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 865: 429 bombers and 689 fighters are dispatched to hit oil targets in Germany; the primary target for the B-17s is the synthetic oil plant at Ruhland but weather forces them to hit the secondary target; all bombing is with H2X radar; 1 B-17 is lost:

1. 233 of 303 B-17s hit the secondary target, the marshalling yard at Chemnitz; targets of opportunity are Plauen (34) and Fulda (9); 1 B-17 is lost and 15 damaged; 9 airmen are MIA. Escorting are 369 of 420 P-51s; 3 P-51s are damaged beyond repair and 1 pilot is KIA.

2. 120 of 126 B-24s hit the Harburg oil refinery at Hamburg without loss. The escort is 186 P-47s and P-51s without loss.

3. 27 P-51s attack the marshalling yard at Kreuztal; 1 P-51 is damaged beyond repair.

4. 28 P-51s fly a scouting mission.

5. 14 P-51s escort 4 F-5s on a photo reconnaissance mission over Germany. Mission 866: 21 of 24 B-24s bomb the Wiesbaden rail station by PFF markers during the night.

Mission 867: 9 of 11 B-24s drop leaflets in the Netherlands, France 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,