This Day in . . .
303rd Bomb Group (H) History
May 23, 1942
ETO 8th AF: Agreement is reached on a plan to transfer the repair depot at Burtonwood, UK to US forces following a period of joint control to begin at the end of Jun 42; Burtonwood later becomes the greatest AAF depot overseas.
May 23, 1943
8th AF: The 417th Night Fighter Squadron, VIII Fighter Command based at Cranfield, England sends a detachment to Scorton, England to train with the RAF on Beaufighters.
May 23, 1944
303rd BG (H) Combat Mission No. 158
Target: Saarbrucken, Germany (PFF)
Crews Dispatched: 26 + 2 PFF
Length of Mission: 6 hours, 45 minutes
Bomb Load: 12 x 500 lb G.P. bombs
Bombing Altitude: 25,000 & 24,000 ft
Ammo Fired: 2,310 rounds
View Mission Report
May 23, 1944
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS 8th AF: Mission 364: 1,045 bombers and 562 fighters are dispatched to hit airfields and rail targets in France; 3 bombers are lost: 1. 580 B-17s are dispatched to the marshalling yard at Metz (34 bomb), Epinal (36 bomb) and Chaumont (54 bomb); airfields at Orleans/Bricy (17 bomb) and Chateaudun (18 bomb); secondary targets hit are marshalling yards at Saarbrucken, Germany (139 bomb), Bayon (12 bomb), the town of Neunkirchen, Germany (37 bomb), Caen/Carpiquet Airfield (18 bomb) and 12 hit targets of opportunity; 2 B-17s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 50 damaged; 12 airmen are KIA and 4 WIA. 2. 465 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Orleans/Bricy (167 bomb), Bourges (84 bomb), Avord (88 bomb) and Etampes/Mondesir (97 bomb); 1 aircraft hits a target of opportunity; 1 B-24 is lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 33 damaged; 10 airmen are KIA and 10 MIA. Escort is provided by 96 P-38s, 142 P-47s and 324 P-51s; none are lost and no Luftwaffe aircraft are claimed; 1 P47 is damaged beyond repair and 1 P-47 and 1 P-51 are damaged; 644 Ninth Air Force fighters also participate with the loss of 2 P-38s and 2 P-47s. Mission 365: 103 P-51s are dispatched to bomb a railroad bridge at Hasselt, Belgium; 75 bomb escorted by 14 acting as top cover; 1 P-51 is lost, the pilot is MIA. Mission 366: 4 of 5 B-17s drop 928,000 leaflets on Belgium and The Netherlands without loss. 7 B-24s are dispatched on CARPETBAGGER operations.
May 23, 1945
8th AF history extracted from Jack McKillop's USAAF Combat Chronology
303rd BG: Major Roland M. Cowan was appointed Group Executive Officer, replacing Frank J. Doherty, who became Commanding Officer of the new 425th Air Service Group.