Saturday, April 22, 2017

381st Bomb Group- Col. Jack Goodwin Interview

Friday, April 21, 2017

Poster of the Week





Mission Briefing

 Monday April 24, 1944
 

STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): Mission 315: 754 bombers and 867 fighters are dispatched to bomb airfields, aircraft production industries and targets of opportunity in Germany; the bomber claim 20-1-36 Luftwaffe aircraft and the fighters claim 124-6-58 fighters; 40 bombers and 17 fighters are lost; details are:
1. Of 281 B-17s dispatched, 109 hit Erding Air Depot, 84 hit aviation industry targets at Oberpfaffenhofen, 57 hit Lansberg Airfield and 18 hit targets of opportunity; 27 B-17s are lost and 112 damaged; casualties are 4 KIA, 22 WIA and 260 MIA.

2. 243 B-17s are dispatched to bomb aviation industry targets at Friedrichshafen/Lowenthal (98 bomb) and Friedrichshafen/Manzell (58 bomb), industrial areas at Friedrichshafen/Manzell (58 bomb) and Neckarsulm (15 bomb); 3 also hit targets of opportunity; 9 B-17s are lost and 119 damaged; casualties are 7 KIA, 4 WIA and 71 MIA.

3. 230 B-24s are dispatched to bomb airfields; 120 hit Gablingen Airfield, 98 hit Leipheim Airfield and 1 hits a target of opportunity; 4 B-24s are lost and 26 damaged; casualties are 1 WIA and 40 MIA.
Escort is provided by 131 P-38s, 490 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-47s and 246 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s: P-38s claim 4-1-0 Luftwaffe aircraft, 1 P-38 is damaged beyond repair and 7 damaged; P-47s claim 2-1-0 aircraft in the air and 36-0-16 on the ground, 5 P-47s are lost and 15 damaged, 5 pilots are MIA; P-51s claim 64-4-2 aircraft in the air and 21-0-20 on the ground, 12 P-51s are lost and 8 damaged; 12 pilots are MIA.
Mission 316: 5 of 5 B-17s drop 1.12 million leaflets on Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht, The Netherlands and Lille and Reims, France at 2322-2344 hours without loss.
8 B-24s are dispatched on CARPETBAGGER operations.

For further great mission details please check  
http://8thafhs.org


Savannah, Georgia

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

303rd Bomb Group, Molesworth, Site 7

Monday, April 10, 2017

The Presidents Report


The Chapter's Motto
"Keeping the Memories Alive"


Board of Directors:
President: Pat Keeley
Vice-President: Stan Goldstein (466th BG)
Secretary: Pat Keeley
Treasurer: Antonio Capobianco
Membership Manager:
Bernard Mirotznik (452nd BG)


Greetings Fellow Members of Our Illustrious Chapter

Chapter Update:

I wanted to update the Chapter's membership that I have confirm a Spring Luncheon at the Plainview LI NY Holiday Inn once again on Sunday May 21, 2017 from 11-3. A newsletter will be sent out with updates on the Spring 2017 Luncheon shortly.

I also wanted to update our NYS Chapter members that the NYS DMV now have a new 8th Air Force license plate.
If interested check the following:
https://dmv.ny.gov/custom-plates/eighth-air-force-historical-society




Below please find last Spring's Luncheon report:

The New York State Southern Wing Chapter of the 8th AFHS's  held it's Spring Luncheon at the Plainview LI NY Holiday Inn from 11:00 to 3 pm on Sunday May 22, 2016. This did prove to be an interesting get together and one of our best as we had WWII and post WWII veterans from all of our Armed Forces. We also had British War Veterans and French War Veterans attending. 
The 72 anniversary of D-Day June 6, 1944 was the theme of the Luncheon with a D-Day Veteran with us.

One our guest speakers Ray O'Conor presented an outstanding   audio/video on his book published last May 
"She Called Him Ray"


Also from the American Air Power Museum Joe Domhan gave us an update us on what is happening at the Museum and also the upcoming Memorial Day events. 
P.S. We are saddened by the death of William Gordon who was piloting the P-47 Jug from the American Air Power Museum which crashed into the Hudson River NY on Friday May 27 

Plus the Chapter is proud to had Mr. Alain Dupuis the President French War Veterans and also representing the American Memorial of St Nazaire (France) where stood wide submarine pens attending. Alain presented a video presentation of the St Nazaire area and crash sites of many downed 8th bombers. Also a good presentation was done regarding the WWII French underground. With Alain was the Ex Commissioner of Veterans Affairs of New York City Mr. Terrance Holiday, retired Colonel USAF who addressed the group.
Alain attended the Memorial Celebration below of the B17 High Ball from the 351st Bomb Group 511 Sq. shot down on June 28, 1943 over St. Nazaire  France which was held on June 30, 2007.


 




 Please find below some pictures from the Chapter's May 22, 2016 Luncheon/Meeting 
We did have 5 8th WWII veterans attending and a British and French War WWII veteran plus a WWII Navy veteran who worked on a LST that worked Utah Beach on D-Day.
 A good time was had by all. 

Some shots of this past Long Island Luncheon
 Moses Levitt with his grandson Daniel
5 of the 7 WWII Veterans
Author Ray O'Conor 



PLEASE help support the Chapter by sending in your $15.00 2017 dues.
Remember the Officers and Board Members are volunteers and receive no salaries. Your dues are used for the Chapter expenses such as the Newsletter, Website, Luncheons and more.



The New York Southern Wing Chapter of the 8th Air Force Historical Society was founded in October 1990 and Incorporated in the County of Nassau State of New York officially on February 23rd, 1991.
Cheers,
Pat Keeley, President.

Please help us to 'Keep Their Memories Alive' by paying your dues


Cheers,
Joseph 'Pat' Keeley

Your membership is what 'Keeps the Memories Alive'
Please help support our Chapter and the 8th Air Force Historical Society



Saturday, March 11, 2017

Interesting Links

Below please checkout these interesting Links and the links within. One can literally spend hours here:

The Mighty Eighth Air Force and to all related Bomber Groups and interesting links
Recommended site

The Mighty Eighth Museum

Holland Museum "Wings To Victory" aircraft crash database in Holland
Recommended site now in English


A great Virginia Beach Aviation Museum

The United States Air Force Military Heritage Database

The Yankee Air Museum "Where History Flies"

The B24 Site dedicated to the men and women who flew and supported the B24 bombers. Recommended site.

The Ghostwings site "Honoring the Sacrifices of America's Veterans"

The National World War II Museum New Orleans

The U.S. Army Center of Military History

The Mid Atlantic Air Museum in Reading PA

The Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum

The Stormbirds.com Luftwaffe-related web sites

The Tanksbooks.com site where generation meets the latest generation

The American Airpower Museum located at Farmingdale New York

The National World War II Memorial in Washington DC

The U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II

The U-505 Submarine in Chicago

The Memphis-Belle website exclusively authorized and maintained by the widow of Col. Robert K. Morgan

The U.S. Army Ordnance Museum in Aberdeen, Maryland

The great UK site regarding the Control Towers of times gone by

The Palm Springs Air Museum

The 94th Bomb Group a Recommended site

The 303rd Bomb Group is a recommended site

The 95th Bomb Group Memorial Foundation

The 398th Bomb Group Memorial Association


The Minnesota Chapter 

If you have a related website that you would like posted please email at 'Historian'

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Looking Back

If you have an experience you would like to share please click on 'Historian' and email it.




April 1944:
On March 4th 1944 my crew in the 388th Bomb Group flew our 25th and last mission.
Completing a combat tour of 25 missions at that time was a miracle, the average was 8 to 10 missions before a crew went down. This is actually a recorded fact from 8th AF history.
When our crew completed our missions we were sent our separate ways. Most of them were scheduled to return to the States. I thought I was included but I was told that I would I would be sent along with 7 other Radio Operators to a school for instructors and then we would be sent to Bomb Groups that were arriving from the States. Each day I was told that my DFC would be awarded soon.
When I arrived at the new base, Lavenham the only men there at that time were an MP Squadron, no bomb group personnel. Within several weeks the ground echelon of the 487 Bomb Group arrived followed a few weeks later by the air crews and their B-24's.
When the Group was finally settled in a formal review of the entire group was held with a parade on the tarmac. I and several Officers assigned as instructors were ordered to appear in dress uniforms. In front of the entire group we were awarded our DFC's. We all thought it was to show the crews that they could complete a combat tour. This Group later transitioned to B-17's. When they flew their first combat mission, we instructors were released and sent to Chorley the base where all personnel was processed for return to the States.
Larry Goldstein


Hi Pat,

I have another of those recall stories of 60 plus years ago.

My crew that I was a part of completed our 25 missions on March 4th 1944, and as was the custom the Army Air Corps never kept their promise. That promise, complete your combat tour and you earn a trip back to the USA. Some of the crew members, and I was one , were assigned to new Groups to train their men before they flew their first mission. We were promised that once they did fly their first mission we would be on our way back home. This time the promise was kept.....one day after they flew, the Instructors were re leased, paid up to date and given orders to report to a camp near Liverpool for shipment by boat to the USA. The route to that camp went through London and with no actual reporting date I decided to take a seven day delay en-route. I decided to stay at the Mt. Royal Hotel a favorite Hotel for GI's because of it's location and it's low rates. London was a GI's delight and there I was with a pocket full of money , my pay up to date, and time to spend it. My second night in the elevator going up to my room I shared it with a GI who was wearing a field jacket which for those wh o knew the situation at that time was an absolute violation of the uniform rules. On pass in London required a class A uniform (Dress) at all time. When I questioned him on his jacket, he told me, "I am part of the regular Army Red Diamond Division and we have been stationed in Greenland for 3 years. We were loaded on a transport and thought we were on the way back to the States and we were landed here in England. Then we were stripped of all class A uniforms and reissued new field uniforms".

This was May 1944, m y first thought, D DAY IS COMING GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE !!!!
It was always the thought of combat crews that if D Day arrived crews might have to fly additional missions. That thought ran through my mind and I was on the first train out of London on the way to Liverpool. That was the right call........the base was Chorley near Liverpool and the few men there were nervous , waiting for orders rotating back to the USA. After one week there June 6, D Day was announced and we all sweated it out and finally o n June 9th we all boarded a ship for the seven day trip to the good old USA arriving in NY harbor on June 16th.

The Army Air Corps did stretch out the combat tours right after that time but they did it
fairly .

When I think back about that incident I consider it one of the best decisions that I have ever made.

Larry Goldstein

Pat,

As a Life Member of the NYS So. Wg. Chapter I have a story, not necessarily a combat adventure, but nevertheless an 8th AF adventure.

One of my fellow crew me mbers that I always went on pass with on our 48 hour passes to London was a farm boy from West Virginia. I mention this because I was from New York City and this was a strange companionship, big city and farm boy.

Our Co-Pilot was a man of my size uniform wise, our Bombardier was my pals size. In our training period they gave each of us their Aviation Cadet blouse. The difference in the Officer's blouse and the Cadet blouse was the commission stripe on the sleeve. We were both Tech Sgts and had our chevrons sewed on. When we were in England, early in 1943, the 8th Air Force authorized a blue patch to be worn on the blouse under the Air Crew member wi ngs. This indicated actual air crew members for the ladies of the night in London. Ground crew men would buy or borrow a set of crew member wings when they went on pass.
On pass in London even in the intense blackout it was against regulations to wear anything other than the issued uniform. One night while my friend and I were walking in London, I mentioned that we might be stopped by the M.Ps and would be severely reprimanded. Sure enough we were stopped by two M.Ps and when they flashed their lights on us, they questioned the odd blouse that we were wearing. My friend immediately answered, "See this blue patch, we are in a special Squadron". Evidently this answer satisfied the M.Ps as they moved on. This was a triumph of country over big city.


Larry Goldstein
388 BG

Joseph,
Our last mission was to bomb some industrial target in Dessau, Germany. I think it was in the northeast quadrant of the city. As we arrived at the IP(initial point for bombing) one of our gunners informed the crew over our intercom that we were being followed by large number of Jerry planes. When they came closer, we could see that they were ME109s (Messerschmidt 109-the world record holder of speed before the war)-a very dangerous ship. A short time later(about 3 minutes) they seperated into groups of about ten each. One of the groups suddenly broke formation and headed toward us - coming in from 2 O'clock.
I was in the nose of the plane at a desk on the port side where I performed my navigation chores. I had one fifty caliber machine gun just forward of my position on either side of the plane. I got to the starbord gun and lined up on the first Jerry. They came in very fast. I only had one or two bursts before they broke away. But, they hit us badly. The plane shook when hit and the pilot, Paul Scharf from Iowa-called Pappy, called me by name to help him because he had been hit in the right arm. I disconnected my oxy gen mask and got up to the pilots compartment where I found the co-pilot had been hit in the chest with several rounds of 20 millimeter shells and appeared out of it. He was dead. Paul had been hit in the upper arm by a shell and was bleeding profusely. I used my leather belt to make a tournequit, which after much effort stopped the bleeding.
I then tried to straighten out the plane, which was in a shallow climb to the left and had reached 32,000feet, about four or five thousand feet above our bombing height, with no success.The wheel seemed to be locked in position. I realized it was on automatic pilot, but it should have responded a little. There was obviously a good deal of damage to the controls in the cockpit area from the shelling. I was afraid to disconnect the automatic pilot for fear I could not control the plane. So I went back down to my compartment and grabbed my chute which I held in my hand. When I headed back to the pilot compartment, I saw one of the guys helping Paul out of his seat. So I returned to my place and called the crew with orders to bail out. By this time, our group had left us and we were sitting like ripe ducks for the slaughter by the Jerry fighters which were still around us. There did not seem to me to be any alternative. I bailed out and had a two week adventu re trying to get to Prague where I would look for a church and possibly get help to evade capture. I finally got to the hills overlooking Prague when I ran into a small group of French workers (Impressed by the Germans) . They were great. They fed me-the first real meal I had , and offered me a cot on which to sleep. But, when I woke up, there was a bayonet in my back,held by a Hungarian S.S. man. I was ultimately turned over to the Luftwaffe (flyers) who processed me by sending me to the interrogation center called Dulag-luft from where I was sent to a prison camp-Stalag Luft 3 at Sagan, a camp for air officers ( about 3,000 in the west camp) That was the end of my career as a soldier. I had been in the infantry for almost two years before transferring to the army air corps in Oct. 1942, commisioned as a navigator in August 1943 and a prisoner of the Germans in July 1944. As the war went on the Russians were destroying the German Army in the East and making its way to the West.
When we could hear the artillery in the East, we were moved out of the camp in a blizzard in 20de grees below zero. All I had was a field jacket and a cap and a pair of mittens I had made from a sweater I had. We walked for three days, sleeping in barns when the Germans could persuade the farmers to let us sleep in the hay with the animals. They then loaded us on to 40 and 8s(forty men or eight animals) and we finally ended up in Nurnberg where we stayed for several months. Our final move in April1945 was to Mooseberg at Stalag 7A, a camp for 4 or 5 thousand, but we were over ten thousand. On April 29th the fouteenth armored division sent a tank into the camp to inform us that we were free.

I hope this has not been to boring.
Bernie

O.K. Joe--here goes
I went on my first mission and it was unbelievably easy. It was a bombing mission to one of the "ski slopes " that the Germans built that were designed to aim the V-2 missiles to one of the key a reas of England. Mostly London. When we reached the very edge of France,we bombed the slopes, then we just turned around and went back to our base at Grafton Underwood.

My second mission was just the opposite. Our target was Berlin and I was the bombardier on that mission which took many hours. We took a Southern route and the Germans were perfecting their aim with their 88 Howitzers. When the time was right, we made a sha rp left turn and descended on Berlin. The Flak over Berlin was remarkable in its intensity and density--with flak everywhere. Our plane was hit a few times. We dropped our bombs on Friedrichstrasse station ,which was the equivalent of the bombings the British endured in London. After we dropped our bombs, we were attacked by a swarm of German fighter planes. It looked very much like they were all aiming at me. I fired my twin 50 caliber machine guns at anything that was flying at us and , since I had tracer bullets, it felt like I hit more than a couple of the German planes.
We fought them off as best we could, until one moment when the German planes suddenly disappeared. And then I saw that the American P51's came on the scene and chased the Germans away.

As the morale officer on the plane, I called for everyone to answer on the intercom and only the tail gunner did not respond. I ordered one of the waist gunners to use a portable oxygen bottle and see what happened. The oxygen connection of the tail gunner had become disengaged and so he passed out at 25,000 feet. He stayed on oxygen all the way home.
Now we get to the interesting part. The ground crew went over our plane and found that there were 91 holes in the plane. And not one of the 10 crewmenwas hurt !

Martin P. Rosenblum, 2d lt.., 384th Bomb Group.
545th Squadron.

Hi Joseph. Obviously a memory of my service, particularly the combat tour, is very personal. I often think of my crew mates, and how they are at this point in time. For years I had been meaning to try to make contact, and never did it until some months ago, since I got to use the computer. The pilot was a retired colonel . I did have previous contact him, and since his passing on, with his wife. He retired as a colonel and lived in Colorado Springs, col...I happened to post a request on the 447th bg website for any information about my crew members of the 'phaneuf crew' in the 708th b sq..and some one responded that they believe they have some info for me..I located the tail gunner, and the radio operator. And also the toggleer, who unfortunately is in a va hospital suffering from parkinsons. I have had much contact with the tail gunner , he is retired teacher, the radio operator is a retired phsychiatrist. I was unable to make any other contact. My feeling is that they may no longer be with us. If you would care to go on the 447th BG website , http://www.447bg.com/, under combat crews, you will note on the left side , under phaneuf crew , some sketches of the crew , and photos that were sent to me by the person who gave me the info, and the tail gunner, plus of course , my photo. On the right side is much the same under the heading of Charles Meshel. I think very often how much a lucky bastard I am and that of my crew mates, having survived with out any injuries. I was grounded for the last 2 missions, because of a cold, and was returned home with the pilot and tail gunner. I hope this is of some of what you wanted..thank you..Charles




Thursday, November 10, 2016

Grandpa Takes the Kids to the Movies

I thought this is very appropriate for this upcoming Memorial Day.
A must see!

We Remember