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B-25 Training Missions

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Bob Dicey
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2003/03/19 00:19:16 (permalink)
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B-25 Training Missions

Hi,

I have been researching B-25 combat aircrew training operations at Greenville Army Air Base SC during WW2. Much of the training involved flying a specific amount of numbered missions. From what I have found out, a crew would have to perform 39 different missions to graduate, later changed to 22 as the program was streamlined. I often see mission numbers mentioned in the Base, Group, and Sqdn. histories. Some I have identities for, most I have not.

For instance:Mission #8 was day-night cross country, #20 was long range cruise, and #21 was formation camera bombing. These are the only ones I have been able to I.D. I have seen evidence that each crewman was issued the requirements on paper or in booklet form.

Does anyone out there know any of the other mission numbers and type, or hopefully have the complete list? It would sure be a great help! Thanks in advance,

Bob
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mridgeelk
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Re: [Bob Dicey] B-25 Training Missions 2003/04/12 19:20:42 (permalink)
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Bob, While this info may not directly apply, according to my dad who was a teenager at the time in upstate NY, during some summers during the war B25s and B26s would practice Hedge-hopping on the hedge rows of central NY state farms usually scaring the teams they were using to hay or whatever out of their hides. The base at Rome, NY was the home field for that training Ed
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corsica
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Re: [Bob Dicey] B-25 Training Missions 2003/09/03 23:59:25 (permalink)
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Hello Bob,

My father, Quentin C. Kaiser, is one of only a very few WWII airmen I am aware of who actually kept an accurate mission log of his B-25 flights and missions. Although I have been most interested in only his 65 combat missions, there are some training missions in his mission log and they can be seen here on the first page:

[url "http://sbl.salk.edu/~dkaiser/missionlog1.html"]http://sbl.salk.edu/~dkaiser/missionlog1.html[/url]

Next time I get home, I will copy the earlier pages of his flight log to get the other training missions. In the right hand margin he makes notes of the kind you seem to be referring to.

*Cheers*

Corsica
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Bob Dicey
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Re: [corsica] B-25 Training Missions 2003/09/09 22:26:42 (permalink)
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Hello Corsica,

Many thanks for your reply to my request for info about training missions. I know most people are primarily interested in just combat missions, but the crews had to learn by stateside practice first ! I am trying to find these missions and mission numbers while there are some of the guys that flew them that are still with us. I am sure there was a printed list of these issued to all trainees at Greenville AAB, but so far a copy has eluded me.

I have looked at your site and enjoyed reading your father's list of missions. I was indeed pleased to see some of his training missions listed. I made a copy to add to my files. If there are any previous listings, I would surely be interested in knowing what they were as well.

My hat is off to your dad for his service to the U.S. And thank you again for posting the copies of his log book, and for your taking the time to contact me.

Best wishes,

Bob
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WolfPackSqdB25
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RE: Re: [Bob Dicey] B-25 Training Missions 2007/02/23 16:37:06 (permalink)
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Bob, my Dad kept a pretty accurate log from training through his final missions in New Guinea as a B-25 (then B-25G model) pilot. His initial training was at Columbia, SC but reference is made to Greenville because Greenville was the other training site for many of those headed to the South Pacific. As of yet, I don't have any specifics on training missions in the States, but have plenty of log entries for training, especially strafing and skip-bombing, that didn't occur until the pilots hit Australia/New Guinea. I'll see what I can find. But Greenville appeared to be one of the two major B-25 training areas on the east coast.
jonjac
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RE: Re: [Bob Dicey] B-25 Training Missions 2007/02/25 23:02:00 (permalink)
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Hey Wolf;  I'm curious, which B-25 Group did he end up in - 3rd, 38th or 345th?.   I spent 39 months in the 3rd, 3 years of it in the S.W. Pacific.
Jack
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RE: B-25 Training Missions 2007/02/26 10:03:08 (permalink)
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Training requirements would have been determined by the 3rd AAF, and would have changed throughout the war as training requirements were adjusted to needs of the service.  Critical will be exactly the time period you are refering to.  Also varied will have been whether the training site was for replacement crew training (as were Columbia and Greenville) or for operational combat group training.

I have yet to see a list of specific mission types listed in any of the reading I've done on the subject.  The best I've found so far is with respect to ground schooling or in a breakdown given as so many hours in this type of traning, and so many hours of that type of training, and so many hours in the Link trainers, etc.

Kevin Anderson
'whose Uncle Roy went through replacement crew training as a B-25H pilot at Columbia, S.C., in late 1943/early 1944, and even then was put through another month or two of further training by the XIIIth Bomber Command when he arrived out in Guadalcanal before being assigned to the 42nd BG and finally flying his first operational combat missions as a co-pilot in June 1944.

porterjet
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RE: B-25 Training Missions 2007/05/09 03:49:58 (permalink)
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Bob:
My father, 2nd Lt. B.L. "Moe" Porter, went through Greenville before heading to the S. Pacific with the 38thBG/405sq.
I emailed him with your search, he says he doesn't remember any specific course syllabus and that he thought they would get most of their training "on the job". There would have been different training missions without a doubt. In additon to the ones already mentioned he remembers that a lot of their training was for the navigators which consisted of offshore missions with the objective of hitting a particular spot on the coast after 3 or 4 hours of flying around over the Atlantic. Most of the time they missed! He joined the 405th in New Guinea in, I believe, later 1944 with about 200 hours total flight time.
I guess it is possible the instructors had a booklet like you mention but not all the crews would have seen it ( or remember it)!
By the way, my father was not called into the Commanders office and was not chewed out after a call from the mayor complaing about, umm, paper latrine bags being dropped on downtown Greenville. Thats his story and I'm sticking to it.
John
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RE: Re: [Bob Dicey] B-25 Training Missions 2011/01/07 22:55:12 (permalink)
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Hi,  my dad Einar Muhonen was a pilot in Columbia S.C.  (1 bomber 56th) and went to the south pacific with the 345th. I am trying to find out info on an incedent that took place on a training mission.  The pilot (gerrald MaHaffee) was going to the turret (B25 J) when his chute caught on the safty latch of the escape hatch.  The hatch blew open and out  went his chute along with him. My dad somehow in an instant, grabbed MaHaffee by the foot and held on while wrestling with the airplane with his left hand. At 200 mph, with a full billowing chute , it must have been incerdible.  Sgt bowels felt the bomber lurch from side to side and crawled forward over the bay and was able to hold on to the other leg of MaHaffee.  They were able to land the plane carfully on the third approach.  My dad became a pilot for American Airlines after the war and taught me how to fly.  He was about to do a power on stall and said "son, there is only one thing you have to know to become a good pilot" ,..........as I was saying "what's that" we snap rolled and he said "how not to throw up. He sure could  "greese" a landing.  Maby some of you know about this incedent or my dad (RIP).  I think he flew combat out of new guine or biac.  Would like to hear back from you.  T Y
craig
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Re:B-25 Training Missions 2011/01/15 20:32:22 (permalink)
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Columbia, SC is my home town. Some skip bombing missions were flown there, over Lake Murray, a large artificial lake about 20 miles from Columbia. One spot on the lake shore was used as a target and multiple efforts to remove bombs from there have been conducted there over the years.
One reason we know that the lake was used for skip bombing missions is that an estimated 25 B-25’s crashed in the lake during training. There was an article in Air Force Magazine a few decades back that described one crash. The B-25 had a portion of the instrument panel removed and covered with a hinged block of wood. In the low altitude turbulence the block of wood would tend to swing open and the co-pilot would push it back. The pilot kept telling him to stop that, to leave it alone. Then, low over the lake the wood swung open and the co-pilot slammed it back – one last time. It went over center and took out the magneto wires. The engines both quit and they went into the water. The pilot released the escape hatch over his head, only to have the co-pilot climb over him on the way out. The pilot had to be physically restrained from strangling the co-pilot.
A B-25 was recovered from Lake Murray a few years ago and there was a TV show about it. It proved to be in very poor shape. But back in the mid-80’s a B-25C was recovered from Lake Greenwood where it had crashed in WWII and it was quite intact. It was cleaned up and painted and can be seen at Columbia’s Owens Field airport, which was itself the site of a few WWII B-25 crashes, one of which was witnessed by my father.

gu310
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Re: B-25 Training Missions 2013/03/13 20:37:01 (permalink)
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Here I am about 7 years late but finally getting around to writing about skip bombing practice from Greenville South Carolina where our crew trained for overseas duty. I had always thought that we trained on Lake Murray near Columbia and only recently found Lake Issaqueena had been part of a large bombing range west of Greenville and had  been used for skip bombing by the Greenville aircraft. I have dug out my letters, written then to my parents, to see if I could find any reference to the lake or skip bombing and other than some  mention of the bombing no names were used. Wonder if any of you could verify the use of this lake for that purpose. And yes, we did cross country missions, gunnery missions to Myrtle Beach and Murrells Inlet, medium altitude bombing, aiming at circles on the ground (near the lake),  low level missions and the whole 'nine yards' but still need some help.  It sure  would ease this old 90 year brain and its memory. No one to contact at this late date, I am the last of my crew and the other few that I know have memories   worse than mine. So let me know please. Many thanks.  gu
coolingwater911
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Re: B-25 Training Missions 2013/03/15 15:55:10 (permalink)
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Bob,
 
I have the flight records of a cousin who went through Grenville training in February 1944. In looking at his records, every flight he took in a B-25 is recorded along with the exact aircraft model,  the number of landings and hours of flight. However, there is no mention of what they trained for. There are 4 months of flight training pages.
 
I have a page of his ground training for 18 such things as weapons, sighting and aiming, Power turret skeet and others.
 
Your welcome to look them over.
 
Tom

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coolingwater911
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Re: B-25 Training Missions 2013/03/15 16:07:19 (permalink)
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Email me at tbrown7777@comcast.net and I will send you the training flight sheets
ROGER MARAIST
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Re: B-25 Training Missions 2013/05/29 16:19:09 (permalink)
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DOES ANYONE HAVE ANY TRAINING LOGS WITH THE NAME ANDREW PALMER's name?
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