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40th Combat Bomb Wing


US Air Force Combat Units of World War II Description

Constituted as 40th Bombardment Wing on 15 Jan 1943 and activated on 21 Jan. Redesignated 40th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) in May 1943. Moved to England, May-Jun 1943, for duty with Eighth AF. Redesignated 40th Combat Bombardment Wing (Heavy) in August 1943 and 40th Bombardment Wing (Heavy) in June 1945. Served in combat n the European theatre from Sep 1943 until Apr 1945, receiving a DUC for an attack on aircraft factories in central Germany on 11 Jan 1944. Remained in Europe after the war as part of United States Air Force in Europe. Inactivated in Germany on 25 Dec 1946.

Commanding officers
  • Anthony Mustoe

    Military | Colonel | Commanding Officer | 305th Bomb Group Can Do
    Chief Weather Officer, 8th Air Force from April 1942 to December 1943. ...

  • Charles Normand

    Military | Lieutenant Colonel | Command Pilot | 305th Bomb Group Can Do
    Prisoner of War (POW) Crashed at Hunteburg, Germany on 8/24/44 in B-17 #42-97533. Group Command Pilot.

  • Emil Kiel

    Military | Brigadier General | Deputy Commanding Officer, Administration

  • Howard Turner

    Military | Major General | Commanding General
    SS w/ Oak Leaf Cluster/ DFC/ AM w/ Oak Leaf Cluster


Part of
  • 1st Air Division

    1st Air Division

    In December 1944, the 1st Bomb Division was redesginated the 1st Air Division.

  • 1st Bomb Division

    1st Bomb Division

    The groups under the command of the 1st Bomb Wing came under the command of the 1st Bomb Division in August 1943. In December 1944, the Division was redesginated the 1st Air Division.

  • 492nd Bomb Group Carpetbaggers

    492nd Bomb Group Carpetbaggers

    The 492nd Bomb Group, after flying similar missions to other heavy bomb groups until the late summer of 1944, took up 'Carpetbagger' missions, transporting agents, supplies and propaganda leaflets to southern France. The Group was taking on the role of...

  • 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

    The 92nd Group sometime after arrivial in the UK converted to the role of in-theater combat crew indocrination and training. For this role, the Group traded its B-17F complement and obtained the B-17E, mostly from the 97th BG which was departing for...

  • 492nd Bomb Group (Heavy)

    492nd Bomb Group (Heavy)

    The 492nd Bomb Group were assigned to the 8th Air Force in April 1944. They flew 60 missions over occupied Europe from 11 May 1944 until 7 August 1944. ...

  • 305th Bomb Group Can Do

    305th Bomb Group Can Do

    The 305th Bombardment Group (Heavy), nicknamed "Can Do" was activated 1-March-1942 at Salt Lake City Air Base, Utah which was their primary training base until 11-Jun-1942 when they relocated to Geiger Field, Washington until 29-Jun-1942, then on to...

  • 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

    Constituted as 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on 28 Jan 1942. Activated on 1 Mar 1942. Trained for combat with B-17's. Moved to England, Aug-Sep 1942, and assigned to Eighth AF Eighth Air Force in September 1942 Station 111 Thurleigh. During combat,...

  • 32nd Station Complement Squadron
  • 4th Station Complement Squadron
  • 2nd Station Complement Squadron
  • Headquarters (40th Combat Bomb Wing)
  • 982nd Military Police Company
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Previously was
Not yet known
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Station Location Date
Based Brampton Grange June 1943
Based Thurleigh 16 September 1943 – June 1945



  • Herman Bryan

    Military | Sergeant
    Killed in Action (KIA)

  • Melvin Caldwell

    Military | Teleprinter Operator | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few
    Melvin Caldwell was born in Missouri in 1924. He was drafted in 1942 and served as teleprinter operator with 92nd Bomb Group and the 40th Combat Wing from March 1943 to November 1945. He died in 2011. Caldwell was interviewed by IWM in 1995.

  • Albert Grinsted

    Military | First Lieutenant | Bombadier | 92nd Bomb Group Fame's Favoured Few

  • Donald Ivarson

    Military | Technical Sergeant (2nd Grade) | Flight Engineer/Top Turret | 305th Bomb Group Can Do
    Assigned to 422BS, 305BG, 8AF USAAF. Awards: DFC, AM (3OLC), GC, WWII Victory, EAME.

  • Delbert Mason

    Military | Senior Master Sergeant | Photographer | 7th Photographic Reconnaissance Group

  • Leon Musselwhite

    Military | Major | Navigator/base engineer | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers
    Leon S. Musselwhite was born and raised in Mississippi. He was an engineering student at Mississippi State University when the war in Europe started. He enlisted in the Mississippi National Guard in 1938 and became active duty 11 May 1939 thru 24 Nov...


  • 42-107063

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Assigned: 16 February 1944 - Continental Airlines / Boeing Modification Center - (Denver Municipal) ...

  • 42-107168 Pappy Time

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Tulsa 12/3/44; Kearney 27/3/44; Grenier 5/4/44; Assigned 325BS/92BG [NV-D] Podington 14/4/44; battle damaged Cauvincourt 16/8/44 with Ted Letterman, crew all OK back at base; Salvaged 18/8/44.


DUC for an attack on aircraft factories in central Germany on 11 Jan 1944


Date Contributor Update
03 September 2019 10:36:00 Emily Changes to type, motto, insignia, us air force combat units of world war ii description, citations, unit part of associations, person associations, commanding officers associations and stations

Transferred information from duplicate record.

Adding unit info from Air Force Combat Units of WWII

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:42:44 AAM AAM ingest

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)