Any Radio Operators & Spot Jamming Operators Report to Communications School Immediately.
BRIEFING OFFICER: HAVE YOU READ SPECIAL BRIEFING POOP??
Ask 508th, 509th and 510th Operations representatives if their crews are all present.
Read Special briefing poop.
- The Visual Primary for today is: 1. Vechta [Germany] - A/F [Airfield]
- PFF Primary: 3. Oldenburg [Germany]
- Visual Secondary: 2. Zwischenahn; Varrelbush
- PFF Secondary: ____
- Last Resort Target: ____
S-2 [Intelligence] Information:
|Zero Hour:|| - 0730||Stations:|| - 0455|
|Start Engines:|| - 0505||Taxi:|| - 0520|
|Take Off:|| - 0535||Last Take Off:|| - 0630|
|Intercept Group at||Cromer||at||17,000 ft.||at 0730|
|Target Time:|| - 0857||ETR [Estimated Time|
|Depart English Coast at:|| 0732||at Cromer||at 17,000'|
Time on oxygen: 4 hours - Length of Mission - 5½ Hrs.
TIME TICK [Set your watches.]
| Gasoline:|| 2,300 Gallons|
16 x 500 S.A.P. [Semi-Armor Piercing] 1/10 Nose 1/100 Tail [Fuses]
Intervalometer Settings: 50 Feet
Commence discharge of chaff at - No Chaff will be released by any A/C [Aircraft]
Each A/C [Aircraft] will carry - ____ units.
Disposition of Forces:
3 Divisions will be dispatched. The 1st Air Division will depart England ____ preceded by ____ Division and followed by the ____ Division.
1st Division will dispatch 2
CBW's of ____ Groups each. Task Forces. We are the 3rd Group attacking in the First Task Force.
The order of attack in the 1st Division will be:
|Lead Group||40th A||Attacking||All Groups in the 1st Task Force -|
|2nd||40th B||Attacking||Will Attack Targets in this Area -|
|3rd||94th A||Attacking||Second Runs will be made on all Primaries -|
|4th||41st A||Attacking||If it can be made without interfering with -|
|5th||1st A||Attacking||Other Groups|
|2nd Division targets are|
|3rd Division targets are|
Fighter Cover: 7 Gps. of P-51's, 1 Gp of P-47 - Target Support; 2 Gps of P-51's Free Lancing; 6 - P-51's will Scout Weather. Call Signs on Flimsy.
Combat Wing Assembly Line: 53°15’N-00°55’E - Cromer
|Lead at||13,000||feet on|| Kings Cliffe ||Buncher||Red-Green||Flares|
|High at||14,000||feet on||Kings Cliffe||Buncher||Green-Green||Flares|
|Low at||12,000||feet on||Kings Cliffe||Buncher||Red-Red||Flares|
|401st at||6,000||feet on||Cottesmore||Buncher||Red-Yellow||Flares|
|457th at||6,000||feet on||Glatton||Buncher||Red-Yellow||Flares|
Division Assembly Line: Cromer to 52°45’N-04°38’E [Leihoek, Netherlands]
2 minutes interval between Groups.
Reference altitude: 20,000'
Bombing altitude: 25,000'
Point for instrument let-down Kings Cliffe magnetic heading of 30 degrees.
|401st||Woodcraft Baker - 1st Gp of 2nd Task Force|
|457th||Woodcraft Charlie - 2nd Gp of 2nd Task Force|
|1st Div. Air Commander||____|
|94th CBW Air Commander||Maj. Gorham|
The following ships will monitor [Radio Channels]- "B" - C-020, O-920, D-082; "C" - 8th A.F. - N-665; "C" - 67th Fighter Wing - B-610.
Other Communications information will be found on the flimsy.
- FLYING CONTROL: _____
a. Type of Bombing Formation - Bomb in Group Formation, if PFF; By Squadron if Visual.
b. Bombardier and Navigator of the #3 A/C of each sqdn. report to Photo Lab.
The A/C are: H-280, M-964, U-813
c. Ball Turret Gunners of the following A/C report to Photo Lab: ____
d. Camera A/C: B-610, U-591, Q-799
return at Continental Coast Out [Bound]
e. Spares to turn back at ____
f. PFF A/C fly as Lead of High & Low Sqdns. - Lead & Deputy Lead of Lead Sqdn.
g. GH A/C fly as ____
Extreme Care will be taken not to bomb in occupied territory.
You are reminded not to discuss the target. EXERCISE ALL SECURITY MEASURES.
Date of Mission - 24 March, 1945.
- Target Attacked: The No. 1 priority target, the airdrome at Vechta, Germany, was attacked visually by squadrons.
- Force: 94th “A” Group. Thirty-six aircraft, including four PFF ships, were dispatched.
- Position: The briefed position, third group in the 1st Task Force, was flown by the 94th "A" Group.
|Group Lead |
|Air Commander: ||Major John D. Gorham Jr|
|Pilot:||Captain Norman A. Trapp|
|Navigator:||1st Lt. John C. Talbott|
|Bombardier:||1st Lt. Clarence L. Hunter Jr|
|Leader: ||Captain Harvey W. Powell|
|Pilot:||F/O Phillip A. Frank|
|Navigator:||1st Lt. Harry U. Perry|
|Bombardier:||1st Lt. Donald H. Stump|
|Leader: ||1st Lt. George A. Patterson|
|Pilot:||2nd Lt. Harold A. Schulte|
|Navigator:||F/O Leon R. Phelps|
|Bombardier:||F/O Leonard L. Lesch|
Squadron and Group Assembly: No difficulties were encountered in making the assembly over the Kings Cliffe buncher at the briefed altitude of 13,000 feet.
Route Over England: The briefed route over England was followed very closely, with no more than a one minute variation between briefed and actual times. As
there was no planned combat wing assembly, the 94th “A” proceeded to the point of departure from the English coast, Cromer, to assembly with the 1st Task Force.
Division Assembly Line: The turn at Cromer was undershot in order for the 94th “A” Group to join the 1st Task Force in its briefed position (third) and at
the proper interval in respect to the preceding groups. A gradual return to the briefed route was flown, and the enemy coast was crossed at the briefed point two
minutes early (0812), and 2,000 feet below the briefed altitude of 25,000 feet.
Flight to Target: There were no deviations from the briefed course during the flight to the target. The 94th “A” remained in the Task Force column, and
the briefed IP was reached at the briefed altitude of 25,000 feet, on course, and two minutes early (0844).
Description of Bombing Run: The briefed IP [Initial Point of Bomb Run] was used by each of the three squadrons, and each made its own visual sighting
operations. The Lead and Low Squadrons identified the MPI [Mean Point of Impact] without difficulty, and very good results were reported in both instances with
heavy concentrations of bombs on the runway and landing ground. The High Squadron was unable to identify the briefed aiming point, but dropped its bombs into the
smoke of previous bombing. The C-1 Pilot [Autopilot] was used by all three squadrons, and no malfunctions were reported. No interference was encountered during
the bomb run.
Flight From Target: The 94th “A” Group rallied without difficulty after the target, and cut inside the briefed turn in order to rejoin the 1st Task Force.
In trailing the preceding formations, the group flew to the right of the briefed course, reaching the enemy coast just north of the briefed point at an altitude of
22,500 feet. The course flown in crossing the channel paralleled the briefed course to the north. This also was the result of remaining in the column of groups.
Cromer, the briefed point of entry at the English coast, was reached at an altitude of 7,500 feet, and the briefed route to base was followed without exception. A
normal let-down procedure was followed, and landings were made at base without difficulty.
Fighter Support: As briefed.
Comments: No aircraft were lost. Neither flak nor enemy aircraft were encountered. The Weather Scouting Force accurately reported the weather conditions
(CAVU) [Ceiling and Visibility Unlimited] existed in the target area. PFF units were employed only as navigational aids.
Aircraft Not Attacking: The bombs of one Aircraft were released early because of an intervalometer malfunction, and another ship dropped on these bombs.
There were no other non-effective sorties. No flying spares had been scheduled.
[Signed] Carl C. Hinkle, Jr, Major, Air Corps, Operations Officer
STATISTICAL SUMMARY OF OPERATIONS
DIVISION FIELD ORDER NUMBER 666
|351st Bombardment Group|
|Lead Squadron||Low Squadron||High Squadron||TOTALS|
|No. of Aircraft Failing to Take Off||0||0||0||0|
|No. of Aircraft Sorties||12||12||12||36|
|No. of Aircraft Airborne Less Unused Spares||12||12||12||36|
|No. of Aircraft Credit Sorties||12||12||12||36|
|No. of Effective Sorties||10||12||12||34|
|No. of Non-Effective Sorties||2||0||0||2|
|Name of Primary Target||VECHTA, GERMANY|
|(A) No. of A/C Attacking Primary Target||10||12||10||34|
|(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs|| 156 x 500# SAP || 191 x 500# SAP || 191 x 500# SAP || 538 x 500# SAP |
|Name of Secondary Target||Figures include the following number of B-17G GH Aircraft|
|(A) No. of A/C Attacking Secondary Target||2||1||1||4|
|(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs|
|Name of Last Resort Target (LRT)|
|(A) No. of A/C Attacking LRT|
|(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs|
|Name of Target of Opportunity (T.O.)|
|(A) No. of A/C Attacking T.O.|
|(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs|
|No. of A/C MIA - Total||0||0||0||0|
|No. of A/C MIA - Flak|
|No. of A/C MIA - Flak and E/A|
|No. of A/C MIA - Enemy Aircraft|
|No. of A/C MIA - Accident over Enemy Terr.|
|No. of A/C MIA - Other and Unknown|
|Time of Take Off||0531||0533||0532|
|Time of Attack||08:54||08:55||08:54:20|
|Total Time for Mission||62:24||63:16||63:50||189:30|
|Altitude of Release (Indicated)||25,000’||24,400’||25,600’|
|Visual, H2X, Gee-H, M-H, Eagle, or Combination||VISUAL|
|Enemy Resistance – AA Intensity & Accuracy||NONE|
|Enemy Resistance – Fighter||0||0||0||0|
|Enemy Resistance – Bombers||0||0||0||0|
|U.S. A/C Engaged by Enemy Aircraft||0||0||0||0|
|Number of Passes made by Enemy Aircraft||0||0||0||0|
|Degree of Success||VERY GOOD RESULTS|
|(B) Personnel (43-39156)||1||0||0||1|
|(C) Enemy Action|
|(D) Other Non-Mechanical|
|(E) Mechanical and Equipment (43-37862)||1||0||0||1|
|Incidents of Mechanical & Equipment Failure:|
|(B) Oil System|
|(C) Fuel System|
|(E) Propeller and Governor|
|(F) Communication System|
|(G) Guns and Turrets|
|(H) Bomb Release||1||0||0||1|
|(I) Bombay Doors|
|(J) Electric System|
|(L) Oxygen Equipment|
|(M) Bomb Sights|
|(N) A/C in General|
____ A/C borrowed as follows: None
____ A/C loaned as follows: None
Lead Bombardier’s Narrative:
Date - 24 March 1945
Field Order # 666
Squadron or Group - Lead Sqdn., 94th CBW "A" Group
Target - Vechta Airfield
Type of Bombing (Visual, PFF or Combined)? Visual
Did Squadron perform own sighting operation, bomb on smoke marker, or was bombing done in Group Formation? Squadron performed own sighting operation
Was turn made at briefed I.P.? Yes
Cloud coverage and visibility. CAVU [Ceiling and Visibility Unlimited]
If Visual, when was MPI identified? If not actually seen, how was it located? MPI [Mean Point of Impact] identified 15 miles from target
Any Interference on Bomb Run? None
Did C-1 [Autopilot] function satisfactory? Yes
Any other factors affecting accuracy? None
[Signed] Clarence L. Hunter, Jr., 1st Lt., Air Corps, Lead Bombardier
Combat Bombing Flight Record:
I certify that this 12E form is complete and correct.
Warren C. Steitz, Captain, Air Corps, Group Bombardier.
Lead Squadron, 94th CBW "A" Group
Bombardier - 1st Lt. Hunter, Clarence L., Jr.
Pilot - Maj. Gorham, J. D. Jr. & Capt. Trapp, N.A.
Navigator - 1st Lt. Talbott, John C.
Aircraft B-17G J-468 Take-off - 05:35 Landed - 10:45
Objective - Vechta Airfield
Aiming Point (MPI) [Mean Point of Impact] - Runway Intersection - As Briefed
Initial Point - As Briefed
Method of Attack - Squadron
No. of Attacking A/C in Group: - 12 Composite Group - ____
Number A/C Dropping Bombs by own Sighting Operation: ____
Deflection and Range Sighting, Group: One Composite Group - ____
Range Sighting only, Group - __ Composite Group - ____
Bombs, Types and Sizes - 16 x 500 Lb. S.A.P.'s [Semi-Armor Piercing]
Number of Bombs Loaded - As Above Released - Same
Fusing, Nose - 1/10 Tail - 1/100
Synchronization - On
Information at Release Point:
|Altitude of Target - 102||Magnetic Heading Ordered 082° Actual 093°|
|True Altitude Above Target - 25,280||True Heading 088°|
|Indicated Altitude - 25,000||Drift, Estimated 5° Left - Actual 6° Left|
|Pressure Altitude of Target -138||True Track 082°|
|Altimeter Setting 29.92||Actual Range 12,640'|
|Calculated Indicated Air Speed - 150K||Bomb Sight Type - M-9|
|True Air Speed - 224K||Time of Release 08:54|
|Ground Speed Est. 222 Actual 224||Length of Bombing Run - 35 N.M. [Nautical Miles]|
|Wind Direction Metro - 160° Actual - 165°||Intervalometer Setting - 50'|
|Wind Velocity Metro 16 Actual 24|| C-1 Pilot [Autopilot] - X [Used]|
|D.S. - 127.4 Trail - 58 ATF - 41.90||A-5 Pilot _____|
|Tan. D.A, Est. .485 Actual .50 ||Manual Pilot ____|
Type of Release - Train 50'
Point of Impact If Seen - Good
Mean Temp. Metro -9 Actual -12
Winds - Altitude - 25,000 Ft. Direction - Metro 160° Actual 165° Velocity - Metro 16 Actual 24
Temp C. - Metro -36° C. Actual -36° C.
Preliminary Damage Assessment:
The three Squadrons of this Group attacked as a priority No. 1 Target, the Airfield at Vechta, Germany. Photo cover is complete for all Squadrons although the
full pattern of the High Squadron cannot be plotted.
The pattern of the Lead Squadron fell across the main runway with hits on the runway and landing ground. The pattern is 2760 feet by 1440 feet with the center
of the concentration 840 feet left of the assigned MPI [Mean Point of Impact]. Percentage will be approximately 65% for 1,000’ and 97% for 2,000’.
The main concentration of the Low Squadron fell on the MPI with damage to runway, runway intersection and landing ground. The pattern is loose and some bombs
will post-hole the southern edge of the field. The pattern is 3,840 feet by 1,450 feet. Percentages will be 65% within 1,000’ and 70% within 2,000’.
The pattern of the High Squadron fell into smoke that had drifted away from the target and only the start of the pattern can be seen. This area is 8,750 feet
from the MPI and 3,700 feet from the target area. No damage will be done
[Signed:] Thomas L. Cooper, Captain, Air Corps, Group P.I. [Photo Intelligence]
Narrative Teletype Report:
- No leaflets were carried by this Group.
The three squadrons from this group formed the 94th “A” CBW [Combat Bomb Wing]. Bombing was visual by individual squadrons on our No. 1 target, an A/F [airfield],
at Vechta, Germany. Photo coverage shows the bombing pattern of the lead and low squadrons to be very good. Heavy concentrations fell on the runway and the L/G
[Landing Ground]. The Southeastern part of the A/F will be well post-holed. Smoke partially obscured the target for the high squadron and their bombs were dropped
into the middle of the smoked area. Estimates place these bombs approximately 1 mile West of the briefed MPI [Mean Point of Impact].
No E/A [Enemy Aircraft] were encountered and no claims [of enemy aircraft being shot down] are being submitted.
No flak was encountered throughout the mission.
CAVU [Ceiling And Visibility Unlimited] weather prevailed along the entire route and over the target area; visibility, air to ground, was fifteen to twenty miles.
A military installation of about twelve buildings was noted at about 5245 N – 0735 E. Three con-trails were observed in the vicinity of 5245 N – 0610 E.
Four PFF A/C [Aircraft] were utilized by this group on today’s mission and proved very effective as a navigational aid. Operators report that their sets performed
efficiently. Fighter support was good and it appeared as briefed. The Scouting Force was contacted by this Group and they accurately reported weather conditions
existing in the target area. None of our A/C is missing.
This Group arrived at the assembly point just as dawn was breaking, enabling the leaders to easily see the other A/C in their formation. We arrived at Control
Point 1 three minutes early and made a 180 degree turn to the North in order to depart this point on time. The formation reached Control Point 2 three minutes
early and this difference in time continued through bombs away. The course was uneventful until arrival at Texel Island, a location on the route out, where we
were forced to jockey around to prevent flying over flak locations plotted on the southern tip of this island. From mid-channel on we followed a course six miles
North of the prescribed route. Let-down was as per S.O.P. [Standard Operating Procedure]. This Group attacked visually by squadrons our No. 1 target, an A/F at
Vechta, Germany. PFF [Pathfinder Force] was employed as a navigational aid and operated effectively.
Click on Chart to Enlarge
Mission Summary Report:
Abortives and Flying Spares:
[Signed:] John W. Freeman, Captain, Air Corps, Group Engineering Officer
Bomb Rack Malfunction - Aircraft 43-39156
Aircraft 43-39156 released all bombs in train shortly after passing the I.P. on the first mission of 24 March, 1945.
The bombing system of this aircraft ground checks perfectly.
The Bomb Release Interval Control (Intervalometer) was removed and its mechanism checked. One broken wire was found which could have caused the malfunction had it
touched the case of the unit.
This office believes the malfunction should be classed as mechanical.
[Signed:] Clemert E. Hayes, Captain, Air Corps, Group Armament Officer.
Last Four numbers and Call Letter of A/C in each Squadron:
|a. 94th Combat Wing "A" Group Lead Squadron - 351st Group|
|Sqdn 508th A/C: None|
|Sqdn 509th A/C: None|
Sqdn 510th A/C: A–8465, B–6610, C–9020, G–7862, H–8280, M–9001, N–7665, O–8435,
|Sqdn 511th A/C: (D–8664 PFF), (J–8468 PFF), |
|b. 94th Combat Wing "A" Group Low Squadron - 351st Group|
Sqdn 508th A/C: A–8410, D–6082, H–8412, K–8130, L–7956, M–7900, O–8277, P–7258, Q–8799, U–8813,
|Sqdn 509th A/C: None|
|Sqdn 510th A/C: None|
|Sqdn 511th A/C: (L–8045 PFF)|
|c. 94th Combat Wing "A" Group High Squadron - 351st Group|
|Sqdn 508th A/C: None|
Sqdn 509th A/C: A–8428, C–8640, G–8617, M–7964, O–8920, P–6904, R–6156, T–8666, U–8591,
|Sqdn 510th A/C: None|
|Sqdn 511th A/C: (Y–7651 PFF)|
- Target: ____
W/T and R/T Operational Call Sign of each Squadron:
|Squadron||508 [Call Sign]||W/T USM R/T CARLTON||Squadron||510 [Call Sign]||W/T RHK R/T TIPSTAFF|
|Squadron||509 [Call Sign]||W/T JLA R/T HOTMINT||Squadron||511 [Call Sign]||W/T SSQ R/T PARTNERSHIP|
Taxi – 0520; Take-Off – 0535; E.T.D. Field – 0657
|Time:||Height:||Place of Crossing English Coast: (OUT)|
|Time:||Height:||Place of Crossing Enemy Coast: (IN)|
|0814||25,000 ft||52°45'N-04°38'E [Leihoek, Netherlands]|
|Time:||Height:||Place of Crossing Enemy Coast: (Out)|
|0941||22,000 ft||53°11'N-04°50'E [North point of Texel Island, Netherlands]|
|Time:||Height:||Place of Crossing English Coast: (IN)|
- E.T.R.(Estimated Time of Return) Base: 1055 Hours
- MF/DF [Medium Frequency/Direction Finder] Section: "H"
Bomb load of Each A/C: "A" Lead Box
Lead Squadron: 16 x 500 Lb. S.A.P. - 1/10 x 1/100
Low Squadron: 16 x 500 Lb. S.A.P. - 1/10 x 1/100
High Squadron: 16 x 500 Lb. S.A.P. - 1/10 x 1/100
Fuel Load of each A/C: 2300 Gallons
Lead Sqdn: Rank & Name: Major Gorham A/C No & Sqdn. J-8468 PFF (511)
Low Sqdn: Rank & Name: Captain Powell A/C No & Sqdn. L-8045 PFF (511)
High Sqdn: Rank & Name: Lt Patterson A/C No & Sqdn. Y-7651 PFF (511)
Passengers, if any: (Full Name, Rank, A/C and Squadron Passenger flying with)
Report Compiled By ____
|94th "A" Group - Lead Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target|
Maj. Gorham–TrappA/C 44-8468 J PFF
DantzlerA/C 44-8280 H
Richardson–DaughertyA/C 44-8664 D PFF
HaftA/C 43-39156 T
SmithA/C 43-39001 M
Phillips–GarnerA/C 43-37862 G
StampsA/C 43-37705 V
DahlborgA/C 43-38465 A
Northrup–BromleyA/C 43-38435 O
BrooksA/C 43-39020 C
BoneA/C 43-37665 N
OenA/C 44-6610 B
|94th "A" Group - High Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target|
Patterson–SchulteA/C 42-97651 Y PFF
BrennanA/C 43-37964 M
ThomsonA/C 44-6156 R
PotterA/C 43-38920 O
MeadowsA/C 44-8617 G
ColeA/C 43-38666 T
HamptonA/C 43-38592 B
HammettA/C 43-38070 V
SextonA/C 43-37696 Z
DrakeA/C 43-38640 C
BirdA/C 43-38428 A
GrigsbyA/C 43-38591 U
|94th "A" Group - Low Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target|
Powell–FrankA/C 44-8045 L PFF
WisdomA/C 43-38813 U
DroughtA/C 44-6082 D
HansenA/C 44-6108 Y
BeringerA/C 44-8410 A
WestercampA/C 43-38130 K
RussellA/C 43-38277 O
HarkinsA/C 44-8412 H
RyanA/C 43-37900 M
BennettA/C 43-37956 L
MarschakA/C 43-38799 Q
JamesA/C 42-97258 P
0730 BST [British Standard Time] Briefing:
0455 Start Engines:
[Wounded On Mission:
The above records were obtained at the National Archives Records Administration and have been
declassified by authority NND 745005