January, 1944

January, '44

Mission preparations were becoming more routine in the 446th's second month, and this allowed for more to be flown. The 705th squadron began a streak of 25 consecutive missions without the loss of a plane. The first awards of the Air Medal were made to 446th personnel for participating in 5 missions over enemy territory.

Click on a date for details

Jan 4th Kiel
Jan 5th Kiel
Jan 7th Ludwigshaven
Jan 11th Brunswick
Jan 14th Noball target, St Pierre-des-Jonquies, France
Jan 21st Noball target in France (exact location not known)
Jan 28th Noball target X1/A/85
Jan 29th Frankfurt
Jan 30th Brunswick
Jan 31st Noball target X1/A/7 in France

Mission Details

Clicking Photos in any mission below will bring you photos for that mission in a new browser window. Simply close that window to return here. Click here for all photos for January 1944.

January 4: Kiel
13 planes bombed the city of Kiel, with 11 more experiencing mechanical problems which forced their return before they could accomplish their mission objective. One crewman died from a lack of oxygen. Bombs were believed to have hit the city itself and it's surrounding areas. There was moderate-heavy flak, but chaff dropped by lead planes reduced it's severity.

January 5: Kiel
15 planes bombed the harbor at Kiel, along with the shipbuilding yards, with good results. Incendiaries burst in the northeast section of the harbor, north of the naval base, and on the south side of the entrance to Kiel canal. More fell within the Deutshe Werk shipbuilding yards. Smoke was seen from 100 miles away. S/Sgt Edward Partridge received credit for shooting down a JU 88.

January 7: Ludwigshaven
This mission was aborted when heavy overcast prevented the planes from meeting the 392nd bomb group.

January 11: Brunswick
This mission was recalled when the weather took a turn for the worse.

January 14: Noball target at St Pierre-des-Jonquies, France
Railroad tracks on each side of a bridge and runways and buildings at an airdrome were hit. A photograph showed a heavy concentration of bursts on and around a 12-span railroad. Direct hits were observed on the primary target area, a buzz bomb launch site. The group would be grounded for the next week due to poor weather.

January 21: Noball target
The group was unable to locate the target due to cloud cover and was forced to turn back. On their way home, they were met by intense flak, which heavily damaged one plane, "Merle Lee" (42-7584), forcing a crash landing in the UK. There were no casualties. Photos

January 28: Noball target
The target was bombed successfully by 25 of the 26 planes that took off. One plane did not drop when another plane flew under it, avoiding a catastrophe.

January 29: Frankfurt
24 planes dropped on Frankfurt with good results. One plane, "Hula Wahine" (42-7578) piloted by 2/Lt Ernest Bruce, lost all 4 superchargers. Fighting off repeated enemy fighter attacks while flying 75 feet over Belgium, the pilot crash landed at an RAF base with 2 wounded crewmen. Photos

January 30: Brunswick
1,146 bombs were dropped on Brunswick, in one of the coldest missions yet flown, -18C. There was little enemy opposition.

January 31: Noball target
This mission was scrubbed when the planes failed to assemble, but 2 planes "tagged along" with the 389th bomb group and bombed the intended target.


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