Narrative - Official Air Force Mission Description
VIII Bomber Command Mission 156: the port area at Bremen, Germany is the target. 402 of 479 B-17s, 133 of 141 B-24s and 10 of 11 PFF aircraft hit the target at 1309-1322 hours; they claim 18-11-11 Luftwaffe aircraft; 10 B-17s are lost; 2 B-17s and 2 B-24s are damaged beyond repair; 128 B-17s, 22 B-24s and 5 PFF aircraft are damaged; casualties are 6 KIA, 8 WIA and 104 MIA. The mission is escorted by 31 P-38s, 131 P-47s and 39 Ninth Air Force P-51s; they claim 2-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 P-47 is lost, 1 P-38 is damaged beyond repair and 1 P-38 damaged; casualties are 1 KIA and 1 MIA.
VIII Bomber Command Mission 157: 4 B-17s drop 1.952 million leaflets over Hannover, Germany; Brussels, Belgium; and Lille, France at 1903-1943 hours; no losses or casualties.
Source: THE ARMY AIR FORCES IN WORLD WAR II: COMBAT CHRONOLOGY, 1941-1945 by Carter / Mueller, the Office of Air Force History,
Bomb Load: 8 x 500 lb G.P. and 20 x M47A1 Incendiary bombs. Bombing Altitude: 26,000 ft. Ammo Fired: 3,680 rounds.
There were no abortives, no aircraft losses and no casualties on this seventh 303rd BG(H) visit to Bremen. All aircraft returned safely to England. Three landed away from Molesworth: #42-31055 Aloha 360BS (Lt. Glass), at Bury St. Edmonds; #42- 5788 A.O.G. Not in Stock 360BS (Lt. Holdcroft) at East Wrethan; #42-29524 Meat Hound 359BS (Lt. Smith), at Newmarket.
Bombing was conducted at an altitude of 26,000 feet, dropping 39 tons of 500-lb. bombs and 12 tons of incendiaries. Moderate to intense accurate flak was encountered at the target with meager flak along the route, especially at Tessel. Enemy fighter opposition was meager with about six aircraft seen. The effective fighter escort contained P-47s and P-51s teaming to give the bombers maximum protection. Fourteen of the 20 aircraft sustained flak damage, three of which were major.
source: 306th Bombardment Group website www.306bg.org/
384BG Mission Report - 384th BG Mission Number 43. Primary Target: Port Area - Bremen, Germany. Target Attacked : Primary (PFF)
23 aircraft assigned to this mission: Completed Mission - 18. Aborted - 2. Spare, Returned As Briefed - 2. Returned Early - 1 41-24578 Lovvorn, Hollie Ray - Turned back over the North Sea at 1247 hrs; #4 engine leaking oil badly; #3 supercharger inoperative at 20,000 ft; #2 prop ran away (split oil line) and had to be feathered. Attacked target of opportunity. 42-29688 McDonald, Raymond L - 2x500GP and 9x65 M47A1 bombs hung up (less than half of bomb load) and were jettisoned in The Wash. Note: Mission Commander's Narrative identifies A/C 9888 (Lt. McDonald Pilot) as having this situation, but that aircraft was piloted by Hines on this mission. Because McDonald landed one-half hour later than Hines, it is believed the narrative has the correct pilot, but the wrong aircraft: the serial numbers of both aircraft are similar, easily mistaken for the other, or there may be a typo in the report. 42-29733 Cosentino, George (NMI) - c/l (overshot) at RAF Cottishall due to b/d; a/c is a total wreck but none of the crew were injured; 42-29828 Fioretti, Edward Anthony - Aborted at 1207 hrs b/c #4 engine fuel pressure went out; 8x500GP, 20x65 M47A1s rtd 42-29935 MacPhail, Philip R - Aborted Deputy; aborted over Molesworth at 0950 hrs b/c #1 engine ran very rough and had to be feathered; bombs rtd 42-37924 Stearns, Clarence Grover - landed away at Alconbury 42-39784 Herbert, Joseph R
source: 384th Bomb Group web page http://384thBombGroup.com/
388BG Mission Report - On this mission the 388th put up two Groups which was to follow the 96th "A" and "B". They had a PFF A/C to lead the 45th Combat Wing. When the 96th PFF A/C aborted, the 388th took over the lead.
The "A" Group put up 22 a/c including 2 PFF and 4 of our a /c aborted for mechanical reasons. The "B" Group put up 21 a/c and one of these aborted.
The briefed route was followed to the Target which was the center of the City of Bremen. Being cloud covered, the bombs were dropped on the PFF A/C from 24,000 feet and crews report that dense black clouds came up through the overcast. From the Target, the briefed route back was followed.
Fighters did not attack either of our Groups. However, shortly after the escort (P-51's) left (1400 hours) just off the Coast of Holland, e/a picked up the Wing formation and attacked the low Group. This was the 96th, and 7 of these a/ c were lost. Our gunners claim 6 e/a destroyed. Intense flak was encountered over the Target, but was not accurate.
13 A/C of the "A" Group landed at base by 1627 hours and 3 landed at other bases for lack of gas and bad weather. 19 A/C of the "B" Group landed by 1619 hours and one a/c landed at Rackheath.
source: 388th Bomb Group web page http://www.388bg.info
source: 392nd Bomb Group web page http://www.b24.net/missions/
44BG Mission Report - Today we returned to Germany, this time to hit Bremen with 22 aircraft (6 were 67th). For the first time three Combat Wings made up the Second Division, and the 446 BG flew its first mission. As with the prior December missions, the winter weather definitely was present. Intense, accurate barrage-type flak was encountered over the target, and meager flak at other points, was met by our Formation. To this date, this mission was probably the biggest effort made by the USAAF - and a successful one. Although we did not lose any planes over the Continent we did have two planes make crash-landings. The 66th's A/c #42-7536 landed safely at Rackheath piloted by Lt. Insley. The 68th's A/C #41-23788 D piloted by Lt. Park H. Jones was severely damaged by flak which knocked out its #4 engine and parts of the bomb bay, enroute from the target. Four men bailed out of the crippled craft and became POWs, while the six men remaining in the plane did not survive the crash landing at Skeffling, near Hull. The plane name was Avenger and it is not recorded if Rusty, the dog that flew Ploesti, was aboard. Very little enemy aircraft activity was experienced on this mission, with all other planes returning safely and six of them with flak damage.
source: 44th Bomb Group web page http://www.8thairforce.com/44thbg
446th Bomb Group Mission Report Bremen
The 446th flew its first mission to Bremen, Germany. Over 1,500 tons of bombs were dropped through heavy clouds by 21 of the 24 planes that took off. Though the crews could not see their target, the bombs fell close to PFF marker trails and dense black smoke was seen rising through the clouds. 3 planes turned back due to malfunctions. Enemy fighter opposition was weak, flak was intense but inaccurate, and all planes returned to base.
source: 446th Bomb Group www.446bg.com
91st BG / 322nd BS Mission Report - Raid on the city of Bremen. Bomb Load: 8 x 500. Bombing Altitude: 25,000. Results Unobserved 10/10 clouds. Time: Take Off 0853. Land 1512. Target 1312. A/A Fire: Meager from Heligoland, Wesermunde, Texel Island, Intense and accurate at the target. Enemy fighters: Up to 30 E/A none encountered.
92BG Mission Report - Losses: 326th Squadron, a/c B-17 F-115-BO 230677 K. Mysteriously aborted inside enemy coast with all engines operating. According to reports did not seem to be having any trouble. No fix received from ground station of any indication of where might have flown to.
source: 92nd Bomb Group web page http://92ndma.org/