Mission Number: 55

Date: 6 May ’44

Target: Brasov, Romania M/Y

449th A/C Over Target: 27

Tons of Bombs Dropped: 65G P

Flak: H-M-I

Enemy A/C Destroyed: 2 (Des)

449th A/C Lost: 0

Results: Good

Thirty (30) B-24’s took off at 0747 – 0820. Three returned early to the base with their bomb loads. Twenty-seven (27) were over the target at 1146 – 1156 hours from 20,000 to 22,500 feet. Twenty-six (26) dropped 65 tons 500-lb GP bombs of .1 and .01 fusing. One (1) jettisoned 22 tons. All planes returned.

From home base to Manduria to rendezvous with 450th, thence on course to San Vito Di Normanni to rendezvous with 98th and 376th thence to key point Radoviei to 4250N – 1910E, to turn point 4432N – 2248E to IP to target. After rally right route back to base was as briefed.

From visual observations the target appeared well hit. Target area was covered with black smoke. A flash of flame was seen. Smoke could be seen for twenty minutes rising to 18,000 feet.

Preliminary analysis of bomb strike photos discloses at least seventeen hits in assigned target area. Rail lines were hit.

Fighters. From 15 – 20 enemy aircraft were seen over the target just as the Group rallied. They were in evidence for 20 – 25 minutes. Some were ME-109’s and some FW-190’s. One JU-88 was reported. ME-109’s were painted black. Some had red, others yellow, spinners. FW-190’s had orange bellies and black topsides. The JU-88 reported was well out of range, at the bomber level and did not attack. FW-190’s fired a few rockets at the formation. ME-109’s and FW-190’s attacked a few times. Three enemy A/C came in at five o’clock level but peeled off at 1,000 yards. One lone fighter made a pass firing 20-mm cannon. The shells seemed to burst into white smoke and flame when fired. Rockets fired by the FW-190’s seemed to burst into clusters, then reburst. Eight (8) to ten (10) enemy A/C were encountered. Two fighters, one ME-109 and one FW-190, were claimed as destroyed. In general, attacks were light and unaggressive.

Flak. In the target area flak was reported as scant to moderate, inaccurate and heavy.

Observations. … Ploesti still smoking from attack of 5 May 1944, one crew reported smoke at 20,000 feet. …

[Total losses: none. One (1) aircraft seriously damaged from flak. Three (3) with minor damage from flak. One (1) seriously wounded by flak.]

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