Mission Number: 49

Date: 23 Apr ’44

Target: Schwechat, Austria Air Drome

449th A/C Over Target: 35

Tons of Bombs Dropped: 87 GP

Flak: H-I-A

Enemy A/C Destroyed: 0

449th A/C Lost: 2

Results: Good

Thirty-eight (38) B-24 G’s, H’s and J’s took off at 0958 – 1026 hours to bomb Schwechat A/C factory. There were three (3) early returns. These three returned for the following reasons: 1, couldn’t stay with formation due to supercharger trouble; 2, #3 turbo failed; 3, #4 engine spraying gasoline from lower side of cowling. Thirty-five (35) dropped 87 tons of 500-lb RDX bombs (1. & .02 fuses) on target at 1450 – 1454 hours from 21,500 – 24,000 feet. One salvoed .5 tons of bombs that failed to release over target. Thirty-one (31) returned to base at 1741 – 1800 hours. One lost. One missing. Two at friendly fields.

Rendezvoused with 450th, 98th, and 376th on Wing rendy line of San Pancrazio to San Vito Di Normanni at 1108 hours. On course to 4320N – 1449E where course turned due west as far as Italian coast at Ancona where a 180° turn was made and course was held until the briefed course was again hit at the Yugoslav coast. From there to 4410N – 1430E to 4647N – 1714E to 4720N – 1728E to IP of Petronell (4807N – 1652E) to target. The target was attacked on an axis of 270° True. The formation rallied left and continued to rally point at 4715N – 1619E to 4610N – 1650E to 4331N – 1618E and returned to base. Rendezvous with twenty (20) P-47’s was at 1215 hours at 4240N – 1531E and with fifty-eight (58) P-38’s at 1252 at 4430N – 1432E.

Results were reported to be good. Photos substantiated results reported visually. Preceding groups had only scattered hits in the target. This group had very good coverage. There was much smoke and flame and four (4) – five (5) direct hits on aiming point. Two AA batteries at east end of target were hit.

Fighters. Twelve (12) E/A were seen from near the IP in to the target. They were of the following types: ME-109’s, FW-190’s, two (2) unidentified T/E, and two (2) unidentified S/E fighters. There were three encounters. Attack was from 5 o’clock high from 600 yards and out, again at 3 o’clock. Attack was not aggressive. There were no claims of E/A destroyed or damaged. T/E fighters were black with yellow horizontal striped tails. Two (2) S/E fighters were green, with red noses and white checkered tails.

Flak. Over the target this group experienced, very intense, accurate, heavy flak.

[Total losses: Two (2) from flak. Twenty-six (26) received damage from flak. Casualties: 1 killed and 5 wounded from flak. No victories.]

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