Sgt Daniel J. Miller's 13th and final mission

Group Mission 86 - Augsburg, Germany- April 13TH, 1944. Daniel was in Crew #6, and flew in A/C 42-39819 "Anoxia Queen".

40 aircraft were dispatched by the 390th, flying "A" and "B" Group, to bomb the Messerschmidt plant at Augsburg on 13th, April. 1944. 38 of our aircraft attacked. Flak, accurate and intense at the target, knocked out 3 of our bombers. One ME 109 attacked the "A" group without damage to the bombers or itself.

First phase photo interpretation states that the bomb pattern of the 390th "A" group was hidden in smoke covering the MPI. The bombs of the 390th "B" group burst 1,000 yards west of the MPI.

The aircraft lost were piloted by 1/Lt. MF Swavel, 2/Lt. D.W. Zollars, and 1/Lt. D.L. Cooper. In addition to their crews being missing, the group lost, 1 killed and 6 wounded in the action.

The effectiveness of the anti aircraft fire is indicated by the causalities and by the fact that 20 of the aircraft returning suffered major battle damage and 14 minor battle damage.

Capt. Jerome A. Osadnick's aircraft had No. 3 and 4 engines knocked out by flak on the return route. No. 2 engine was hit, but continued to operate, He was forced to leave the formation. Between  Dunkirk and Ostend, other flak hit his aircraft, knocking out the radio, radio compass and the hydraulic system. The captain landed his ship safely at an emergency field near Dover.

                                                 1/Lt M.F. Swavel's Aircraft Lost

The missing aircraft report stated as follows regarding the loss of 1/Lt. M.F. Swavel's aircraft:
"About 1649 hours near Brussels, A/C 819, 390th "A" Group was hit by flak. A/C fell out of formation and was last seen leaving the enemy coast near Ostend at about 10,000 feet. No chutes reported seen".
                                                1/Lt. D.L. Cooper's Aircraft Lost

The missing aircraft report states as follows regarding the loss of 1/Lt. D.L. Cooper aircraft:
"About 1453 hours near Augsburg, A/C 691, 390th "B" group was hit by flak. Gasoline was observed leaving rapidly. A/C fell behind with No. 2 prop feathered. A/C 691 proceeded toward Switzerland as per instructions of Wing leader. No chutes were seen."

                                                2/Lt. D.W. Zollors's Aircraft Lost

"About 1453 hours near Augsburg, A/C 821, 390th "B" Group was hit by flak, and dropped of formation with a engine smoking. A/C was under control, disappearing into the clouds at 1615 hours. One crew reported that 6, and another crew, 10 objects believed to be bodies were observed to come out of the B-17 from 390th "B" group at 1510 hours. No chutes were seen to open and the objects disappeared into the clouds. Whether these objects were equipment being thrown out to lighten the load,or personnel parachutes  and delaying jumps cannot be ascertained. As above stated, crews reported seeing A/C 821 at 1615 hours near 50 degrees. 15 minutes N- 06 degrees. 20 minutes E. If personnel bailed out near 48 degrees. 50 minutes N-10 degrees 30 minutes E and A/C reached 50 degrees. 15 minutes N - 06 degrees. 30 minutes E, possibly A/C 821 continued flying on AFCE".

Eighth AAF Report:

The Eighth AAF Narrative of Operations states as follows: "207 B-17's dropped 1491 x 500lbs general purpose, and 2242 x 100 lbs incendiary bombs on the Messerschmidt plant at Augsburg. Preliminary assessment of strike photographs indicates hits on the sub-assembly machine shops, the power house, the flight hanger and other workshops, There are incendiary strikes on two round hangers and a machine and press shop".

The third bomb division lost 18 bombers on the mission. The 207  A/C which attacked were 3rd division aircraft.

Combat Crew Comments.

Combat crew personnel when interviewed in the briefing room on their return from the mission stated as follows:

Lt Col Robert O Good: "The worst flak I've ever encountered...... hundreds of bursts filled the sky over the target with big black clouds. The whole formation rocked up and down as a result of the terrific explosions."

Lt. Martin: "Broken clouds and the smoke screen partially obscured the target. A quick look through the opening, however indicated that the bombs hitting true. Red flashes marked the target area."

S/Sgt. Dunn: "A supercharger shot out, and more than 50 flak holes in our ship tells better than words the story of the flak we flew through today, but our bombs hit the target and started a column of smoke rising"

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