Mission Number: 48

Date: 20 Apr ’44

Target: Treviso, Italy M/Y

449th A/C Over Target: 11

Tons of Bombs Dropped: 27-1/4 GP

Flak: H-M-I

Enemy A/C Destroyed: 0

449th A/C Lost: 0

Results: Poor

Thirty-six B-24 G, H, & J’s took off at 0940 – 1024 hours to bomb Treviso M/Y. Three returned early; one had a gas leak in #3 engine, one had a gas leak in #2 engine and the other ship returned because the copilot was ill. Weather over the target was 10/10 overcast but eleven (11) dropped 27.25 tons of 500-lb GP bombs with .1 and .025 fusing from 1306 to 1330 hours at 21,500 feet. Four (4) dropped 10 tons on Padua, two (2) over Mestre dropped 5 tons, one (1) dropped 22 tons over a fleet of scattered small boats ten (10) miles east of Chioggia. Six (6) returned 15 tons to the base and nine (9) jettisoned 22.75 tons in the sea. Thirty-three (33) returned to base about 1613 hours. None were lost and none are at friendly fields.

Rendezvoused with 450th Group over Manduria about 0944 hours at 6,000 feet and lead on course to San Vito Di Normanni. From here this Group went to key point (4400N – 1400E) to Piove thence to the IP (4540N – 1155E). Here they made a right turn on to target on a true course of 92° and dropped on ETA as the radar system was inoperative. Rallied right and went over Padua to 4500N – 1300E and returned to base. Escort was met on flight line before the key point and provided cover over the target and upon withdrawal.

The target area was 10/10 covered and it was impossible to determine any hits from the air. One ship dropped its bombs on a fleet of small boats 10 miles east of Chioggia at 1337 hours from 20,000 feet on a heading of 140° True, but reported only near misses.

There was no enemy fighter interception, but one crew did report what appeared to be a dog fight in the target area at a distance too far for details. Another crew reported they saw bombs dropping in the water below them and later spotted 2 elements of four single-engine fighters. They had red noses and black on the bellies which they took to be either belly tanks or bomb racks. They reported that about 1430 hours while they were off the coast at Ancona flying at 10,000 feet these same fighters were flying above them 8,000 to 10,000 feet. At this time 12 bombs went through a formation of six B-17’s flying off at 5 o’clock some distance from this Group and 2,000 or 3,000 feet below. They could see these bombs in the air and observed them hit the water in a circular pattern. No hits were observed in this attack.

Over the target this Group experienced moderate, inaccurate, heavy flak. However, it should be noted that window was being used at the time and there was a complete overcast. Slight, inaccurate, heavy flak was also reported over Padua and Mestre, and one battery at Chioggia. Intense, inaccurate, heavy flak was encountered over Piove.

[No losses, damage, casualties, or victories.]

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