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303rd Bomb Group (H) History

September 17th    

September 17, 1944
303rd BG (H) Combat Mission No. 243
Target: Eindhoven and Hertogenbosch (Areas),
The Netherlands
Crews Dispatched: 37
Length of Mission: 6 hours, 45 minutes
Bomb Load: 30 x 260 lb M81 Fragmentation bombs
Bombing Altitudes: 15,700 to 16,400 ft
Ammo Fired: 1,775 rounds
View Mission Report

September 17, 1944
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS 8th AF: The last UK-USSR-Italy-UK shuttle mission (Operations FRANTIC) is completed as 72 B-17s and 59 P-51s fly without bombs from Italy to the UK; 2 B-17s and a P-51 abort and a P-51 crashlands SW of Paris; 70 B-17s 57 P-51s land safely in the UK. Mission 637: 875 B-17s are dispatched bomb 117 flak batteries and installations and an airfield, all in the Netherlands; 815 B-17s attack the primaries and 6 hit Eisenach; 2 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 119 damaged; 9 airmen are KIA, 6 WIA and 15 MIA. Escort is provided by 141 of 153 P-51s; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot is MIA). 503 P-38s, P-47s and P-51s escort aircraft of the First Allied Airborne Army making a parachute and glider drop of 20,000 troops into the Netherlands to secure the axis of advance toward the Zuider Zee for the British Second Army, as part of Operation MARKET-GARDEN, 17-30 Sep; troops dropped are the I Airborne Corps, consisting of the British 1 Airborne Division (with Polish Parachute Brigade) and US 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions; the fighters also bomb and strafe flak positions and other ground targets, encountering intense flak and about 30 fighters; they claim 7-0-0 aircraft in the air, 1-0-0 on the ground and the destruction of 107 flak positions; 6 P-47s and 7 P-51s are lost, 3 P-47s and 2 P-51s damaged beyond repair and 41 P-47s and 6 P-51s damaged; 2 pilots are WIA and 11 MIA.

September 17, 1944
Operation Market Garden begins (Allied airborne assault on Holland).

8th AF history extracted from Jack McKillop's USAAF Combat Chronology

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