44th Bomb Group Mission Number 140

Date City Country Target
5/19/1944 Brunswick Germany Marshalling yards

Unofficial Mission Summary 

After three days of rest, operations were resumed in a big way. Major Felber, flying as Command Pilot, led the Group to Brunswick, Germany. The 66th sent two PFF ships to lead the 492nd BG, and two more flew with the other 26 ships of the 44th (9 were 67th's). Brunswick is always a tough target, this time the Marshalling Yards were the center of attention. Bombing loads of 6 x 100b lb GPs were dropped, with strike photos showing hits on the target, fair results on a visual run. A field day was had at the expense of E/A by the gunners of the Group - and other Groups. No less than thirteen enemy aircraft were shot down by our gunners, four by the 68th, three by the 67th. Two others were claimed as probables, with additional planes not allowed due to circumstances that made it impossible to make accurate decisions. Approximate1y 150 E/A made attacks on the formation with no losses to the Group. Claims for destruction of E/A included S/Sgt. Joseph Mulhaney, left waist gunner on A/C #846, downed a Me 109; 1st Lt. Melvin L. McLaud, nose turret gunner on A/C #475 with another Me- 109, and T/Sgt. Clyde Nickel, top turret gunner on A/C #095 with a FW 190. The flak was heavy intense, ranging from inaccurate to accurate. All of our aircraft returned at 1600 hours. Sgt. Chase adds: "The top turret gunner got off several bursts, the empty casing clinking against one another as they fell onto the cabin deck. I crouched behind the armor plate that protected the co-pilot's back, only my helmet and eyes above the armor as I watched the action. Oh, how I wished I could shoot back please, don't let them strip my bed... Finally, I couldn't resist anymore; I just had to do something positive. As an E/A came barrelling through our formation I pulled the trigger of my Very pistol and fired a signal flare at him. Useless? Foolish? Certainly, but I did get to fire one futile shot at the enemy." Sgt. Kipnes says, "We were to have bombed PFF, but the clouds dispersed and allowed for visual bombing. We ran into the worst enemy fighter attack we have ever encountered. We counted between 150 to 200 E/A swarming all over the skies. A few minutes earlier a small group of enemy fighters lured our escort away. Minutes later we were hit by this large formation of fighters. About 10 B-24s were seen to go down. (Officially 12 lost) We were exceptionally lucky for none of the attacks were aimed directly at us. Target was well saturated with bomb hits. Lt. Rising, our bombardier, had his nose turret hit by flak, but no injuries. Landed at 1610 hours. " Captain Slough was promoted to Major. Also, Capt. Lehnhausen, 68th Squadron C.O. was the recipient of Major as of the 14th.
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