VIII Bomber Command 71

4 July 1943

Object Number - UPL 19152 - "Hell Cat" Lockheed/Vega B-17F-35-VE Flying Fortress s/n 42-5910, of 365th BS, 305th BG, 8th AF. This aircraft was originally assigned to the 326th...

Description

The aircraft factories at Le Mans and Nantes, France and the lock gates and harbour facilities at La Pallice, France are the primary targets for this mission. The mission is comprised of three elements:

1st Element: 121 B-17s are despatched to Le Mans, France: 91BG (19); 303BG (24); 351BG (18); 379BG (20); 381BG (21) and 384BG (19). The 92BG compliment includes 2 YB-40 gunships. 103 of this formation are effective on the aircraft factories and 2 bomb the marshalling yards. Enemy fighter oppositions is strong and 4 B-17s are MIA but the bomber gunners claim 24-5-15 of the attacking fighters;

2nd Element: 71 B-17s are despatched to Nantes, France: 92BG (19); 305BG (25); and 306BG (27). 61 of this formation are effective on the target. Enemy fighter opposition is strong and 3 B-17s are MIA but the bomber gunners claim 28-9-7 of the attacking fighters;

3rd Element: 83 B-17s are despatched to La Pallice, France: 94BG (18); 95BG (23); 96BG (16); 100BG (26). Fighter and flak opposition are light with only 1 B-17 MIA and 1 damaged. The bomber gunners claim 0-1-0 on enemy fighters.

Mission Details

LA PALLICE (Primary)

Description: PORT AREA

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
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment
The insignia of the 95th 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: 137.50
  • People evaded: 1
  • Prisoners of war: 9
  • Enemy aircrafts probably destroyed by bomber: 1
  • Aircraft sent: 83
  • Aircraft effective: 71
  • Aircraft missing in action: 1
  • Aircraft damaged: 1

LE MANS (Primary)

Description: AIRCRAFT FACTORY

Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes: 92nd Bomb Group's despatch included 3 YB-40s. Fighters were planned to cover the withdrawal from the target but were recalled due to weather.

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: 254.50
  • People killed in action: 31
  • People wounded in action: 9
  • People evaded: 15
  • Prisoners of war: 25
  • Enemy aircrafts destroyed by bomber: 24
  • Enemy aircrafts probably destroyed by bomber: 5
  • Enemy aircraft damaged by bomber: 15
  • Aircraft sent: 119
  • Aircraft effective: 103
  • Aircraft missing in action: 4
  • Aircraft damaged: 29

LE MANS (Primary)

Description: MARSHALLING YARDS

Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress

Notes: Two B-17s from 303rd Bomb Group drop their bomb loads on the marshalling yards at Le Mans.

Official emblem of the 303rd Bomb Group approved 7 November 1942.
  • Unit Hierarchy: Group
  • Air Force: Eighth Air Force
  • Type Category: Bombardment

Mission Statistics

  • Tonnage Dropped: 5.00
  • Aircraft sent: 2
  • Aircraft effective: 2

NANTES (Primary)

Description: AIRCRAFT FACTORY

Aircraft Type: B-17 Flying Fortress

Mission Statistics

  • Tonnage Dropped: 145.00
  • People killed in action: 16
  • People wounded in action: 4
  • People evaded: 2
  • Prisoners of war: 16
  • Enemy aircrafts destroyed by bomber: 28
  • Enemy aircrafts probably destroyed by bomber: 9
  • Enemy aircraft damaged by bomber: 7
  • Aircraft sent: 71
  • Aircraft effective: 61
  • Aircraft missing in action: 3
  • Aircraft damaged: 34

Connections

See how this entry relates to other items in the archive by exploring the connections below.

People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 384th Bomb Group 544th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Waist Gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 381st Bomb Group 533rd Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: O-736459
  • Highest Rank: Captain
  • Role/Job: Pilot
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 381st Bomb Group 533rd Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 35661197
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Role/Job: waist gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 91st Bomb Group The Ragged Irregulars 322nd Bomb Squadron
  • Service Numbers: 36324682
  • Highest Rank: Technical Sergeant
  • Role/Job: Aerial Gunner
  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 100th Bomb Group 418th Bomb Squadron
  • Highest Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
  • Role/Job: Pilot; Commanding Officer

Aircraft

Revisions

Date15 Jan 2016 19:33:01
ContributorMags
Sources

303rd BG Web Page

Date15 Feb 2015 17:54:36
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Feb-2015. Added Personnel losses and bomber gunner claims to Nantes statistics per "the Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date15 Feb 2015 17:41:01
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Feb-2015. Added bomber gunner claims to Le Mans statistics.

Date15 Feb 2015 17:38:58
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Feb-2015. Added bomber gunner claims to La Palice statistics per "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman

Date15 Feb 2015 17:35:52
ContributorLee8thbuff
Sources

Lee Cunningham 15-Feb-2015. Edited Title and added Description based on "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date27 Sep 2014 18:43:17
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'.

VIII Bomber Command 71: Gallery (5 items)