351st Bomb Group

Polebrook, England

Group Mission #302

Credited Mission #295

 
DATE: 24 Mar. 1945
Afternoon Mission
Target:  Airfield at Twente/Enschede, Holland
 
BRIEFING OUTLINE

  1. Ask 508th, 509th and 510th Operations representatives if their crews are all present.

  2. Read Special briefing poop.

  3. TARGETS:
    1. The Visual Primary for today is: Twente-Enschede [Netherlands] A/F [Airfield]
    2. PFF Primary: No other targets - if target cannot be attacked visually, bombs will be returned to base.
    3. Visual Secondary: ____
    4. PFF Secondary: ____
    5. Last Resort Target: ____

  4. S-2 [Intelligence] Information: Bomb bay doors will not be opened prior to the I.P. [Initial Point of Bomb Run]. Bomb run will be started on Gee-H & Gee-H operator will attempt to set up bombardier for visual release. Bombs will not be dropped by Gee-H. Second runs will be made if able to accomplish same without interfering with other forces.

  5. Weather:

  6. Time Schedule:
    Zero Hour: - 1730Stations: - 1350
    Start Engines: - 1400Taxi: - 1415
    Take Off: - 1430Last Take Off: - 1515
    Intercept Group atCromerat15,000 ft.at 1617
    Target Time: - 1734ETR [Estimated Time
       of Return]:

    - 1920
    Depart English Coast at: 1617at Cromerat 15,000'

    Time on oxygen: 3½ hours

    TIME TICK [Set your watches.]

  7. Loadings:
     Gasoline: 2,300 Gallons
     Bombs: 38 x 100 Lb. G.P. No Nose x 1/40 Tail [Fuses]
    M-169 is carrying Delay Action Bombs

  8. Intervalometer Settings: 100 feet

  9. Chaff: Commence discharge of chaff at - No Chaff will be dropped.
        Each A/C [Aircraft] will carry - ____ units.

  10. 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 4 CBW's of 1 Groups each.
    The order of attack in the 1st Division will be:
    Lead41st AAttackingTwente-Eschede A/F [Airfield]
    2nd1st AAttackingTwente-Eschede A/F
    3rd94th AAttackingTwente-Eschede A/F
    4th40th AAttackingTwente-Eschede A/F
    6 Gps of 2nd Division targets areStormede A/F; Kirtorf A/F
    3 Gps of 3rd Division targets areLippe A/F

  11. Fighter Cover: 12 Gps. of P-51's - Area Support; 2 Gps P-51's - Free Lancing
    4 P51's C/S [Call Sign] Buckeye Red - Scouting Target Weather 20 minutes prior to target time of lead group.

  12. Assembly:
    Lead at11,000feet on Kings Cliffe BuncherRed-GreenFlares
    High atfeet onBuncherFlares
    Low atfeet onBuncherFlares
    High Sqdn.401st at11,000feet onKings CliffeBuncherGreen-GreenFlares
    Low Sqdn.457th at11,000feet onKings CliffeBuncherRed-RedFlares
    Combat Wing Assembly Line: ____
    Division Assembly Line: Cromer to Dutch Coast
    2 minutes interval between Groups.
    Reference altitude: 20,000'
    Bombing altitude: 22,000'
    Point for instrument let-down Kings Cliffe magnetic heading of 30 degrees.

  13. Call Signs:
    351stWoodcraft Able
    401stWoodcraft Able High
    457thWoodcraft Able Low
    1st Div. Air CommanderCol. Preston
    94th CBW Air CommanderLt. Col. Stewart

  14. The following ships will monitor [Radio Channels]- "B" - C-952; "C" - 8th A.F. - P-038; "C" - 67th Fighter Wing - N-169.
    Other Communications information will be found on the flimsy.

  15. FLYING CONTROL: _____

  16. SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS:
     a. Type of Bombing Formation - By Squadron Only
     b. Bombardier and Navigator of the #3 A/C of each sqdn. report to Photo Lab.
      The A/C are: S-512
     c. Ball Turret Gunners of the following A/C report to Photo Lab: C-753, N-169
     d. Camera A/C: Lead - K-252
      return at  Dutch Coast Out [Bound]
     e. Spares to turn back at ____
     f. PFF A/C fly as Group Deputy
     g. GH-PFF A/C fly as Group Lead
     h. REMARKS: 
       Every effort will be made to prevent dropping bombs in occupied territory.
       A/C [Aircraft] in distress land at B-53 [Merville, France] if possible - Crash land off the A/F [Airfield] if necessary.
       N-169 is carrying Delay-Action Bombs.
       Trucks will be at the respective drying rooms at 1200.

  17. You are reminded not to discuss the target. EXERCISE ALL SECURITY MEASURES.


  BRIEFING OFFICER: HAVE YOU READ SPECIAL BRIEFING POOP??


Operational Narrative.
  1. Date of Mission - 24 March, 1945.
    1. Target Attacked:  The No. 1 priority target, the airdrome at Twente/Enschede, Holland, ws attacked visually.
    2. Force: Lead Squadron, 94th “A” Group. Thirteen aircraft, including an H2X ship, one H2X-GH ship, and one flying spare, were dispatched.
    3. Position: The briefed position, leading the 94th "A" as the third group in the 1st Division Formation, was flown..
    4. Lead Teams
      Group Lead
      Air Commander: Lt Col James T. Stewart
      Pilot:Captain Frank H. Wilcox
      Navigator:2nd Lt. Rolland X. Madsen
      Bombardier:1st Lt. Jack P. Austin

  2. Narrative.
    1.  Squadron and Group Assembly: The assembly was carried out as briefed over the Kings Cliffe buncher at the briefed altitude of 11,000 feet.
    2.  Route Over England: The route over England was flown as briefed, except that corners were cut short in an effort to make up lost time. The formation was two minutes late at the turn corresponding to the briefed turn at Point A, and on time at the point substituted for Point D. The point of departure from the English coast, Cromer, was reached thirty seconds after the briefed departure time (1617½), at the briefed altitude of 15,000 feet.
    3.  Division Assembly Line: The 94th “A” Group was in its briefed position as the third group in the Division Formation crossing the channel. Minor deviations from the briefed route were made in maintaining the proper position in respect to the other groups. The enemy coast was crossed three miles south of the briefed point, at an altitude of 21,000 feet, 1,000 feet below the briefed height, and two and one-half minutes late (1704½).
    4.  Flight to Target: The Division Column was followed in the flight to the target. After having crossed the enemy coast south of the briefed point in order to avoid flak, the formation made a gradual return to the briefed route, and the briefed IP [Initial Point of Bomb Run] was reached at 1725, four minutes late, at the briefed altitude of 22,000 feet. The Weather Scouting Force had informed the formation that it should begin a GH run on the target, and that, in spite of the haze, a visual sighting would be possible.
    5.  Description of Bombing Run: The Lead Squadron began a GH run and the bombardier picked up the aiming point in time to make a perfect sighting. However, eight seconds before the time for bombs away, the Air Commander heard “Bombs Away” called over the VHF, which he mistook for the signal from his own bombardier over the intercommunications system. Consequently, he took over the ship and turned off the bombing run. When the error was discovered, a 360° turn was made, and a second bomb run was begun. This time bombs were released successfully and excellent results were reported. No other interference on the bomb run was encountered. The C-1 Pilot [Autopilot] was used without malfunction.
    6.  Flight From Target: While the Lead Squadron was making its 360° turn at the target, the High and Low Squadrons completed their bomb runs, and were instructed to proceed to the IP and to wait for the Lead Squadron to complete its second run. However, after bombs away, the Lead Squadron gave the High and Low permission to return without the Lead, which then made the return flight alone. The briefed course was followed with minor variations. The enemy coast was crossed south of the briefed point, again to avoid the flak on the briefed route. The flight across the channel was made slightly to the left of course, and the briefed point of entry into England (Cromer), was reached at an altitude of 9,000 feet. Because of darkness, a direct route from Cromer to base was flown. A normal let-down procedure had been followed, and landings were made without difficulty.
    7.  Fighter Support: As briefed.
    8.  Comments: No aircraft were lost. Flak at the target was meager and accurate, with continuous following fire control. No enemy aircraft were encountered. CAVU [Ceiling and Visibility Unlimited] weather prevailed along the entire route and over the target. Visibility, air to ground, was twelve to fifteen miles, with some ground haze. The Weather Scouting Force reported accurately concerning weather conditions in the target area.
    9.  Aircraft Not Attacking: There were no failures to attack. The flying spare remained with the formation.

  [Signed] Carl C. Hinkle, Jr, Major, Air Corps, Operations Officer


STATISTICAL SUMMARY OF OPERATIONS
DIVISION FIELD ORDER NUMBER 667
Lead Squadron
351st Bombardment Group
No. of A/C Failing to Take Off0
No. of A/C Sorties13
No. of A/C Sorties Less Unused Spares13
No. of A/C Credit Sorties13
No. of Effective Sorties13
No. of Non-Effective Sorties0
Name of Primary TargetTWENTE/ENSCHEDE, HOLLAND
(A) No. of A/C Attacking Primary13
(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs469 x 100# GP
Name of Secondary Target
(A) No. of A/C Attacking Secondary Target
(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 Lost - Total0
No. of A/C Lost - Flak
No. of A/C Lost - Flak and E/A
No. of A/C Lost - Enemy Aircraft
No. of A/C Lost - Accident
No. of A/C Lost - Unknown
Time of Take Off1420
Time of Attack17:56
Average Time of Flight65:47
Altitude of Release22,000’
Visual or PFFVISUAL
Enemy Resistance – AA Intensity & AccuracyMEAGER & ACCURATE
Enemy Resistance – Fighter0
Enemy Resistance – Bombers0
U.S. A/C Engaged by Enemy Aircraft0
Number of Passes made by Enemy Aircraft0
Degree of SuccessExcellent Results

____ A/C borrowed as follows: None
____ A/C loaned as follows: None


Lead Bombardier’s Narrative
Date - 24 March, 1945
Field Order # 667
Squadron or Group - Lead Sqdn., 94th CBW "A" Group Composite Squadron
Target - Airfield at Twente, Holland
  1. Type of Bombing (Visual, PFF or Combined)?  Visual, but G.H. at start of run.
  2. Did Squadron perform own sighting operation, bomb on smoke marker, or was bombing done in Group Formation? Squadron performed own sighting operation.
  3. Was turn made at briefed I.P.? Yes
  4. Cloud coverage and visibility. Haze and Smoke
  5. If Visual, when was MPI identified? If not actually seen, how was it located? MPI [Mean Point of Impact] was identified about five miles away.
  6. Any Interference on Bomb Run? None
  7. Did C-1 [Autopilot] function satisfactory? Yes
  8. Any other factors affecting accuracy? None
  [Signed] Jack P. Austin, 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. Austin, Jack P.
Pilot - Lt. Col. Stewart, J.T. & Capt. Wilcox, F.H.
Navigator - 2nd Lt. Madsen, Rolland X.

Aircraft B-17G   P-867  Take-off - 14:30 Landed - 19:30
Objective - Airfield at Twente, Holland
Aiming Point (MPI) [Mean Point of Impact] - 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: 1   Composite Group - ____
Range Sighting only, Group - __   Composite Group - ____
Bombs, Types and Sizes - 38 x 100 Lb. AN-M30 G.P.[General Purpose]
Number of Bombs Loaded - As Above   Released - Same
Fusing, Nose - Nose   Tail - 1/100
Synchronization - Fast

Information at Release Point:  

Altitude of Target - 101'Magnetic Heading Ordered 147° Actual 171°
True Altitude Above Target - 22,202True Heading 164°
Indicated Altitude - 22,000Drift, Estimated 2° Right - Actual 0°
Pressure Altitude of Target -82True Track 164°
Altimeter Setting 29.92Actual Range 8,867.6'
Calculated Indicated Air Speed - 150KBomb Sight Type - M-9
True Air Speed - 212Time of Release 17:56
Ground Speed Est. 187 Actual 174Length of Bombing Run - 8 min.
Wind Direction Metro - 160° Actual - 164°Intervalometer Setting - 100'
Wind Velocity Metro 22 Actual 33 C-1 Pilot [Autopilot] - X [Used]
D.S. - 129.4  Trail - 108   ATF - 41.02A-5 Pilot ____
Tan. D.A, Est. .39 Actual .37 Manual Pilot ____

Type of Release - Train 100'
Point of Impact If Seen - Good
Mean Temp. Metro -6 Actual -5
Winds - Altitude - 22,000 Ft.  Direction - Metro 160°  Actual 164°  Velocity - Metro 22  Actual 33
Temp C. - Metro -30° C. Actual -27° C.



Preliminary Damage Assessment on Today’s Second Mission.
  1. The one sqdn. of this group flying as lead of the 94th CBW bombed the No. 1 priority at Twente. The purpose of bombing was to crater the landing facilities and results were very good. Photo cover is fair.
  2. The pattern of the lead sqdn. Fell along the NW-SE runway with damage to the runway, runway intersection, and landing ground. The center of the pattern is very nearly on the assigned MPI [Mean Point of Impact] with the pattern measuring 4360 feet by 1853 feet. Approximate percentages will be 33% in 1000 feet and 98(plus)% in 2000 feet.
  [Signed:] Thomas L. Cooper, Captain, Air Corps, Asst. Group S-2 P.I. [Photo Intelligence]


Narrative Teletype Report:
  1. No leaflets were carried by this Group.
  2. One squadron from this Group flew as the lead squadron of the 94th Composite Combat Wing. The bombing was visual by the squadron from this Group on our No. 1 target, an airfield at Twente/Enschede, Holland. Photos show the bombing results to be very good. The pattern crosses the landing ground with concentrations on the central runway. The middle part of the field will be well post-holed.
  3. No E/A [Enemy Aircraft] were encountered and no claims [of enemy aircraft being shot down] are being submitted.
  4. Flak at the target was meager and accurate, with continuous following fire control.
  5. CAVU [Ceiling And Visibility Unlimited] weather prevailed along the entire route and over the target area. Visibility, air to ground, 12 to 15 miles with some ground haze.
  6. There were no observations of military importance.
  7. Two PFF aircraft were used by this Group on today’s mission. They proved to be very effective as a navigational aid. Operators report that their sets performed efficiently. Fighter support was good and appeared as briefed. Scouting Force was contacted by this Group, and their report was accurate concerning weather conditions existing in the target area. None of our aircraft is missing.
  8. This squadron was two minutes late in leaving the assembly point. This necessitated cutting the first point short in order to make up time. They were one-half minute late in departing from control point #1. The formation arrived at control point #2 two and one-half minutes late and this difference in time continued until the target was reached. The formation flew six miles to the north and parallel to the course across the Channel. When the Dutch coast was reached they swung to the south and flew a course three miles south and parallel to the briefed route. This action was taken to evade flak at the coast. The IP [Initial Point of Bomb Run] was reached and bomb run flown as briefed. However, because the bombs could not be released it was necessary to do a 360 degree turn to the right and another run was executed. This time bombs were successfully released. The route out was flown as briefed until the English coast was reached. At this time, because of darkness, they returned directly to base and did not make the briefed point between the coast and base. Let-down was as per SOP [Standard Operating Procedure]. The squadron from this Group attacked visually our No. 1 target, an airfield at Twente/Enschede, Holland. PFF was employed as a navigational aid and operated effectively.


“J” Form:
  1. 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: C–8753
    Sqdn 509th A/C: N–7169 D.A., L–2955, D–7193
    Sqdn 510th A/C: S–7512, U–7216, P–8038, F–7124, K–7252, L–7515 Spare
    Sqdn 511th A/C: (P–8867 GH), (B–7701 PFF), C–6952

    b. Low Squadron - 351st Group
    Sqdn 508th A/C: None
    Sqdn 509th A/C: None
    Sqdn 510th A/C: None
    Sqdn 511th A/C: None

    c. High Squadron - 351st Group
    Sqdn 508th A/C: None
    Sqdn 509th A/C: None
    Sqdn 510th A/C: None
    Sqdn 511th A/C: None

    [D.A. - Delayed Action Bombs]
  2. Target: ZH-65
  3. W/T and R/T Operational Call Sign of each Squadron:
    Squadron508 [Call Sign]W/T USM R/T CARLTONSquadron510 [Call Sign]W/T RHK R/T TIPSTAFF
    Squadron509 [Call Sign]W/T JLA R/T HOTMINTSquadron511 [Call Sign]W/T SSQ R/T PARTNERSHIP
  4. Taxi – 1415; Take-Off – 1430; E.T.D. Field – 1540
  5. Time:Height:Place of Crossing English Coast: (OUT)
    161715,000 FtCromer
  6. Time:Height:Place of Crossing Enemy Coast: (IN)
    170222,000 Ft52°45'N-04°38'E [Leihoek, Netherlands]
  7. Time:Height:Place of Crossing Enemy Coast: (Out)
    181222,000 Ft52°45'N-04°38'E [Leihoek, Netherlands]
  8. Time:Height:Place of Crossing English Coast: (IN)
    18515,000 FtCromer
  9. E.T.R.(Estimated Time of Return) Base: 1920 Hours
  10. MF/DF [Medium Frequency/Direction Finder] Section: "H"
  11. Bomb load of Each A/C: "A" Lead Box
    Lead Squadron: 38 x 100 G.P. - No Nose x 1/100
    Low Squadron: None
    High Squadron: None
    ___ Squadron:
  12. Fuel Load of each A/C: 2300 Gallons
  13. Leaders:
    Lead Sqdn: Rank & Name: Lt. Col. Stewart A/C No & Sqdn. P-8867 GH (511))
    Low Sqdn: Rank & Name: None A/C No & Sqdn. ____
    High Sqdn: Rank & Name: None A/C No & Sqdn. ____
  14. Passengers, if any: (Full Name, Rank, A/C and Squadron Passenger flying with)
    None

Report Compiled By Maksimik, S/Sgt.



Formation Chart:
94th "A" Group - Lead Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target
Lt Col Stewart–Wilcox
A/C 44-8867 P GH
Mahnke
A/C 43-37512 S
Horns–Blackford
A/C 42-97701 B PFF
Murray
A/C 44-6952 C
Peterson
A/C 42-97216 U
Sprecher
A/C 42-107124 F
Workman
A/C 42-102955 L
Kirkland
A/C 42-38038 P
Quinn
A/C 42-97169 N
Wefel
A/C 42-97193 D
Hollister
A/C 43-37515 L Spare
Grissom
A/C 42-97252 K
Dunn
A/C 43-38753 C

[Lt Hollister, the flying spare, stayed with the formation.]

Time Schedule:
Zero Hour: 1730 BST [British Standard Time]  Briefing: 1000 Stations: 1350 Start Engines: 1400 Taxi: 1415 Take-Off: 1430  

[Wounded On Mission: 0]
The above records were obtained at the National Archives Records Administration and have been declassified by authority NND 745005
Please contact us with your comments and corrections.