I am continuing my series of articles based on the entries from Kit C. Carter and Robert Mueller’s U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II Combat Chronology 1941 – 1945 and Jack McKillop’s USAAF Chronology: Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces. Both combat chronologies are excellent sources of information regarding combat missions in World War II and I thank the authors for sharing them online.
These articles are concentrated on the operations of the 8th Army Air Forces on the missions on which the John Oliver Buslee crew and James Joseph Brodie crew of the 384th Bomb Group participated. The statistics of other dates and missions and of other branches of the American Air Forces and theaters of operation of World War II are available through the links provided in this article to these two sources for those interested.
Today’s installment is the 11 August 1944 mission in which the Buslee crew and Brodie crew participated.
WWII Combat Chronology – Friday, 11 August 1944
384th BG Mission 177/8th AF Mission 541 to Brest, France.
Target: Military and Tactical, Coastal Artillery Emplacements.
The John Oliver Buslee crew of the 544th Bomb Squadron and the James Joseph Brodie crew of the 545th Bomb Squadron participated in this mission.
Carter and Mueller’s U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II Combat Chronology 1941 – 1945 entry:
More than 850 HBs attack 13 M/Ys, fuel dumps, A/Fs, and T/Os, in NE France and Paris area, and 23 arsenal areas, barracks, concrete emplacements and heavy arty posts in and around Brest, escorted by 8 ftr gps and a sq. 5 gps later strafe ground tgts.
Jack McKillop’s USAAF Chronology: Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces entry:
EUROPEAN THEATER OF OPERATIONS (ETO)
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): 4 missions are flown:
- Mission 541, to attack marshalling yards, fuel dumps, airfields, and targets of opportunity in northeast France and the Paris area. The Buslee and Brodie crews participated in this mission.
- Mission 542, to attack arsenal areas, barracks, concrete emplacements and heavy artillery posts in and around Brest, France.
- Mission 543, a Micro H test against Le Chenaie rail bridge.
- Mission 544, to drop leaflets in France during the night.
Also, 28 of 31 B-24s fly CARPETBAGGER missions in France.
Mission 541: 660 bombers and 300+ fighters are dispatched to attack 13 marshalling yards, fuel dumps, airfields, and targets of opportunity, in NE France and the Paris area; 4 bombers are lost (numbers in parenthesis indicate number of bombers attacking the target):
- 157 B-17s are dispatched to attack Belfort (76) and Mulhouse (76) marshalling yards and 1 B-17 hit a target of opportunity; 16 B-17s are damaged.
- Of 141 B-24s, 47 hit Coulommiers Airfield, 36 hit Pacy-sur-Armancon and 34 hit St Florentin; 5 B-24s are damaged.
- 76 of 77 B-17s hit Villacoublay aircraft depot; 1 B-17 is lost and 17 damaged; 1 airman is WIA and 9 MIA.
- 45 of 65 B-24s dispatched hit Toussus le Noble Airfield; 9 others hit Orleans/Saran Airfield; 1 B-24 is damaged.
- Of 220 B-24s, 66 hit Strasbourg fuel dump; marshalling yards at Strasbourg (65) and Saarbrucken (60); Nivelles Airfield (10) and 1 hits a target of opportunity; 3 B-24s are lost and 112 damaged; 7 airman are KIA, 7 WIA and 19 MIA.
Missions 541 and 542 are escorted by 356 P-38s and P-51s; 1 P-51 is lost and 1 damaged beyond repair; 1 pilot is WIA and 1 MIA.
- The Buslee crew’s participation in 384th Bomb Group Mission 177/8th AF Mission 541
- Kit C. Carter and Robert Mueller’s U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II Combat Chronology 1941 – 1945
- Jack McKillop’s Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces
Except for entries from Carter and Mueller’s U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II Combat Chronology 1941 – 1945 and McKillop’s Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces © Cindy Farrar Bryan and The Arrowhead Club, 2021