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34th Bomb Group

Group

After forming part of the American defence force, first on America's east coast and then on its west, the Group was assigned to the Eighth Air Force in April 1944 and entered combat in May 1944. The Group helped with the preparation for the Normandy invasion by bombing airfields and coastal defenses in France. It continued to support ground forces as they moved eastwards. The Group did not lose a single bomber to enemy fighter action over enemy territory. After V.E. day, they dropped food supplies into Holland and transported Allied prisoners of war out of Germany.

US Air Force Combat Units of World War II Description

Constituted as 34th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 20 Nov 1940. Activated on 15 Jan 1941. Using B-17’s, trained and participated in maneuvers until Dec 1041. Flew Patrol missions along the east coast after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Later became part of the defense force for the west coast. Served as a replacement training unit from mid-1942 until the end of 1943, and then began preparing for overseas duty with B-24’s. Moved to England in Apr 1944 for operations with Eighth AF. Entered combat in May 1944. Helped to prepare for the invasion of Normandy by bombing airfields in France and Germany, and supported the landing in Jun by attacking coastal defenses and communications. Continued to take part in the campaign in France by supporting ground forces at St Lo, 24-25 Jul, and by striking V-weapon sites, gun emplacements, and supply lines throughout the summer of 1944. Converted to B-17’s and engaged primarily in bombardment of strategic objectives from Oct 1944 to Feb 1945. Targets included marshalling yards in Ludwigshaven, Hamm, Osnabruck, and Darmstadt ; oil centers in Bielefeld, Merseburg, Hamburg, and Misburg; factories in Berlin, Dalteln, and Hannover; and airfields in Munster, Neumunster, and Frankfurt. During this period the group also supported ground forces during the Battle of the Bulge, Dec 1944-Jan 1945. In Mar 1945, with few industrial targets remaining and with Allied armies advancing across Germany, the 34th turned almost solely to interdicting enemy communications and supporting Allied ground forces. After V-E Day it carried food to flooded areas of Holland and transported prisoners of war from German camps to Allied centers. Returned to the US in the summer of 1945. Inactivated on 28 Aug 1945.

Commanding officers
  • Ernest Wackwitz

    Military | Colonel | Commanding Officer
    Wackwitz was appointed commanding officer of the 34th Bomb Group in January 1944 when the group was destined for service in the UK. He retained the post until September 1944.

  • William Creer

    Military | Major | Commanding Officer | 34th Bomb Group
    Col. Crer succeeded Col Ernest Wackwitz, Jr as CO of the Group and AAF Station 156 including the units of attached arms and services in Sept 1944. Creer led 17 missions as Combat Command Pilot. Retired as Major General

Structure

Part of
Encompassing
Previously was
Not yet known
Became
Not yet known

Missions

  • 347

    9 May 1944

  • 350

    11 May 1944

  • 412

    14 June 1944
    Mission #10. Bombed an airfield south of Brussels. Bob Martin flew in place of Hussong.

  • 456

    6 July 1944

  • 8th Air Force 554

    15 August 1944
    Airfields in NW Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium are the primary targets for this mission. 8th Air Force despatches a total of 932 aircraft. The raid is coordinated with 1,000 Royal Air Force (RAF) heavy bombers and Mosquitos attacking 9 airfields...

  • 8th Air Force 760

    24 December 1944
    1. Decision. ...

  • 8th Air Force 908

    23 March 1945
    Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description ...

Stations

Station Location Date
Based Mendlesham 2 August 1944 – 18 April 1945

Connections

People

  • William Abraham

    Military | 34th Bomb Group

  • Horton Abrams

    Military | 34th Bomb Group

  • Morton Abrams

    Military | First Lieutenant | Pilot | 34th Bomb Group
    35 combat missions over Europe as Pilot of B-17 'Lucky 13. ' Required to make forced landing at an advanced fighter base near Antwerp, Belgium with 2 engines out on January 18, 1945. Three missions to Berlin. DFC/ AM w/ 2 Oak Leaf Cluster

  • Harry Ackerman

    Military | Major | Group Navigator | 34th Bomb Group
    Shot down on 8/7/44 in Sunshine Rose Prisoner of War (POW) ...

  • Bailey Adams

    Military | 34th Bomb Group

  • Bluford Adams

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Navigator | 34th Bomb Group
    Prisoner of War (POW) Shot down by flak and crashed near Wesermunde on 8/5/44 in B-24 Shadrach #4129557 POW

  • James Adams

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 34th Bomb Group

  • James Adams

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 34th Bomb Group
    Shot down 29 May 1944 in B-24 #4294796. Landed in Sweden. Interned.

  • Leonard Adringola

    Military | 34th Bomb Group

  • Edward Aikey

    Military | 34th Bomb Group

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Aircraft

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Citations

None

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
22 August 2019 09:47:34 Emily Changes to insignia, us air force combat units of world war ii description, person associations and commanding officers associations
Sources

Air Force Combat Units of WWII

Date Contributor Update
26 March 2017 07:23:24 Scott 34th7th Changes to media associations
Sources

Personal documents of John A Ferard as provided by his son (Scott 34th7th).

Date Contributor Update
02 June 2015 00:47:48 jpstamper Changes to motto and mission associations
Sources

Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum

Date Contributor Update
02 May 2015 20:32:22 JasonR Changes to aircraft types and mission associations
Sources

34th BG history/records

Date Contributor Update
22 November 2014 15:42:25 baerc234 Changes to type, description, aircraft types, unit encompassing associations and mission associations
Sources

Unit History

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:42:45 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database / The Mighty Eighth. A History of the Units, Men and Machines of the US 8th Air Force.' by Roger A. Freeman (1989). 'Air Force Combat Units of World War II' compiled by the Department of the US Air Force, edited by Maurice Maurer (1983). / Units in the UK from ETOUSA Station List, as transcribed by Lt. Col. Philip Grinton (US Army, Retired) and extracted by IWM; air division data from L.D. Underwood, based on the 8th Air Force Strength Report of 6th August 1944, as published in 'The 8th Air Force Yearbook' by Lt. Col. John H Woolnough (1980)

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