined force of 70 P-38s from 20FG & 55 FG are despatched to provide escort to bombers attacking at Kiel, Germany. The P-38 are joined by 42 P-51s despatched by IX Fighter Command 354FG. 20FG sustaines 2 losses - 1KIA 1POW. 1 P-38 from 55FG sustaines engine failure on take off and crashes into a fuel truck on the perimeter track - pilot receives minor injuries but the aircraft is destroyed. 354FG sustaines 1 loss of a P-51 - 1KIA. The fighters claim 1-1-4 of attacking German fighters.

A combined force of 430 P-47s are despatched from 4FG; 56FG; 78FG; 352FG; 353FG; 355FG; 356FG; 358FG; and 359FG to provide escort to B-17s attacking at Munster city, Germany. There are no fighter losses in this element, but 1 aircraft is damaged. P-47s from 78FG strafed a locomotive. The fighters of this element claim 7-0-1 of attacking enemy fighters.

Mission details

1. KIEL

Description

FIGHTER ESCORT

Aircraft type

P-38 Lightning

Notes

78th Fighter Group strafed a locomotive in Germany. First use of paddle blade propellers by P-47s of 56th Fighter Group.

Units

  • 20th Fighter Group

    20th Fighter Group

    Group
    In August 1943, the 20th Fighter Group arrived in Clyde, Scotland, before travelling to Kings Cliffe, Northamptonshire, which was to be their base for the rest of the war. The Group flew 312 missions before their last mission on 25 April 1945. The...

  • 55th Fighter Group

    55th Fighter Group

    Group
    The 55th Fighter Group were the first P-38 Lightning Group to go fully operational from England. The pilots flew long-range escort missions for bombers flying over occupied Europe and racked up 'kills' of their own by destroying enemy aircraft in...

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 70
Number of aircraft Effective 1
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 2
Number of people Killed In Action 1
Number of people Wounded in Action 1
Number of people Prisoners of War 1
Number of people Returned To Duty 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 1

2. MUNSTER

Description

FIGHTER ESCORT

Aircraft type

P-47 Thunderbolt

Notes

Not yet known

Units

  • 352nd Fighter Group

    352nd Fighter Group

    Group
    The 352nd Fighter Group were based at Bodney, Norfolk from July 1943 until November 1945 but in the winter months of 1944/1945 detachments moved to bases in Belgium to provide extra air support to ground forces during the Battle of the Bulge and to...

  • 353rd Fighter Group

    353rd Fighter Group

    Group
    The 353rd Fighter Group was assigned to the Eighth Air Force on 7 June 1943. The group flew P-47 Thunderbolts, and from October 1944, P-51 Mustangs, as escorts for bombing missions across occupied Europe and to strafe targets on the ground. Tactical...

  • 355th Fighter Group

    355th Fighter Group

    Group
    Where the 353rd Fighter Group had pioneered ground strafing techniques, it was the 355th Fighter Group who destroyed more enemy aircraft by ground strafing than any other Eighth Air Force Group. Based at Steeple Morden from July 1943 to July 1945, the...

  • 4th Fighter Group

    4th Fighter Group

    Group
    Some of the pilots of the 4th Fighter Group had seen many hours of combat by the time they joined the 4th Fighter Group as they had volunteered with the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Royal Air Force. The three 'Eagle Squadrons' of RAF Fighter...

  • 56th Fighter Group

    56th Fighter Group

    Group
    Flying P-47 Thunderbolts throughout their time stationed in England, the Group, known as "the Wolfpack", had more ace pilots than any other Eighth Air Force Fighter Group. The 56th Fighter Group also destroyed more enemy aircraft in air combat than any...

  • 78th Fighter Group

    78th Fighter Group

    Group
    The 78th Fighter Group was initially based at Goxhill but moved to Duxford in April 1943 and stayed there until October 1945. The 78th FG flew each of the three US built principal fighters of the AAF in the ETO. In their Thundetbolts, the 78th FG ...

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 430
Number of aircraft Damaged 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Destroyed by Fighter Command 7
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 2

3.

Description

FIGHTER ESCORT by IX Fighter Command P-51s from 354FG

Aircraft type

P-51 Mustang

Notes

A force of 42 P-51s from 354FG (IX FC) is despatched to assist in the escrot of bombers attacking at Kiel, Germany. 1 aircraft is lost - 1 KIA. The P-51 element claims 1-1-3 of attacking enemy aircraft.

Units

  • 354th Fighter Group

    354th Fighter Group

    Group
    The Group moved to England in the autumn of 1943 and was assigned to the Ninth Air Force in December 1943. The Group were the first to fly P-51 Mustangs operationally and in their bomber escort missions pushed to find the long-range limits of the...

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 42
Number of aircraft Effective 42
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 1
Number of people Killed In Action 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Destroyed by Fighter Command 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Probably Destroyed by Fighter Command 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 3

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 19:07:47 Lee8thbuff Created event
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Added P-51 of 354FG (IX FC) element to Mission Events and completed statistics per "The Mighty Eight War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 19:01:40 Lee8thbuff Changes to event
Sources

Lee Cunningham -1-Dec-2015. Correcting VIII FC claims on enemy aircraft in Kiel element per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 18:54:51 Lee8thbuff Changes to event
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Added fighter claims on enemy aircraft to statistics of Munster escort per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" , Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 18:51:28 Lee8thbuff Changes to event
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Added fighter claims on enemy aircraft to statistics of Kiel escort per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 18:47:50 Lee8thbuff Changes to description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Added P-47 despatch to Detailed Description per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
01 December 2015 18:37:54 Lee8thbuff Changes to name and description
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Added Detailed Description per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary", Roger A. Freeman and "Losses of the 8th & 9th Air Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey, MBE.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:43:20 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'.

Share