The Eighth Air Force Historical Society

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The Eighth Air Force Historical Society

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Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description

Mission 792: 911 bombers and 860 fighters are dispatched to attack oil refineries and plants in C Germany and highway bridges at Cologne; clear skies allow all bombers to bomb visually; about 250 Luftwaffe fighters attack and the AAF claims 158-0-30 aircraft; 7 bombers and 11 fighters are lost:

1. 370 B-17s are sent to hit oil targets at Derben (186) and Magdeburg (90); 36 hit Hallendorf, the secondary target; targets of opportunity hit are the Osnabruck marshalling yard (8) and other (19); they claim 31-9-7 aircraft; 6 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 121 damaged; 4 airmen are WIA and 149 MIA. Escorting are 295 of 331 P-51s; they claim 89.5-0-14 aircraft in the air and 3-0-5 on the ground; 5 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA) and 3 damaged beyond repair.

2. 348 B-24s are dispatched to hit oil targets at Hallendorf (145), Hemmingstedt (91) and Ehmen (89); 1 hits Wangerooge Island, a target of opportunity; 1 B-24 is damaged beyond repair and 80 damaged; 8 airmen are KIA and 1 WIA. The escort is 261 of 295 P-51s; they claim 14.5-0-0 aircraft; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot MIA) and 1 damaged beyond repair.

3. 187 B-17s are sent to hit highway bridges at Cologne, the Deutz Bridge (71), the Hohenzollern Bridge (67) and the Rodenkirchen Bridge (36); targets of opportunity are Berg (1) and Cologne (1); 1 B-17 is lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 92 damaged; 4 airmen are WIA and 10 MIA. Escort is provided by 40 of 42 P-51s; they claim 9-0-5 aircraft; 2 P-51s are lost (pilots MIA) and 1 pilot is WIA.

4. 6 of 6 B-17s fly a screening mission without loss.

5. 116 P-47s and P-51s fly a sweep over N Germany and claim 42-0-6 aircraft; 2 P-47s and 1 P-51 are lost (pilots MIA); 1 P-47 is damaged beyond repair.

6. 30 of 32 P-51s fly a scouting missions without loss.

7. 19 of 22 P-51s escort 12 F-5s and 4 Spitfires on a photo reconnaissance mission over Germany.

Mission 793: 2 B-17s and 5 B-24s drop leaflets over SE Belgium and Germany during the night.

Source: THE ARMY AIR FORCES IN WORLD WAR II: COMBAT CHRONOLOGY, 1941-1945 by Carter / Mueller, the Office of Air Force History,