351st Bomb Group

Polebrook, England

Group Mission #308

Credited Mission #300

DATE: 4 Apr. 1945
Target: Airfield at Fassburg, Germany

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

  2. Read Special briefing poop.

    1. The Visual Primary for today is: #1 Rotenburg [Germany] A/F [Airfield] M- Mike [Target Code Word]
    2. PFF Primary: #2 Dedelstorf [Germany] A/F & Luneburg A/F [Airfield]
    3. Visual Secondary: ____
    4. PFF Secondary: ____
    5. Last Resort Target: ____

  4. S-2 [Intelligence] Information:

  5. Weather:

  6. Time Schedule:
    Zero Hour: - 0730Stations: - 0550
    Start Engines: - 0600Taxi: - 0615
    Take Off: - 0630Last Take Off: - 0720
    Intercept Group atCromerat 10,000 ft.
    Target Time: - 1039ETR [Estimated Time
       of Return]:

    - 1409
    Depart English Coast at: 0801at Cromer

    Time on oxygen: 3½ hours

    TIME TICK [Set your watches.]

  7. Loadings:
     Gasoline: 2,600 Gallons
     Bombs:Lead & Low Sqdns. 38 x 100 G.P. No Nose - 1/40 Tail [Fuse]
    High Sqdn. 38 x 150 G.P. - Fuse 1/10

  8. Intervalometer Settings: 100 feet

  9. Chaff: Commence discharge of chaff at - 5 mins before Target - Continue for 9 minutes.
        Each A/C [Aircraft] will carry - 216 units.

  10. Disposition of Forces:

    3 Divisions will be dispatched.
    The 1st Air Division will depart England 2nd preceded by 3rd Division and followed by the 2nd Division.
    1st Division will dispatch 3 CBW's of 4 Groups each.
    The order of attack in the 1st Division will be:
    Lead1stAttackingReinsehlen A/F [Airfield]
    2nd94thAttackingRotenburg A/F
    3rd40thAttackingFassberg A/F - 40-D - Hamburg
    4th41stAttackingFassberg A/F
    2nd Division targets arePerlberg, Kaltenkirchen & Parchim - North & East of Hamburg
    3rd Division targets areKiel

  11. Fighter Cover: 1 Gps. of P-51's - Close [Support] - Balance 2-3 [Call Sign]
    Weather Scout - Buckeye Blue [Call Sign]

  12. Assembly:
    Lead at8,000feet on Kings Cliffe BuncherRed-GreenFlares
    High at9,000feet onKings CliffeBuncherGreen-GreenFlares
    Low at7,000feet onKings CliffeBuncherRed-RedFlares
    401st at8,000feet onCottesmoreBuncherRed-YellowFlares
    457th at8,000feet onGlattonBuncherRed-YellowFlares
    Combat Wing Assembly Line: 53°10’N-00°05’E to Cromer
    Division Assembly Line: Beacon 5 to 53°50’N-05°00’E [32 miles North of Terschelling Island, Netherlands]
    2 minutes interval between Groups.
    Reference altitude: 23,000'
    Bombing altitude: 12,000'
    Point for instrument let-down Kings Cliffe magnetic heading of 30 degrees.

  13. Call Signs:
    351stWoodcraft Able
    401stWoodcraft Baker
    457thWoodcraft Charlie
    1st Div. Air CommanderLt. Col. Shachley - Swordfish Able [Call Sign]
    94th CBW Air CommanderLt. Col. Stewart

  14. The following ships will monitor [Radio Channels]- "B" - R-156, Q-565, H-412; "C" - 8th A.F. - B-592; "C" - 67th Fighter Wing - M-964.
    Other Communications information will be found on the flimsy.

  15. FLYING CONTROL: _____

     a. Type of Bombing Formation - By Sqdn. - Visual Only - bombs will be brought back if unable to drop visually.
     b. Bombardier and Navigator of the #3 A/C of each sqdn. report to Photo Lab.
      The A/C are: Lead - G-617, Low - V-705, High - U-813
     c. Ball Turret Gunners of the following A/C report to Photo Lab: Lead - B-592, Low - C-020, High - Y-108
     d. Camera A/C: Lead - A-428, Low H-280, High Q-799
      return at  Enemy Coast
     e. Spares to turn back at Go all the way
     f. PFF A/C fly as Lead of each Sqdn. - Deputy Lead of Lead Sqdn.
     g. GH A/C fly as ____
     h. REMARKS: 
       Bomb Run 45 miles - 24 Min - Ground Speed 112 Knots.
       In event Hamm is attacked right turn off target will be made.

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


Operational Narrative.
  1. Date of Mission - 4 April, 1945.
    1. Target Attacked:  The Lead and High Squadrons attacked the No. 2 Target at Fassberg, Germany. Due to poor visibility, the Low Squadron was unable to make a sighting and brought its bombs back to base.
    2. Force: 94th “A” Group. Thirty-eight aircraft, including four H2X aircraft, and two flying spares, were dispatched.
    3. Position: The 94th "A" Group flew in its briefed position as the fourth group in the First Division Formation.
    4. Lead Teams
      wing Lead
      Air Commander: Lt Col James T. Stewart
      Pilot:Captain Duane s. Anderson
      Navigator:1st Lt. Milton J. Morrisette
      Bombardier:1st Lt. Gerald W. Traczwitz

      Low Squadron
      Leader: 1st Lt. Frederick F. Horns
      Pilot:2nd Lt. Carl L. Blackford
      Navigator:1st Lt. Frank D. Fuller
      Bombardier:2nd Lt. Salvatore R. Cacace

      High Squadron
      Leader: 1st Lt. Morris G. Turner
      Pilot:2nd Lt. Boleslau Lipski
      Navigator:2nd Lt. John H. Brandon
      Bombardier:2nd Lt. Patrick J. Finnegan
  2. Narrative.
    1.  Squadron and Group Assembly: The assembly was carried out over the Kings Cliffe buncher at an altitude of 9,000 feet instead of at the briefed height of 8,000 feet. Cloud cover at the briefed assembly altitude made the increase in height necessary. The formation was slightly scattered before departing from the buncher when the 401st Group passed through it.
    2.  Route Over England: Departure was made from the assembly area east of the buncher at the briefed time (0730). The briefed route was followed to Point A, but as it became apparent that the group would teach Control Point #1 early, a deviation to the left of course was flown between Point A and Point D. Point D was reached one minute late (0755) at the briefed altitude of 10,000 feet. The briefed route was closely followed to Control Point #1, which was reached one minute late (0802) at 10,000 feet.
    3.  Division Assembly Line: The preceding combat wing reached Control Point #1 on time. No difficulty was experienced in falling into position behind it. A good Division Column was flown to the left of the briefed route. The end of the Division Assembly Line was reached one minute early (0851) at an altitude of 10,000 feet.
    4.  Flight to Target: The briefed route was followed with little variance from the Division Assembly Line to the Danish coast. It was necessary to cut inside of the briefed route as the coast was reached in order to keep out of the clouds, which reached 18,000 feet in that area. A valley between the clouds was found and was followed. The briefed route was followed with little divergency until the turn before the IP was reached. From there, the preceding groups were followed to the left of the IP [Initial Point of Bomb Run]. The Weather Scouting Force announced that the assigned airdrome targets were completely covered. As the preceding combat wing announced its intention to stay in the area in hopes of locating a target, the 94th “A” made the same decision. The No. 2 Targets on both sides of the No. 1 Target were apparently well covered, with the exception of the one at Fassberg, which was seen with some difficulty through a break in the clouds. The briefed IP was not reached due to the necessity of searching for a target other than the briefed No. 1 Target.
    5.  Description of Bombing Run: The Combat Wing Air Commander ordered the High and Low Squadrons to take interval while the search for a target was made. The airdrome at Fassberg, Germany, was seen through a break in the clouds, but it was sighted too late to permit the bombs to be dropped. Three 360° turns were made in the area before the Lead and the High Squadrons were able to make a sighting and release their bombs.

       The Lead Squadron performed its own sighting operation. The target area was eight-tenths cloud covered. The target was identified eight miles away after the third 360° turn had been made. The C-1 Pilot [Autopilot] was used and functioned satisfactorily.

       The Low Squadron followed the Lead Squadron closely, but was unable to sight the target at any time until the last pass was made. The fighter support was at that time announcing bandits in the area, and so the Combat Wing Commander decided that that danger, plus the poor visibility, did not warrant permitting the Low Squadron to make its own run again in the hopes of seeing the target. The Low Squadron brought its bomb back to base.

       The High Squadron followed the Lead and Low Squadrons over the target. The target area was picked up by the Lead Bombardier, but was not definitely identified until the bombs from the Lead Squadron had been dropped. A Sighting was made and the bombs were dropped with what are believed to be good results. The C-1 Pilot was used and functioned satisfactorily.
    6.  Flight From Target: After the two squadrons had bombed, the Combat Wing Air Commander contacted the 401st and 457th Groups on VHF [Radio]. Only one of the six squadrons had bombed, but the Combat Wing Air Commander advised the two groups not to attempt any further target location. The search for a target had taken the formation to the south of the briefed course. A heading was taken up which permitted it to contact the briefed route at a point south of Dummer Lake. From that point to the Dutch coast, the briefed route was closely followed behind other groups. The coast of Holland was reached thirty minutes late (1258) at an altitude of 14,000 feet. The preceding groups were followed in the flight to the English coast. Some variance from the briefed route was necessary in order to avoid clouds. The English coast was reached at the briefed point at an altitude of 3,000 feet. The return to base from that point was flown without difficulty. The High and Low Squadrons were sent to their respective stand-off areas before landing. A normal let-down procedure had been followed.
    7.  Fighter Support: As briefed.
    8.  Comments: No aircraft were lost. No enemy aircraft were encountered. A few bursts of flak were observed in the general target area. The information received from the Weather Scouting Force regarding weather in the target area was accurate and helpful. The lead aircraft experienced navigation difficulties when the fluxgate compass was found to be inoperative.
    9.  Aircraft Not Attacking: Twelve aircraft (the entire Low Squadron) failed to attack when the target attacked by the other two squadrons could not be sighted. The two flying spares remained with the formation.

  [Signed] Robert B. Stratton, Captain, Air Corps, Statistical Officer

351st Bombardment Group
Lead SquadronLow SquadronHigh SquadronTOTALS
Borrowed Aircraft0000
No. of Aircraft Failing to Take Off0000
No. of Aircraft Sorties13121338
No. of Aircraft Airborne Less Unused Spares13121338
No. of Aircraft Credit Sorties13121338
No. of Effective Sorties1301326
No. of Non-Effective Sorties012012
(A) No. of A/C Attacking Primary Target
(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs
Name of Secondary Target #2AIRFIELD, FASSBERG, GERMANY
(A) No. of A/C Attacking Secondary Target1301326
(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs 488 x 100# GP  0  491 x 150# GP  488 x 100# GP 
491 x 150# GP
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.)Pathfinder A/C used as follows:
(A) No. of A/C Attacking T.O.2 B-17G SH1 B-17 SH
(did Not attack)
1 B-17 G SH4 B-17 G SH
(B) No., Size & Type Of Bombs
No. of A/C MIA - Total0000
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 Off063006330632
Time of Attack11061107
Total Time for Mission104:5686:14108:57310:07
Altitude of Release (Indicated)15,000’15,600’
Visual, H2X, Gee-H, M-H, Eagle, or CombinationVisualVisual
Enemy Resistance – AA Intensity & AccuracyMeager and Inaccurate
Enemy Resistance – Fighter0000
Enemy Resistance – Bombers0000
U.S. A/C Engaged by Enemy Aircraft0000
Number of Passes made by Enemy Aircraft0000
Degree of SuccessGood Results
Non-Effective Sorties
(A) Weather1212
(B) Personnel
(C) Enemy Action
(D) Other Non-Mechanical
(E) Mechanical and Equipment
Incidents of Mechanical & Equipment Failure:
(A) Engine
(B) Oil System
(C) Fuel System
(D) Supercharger
(E) Propeller and Governor
(F) Communication System
(G) Guns and Turrets
(H) Bomb Release
(I) Bombay Doors
(J) Electric System
(K) Instruments
(L) Oxygen Equipment
(M) Bomb Sights
(N) A/C in General

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

Bombardier’s Report For The Mission Of This Date:
  1. No bombs were dropped by the Low Squadron flying in the 94th CBW [Combat Bomb Wing] "A" Group.
  2. Due to the cloud coverage, the Lead Bombardier could not identify the target.
  3. The following Bombardier's Reports will not be submitted for the Low Squadron of the 94th CBW "A" Group.
    1. Bombardier's 12E form.
    2. Lead Bombardiers narrative.
  [Signed] Warren C. Steitz, Captain, Air Corps, Group Bombardier.

Lead Bombardier’s Narrative:
Date - 4 Apr. 1945
Field Order # 677
Squadron or Group - Lead Sqdn., 94th "A" Group
Target - Priority #2 Target - A/F [Airfield] at Fassberg, Germany
  1. Type of Bombing (Visual, PFF or Combined)?  Visual
  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.? 52°45'N., 10°40'E.
  4. Cloud coverage and visibility. 8/10 Cloud
  5. If Visual, when was MPI [Mean Point of Impact] identified? If not actually seen, how was it located? 8 miles away
  6. Any Interference on Bomb Run? Clouds
  7. Did C-1 [Autopilot] function satisfactory? Yes
  8. Any other factors affecting accuracy? None
  [Signed] Gerald E. Traczewitz, 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 "A" Group
Bombardier - 1st Lt. Traczewitz, Gerald W.
Pilot - Lt Col Stewart, J.T & Capt. Anderson, D.S.
Navigator - 1st Lt. Morrisette, Milton J.

Aircraft B-17G   P-664  Take-off - 06:30 Landed - 14:35
Objective - A/F at Fassberg, Germany - Priority #2
Aiming Point (MPI) [Mean Point of Impact] - As Briefed
Initial Point - 52°45'N., 10°40'E.
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 - 38 x 100 Lb. G.P.[General Purpose] & Markers
Number of Bombs Loaded - As Above   Released - Same
Fusing, Nose - None   Tail - 1/40
Synchronization - On

Information at Release Point:  

Altitude of Target - 118Magnetic Heading Ordered 285° Actual 315°
True Altitude Above Target - 14,425True Heading 310°
Indicated Altitude - 15,000Drift, Estimated 8° Left - Actual 4° Right
Pressure Altitude of Target +228True Track 314°
Altimeter Setting 29.92Actual Range 5,193'
Calculated Indicated Air Speed - 150KBomb Sight Type - M-9 Mercury
True Air Speed - 185KTime of Release 11:06
Ground Speed Est. 136 Actual 105KLength of Bombing Run - 12 N.M. [Nautical Miles]
Wind Direction Metro - 290° Actual - 311°Intervalometer Setting - 100'
Wind Velocity Metro 50K Actual 66 C-1 Pilot [Autopilot] - X [Used]
D.S. - 165  Trail - 90   ATF - 32.10A-5 Pilot _____
Tan. D.A, Est. .40 Actual .36 Manual Pilot ____

Type of Release - ____
Point of Impact If Seen - ____
Mean Temp. Metro -__ Actual -__
Winds - Altitude - _____  Direction - Metro 290°  Actual 311°  Velocity - Metro 50  Actual 66 Knots
Temp C. - Metro -___° C. Actual -__° C.

Preliminary Damage Assessment:
  1. Two squadrons of this group attacked as a priority No. 2 target the A/F [Airfield] at Fassberg, Germany. Photo cover is incomplete as clouds obscure the target area and no bursts are seen on the ground.
  2. Bombs away can be plotted for the lead and high squadrons. Using information furnished by the Group Bombardier an estimated point of impact would place both patterns on the landing field with patterns running across the field. The main field will be well cratered and unusable.
  [Signed:] Thomas L. Cooper, Captain, Air Corps, Group S-2 P.I. [Photo Intelligence]

Narrative Teletype Report:
  1. No leaflets were carried by this Group.
  2. The three squadrons of this Group formed the 94th “A” Combat Wing. They were the fourth group of the 1st Air Division and attacked by visual methods the No. 2 target, an A/F [Airfield] at Fassberg, Germany. Photos show ground detail at Bombs Away and the target is identified as the A/F at Fassberg near Ulzen, Germany. Clouds obscured the target area and no bursts can be seen on the ground.
  3. No E/A [Enemy Aircraft] were encountered and no claims [of enemy aircraft being shot down] are being submitted.
  4. A few bursts of flak were observed in the general target area.
  5. 3 to 4/10 undercast was encountered to as far as 5 degrees East, after which it changed to 10/10, covering the assigned target area and preventing our bombing the No. 1 target. 7/10 undercast was encountered over the No. 2 target.
  6. There were no military observations.
  7. Four PFF A/C were employed by this group and their equipment worked satisfactorily. They were used as navigational aids only. The fighter support appeared as briefed. The information received from the Scouting Force regarding weather in the target area was adequate and helpful; they also informed the Group Leader of possible Target of Opportunity areas where the weather would permit bombing. None of our A/C are missing.
  8. Assembly was as per SOP [Standard Operating Procedure] until the 94th “B” group crossed this group’s line of flight and broke the formation into squadrons. The group was able to re-form and depart from Kings Cliffe on time, reaching Control Point No. 1 on time and on course. Control Point No. 2 was reached one minute early and from there the route was flown as briefed until the leg before the I.P. [Initial Point of Bomb Run] where a southeasterly course was taken to a point approximately 5313N – 1100E. The group then made a 90 degree turn to the right and sighted the A/F at Fassberg through a break in the clouds but too late to attack. Two 360 degree turns were made and on the third run bombs were dropped by the lead and high squadrons from an altitude of 15000 feet. The low squadron failed to see the target on any of the bomb runs and brought their bombs back to Base. After bombs away the group flew on a westerly course and intercepted the briefed route at an approximate position of 5245N – 0900E. From there the route was flown as briefed and let-down was as per SOP.

Track Chart:
Click on Chart to Enlarge

“J” Form:
  1. Last Four numbers and Call Letter of A/C in each Squadron:
    94th Combat Wing "A" Group
    1A - LEAD Squadron - 351st Group
     (A) Sqdn 508th A/C: None
     (B) Sqdn 509th A/C: A–8428, B–8592, G–8617, H–6952, L–2955, M–7964, R–6156, T–8666, U–8591, Z–7696, (F–6566 Spare)
     (C) Sqdn 510th A/C: None
     (D) Sqdn 511th A/C: (D–8664 PFF, J–8468 PFF)

    1B - LOW Squadron - 351st Group
     (A) Sqdn 508th A/C: None
     (B) Sqdn 509th A/C: None
     (C) Sqdn 510th A/C: A–8465, C–9020, D–8694, G–7862, H–8280, K–7252, M–9001, Q–6565, S–7512, T–9156, V–7705
     (D) Sqdn 511th A/C: (Y–7651 PFF)

    1C - HIGH Squadron - 351st Group
     (A) Sqdn 508th A/C: B–7349, C–8753, D–6082, G–8954, H–8412, K–8130, L–7956, Q–8799, U–8813, X–6579, Y–6108, (O–8277 Spare)
     (B) Sqdn 509th A/C: None
     (C) Sqdn 510th A/C: None
     (D) Sqdn 511th A/C: (Z–8774 PFF)
  2. Target: GW-4906
  3. W/T and R/T Operational Call Sign of each Squadron:
    Squadron508 [Call Sign]W/T MDH R/T CARLTONSquadron510 [Call Sign]W/T MRD R/T TIPSTAFF
    Squadron509 [Call Sign]W/T KTZ R/T HOTMINTSquadron511 [Call Sign]W/T NFT R/T PARTNERSHIP
  4. Taxi – 0615; Take-Off – 0630; E.T.D. Field – ____
  5. Time:Height:Place of Crossing English Coast: (OUT)
    080110,000 ftCromer
  6. Time:Height:Place of Crossing Enemy Coast: (IN)
    093118,000 ft54°10'N-08°50'E [Westerdeichstrich, Germany]
  7. Time:Height:Place of Crossing Enemy Coast: (Out)
    122812,000 ft52°45'N-04°39'E [Leihoek, Netherlands]
  8. Time:Height:Place of Crossing English Coast: (IN)
    13366,000 ftCromer
  9. E.T.R.(Estimated Time of Return) Base: 1409 Hours
  10. MF/DF [Medium Frequency/Direction Finder] Section: "G"
  11. Bomb load of Each A/C: "A" Lead Box
    Lead Squadron: 13 A/C - 38 x 100 G.P. No Nose [Fuse] 1/40 Tail [Fuse]
    Low Squadron: 12 A/C - 38 x 100 G.P. No Nose [Fuse] 1/40 Tail [Fuse
    High Squadron: 13 A/C - 38 x 150 G.P. 1/10 Nose [Fuse] No Tail [Fuse
    ___ Squadron:
  12. Fuel Load of each A/C: 2600 Gallons
  13. Leaders:
    Lead Sqdn: Rank & Name: Col. Stewart A/C No & Sqdn. D-8664 PFF (511)
    Low Sqdn: Rank & Name: Lt. Horns A/C No & Sqdn. Y-7651 PFF (511)
    High Sqdn: Rank & Name: Lt. Turner A/C No & Sqdn.Z-8774 PFF (511)
  14. Passengers, if any: (Full Name, Rank, A/C and Squadron Passenger flying with)

Report Compiled By D.W. Grasmehr, Sgt.

Formation Chart:
94th "A" Combat Bomb Group - Lead Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target
509th Squadron
Col. Stewart–Anderson, D.S.
A/C 44-8664 D PFF
A/C 44-8617 G
A/C 44-8468 J PFF
A/C 43-37696 Z
A/C 43-38591 U
A/C 42-102955 L
A/C 44-6156 R
A/C 43-37964 M
A/C 43-38592 B
A/C 44-6952 H
A/C 44-6566 F Spare
A/C 43-38428 A
A/C 43-38666 T

94th "A" Combat Bomb Group - High Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target
508th Squadron
A/C 44-8774 Z PFF
A/C 43-38813 U
A/C 43-38954 G
A/C 43-38753 C
A/C 42-97349 B
A/C 44-6108 Y
A/C 43-38130 K
A/C 44-8412 H
A/C 43-37515 L
A/C 43-37956 L
A/C 43-38277 O Spare
A/C 44-6082 D
A/C 43-38799 Q

94th "A" Combat Bomb Group - Low Squadron Formation at Take–Off and Over Target
510th Squadron
A/C 42-97651 Y PFF
A/C 43-37705 V
A/C 43-38694 D
A/C 43-39020 C
A/C 43-39001 M
A/C 43-37862 G
A/C 44-6565 Q
A/C 43-38465 A
A/C 43-37512 S
A/C 43-39156 T
A/C 42-97252 K
A/C 44-8280 H

Time Schedule:
Zero Hour: 0730 DBST [Double British Standard Time]  Briefing: Enlisted Men 0300; Officers 0330 Stations: 0550 Start Engines: 0600 Taxi: 0615 Take-Off: 0630  [Breakfast: Enlisted Men 0200; Officers 0230]

[Wounded On Mission: 0]
The above records were obtained at the National Archives Records Administration and have been declassified by authority NND 745005
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