WWII 8thAAF COMBAT CHRONOLOGY
JANUARY 1942 THROUGH DECEMBER 1942


FRIDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 1942

(ETO) Army Air Forces in Britain (AAFIB)]: Brigadier General Ira C Eaker arrives in the UK with 6 staff officers.

SUNDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ VIII Bomber Command arrives at Daws Hill, England from the US; Major General Ira C Eaker assumes command.

TUESDAY, 24 FEBRUARY 1942

(ETO) US Army Forces in British Isles (USAFBI)]: Major General James E Chaney, Commanding General USAFBI, instructs Brigadier General Ira C Eaker and the staff of the VIII Bomber Command to proceed to HQ, RAF Bomber Command for a study of bombing operations, and to make reconnaissance of certain airfields and submit plans for the reception and assignment of Army Air Forces units. FRIDAY, 20 MARCH 1942 (ETO) Army Air Forces in Britain (AAFIB)]: A report submitted by Brigadier General Ira C Eaker in compliance with Major General James E Chaney's instructions of 25 Feb indicates completion of studies of Royal Air Force (RAF) Bomber Command operations and of airfields, training, tactical doctrine, equipment, and methods of conducting air offensive in cooperation with the RAF. The report also indicates much dependence upon the British for the present but emphasizes the apparent compatibility of the tactical doctrines of the US (daylight precision bombing) and RAF (night area bombing), and implies the principle of coordinating these attacks to complement each other.

WEDNESDAY, 25 MARCH 1942

(ETO) (AAFIB): Major Cecil P Lessig becomes the first AAF pilot to fly a mission over France in World War II. Flying a Spitfire VB with RAF 64 Squadron from Hornchurch, England, Lessig participates in a 36-aircraft fighter sweep that is recalled when 50 Luftwaffe fighters challenge them.

TUESDAY, 7 APRIL 1942

ZONE OF INTERIOR (HQ War Department): The War Department officially states that the 8th Air Force will be established in the UK as an intermediate command between US Army Forces in British Isles (USAFBI) and the AAF commands. General George C Marshall notifies Major General James E Chaney of this decision.

WEDNESDAY, 8 APRIL 1942

(ETO): Harry L Hopkins, Special Assistant to President Franklin D Roosevelt, and General George C Marshall, US Army Chief of Staff, arrive in London for talks with British service and supply chiefs concerning the integration of US and British manpower and war production for action in Europe. General Marshall urges an offensive in the west to relieve pressure upon the USSR and promises a constant flow of US troops, including many air units, to the UK.

SUNDAY, 12 APRIL 1942

ZONE OF INTERIOR (HQ AAF): Lieutenant General Henry H "Hap" Arnold sends air plans for Operation BOLERO, the buildup of US armed forces in the UK for an attack on Europe, to General George C Marshall in London. The plan calls for establishment of the 8th Air Force in the UK.

TUESDAY, 14 APRIL 1942

(ETO): The British Government and Chiefs of Staff (CoSs) accept General George C Marshall's Operation BOLERO plan for the Allied build-up in the UK for an attack on Germany.

MONDAY, 27 APRIL 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Advanced echelon (ADVON) of HQ 8th Air Force and bomber, interceptor and base commands, along with 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), 2d Air Depot Group, and a weather detachment totalling about 1,800 men, sail from Boston, Massachusetts for the UK.

TUESDAY, 28 APRIL 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ VIII Ground Air Support Command is activated at Bolling Field, Washington, DC.

TUESDAY, 7 APRIL 1942

ZONE OF INTERIOR (HQ War Department): The War Department officially states that the 8th Air Force will be established in the UK as an intermediate command between US Army Forces in British Isles (USAFBI) and the AAF commands. General George C Marshall notifies Major General James E Chaney of this decision.

WEDNESDAY, 8 APRIL 1942

(ETO): Harry L Hopkins, Special Assistant to President Franklin D Roosevelt, and General George C Marshall, US Army Chief of Staff, arrive in London for talks with British service and supply chiefs concerning the integration of US and British manpower and war production for action in Europe. General Marshall urges an offensive in the west to relieve pressure upon the USSR and promises a constant flow of US troops, including many air units, to the UK.

SUNDAY, 12 APRIL 1942

ZONE OF INTERIOR (HQ AAF): Lieutenant General Henry H "Hap" Arnold sends air plans for Operation BOLERO, the buildup of US armed forces in the UK for an attack on Europe, to General George C Marshall in London. The plan calls for establishment of the 8th Air Force in the UK.

TUESDAY, 14 APRIL 1942

(ETO): The British Government and Chiefs of Staff (CoSs) accept General George C Marshall's Operation BOLERO plan for the Allied build-up in the UK for an attack on Germany.

MONDAY, 27 APRIL 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Advanced echelon (ADVON) of HQ 8th Air Force and bomber, interceptor and base commands, along with 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), 2d Air Depot Group, and a weather detachment totalling about 1,800 men, sail from Boston, Massachusetts for the UK.

TUESDAY, 28 APRIL 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ VIII Ground Air Support Command is activated at Bolling Field, Washington, DC.

SATURDAY, 2 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Major General Carl Spaatz is designated 8th Air Force commander.

TUESDAY, 5 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Major General Carl Spaatz assumes command of HQ 8th Air Force at Bolling Field, Washington, DC.

MONDAY, 11 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): The transport SS ANDES docks in the UK, carrying about 1,800 personnel for various 8th Air Force units. This is the first large shipment of AAF troops to the UK.

TUESDAY, 12 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): 39 officers and 348 enlisted men of HQ and the bomber, interceptor and service commands arrive at High Wycombe, England where the VIII Interceptor Command sets up HQ.

WEDNESDAY, 13 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Flying personnel of the 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), VIII Bomber Command, the first US bomb unit sent to the UK, arrive at Newport, UK without aircraft.

THURSDAY, 14 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Major General Ira C Eaker is designated commander of Detachment, HQ 8th Air Force in addition to his duties as Commanding General VIII Bomber Command. Brigadier General Frank O'D Hunter assumes command of VIII Interceptor Command. 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), VIII Bomber Command, arrives at Grafton Underwood, England without aircraft.

FRIDAY, 15 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ VIII Bomber Command transfers from Daws Hill to High Wycombe, England.

SUNDAY, 17 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Detachment, 8th Air Force, with the help of the VIII Bomber Command staff, issues a directive defining its mission, which is the organization, training and supplying of units advanced echelons of 8th Air Force to prepare for immediate operations upon arrival of tactical elements of the 8th. 50 US intelligence officers arrive in the UK for training by the Royal Air Force (RAF) Bomber Command.

TUESDAY, 19 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Detachment, HQ 8th Air Force under Major General Ira C Eaker, assumes control of all AAF organizations in the British Isles.

SATURDAY, 23 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Agreement is reached on a plan to transfer the repair depot at Burtonwood, UK to US forces following a period of joint control to begin at the end of Jun 42; Burtonwood later becomes the greatest AAF depot overseas.

SUNDAY, 24 MAY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): VIII Air Force Base Command, under overall logistical control of Service of Supply, is given primary responsibility for all supply and maintenance peculiar to the AAF, thus leaving much logistical autonomy to the Army Air Forces in Britain (AAFIB).

MONDAY, 25 MAY 1942

(ETO): Lieutenant General Henry H "Hap" Arnold, Rear Admiral John H Towers and Air Chief Marshall Sir Charles F Portal attend an Anglo-American air conference in London. Topics of discussion include allocation of aircraft and the establishment of US air forces in the UK. The meeting begins at 10 Downing Street with Prime Minister Winston S Churchill.

SATURDAY, 30 MAY 1942

(ETO): During conferences with Air Chief Marshall Sir Charles F Portal, Lieutenant General Henry H "Hap" Arnold presents "Programme of Arrival of US Army Air Forces in the United Kingdom" providing for 66 combat groups, exclusive of observation squadrons, by Mar 43. THURSDAY, 4 JUNE 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): A HQ AAF schedule, with tables of composition and strength, indicating a total of 3,649 aircraft, is set up for the AAF in the UK.

FRIDAY, 5 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): VIII Air Force Base Command, activated in the US on 28 Jan 42, is redesignated VIII Air Force Services Command. Colonel Harold A McGinnis assumes command.

MONDAY, 8 JUNE 1942

(ETO):  US Army (ETOUSA) established by presidential directive. Major General James E Chaney is designated commander of all US forces of ETOUSA.

TUESDAY, 9 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): The second contingent of personnel for HQ 8th Air Force and subordinate commands, including the main body of the VIII Air Force Services Command, arrives in the UK. 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), VIII Bomber Command, moves from Grafton Underwood to Molesworth, England with A-20s; first mission is 4 Jul. Ground echelon of 27th Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, arrives at Goxhill, England from the US.

WEDNESDAY, 10 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): The main part of the ground echelon, including ground echelons of the 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy), 1st and 31st Fighter Groups, 60th Transport Group and 5th Air Depot Group, and service units arrive in the UK aboard the QUEEN ELIZABETH. Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 1st Fighter Group and 71st and 94th Fighter Squadrons at Goxhill (first missions are 1 Sep and 3 Aug respectively); 12th Transport Squadron, 60th Transport Group, at Chelveston with C-47s; and 308th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, at Atcham (first mission is 17 Aug).

THURSDAY, 11 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 31st Fighter Group at Atcham; 10th and 11th Transport Squadron, 60th Transport Group, at Chelveston; 307th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, at Atcham (first mission is 17 Aug); and 340th and 414th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) at Polebrook with B-17s (first mission is 17 Aug).

FRIDAY, 12 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Another contingent of personnel for HQ 8th Air Force and subordinate commands arrive in the UK. Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 60th Transport Group at Chelveston; 309th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, at High Ercall (first mission is 17 Aug); 341st Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy), at Polebrook with B-17s (first mission is 17 Aug).

SATURDAY, 13 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) arrives at Polebrook, England from US.

SUNDAY, 14 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): The aircraft program for the AAF in the UK is revised downward from 3,649 to 3,266, and the date of anticipated final strength is advanced 1 month to 1 Apr 43.

MONDAY, 15 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Major General Carl Spaatz, Commanding General 8th Air Force, arrives in the UK. The VIII Bomber Command takes a significant step toward development of the organization for control of combat operations by establishing the 1st Bombardment Wing (Provisional) at Brampton Grange, England.

WEDNESDAY, 17 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): 5th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron, 8th Air Force, arrives at Molesworth, England from the US with F-4s; first mission is in Nov 42.

THURSDAY, 18 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ 8th Air Force opens in London with Major General Carl Spaatz commanding. The British Air Ministry publishes a tentative list of 87 airfields to be made ready for the 8th Air Force.

SATURDAY, 20 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): General George C Marshall's letter of instruction to Brigadier General Dwight D Eisenhower reveals plan to integrate all US air units in the UK into the 8th Air Force. The broad objective of the AAF in the ETO is to attain "air supremacy over Western Continental Europe" in preparation for a future invasion of the Continent.

SUNDAY, 21 JUNE 1942

ZONE OF INTERIOR: An agreement is signed by Lieutenant General Henry H "Hap" Arnold, USAAF; Air Chief Marshall Sir Charles F Portal, RAF; and Rear Admiral John H Towers, USN dealing with US air commitments and provides for a strong air force for Operation BOLERO (the buildup of US armed forces in the UK for an attack on Europe).

TUESDAY, 23 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Major General Carl Spaatz is informed that Operation ROUNDUP (plans for the invasion of Western Europe) has been put off until Spring 1943. This postponement is due to a decision to mount Operation TORCH (plan for Allied landings in North and Northwest Africa in Nov 42), which will necessitate the diversion of large numbers of aircraft earlier slated for the 8th Air Force in the UK.

WEDNESDAY, 24 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Lieutenant General Dwight D Eisenhower arrives in the UK.

THURSDAY, 25 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): HQ 8th Air Force moves from London to Bushy Park, a London suburb.

FRIDAY, 26 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Air echelons of the 31st Fighter Group are established at Atcham and High Ercall, England by this date. These are the first combat personnel of the VIII Fighter Command to reach the UK.

SUNDAY, 28 JUNE 1942

(ETO): Lieutenant General Dwight D Eisenhower assumes command of ETOUSA, succeeding Major General James E Chaney.

MONDAY, 29 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Captain Charles C Kegelman [Commanding Officer, 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light)], flying on a mission with 12 RAF Bostons against Hazebrouck marshalling yard, France, becomes the first member of the 8th Air Force drop bombs on enemy-occupied Europe. The first pilot fatality of the 8th Air Force in the ETO is suffered when First Lieutenant Alfred W Giacomini of the 31st Fighter Group crashes a Spitfire while landing at Atcham, England.

TUESDAY, 30 JUNE 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): Joint Anglo-American control of Burtonwood air depot begins with a view toward subsequent exclusive control by the AAF. VIII Air Force Services Command is designated the US agent at Burtonwood.

WEDNESDAY, 1 JULY 1942

(ETO) (8th Air Force): The first B-17, assigned to the 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) of the BOLERO air movement via the N Atlantic route lands at Prestwick, Scotland..

THURSDAY, 2 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): First USAAF air operation over W Europe. 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light) flying 6 American-built Bostons belonging to No. 226 Squadron Royal Air Force, join a RAF low-level attack on De Koog (2 aircraft), Bergen/Alkamaar, Haanstede and Valkenberg (2 aircraft) Airfields in the Netherlands; 2 aircraft are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 1 damaged; 6 airmen are MIA. Aircraft flown by Captain Charles C Kegelman, Squadron Commander, is severely damaged, but Kegelman succeeds in bringing it back to base at Swanton Morley. VIII Air Force Composite Command is activated in the US. Second B-17 arrives in the UK via the N Atlantic ferry route.

MONDAY, 6 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): The RAF invites the Eighth Air Force to share membership in important RAF operational committees dealing with targets, operational research, interception, and bomber operations. VIII Air Force Service Command sets up HQ at Bushy Park with Major General Walter H Frank as Commanding General. 6 B-17s arrive in the UK via the N Atlantic ferry route.

THURSDAY, 9 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): 7 P-38s arrive in the UK via the N Atlantic route, this being the first time single-seater USAAF aircraft have flown this route.

SATURDAY, 11 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): First formal decoration ceremony held in the Eighth Air Force takes place when Major General Carl Spaatz pins the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) on Major Charles C Kegelman for extraordinary gallantry and heroism during the raid of 4 Jul.

SUNDAY, 12 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): 6 of 6 Bostons borrowed from the RAF hit Abbeville/Drucat Airfield, France; 2 aircraft are damaged; no casualties. The 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light) stands down after this mission to prepare their own Bostons which are ex-RAF machines.

MONDAY, 13 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): HQ 52d Fighter Group arrives at Eglinton, Co. Derry, Ireland from the US.

SATURDAY, 18 JULY 1942

(ETO): Harry Hopkins, General George C Marshall, Admiral Ernest V King, Prime Minister Winston S Churchill and the British Chiefs of Staff begin a conference in London on the proposed invasion of N Africa (Operation TORCH).

TUESDAY, 21 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): Lieutenant General Dwight D Eisenhower assigns to the 8th Air Force the mission of carrying out, in collaboration with the RAF, the degree of air operations with the view of attaining air domination over W France by 1 Apr 43.

SUNDAY, 26 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): Lieutenant Colonel Albert P Clark, Executive Officer of the 31st Fighter Group, is shot down while flying an RAF fighter on a sweep over France, thus becoming the first 8th Air Force fighter pilot to be shot down in the ETO; he survives and is taken prisoner by the Germans.

MONDAY, 27 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): HQ VIII Bomber Command issues an order establishing 1st Bombardment Wing at Brampton Grange [replacing 1st Bombardment Wing (Provisional), established there on 15 Jun) and 2d Bombardment Wing at Old Catton. 1st Bombardment Wing is commanded by Colonel Claude E Duncan; 2d Bombardment Wing by Colonel Newton Longfellow. US aircraft of 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 1st Fighter Group land at Prestwick, Scotland, thus completing the first series of flights in Operation BOLERO, air movement across the N Atlantic ferry route. 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) becomes the first US heavy bomber group complete with air and ground echelons in the UK. Lieutenant General Ira C Eaker and officers of the RAF Fighter Command agree to use Spitfire Mk IX's as high fighter cover for B-17s of the VIII Bomber Command until the VIII Fighter Command is ready for escort duty; this also will provide a test of the Spitfire Mk IX against Fw 190s at high altitude. HQ VIII Fighter Command moves from High Wycombe to Bushey Hall, England.

TUESDAY, 28 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): HQ VIII Fighter Command opens at Bushey Hall, England following move from temporary HQ at High Wycombe. Brigadier General Frank O'D Hunter, designated Commanding General VIII Fighter Command on 14 May in the US, assumes command in England. HQ VIII Ground Air Support Command, Brigadier General Robert C Candee, Commanding General, arrives at Bushy Park, England from the US. General Candee announces staff assignments and begins the organization of his command in the UK.

WEDNESDAY, 29 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): 28th Troop Carrier Squadron, 60th Troop Carrier Group arrives at Podington, England from the US with C-47s.

FRIDAY, 31 JULY 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): Units of the Provisional Troop Carrier Command are organized in UK.

SATURDAY, 1 AUGUST 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): Lieutenant General Ira C Eaker describes the mission of the VIII Bomber Command as the destruction of carefully chosen strategic targets in Europe. HQ 31st Fighter Group and 307th, 308th and 309th Fighter Squadrons move from Atcham to Westhampnett, Biggin Hill, Kenley and Westhampnett, England respectively with Spitfire Mk Vs.

WEDNESDAY, 5 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): VIII Fighter Command dispatches its first mission-11 Spitfire Mk Vs of the 31st Fighter Group on a practice run over France.

FRIDAY, 7 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): HQ 60th Troop Carrier Group and 10th and 28th Troop Carrier Squadrons move from Chelveston and Podington to Aldermaston, England with C-47s.

SUNDAY, 9 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Unit moves in England: HQ 301st Bombardment Group (Heavy) to Chelveston from the US; 27th Fighter Squadron from Goxhill to Atcham (the squadron is operating their P-38s from Reykjavik, Iceland).

TUESDAY, 11 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Referring to Operation TORCH (plans for the invasion of N Africa in Nov 42), Major General Carl Spaatz informs General Henry H "Hap" Arnold that, in his opinion, the UK remains the only base from which air supremacy over Germany can be established.

WEDNESDAY, 12 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): 31st Fighter Group at Westhampnett, England with Spitfire Mk Vs, is declared fully operational and ready for combat operations under Royal Air Force (RAF) control until it gains enough experience to be able to fight as a group; this is first US fighter unit in the UK to reach this operational status.

SATURDAY, 15 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): 11th Troop Carrier Squadron, 60th Troop Carrier Group, moves from Chelveston to Aldermaston, England with C-47s.

SUNDAY, 16 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): HQ 6th Fighter Wing arrives at Bushey Hall, England from the US; the wing will train replacement pilot for fighter organizations until Sep 43.

MONDAY, 17 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Mission 1: 12 of 12 B-17s bomb Rouen/Sotteville marshalling yard in France at 1739-1746 hours; they claim 0-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 2 B-17s are damaged. 6 B-17s also fly a diversion without loss; escort is provided by RAF Spitfires.

TUESDAY, 18 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 14th Fighter Group at Atcham; HQ 64th Troop Carrier Group and 16th, 17th, 18th and 35th Troop Carrier Squadrons at Ramsbury with C-47s; HQ 92d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 325th, 326th, 327th and 407th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Bovingdon with B-17s (they will fly some combat missions while training replacement crews, Aug 42-Jan 43); 32d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 301st Bombardment Group (Heavy), at Chelveston with B-17s (first mission is 2 Oct).

WEDNESDAY, 19 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Mission 2: 22 of 24 B-17s bomb Abbeville/Drucat Airfield, France at 1032-1040 hours; 3 B-17s are damaged; 6 B-17s fly a diversion and 2 airmen are WIA. This mission is flown to occupy the Luftwaffe and prevent them from opposing an invasion by over 5,000 Allied troops, mostly Canadians, who raid Dieppe, France. 123 Spitfire Mk Vs of the 31st Fighter Group support the raid on Dieppe and claim 1-1-5 Luftwaffe aircraft with the loss of 8 Spitfires (4 pilots are MIA); 2d Lieutenant Samuel F Junkin Jr of the 309th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, flying a Spitfire Mk V in support of the amphibious raid on Dieppe, shoots down a German fighter, this being the first aerial victory won by an 8th Air Force fighter pilot flying from the UK. Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 1st Bombardment Wing at Brampton Grange; 353d and 419th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 301st Bombardment Group (Heavy), at Chelveston with B-17s (first mission is 2 Oct). 2d, 4th and 5th Fighter Squadron, 52d Fighter Group arrive at Eglinton, Co Derry, Ireland from the US (squadrons will be equipped with Spitfire Mk Vs and 2d and 4th Fighter Squadrons will fly their first mission on 27 Aug; 5th Fighter Squadron will not fly missions).

THURSDAY, 20 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): The principle of coordinated day and night bombing receives its first formal definition in the "Joint British/American Directive on Day Bomber Operations involving Fighter Cooperation." The emphasis is placed on achieving continuity in the bombing offensive from the UK. Mission 3: 11 of 12 B-17s bomb Amiens/Longeau marshalling yard, France at 1801 hours without loss. Unit moves in England: 27th Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, from Atcham to High Ercall (the squadron is operating from Reykjavik, Iceland with P-38s); 352d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 301st Bombardment Group (Heavy) to Podington from the US with B-17s (first mission is 5 Sep).

FRIDAY, 21 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): At General Henry H "HAP" Arnold's request, Lieutenant General Dwight D Eisenhower gives Major General Carl Spaatz additional duties as Air Officer for the ETO and head of the air section of its staff, thus assuring active participation by the 8th Air Force in theater planning. Mission 4: 12 B-17s are dispatched to the bomb the shipyards at Rotterdam, The Netherlands but the mission is aborted due to an attack by 25 Bf 109s and Fw 190s; the bombers claim 2-5-6 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 bomber is damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 5 WIA. Lack of proper coordination with the Spitfire escorts is a major factor in the failure of the mission. HQ VIII Ground Air Support Command moves from Bushy Park to Membury, England.

MONDAY 24 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Mission 5: 12 of 12 B-17s bomb the shipyard of Ateliers et Chantiers Maritime de la Seine at Le Trait, France; 3 B-17s are damaged and 5 airmen are WIA. Major General Carl Spaatz reports the the RAF attitude towards US daylight precision bombing seems to be changing from one of skepticism to one of tentative approval. Unit moves in England: HQ 6th Fighter Wing from Bushey Hall to Atcham; HQ 1st Fighter Group and 71st Fighter Squadron from Goxhill to Ibsley with P-38s (first mission is 1 Sep); 307th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, from Biggin Hill to Merston.

TUESDAY, 25 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Units of the Provisional Troop Carrier Command, organized in the UK on 31 Jul pending arrival of the VIII Troop Carrier Command, are transferred to the VIII Ground Air Support Command after plans to organize the VIII Troop Carrier Command are abandoned. 308th Fighter Squadron, 31st Fighter Group, moves from Kenley to Westhampnett, England with Spitfires.

WEDNESDAY, 26 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Unit moves in England: HQ 52d Fighter Group and 2d, 4th and 5th Fighter Squadrons from Eglinton, Ireland to Goxhill with Spitfires; 27th Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, stops operating from Reykjavik, Iceland with P-38s and moves to High Ercall.

THURSDAY, 27 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Mission 6: 7 of 9 B-17s bomb the shipyards at Rotterdam, The Netherlands at 1740 hours; 3 B-17s are damaged; 1 airman is WIA. 92d Bombardment Group (Heavy) completes nonstop flight of the last of its 4 squadrons from Newfoundland to UK without a loss. A Combat Crew Replacement Center (CCRC), the first in the Eighth Air Force, is established at Bovingdon, England. 94th Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, moves from Kirton in Lindsey to Ibsley, England with P-38s.

FRIDAY, 28 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Mission 7: 11 of 14 B-17s bomb the Avions Potez aircraft factory at Meaulte at 1337-1344 hours; 3 B-17s are damaged; 1 airman is KIA.

SATURDAY, 29 AUGUST 1942

ETO (8th AF): Mission 8: In France, 11 of 13 B-17s attack Courtrai Airfield at 1131-1136 hours; 1 B-17 hits Steene Airfield at 1137; they claim 0-1-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 3 B-17s are damaged.

TUESDAY, 1 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): During Jul, the following units arrive in England from the US: HQ 51st Troop Carrier Wing at Greenham Common.

FRIDAY, 4 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): The 352d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 301st Bombardment Group (Heavy), moves from Podington to Chelveston, England with B-17s (first mission is tomorrow).

SUNDAY, 6 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): Mission 10: 76 bombers and 37 fighters bomb targets in France; 2 B-17s are lost: 1. 12 of 12 DB-7s attack the Abbeville/Drucat Airfield at 1702 hours; escort is provided by 37 Spitfires, all without loss. 2. 30 of 51 B-17s, 30 attack the Avions Potez aircraft plant at Meaulte at 1740-1748 hours; they claim 4-19-20 Luftwaffe aircraft; 2 B-17s are lost and 7 damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 5 WIA and 18 MIA. This is the VIII Bomber Command's first loss of aircraft in combat. 3. Of 13 B-17s, 11 hit St Omer/Longuenesse Airfield and 2 St Omer/Ft Rouge Airfield without loss. Arrivals in England from the US: HQ 67th Observation Group at Membury; and the 367th, 368th and 369th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy), at Thurleigh with B-17s.

MONDAY, 7 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): Mission 11: 29 bombers attack targets in the Netherlands without loss: 1. 4 of 15 B-17s ineffectively raid the Wilton shipyards at Rotterdam in bad weather; they claim 8-4-7 Luftwaffe aircraft; 4 B-17s are damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 3 WIA. 2. 5 of 14 B-17s seek targets of opportunity in the vicinity of Utrecht; they claim 4-6-5 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 B-17 is damaged and 1 airman is WIA. Units arriving in England from the US: HQ 2d Bombardment Wing at Old Catton; HQ 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 328th, 329th, 330th and 409th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Alconbury with B-24s (first mission is 9 Oct 42); HQ 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) at Thurleigh; 12th, 107th, 109th and 153d Observation Squadrons, 67th Observation Group, at Membury with no aircraft (first mission is in Aug, Dec 43 and Jan 44 respectively); and 15th Photographic Mapping Squadron, 3d Photographic Group, at Membury with B-17s (first mission is Nov 42).

TUESDAY, 8 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): The "Joint British American Directive on Day Bomber Operations Involving Fighter Cooperation" is issued; worked out between Major General Carl Spaatz and the RAF, it consigns night bombing to the RAF and day bombing to the Eighth Air Force; the purpose is to achieve continuity in the bombing offensive and secure RAF fighter support for US bombers; General Spaatz orders all tactical operations to give way to activity in support of Operation TORCH (plan for Allied landings in N and NW Africa in Nov 42); processing of units of the newly created Twelfth Air Force destined for N Africa takes priority over combat operations for the present. In England, HQ 3d Photographic Group arrives at Membury from the US; 342d and 414th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy), move from Grafton Underwood to Polebrook with B-17s.

WEDNESDAY, 9 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO, 8th Air Force): The 423d Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrives at Thurleigh, England from the US with B-17s (first mission is 9 Oct).

THURSDAY, 10 SEPTEMBER 1942

UK (8th Air Force): The 364th and 365th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 305th Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrive at Grafton Underwood, England from the US with B-17s.

SATURDAY, 12 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO) 8th Air Force: HQ VIII Air Force Composite Command arrives in Ireland and is temporarily stationed at Long Kesh, County Down. Following units arrive in England from the US: HQ 3d Bombardment Wing at Elveden Hall; HQ 4th Bombardment Wing at Camp Lynn but soon loses its personnel to the XII Bomber Command and is not manned again until Jan 43; HQ 91st Bombardment Group (Heavy) at Kimbolton; HQ 303d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 358th, 359th, 360th and 427th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Molesworth with B-17s (first mission 17 Nov); HQ 305th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 366th and 422d Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Grafton Underwood with B-17s (first mission 17 Nov); 66th and 68th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) at Cheddington with B-24s (first mission is 7 Nov). In England, HQ 4th Fighter Group and 334th, 335th and 336th Fighter Squadrons are activated at Bushey Hall with Spitfires to be manned by US pilots who formerly flew with the RAF Eagle Squadrons; and the 27th Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, moves from High Ercall to Colerne with P-38s (first mission is 2 Oct).

SUNDAY, 13 SEPTEMBER 1942

8th Air Force: In England, the 15th Bombardment Squadron (Light), VIII Bomber Command, moves from Molesworth to Podington, with DB-7s; the 322d, 323d, 324th and 401st Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy), 91st Bombardment Group (Heavy), arrive at Kimbolton from the US with B-17s (first mission is 7 Nov).

MONDAY, 14 SEPTEMBER 1942

8th Air Force: After the transfer of the combat unit to the Twelfth Air Force (see below), the combat units assigned to the Eighth are: HQ 3d Photographic Group and 5th, 12th, 13th and 14th Photographic Squadrons and 15th Photographic Mapping Squadron with F-4s, F-5s and B-17Fs; HQ 4th Fighter Group and 334th, 335th and 336th Fighter Squadrons at Steeple Morden with Spitfire Vs; HQ 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 66th, 67th and 68th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Cheddington with B-24s; HQ 67th Observation Group and 12th, 107th, 109th and 153d Observation Squadrons at Membury with no aircraft; HQ 91st Bombardment Group and 322d, 323d, 324th and 401st Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Kimbolton with B-17Fs; HQ 92d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 325th, 326th, 327th and 407th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Bovingdon with B-17Fs; HQ 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 328th, 329th, 330th and 409th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Alconbury with B-24Ds; HQ 303d Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 358th, 359th, 360th and 427th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Molesworth with B-17Fs; HQ 305th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 364th, 365th, 366th and 422d Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Grafton Underwood with B-17Fs; and HQ 306th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and 367th, 368th, 369th and 423d Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) at Thurleigh with B-17Fs.

WEDNESDAY, 16 SEPTEMBER 1942

8th Air Force: The VIII Air Force Services Command selects Honington and Watton, England as sites for Bomber Command advance depots; the site for the VIII Fighter Command awaits a final settlement of question of location and mission of the Fighter Command.

FRIDAY, 18 SEPTEMBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: VIII Ground Air Support Command at Membury, England is redesignated VIII Air Support Command.

TUESDAY, 29 SEPTEMBER 1942

(ETO) Eighth Air Force: US pilots who had been members of the 3 RAF Eagle Squadrons (Numbers 71, 121 and 133 Squadrons) are taken over by the VIII Fighter Command and organized into the 4th Fighter Group as the 334th, 335th and 336th Fighter Squadrons; the group HQ and all squadrons move from Bushey Hall to Debden, England with Spitfires.

THURSDAY, 1 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: HQ 350th Fighter Group and the 345th, 346th and 347th Fighter Squadrons are activated at Bushey Hall, England; the ground echelons of the squadrons are at Harding Field, Louisiana and will sail to North Africa for the invasion.

FRIDAY, 2 OCTOBER 1942

(ETO) Eighth Air Force: Mission 13: 61 bombers and 54 fighters are dispatched to attack 3 targets in France; 1 fighter is lost: 1. 32 of 43 B-17s dispatched hit the Avions Potez aircraft factory at Meaulte; they claim 4-9-5 aircraft; 6 B-17s are damaged; 3 airmen are WIA. Escort is provided by 31 P-38s; 1 P-38 is lost. 2. 6 of 6 B-17s fly a diversionary missions to St Omer/Longuenesse Airfield; they claim 5-4-4 aircraft. Escort is provided by 23 Spitfires; they claim 4-0-1 aircraft without loss. 3. 11 of 12 unescorted DB-7s attack a ship in a dock at Le Havre without loss.

SATURDAY, 3 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: The 95th Fighter Squadron, 82d Fighter Group, arrives at Eglington, Co Derry, Ireland from the US with P-38s.

SUNDAY, 4 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: The 347th Fighter Squadron, 350th Fighter Group, moves from Bushey Hall to Snailwell, England with P-39s and P-400s.

MONDAY, 5 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: HQ 82d Fighter Group and the 96th and 97th Fighter Squadrons arrive at Eglington, Co Derry, Ireland from the US with P-38s.

WEDNESDAY, 7 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: In letter to Major General George E Stratemeyer, Chief of the Air Staff, Major General Ira C Eaker, Commanding General Eighth Air Force, indicates plans for developing a highly-skilled intruder force capable of using bad weather as a cloak for small blind-bombing operations. These missions are also to serve the purpose of keeping the enemy from resting during periods of bad weather when big strategic missions cannot be flown.

FRIDAY, 9 OCTOBER 1942

(ETO) Eighth Air Force: Mission 14: 108 bombers are dispatched to bomb the steel and engineering works of the Compagnie de Fives at Lille, France and the locomotive and freight car works of Ateliers d'Hellemmes at Lille; 59 B-17s and 10 B-24s hit the primary targets; 2 B-17s hit the secondary target, Courtrai Airfield; other targets hit are Longuenesse Airfield (6) and Roubaix (2); the bombers claim 25-38-44 Luftwaffe aircraft; 4 bombers are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 46 damaged; 10 airmen are WIA and 29 MIA.

SATURDAY, 10 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: HQ 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) and the 66th, 67th and 68th Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) arrive at Shipham, England from the US with B-24s (first mission is 7 Nov).

MONDAY, 12 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: The VIII Fighter Command is made responsible for the preparation and movement of air echelons of the Twelfth AF from the UK to N Africa.

WEDNESDAY, 14 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: HQ 91st Bombardment Group (Heavy) and the 322d, 323d, 324th and 401st Bombardment Squadrons (Heavy) move from Kimbolton to Bassingbourn, England with B-17s (first mission is 7 Nov).

THURSDAY, 15 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: Lieutenant General Dwight D Eisenhower issues a directive reflecting the immediate urgency of Operation TORCH (plan for the Allied landings in N and NW Africa in Nov 42) as the currently important item of Allied strategy and requiring the Eighth AF, as a matter of first priority, to protect the movement of men and supplies from the UK to N Africa by attacking German submarine bases on the W coast of France, with shipping docks on the French W coast as a secondary targets for these missions and with German aircraft factories and depots in France as second priority.

WEDNESDAY, 21 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: Mission 15: 107 bombers are dispatched to hit submarine bases and an airfield in France; 3 bombers are lost: 1. 66 B-7s and 24 B-24s are dispatched to hit the U-boat pens at Lorient/Keroman; clouds prevent all but 15 B-17s from bombing from 17,500 feet (5,334 m), 5,000 to 10,000 feet (1,524 to 3,048 m) lower than usual; 36 Fw 190s intercept and shoot down 3 B-17s. 2. 8 of 17 B-17s hit Cherbourg Airfield; they claim 10-4-3 aircraft without loss.

THURSDAY, 22 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: The 330th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy), based at Alconbury, England with B-24s, begins operating from Holmsley, England.

WEDNESDAY, 28 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: The last 2 squadrons of the 14th Fighter Group, the 48th and 49th Fighter Squadrons, leave the UK for N Africa; this completes the transfer of VIII Fighter Command's fighting units to the XII Fighter Command and leaves the VIII Fighter Command with only the 4th Fighter Group operational. 

SATURDAY, 31 OCTOBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: Major General Spaatz, Commanding General Eighth AF, informs Lieutenant General Henry H "Hap" Arnold, Commanding General AAF, that operations against submarine pens may prove too costly for results obtained; believing the pens impervious to normal high-altitude bombing, Spaatz plans to operate as low as 4,000 feet (1,219 m) and accept higher casualty rates.

(ETO) Eighth Air Force: Brigadier General Robet C Candee, Commanding General VIII Air Support Command, states that the effort expended and personnel lost in organizing the Twelfth AF and preparing for its move from the UK to N Africa has severely retarded organization of his HQ and staff.

MONDAY, 2 NOVEMBER 1942

Eighth Air Force: Brigadier General Robet C Candee, commanding General VIII Air Support Command, states that the effort expended and personnel lost in organizing the Twelfth AF and preparing for its move from the UK to N Africa has severely retarded organization of his HQ and staff.

SATURDAY, 7 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO) Eighth Air Force: Mission 16: 23 of 56 B-17s and 11 of 12 B-24s attack the U-boat pens at Brest, France; they claim 4-3-7 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 B-17 is damaged beyond repair and 12 damaged; 3 airmen are KIA. 7 B-24s fly a diversion.

SUNDAY, 8 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Mission 17: 53 bombers are dispatched to hit two targets in France; 1 B-17 is lost: 1. 11 of 15 B-17s bomb the Abbeville/Drucat Airfield; they claim 1-2-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 B-17s are damaged and 5 airmen are WIA. 2. 31 of 38 B-17s bomb the Atclier d'Hellemmes locomotive works at Lille; they claim 10-4-13 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 B-17 is lost and 8 damaged; 3 airmen are WIA and 11 MIA.

MONDAY, 9 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Lieutenant General Carl Spaatz, Commanding General Eighth Air Force, in a memo to Lieutenant General Dwight D Eisenhower, agrees that any increase in air commitments to N Africa must necessarily be made at the expense of US forces in the UK as US forces in other theaters are considered irreducible. Mission 18: 31 of 33 B-17s and 12 of 14 B-24s attack the U-boat base at Saint Nazaire, France from reduced altitude; only 1 of the 12 B-24s bombing from 17,500 to 18,300 feet (5,334 to 5,578 m) suffer AA damage, but 31 B-17s at 7,500 to 10,000 feet (2,286 to 3,048 m) lose 3 of aircraft and have 22 damaged by AA fire, 1 airman KIA, 11 WIA and 32 MIA; this ends the experiment with low-level attacks of heavy bombers, against submarine bases.

FRIDAY, 13 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): HQ VIII AF Composite Command moves from the temporary station at Long Kesh to Kirkassock House, Ireland.

SATURDAY, 14 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Mission 19: 34 bombers are dispatched to hit U-boats pens at La Pallice, France but the target is covered by 10/10 clouds and 15 of 21 B-17s and 9 of 13 B-24s hit the secondary, the port area at St Nazaire, France; 1 B-24 is damaged. 6 B-24s fly a diversion for this mission.

TUESDAY, 17 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Mission 20: 2 locations are targetted: 1. 23 of 49 B-17s and 12 of 14 B-24s hit the U-boats pens at St Nazaire, France; they claim 6-8-2 Luftwaffe aircraft; 9 B-17s and 7 B-24s are damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 3 WIA. 2. 6 B-24s are dispatched to hit Maupertus Airfield at Cherbourg but abort due to cloud cover. 3. 10 B-17s fly a diversion to covert the missions above.

WEDNESDAY, 18 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Mission 21: 65 bombers are dispatched to hit targets against U-boat bases in France; 1 bomber is lost: 1. 13 of 13 B-24s hit Lorient; 1 B-24 is damaged beyond repair and 3 are damaged; 5 airmen are KIA and 8 WIA. 2. 19 of 21 B-17s hit St Nazaire; 15 B-17s are damaged and 3 airmen are WIA. 3. 21 of 34 B-17s hit La Pallice; 1 B-17s is lost and 9 damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 3 WIA. 4. 20 B-17s and 6 B-24s fly diversions for the above missions.

THURSDAY, 19 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Submarine yards at Vegesack, Bremen, and Kiel, Germany are added to day bombardment program as top priority objectives.

SATURDAY, 21 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): The 109th Observation Squadron, 67th Observation Group, moves from Membury to Atcham, England with A-20s (first mission is Dec 43).

SUNDAY, 22 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Mission 22: 68 B-17s and 8 B-24s are dispatched to hit the Keroma U-boat pens at Lorient, France; only 11 B-17s find a gap in the 10/10 cloud cover and bomb at 1410 hours local without loss.

MONDAY, 23 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): Mission 23: 50 B-17s and 8 B-24s are dispatched to hit the St Nazaire submarine base in France for the 5th time in 2 weeks; the cumulative effect of the operation on the base is large though the sub shelter shows little permanent damage; 28 B-17s and 8 B-24s hit the target; they claim 16-2-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; the AAF crews report a change in fighter tactics from rear to head-on attack as the Luftwaffe learns that the B-17 and B-24 are weak in forward firepower; 4 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 16 B-17s and 1 B-24 are damaged; 3 airmen are KIA, 16 WIA and 43 MIA. Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, First Lord of the Admiralty, writes to Lieutenant General Ira C Eaker, Commanding General Eighth AF, praising the effects of the US bomber attacks on disorganizing the servicing schedule of the German U-boat bases on the French W coast.

WEDNESDAY, 25 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): The 107th Observation Squadron, 67th Observation Group, moves from Membury to Aldermaston, England with A-20s, L-4s and Spitfires (first mission is 20 Dec 43).

SATURDAY, 28 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): In England, the 153d Observation Squadron, 67th Observation Group, moves from Membury to Keevil with A-20s, L-4s and P-51s (first mission is 18 Aug 43); the 330th Bombardment Squadron (Heavy), 93d Bombardment Group (Heavy), ceases operating from Holmsley with B-24s and returns to base to Alconbury.

MONDAY, 30 NOVEMBER 1942

(ETO, Eighth Air Force): In a meeting at the Air Ministry a joint decision is made on the allocation of responsibility, with the RAF to provide aerial defense of sectors in which US airfields are located while the VIII Fighter Command operates principally as escort for bomber strikes against the Continent.

TUESDAY, 1 DECEMBER 1942

(Eighth Air Force) Major General Ira C. Eaker replaces Major General Carl Spaatz as Commanding General Eighth Air Force. Spaatz flies to Algeria to serve as air adviser to Lieutenant General Eisenhower, Commanding General . Headquarters 78th Fighter Group and its 82d, 83d and 84th Fighter Squadrons is established at Goxhill England upon arrival from the US. The three squadrons are equipped with P-38Gs but begin transitioning to the P-47C in Jan 43 and enter combat with their P-47s on 13 Apr 43. Headquarters 315th Troop Carrier Group and its 34th and 43d Troop Carrier Squadrons is established at Aldermaston, England upon arrival from the US. The air echelon is flying their C-47s across the North Atlantic with the first aircraft arriving on 12 Dec. Headquarters 322d Bombardment Group (Medium) and its 449th, 450th, 451st and 452d Bombardment Squadrons (Medium) is established at Rougham, England upon arrival from the US. The air echelon with B-26C-6s will not depart the US until Mar 43; they will fly their aircraft via the southern route with the last aircraft arriving until 29 May 43. The group will not fly it's first combat mission until 14 May 43.

WEDNESDAY, 2 DECEMBER 1942

(Eighth Air Force) The 13th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron arrives at Podington, England from the US. The squadron, which was scheduled to go to North Africa with the 3d Photographic Group, is reassigned to the Eighth Air Force due to lack of equipment, personnel and aircraft and will remain in England for the rest of the war. The squadron will be equipped with F-5s and will fly it's first combat mission on 28 Mar 43.

SUNDAY, 6 DECEMBER 1942

(Eighth Air Force) On Mission 24, 103 heavy bombers are dispatched against France. Nineteen are dispatched against the Abbeville/Drucat Airfield; six bomb the target with one aircraft lost. Sixty six are dispatched against the Atelier d'Hellemmes locomotive works at Lille; 36 bomb the target with the loss of one aircraft. Eighteen other aircraft fly a diversion.

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 8, 1942

(Eighth Air Force) An VIII Bomber Command study of air attacks on submarine pens indicates that available US bombs are incapable of penetrating roofs of the pens from any bombing level low enough to maintain accuracy.

SATURDAY, 12 DECEMBER 1942

(Eighth Air Force) During Mission Number 25, 90 bombers are dispatched to bomb two targets in France; 78 aircraft are dispatched to the Rouen-Sotteville Marshalling Yard; 17 attack the target with the loss of two aircraft. A diversion is flown against the Abbeville/Drucat Airfield by 12 aircraft but the target is overcast and the aircraft return without attacking.

MONDAY, 14 DECEMBER 1942

(Eighth Air Force) An Inspector General report states that the drain of stocks from the Eighth Air Force for the purpose of equipping the Twelfth Air Force in Northwest Africa is hindering greatly the training and combat program of the Eighth Air Force.

SUNDAY, 20 DECEMBER 1942

During Mission Number 26, 80 B-17s and 21 B-24s are dispatched to attack the Luftwaffe air depot at Romilly-sur-Seine; 72 bomb the target with the loss of six B-17s to German fighters.

THURSDAY, 24 DECEMBER 1942 (CHRISTMAS EVE)

The first P-47s arrive in England however, because of VHF radio and engine difficulties, the P-47s are not sent into combat until Apr 43.

FRIDAY, 25 DECEMBER 1942 (CHRISTMAS DAY)

HQ 24th Composite Wing is activated in Iceland to control all USAAF units on the island.

WEDNESDAY, 30 DECEMBER 1942

During Mission Number 27, 77 bombers are dispatched to the submarine base at Lorient, France; 40 aircraft attack with the loss of three B-17s to German fighters. The submarine base shows the cumulative effect of repeated bombardment.