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357FG over Munich 24 April-1944

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drgondog
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2007/02/14 20:40:37 (permalink)
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357FG over Munich 24 April-1944

trying to piece together the Order of Battle and the combatants for the 24 April 1944 battle over Munich and looking for 357 Encounter reports (i.e Kit Carson and others to try to figure out which of the Luftwaffe units took a bad beating from the fighters. the 355th and the 357th were the primary escorts in the area.
 
Can anybody point me in the right direction?
 
Regards,
 
Bill Marshall

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    ektra79
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/14 23:24:56 (permalink)
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    Hi Bill,

    There are three reports from 357 FG pilots for 24 APR 44 at this link:  http://www.spitfireperformance.com/mustang/combat-reports.html   The pilots whose reports are listed are Bochkay, Carder and Williams.  Might be worth it to take a look at Bud Anderson's sight and the 357th site as well.
     
    Cheers -
     
    Tim
     
    roy_n
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 11:24:04 (permalink)
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    Bill. looking at your question from another angle...
    i can find victorys credited to a number of Luftwaffe pilots in, or close to, the Munich area on 24/4/44. all for USAAF A/C.
    i would guess these same LW. Groups would have suffered at least some of the losses you are interested in.

    they were. JG3, JG26, JG27.

    hope this helps
    Roy
    post edited by roy_n - 2007/02/15 11:27:56
    shooshoobaby
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 12:15:31 (permalink)
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    Bill : from Merle's Book 4/24/44 Ariel Victories
    362d: 12
    363d:  6
    364th : 5
    Mike
     
     
     
    drgondog
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 13:48:57 (permalink)
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    Thanks Tim, Roy, Mike.
     
    What I know, versus what I believe, is the the 357th was the point of the spear for Munich, covering the lead CW's and the 355th was next in line..
     
    The 357th engaged over Munich and south along the rally points and return leg between 1345 and 1400?
     
    The 354th FS of the 355th 'Backfilled' the 357th when the 357th attacked, moving in to cover the vacuum. The 354FS was first engaged at 1345 just north of Munich and continued to engage through the rally point and along the return to a point SSW of Munich around 1410.
     
    The 357FS engaged around 1345.
     
    Sometime between 1355 and 1410 the 357th FS lost three in the air (Norman, Hillman and Sturm). Norman and Hillman last seen chasing 109's into a B-17 formation, Sturm was shot down. I haven't found two claims in Tony Woods database yet which seem good for Hillman and Norman - so they might have been shot down by the 17's.
     
    Sturm almost certainly went down to JG27 (Bartels, Stieglar?) but two more went down in the 1420-1430 in same area - so could have been Norman and Hillman somehow with Sturm?
     
    Bochay's Encounter Report won't open so I don't know what time or where he engaged.
     
    Thanks again,
     
    Bill
     
    What I believe is that the probable unit was JG27.. the JG26 engagements were further north and not likely to be part of the 355/357 action.
     
    JG3 is possible also.  One or both of those units took a bad beating by both the 355th and 357th - I just haven't nailed it down. 
    shooshoobaby
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 14:12:18 (permalink)
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    Bill - Bits and Pieces list Norman and Hillman crashed Munich.
           Lt. Demers - mechanical failure KIA  crashed Birgin w/ ? mark
           Lt. Sturm  - POW crashed Wessling w/ ? mark
    357th FG lost 4 :
    LT. Stager - AA POW
    Lt. Hinmam - POW  Shot down / Fighter - crashed Munich
    Lt. Donnell - POW collided w/ German Fighter
    Lt. Connaghen - KIA collided w / German Fighter
    Mike
    drgondog
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 14:34:01 (permalink)
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    Mike - I'm reasonably sure that Bits and Pieces extracted their info from ABD as the MACR's are very vague about cause for Hillman and Norman.  DeMers is correct as he went in strafing barges on Reine near Bingen. My experience with B&P on 355th stuff is that they are perhaps 70% accurate based on what I absolutely have on combinations of LW reports and MACR's.
     
    I have gotten to point where I know the fates of 185 of the 190 killed, POW and Evaded/Rescued pilots of 355th and only Hillman, Norman, Mills and Plowman are up for question...
     
    Sturm's fate was documented after return from POW..
     
    However, if B&P have their data from a LW report - then Hillman/Norman went down very soon after Minchew reported last seeing them - namely 1345 over N.Munich
     
    I have been unable to verify actual crash sites for Hillman and Norman and they are definitely not in the MACR's - so the LW reports, if available, would be the only source I would trust?
     
    Thanks again,
     
    Bill
    shooshoobaby
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 14:45:20 (permalink)
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    Bill - thanks. Bits and Pieces lists Plowman and Mills as Crashed Bremen 4/7/45
    What is ETA on New Book ?
    Mike 
    drgondog
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/15 14:57:26 (permalink)
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    Mills was leading a flight w/Plowman flying wing. Decklar flying number 3 (have to check on number 4).

    Around 1215 Vineyard and Beeler broke away to chase a 109 diving in front and Mills/Plowman last seen on south track below Breman at that time. Vineyard shot the 109 down and returned to base w/o re-connecting to Plowman/Mills

    Mills was buried at Varrigan (field grave) near his crash site - which is south of Hildesheim and way south of Bremen.. don't know yet where Plowman was buried and still not sure if MIA or KIA..

    Still trying to track down possibility of mid air collision but looking more like German fighter or flak as cause.
    post edited by drgondog - 2007/02/16 20:18:06
    Erich
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/27 23:10:53 (permalink)
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    Gents:  please also take into consideration the Bf 109G's operating with I./JG 301 based at Neubiberg which is almost next door to München.  1 P-51 claimed by the gruppe and it lost some 7 109's with 3 KIA and 4 wounded.

    IV./JG 27 claimed 6 P-51's this date with 3 KIA and 1 wounded.
    Bartels claimed 2 P-51's at 13. 45 and 13.47
    Rabenstein a P-51 at 14.00 hrs
    Bartels claimed a 3rd P-51 at ?
    Stigler at ?
    Otto Engel at ?


    E ~
    post edited by Erich - 2007/02/27 23:17:22

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    drgondog
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/28 10:59:58 (permalink)
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    Eric/Mike - thanks for update.. it is interesting to note that between IV/JG27 and I/JG301 that only 10 losses surface between them and the 355th and 357th claimed 43 for loss of 8 (with one lst confirmed to structural failure at Bingen on the Rhine)..
     
    I often wonder if the Luftwaffe was counting a/c lost or pilots lost?
     
    Between Bob Woody, Fortier and Boulet there are nine confirmed (as in a/c seen to completely blow up or dive in the ground) - and that is just one flight between the two groups.. Henry Brown filmed the two he shot down and so did Kucheman for the three he shot down... I don't have as much detail on the 357thFS (Bille, Minchew, Dix, DeMers, McNeff, Wilson and Butler) - which are 6 more claims.  The latter are almost certain to be in the IV/JG27 fight which match up to Bartels and Dahl claims/losses... but the 357FS lost a max of three in that fight to air combat.. and the 354 lost none.
     
    So, some other group(s) had to be heavily involved with both the 355 and 357FG between Munich and Regensburg area.  I'm pretty sure the 357 shot up a lot of t/e - (10) but all of the 355Fg scores were s/e - mostly 109's.
     
    Between the two groups we are looking at 45+ awards in a 50 mile area...
    Erich
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/28 12:59:49 (permalink)
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    Bill

    the IV./JG 27 could of lost other Bf 109's with crews bailing out no twounded, but sorry I do not have those details. 
    III./ZG 26 with Bf 110G-2's lost 4 with another 6 damaged



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    drgondog
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    RE: 357FG over Munich 24 April-1944 2007/02/28 13:05:08 (permalink)
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    sounds like ZG26 is one of the outfits that the 357FG tangled with..
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