This Day in . . .
303rd Bomb Group (H) History
April 15, 1944
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS 8th AF: Mission 303: 616 fighters are dispatched on strafing sweeps of C and W Germany, airfields being the primary objectives; 33 fighters are lost: 132 P-38s claim 7-0-2 Luftwaffe aircraft, 11 P-38s are lost and 16 damaged, 11 pilots are MIA; 262 P-47s claim 20-1-23 aircraft, 7 P-47s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 13 damaged, 7 pilots are MIA; 222 Eighth and Ninth Air Force P-51s claim 30-0-10 aircraft, 15 P-51s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 5 damaged; 12 pilots are MIA.
April 15, 1945
303rd BG (H) Combat Mission No. 360
Target: Huge Gun Emplacements at Royan, France
Crews Dispatched: 42
Length of Mission: 7 hours, 34 minutes
Bomb Load: 2 x 2,000 lb G.P. & 2 x 1,000 lb S.A.P. bombs
Bombing Altitudes: 15,000, 14,500 & 16,000 feet
View Mission Report
April 15, 1945
8th AF history extracted from Jack McKillop's USAAF Combat Chronology
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS 8th AF: 3 missions are flown. Mission 951: 1,348 unescorted bombers are dispatched to visually attack strongpoints on the French Atlantic coast; the first two forces below make the sole operational employment of napalm bomb by the Eighth AF against German ground installations (pillboxes, gunpits, tank trenches, and heavy gun emplacements); the results are negligible and HQ recommends its discontinuance against this type of target: 1. 492 of 529 B-17s hit four strongpoints and flak batteries in the Royan area; 5 B-17s are damaged. 2. 341 of 359 B-24s hit six strongpoints and flak batteries in the Royan area; 1 B-24 is damaged beyond repair and 3 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA. 3. 442 of 457 B-17s hit 9 strongpoints and flak batteries in the Bordeaux/Royan, Pointe Grave and Pointe Courbre area without loss. 4. 3 B-17s and 20 P-51s fly scouting missions. 5. 107 of 109 P-51s support Ninth AF B-26s; 1 is lost (pilot MIA). 6. 6 of 7 P-51s escort 6 F-5s on photo reconnaissance missions over Royan and Germany. Mission 952: 1 Mosquito and 9 B-24s abort a mission to Lechfeld Airfield during the night. Mission 953: 10 of 11 B-24s drop leaflets in France, the Netherlands and Germany during the night.