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361st Fighter Group

Group

The 361st Fighter Group was the last P-47 Thunderbolt Group to join the Eighth Air Force. Between 21 January 1944 and 20 April 1945, the Group flew 441 missions, the majority in an escort role in support of bombers flying over occupied Europe. The Group also carried out dive-bombing missions of strategic targets in support of the Normandy invasion and battles being fought by ground forces moving eastwards. The Group also sent a detachment to France to support the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944 to January 1945).

Commanding officers
  • Joseph Kruzel

    Military | Major | Pilot; Commanding Officer | 361st Fighter Group
    SS w/ 2 Oak Leaf Cluster/ PH/ DUC w/ Oak Leaf Cluster/ DFC w/ 2 Oak Leaf Cluster/ AM w/ 2 Oak Leaf Cluster ...

  • Thomas Christian

    Military | Colonel | Pilot / Commanding Officer 361st Fighter Group | 361st Fighter Group
    Thomas Jonathan Jackson Christian, Jr ...

Structure

Part of
Encompassing
Previously was
Not yet known
Became
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Missions

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 221 BOMBER ESCORT

    21 January 1944
    This is a bomber escort fighter operation composed of a combination of three fighter types: P-38s, P-47s and P51s totalling 628 aircraft despatched to escort the heavy bombers attacking V-Weapon sites in the Pas-de-Calaise area and the Cherbourg area...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 222 BOMBER ESCORT

    24 January 1944
    A combined force of 638 fighter aircraft of three different types :P-38s, P-47s and P-51s are despatched to provide escort the heavy bombers attacking the Zukufnt power station at Eschweiler, Germany. A new escort tactic - area patrol - is attempted...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 225 BOMBER ESCORT

    28 January 1944
    122 P-47s are despatched from: 78FG and 361FG to escort the bombers attacking V-Weapon sites near Bonnieres, France. There are no losses or claims.

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 226 BOMBER ESCORT

    29 January 1944
    A combined force of 632 fighter aircraft of 3 types: P38; P4; and P-51 are despatched to provide escort for the heavy bombers attacking at Frankfurt, Germany. Mission summary as follows: ...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 227 BOMBER ESCORT

    30 January 1944
    A combined force of 635 fighter aircraft are despatched to provide escort to heavy bombers attacking the avaition industry at Brunswick, Germany. All three types of fighter aircraft are employed: P-38s, P-47s and P-51s. Source data does not state how...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 231 BOMBER ESCORT

    2 February 1944
    A combined force of 183 P-47s is despatched from: 4FG; 355FG; 356FG; and 361FG to provide escort and top cover for the heavy bombers attacking V-Weapon sites in the St. Pol/Siracourt/Watten areas of France. There are no personnel or aircraft losses and...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 233 BOMBER ESCORT

    3 February 1944
    A combined force of 632 fighter aircraft of types P-38, P-47 and P-51 are despatched to provide escort to heavy bombers attacking at Wilhelmshaven, Germany. ...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 235 BOMBER ESCORT

    5 February 1944
    A combined force of 634 fighter aircraft of types: P-38; P-47 and P-51s are despatched to provide escort to heavy bombers attacking German airfields in France. Summary follows: ...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 236 BOMBER ESCORT

    6 February 1944
    A combined force of 638 fighter aircraft of types: P-38; P-47; and P-51 are despatched to provide escort to heavy bombers attacking German airfields in France. Mission Summary follows: ...

  • VIII Fighter Command FO 238 BOMBER ESCORT

    8 February 1944
    A combined force of 553 fighters of types: P-38, P-47 and P-51 are despatched to provide escort for heavy bombers attacking the railroad marshalling yards at Frankfurt, Germany and Targets of Opportunity in the Frankfurt area. Mission Summary follows: ...

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Stations

Station Location Date
Based Bottisham 30 November 1943 – 26 September 1944
Based Little Walden 26 September 1944 – 3 November 1945

Connections

People

  • Robert Adams

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 375FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) fighter sweep to Carlsruhe Koblenz hit by flak and crashed near Heppenheim in P-51D 'Pat' 44-14678 25-Jan-45. Killed in Action (KIA). MACR 11917.

  • Jesse Adkins

    Military | Captain | Fighetr Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 374FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. Ended Tour of Duty (ETD).

  • Estel Alcorn

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 376FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 496FTG 8AF USAAF. Ended Tour of Duty (ETD).

  • Glenn Allison

    Military | Second Lieutenant | 361st Fighter Group

  • Ethelbert Amason

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 374FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. Crashed near Rijssen, Holland after combat with an Bf109 on a bomber escort mission to Ijmuiden in P-47D 42-75567. Killed in Action (KIA). 30-Jan-44. MACR 2133.

  • Richard Anderson

    Military | Captain | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 375FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. End of War. Awards: WWII Victory, EMAE.

  • Sherman Armsby

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 495FTG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 375FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. Credited with 5.5 destroyed, 2 damaged. Destroyed 3 x Bf109's on a single mission dated 20-Jul-44. Brought down strafing rail carriages, ammunition carriage exploded as he flew over...

  • Sherman Armsey

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Killed in Action (KIA) crashed near Longuyon in P-51 'Jacquline' #4324761

  • Tobin Armstrong

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 63FS, 56FG, 8AF USAAF. Transferred to 361FG. Awards: WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Clyde Arrants

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 361st Fighter Group
    Assigned to 374FS, 361FG, 8AF USAAF. Failed to Return (FTR) bomber escort to Berlin, last seen circling airfield 5 miles south of Schleswig with element leader. Shot down by flak, crashed Viöl, Germany in P-51D 44-13949. Pilot 2nd Lt Clyde Arrants...

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Aircraft

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Citations

None

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
05 July 2016 09:32:17 Lucy May Changes to stations
Sources

http://www.littlefriends.co.uk/361stfg.php

Date Contributor Update
04 October 2014 07:26:50 LWiart Changes to type, nicknames, aircraft types, commanding officers associations and mission associations
Sources

LWiart

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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