8th Air Force 174

4 January 1944

Description

The port area of Kiel, Germany and the railroad marshalling yards at Munster, Germany are the Primary targets of this Mission which is organised as two elements: one going to Kiel and the other to Munster. Roger A. Freeman begins to designate aircraft despatched by Bomb Division rather than by individual Bomb Groups as follows:

Kiel Element - Bomb Groups participating
1BD = 91BG, 92BG, 303BG, 305BG, 306BG, 351BG, 379BG, 381BG and 384BG
2BD = 44BG, 93BG, 389BG, 392BG, 445BG, 446BG and 448BG
3BD = 94BG, 95BG, 100BG, 385BG, 390BG and 447BG
Kiel Element - Aircraft despatched - total 569 despatched - 486 effective as follows:
1BD = 263 B-17s despatched - 205 effective
2BD = 176 B-24s despatched - 166 effective
3BD = 130 B-17s despatched - 115 effective

Munster Element - Bomb Groups participating
3BD = 96BG and 388BG
Munster Element -Aircraft despatched - total despatched 75 - 68 effective.

NOTE: Some sources claim that this was the last bombing mission flown under the VIII Bomber Command designation and some claim that it was the first mission flown by bombers under the 8th Air Force designation. The official designation of 8th Air Force as an autonomous unit of the of the United States Army Air Forces will come on 22-Feb-44, but mission designation as "8th Air Force" begins 1-Jan-44.

Mission Details

KIEL (Primary)

Description: PORT AREA

Aircraft Type: B-24 Liberator

Notes: 34 B-24s drop on Targets of Opportunity around Kiel, Germany. Bomber Gunner claims are recorded on this entry for statistical purposes. The totals are combined for all Air Divisions that attacked Kiel on this date.

The insignia of the 389th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 392nd Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
A pathfinder B-24 Liberator (serial number 42-51681) of the 453rd Bomb Group flies in formation with a fellow Liberator of the 453rd and and a pathfinder Liberator of the 445th Bomb Group. Image via Alan Rowsell.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
A flight of B-24 Liberators of the 446th Bomb Group fly in formation above the clouds.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Fifteenth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

Mission Statistics

  • Tonnage Dropped: 253.00
  • People killed in action: 41
  • People wounded in action: 13
  • People evaded: 4
  • Prisoners of war: 20
  • People returned to duty: 10
  • Enemy aircrafts destroyed by bomber: 4
  • Enemy aircrafts probably destroyed by bomber: 12
  • Enemy aircraft damaged by bomber: 4
  • Aircraft sent: 130
  • Aircraft effective: 115
  • Aircraft missing in action: 6
  • Aircraft damaged beyond repair: 2
  • Aircraft damaged: 16

KIEL(Primary)

Description: BOMB TARGETS OF OPPORTUNITY

Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress

Official emblem of the 100th Bomb Group, approved 30 March 1944 and replaced 1957
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 385th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 390th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 447th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

Mission Statistics

  • Tonnage Dropped: 365.00
  • People killed in action: 15
  • People wounded in action: 6
  • Prisoners of war: 27
  • People returned to duty: 10
  • Aircraft sent: 176
  • Aircraft effective: 166
  • Aircraft missing in action: 4
  • Aircraft damaged beyond repair: 1
  • Aircraft damaged: 29

KIEL(Primary)

Description: PORT AREA

Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes: 7 B-17s drop on Targets of Opportunity around Kiel, Germany.

Official emblem of the 303rd Bomb Group approved 7 November 1942.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 351st Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 379th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

Mission Statistics

  • Tonnage Dropped: 451.00
  • People killed in action: 27
  • People wounded in action: 34
  • People evaded: 1
  • Prisoners of war: 38
  • People returned to duty: 8
  • Aircraft sent: 263
  • Aircraft effective: 205
  • Aircraft missing in action: 5
  • Aircraft damaged beyond repair: 2
  • Aircraft damaged: 82

Münster, Germany

Description: MARSHALLING YARDS

Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress

The insignia of the 388th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 96th Bomb Group.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

Mission Statistics

  • Tonnage Dropped: 192.00
  • People killed in action: 17
  • People wounded in action: 1
  • Prisoners of war: 3
  • People returned to duty: 10
  • Aircraft sent: 75
  • Aircraft effective: 68
  • Aircraft missing in action: 2
  • Aircraft damaged beyond repair: 1
  • Aircraft damaged: 35

Connections

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People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 381st Bomb Group 533rd Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-809475
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Navigator
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 401st Bomb Group 612th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-735233
  • Highest Rank: First Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Navigator; Bombardier
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 95th Bomb Group 412th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 18193418
  • Highest Rank: Technical Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Radio Operator
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 381st Bomb Group 532nd Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-811523
  • Highest Rank: Second Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Navigator
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 388th Bomb Group 560th Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 12159739
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant (Technician Third Grade)
  • Role/Job: Waist Gunner

Aircraft

Revisions

Date15 Nov 2022 22:10:16
ContributorAAM
Sources

Lee Cunningham 6-Jan-2016. Removed Note to Viewers and transferred it to 8th AF PHOTO RECCE operation of 2-Jan-44.

Date6 Jan 2016 23:53:24
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 6-Jan-2016. Removed Note to Viewers and transferred it to 8th AF PHOTO RECCE operation of 2-Jan-44.

Date1 Dec 2015 19:11:52
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 1-Dec-2015. Changed title to 8th AF mission, per "Losses of the 8th & 9th AIr Forces", Stan Bishop & John A. Hey, MBE.

Date9 Feb 2015 20:21:18
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 9-Feb-2015. Added Note referencing mission designation changes from VIII Bomber Command to 8th Air Force.

Date9 Feb 2015 20:13:29
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 9-Feb-2015. Completed entry and Bomber Gunner statistics based on "The Mighty 8th War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date9 Feb 2015 01:06:49
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Feb-2015. Defined Kiel and Munster elements per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date8 Feb 2015 23:14:57
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 8-Feb-2015. NOTE to VIEWERS added per Mr. Lee Cunningham.

Date27 Sep 2014 18:43:16
ContributorAAM
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'.