326th Squadron
Daily Operations Journal

July 1943

7 July 1943
326th Sq moves from station 112 [Bovingdon] to #102 [Alconbury]
90 men transferred
squadron being reorganized for combat duty
prior to this were helping to set up the 11 CCRC Combat School

Capt. McGehee Word was transferred in from the 407th Squadron (operations officer) to become CO
Capt. Francis E. Winget transferred in from 327th Squadron (operations officer)

Lt. Stone and crew transferred in from 407th Squadron
Lt. Arenholz - CP
Lt. Holch - N
Lt. Ryan - Bomb
T/Sgt. Hansen - R
S/Sgt. Urbis - E
S/Sgt. Seymore - BT
S/Sgt. Balke - TG
S/Sgt. Murphy - WG
S/Sgt. Scott - WG

Lt. Gibson - P
Lt. Dickens - CP
Lt. Hughes - N
Lt. White - Bomb
S/Sgt. Pencek - E
S/Sgt. Adams - BT
S/Sgt. Bomberger - TG
S/Sgt. Dillon - WG
S/Sgt. Calvert - WG
Lt. Johnson - P
Lt. Weir - CP
Lt. Doolan - N
T/Sgt - Dickerson - E
S/Sgt. McKagan - BT
S/Sgt. Treon - TG
T/Sgt Antala - WG
S/Sgt. Gutierrez - WG
transferred in from the 327th Sq

Lt. Parkinson - P
F/O Cates - CP
Lt. Champagne - N
Lt. Lauffer - Bomb
Sgt. Ellenberg - R
Sgt. DeMasters - E
S/Sgt. Smith - BT
Sgt. Landers - TG
Sgt. Thuresson - WG
Sgt. Semrad - WG
Lt. Campbell - P
F/O Morgan - CP
Lt. Koske - N
T/Sgt. Johnson - R
S/Sgt. Weaver - E
Sgt. Ford - BT
Sgt. Montemarano - TG
Sgt. Walton - WG
Sgt. Ponte - WG
transferred in from the 325th Sq

squadron is situated at Site #3
equipment and materials were picked up any way and every way possible
so by 16th the operations office was set up to operate
four B-17 Fs were transferred in from the 325th: 884, 897, 612 and one B-17E from the 327th: 051 [sic]

an alert for tomorrow
three planes are alerted that are in XC. 16th July, 1943 [sic]

*****

17 July 1943
target for today's mission supposed to be Hanover
three planes and four crews flew
one plane borrowed from the 325th
no bombs were dropped so the target is carried as Amsterdam

heavy fighter opposition and flak encountered
mission unsuccessful

crews to go:
Lt. Stone - P
Lt. Foster - CP
Lt. Holch - N
Lt. Ryan - B
T/Sgt. Hansen - R
S/Sgt. Urbis - E
S/Sgt. Seymore - BT
S/Sgt. Balke - TG
S/Sgt. Murphy - WG
S/Sgt. Scott - WG
a/c 612

Lt. Gibson - P
Lt. McLaughlin - CP
Lt. Hughes - N
Lt. White - B
S/Sgt. Jackson - R
S/Sgt. Pencek - E
Sgt. Ford - BT
Sgt. Dillon - WG
S/Sgt. Claver - WG
a/c 884

Lt. Parkinson - P
F/O Cates - CP
F/O Eaton - N
Lt. Lauffer - B
Sgt. Ellenberg - R
S/Sgt. DeMasters - E
S/Sgt. Purvis - BT
a/c 712

Sgt. Landers - TG, Sgt. Semrad - WG filled in crew to go with Lt. Miles of the 327th

on a/c 709, a 325 plane
Lt. Weir - CP
Lt. Doolan - N
S/Sgt. Jackson - R
S/Sgt. Few - E
S/Sgt. Treon - TG
T/Sgt. Antala - WG
S/Sgt. Smith - BT

*****

18, 19, 20 July 1943
daily routine, ground school, charts, new transfers and a general run of lots of work

1 Lt. Parkinson is the new Ass't Operations Officer

*****

21, 22, 23 July 1943
ground school, routine work, reports, checking charts
in general, the squadron is still having some difficulty obtaining equipment and starting

*****

24 July 1943
four planes scheduled for a mission today and completed
Lt. Stone and crew - a/c 231
Lt. Hermance - a/c 709
Lt. Belongia - a/c 612
Lt. Johnson - a/c 897

group as a whole sent out 15 Forts
all returned
ten 500-pounders carried by each plane
target clearly seen
about six enemy fighters encountered
flak was medium
target was an aluminum plant in Heroya [Norway]

several other planes were borrowed by another squadron

this was the second mission for the squadron since moving from Bovingdon and number six total

no reports by 8th Air Force as yet through newspapers

the mileage on this hop was the longest made in this theater by Forts to date
1800 miles round trip

target was hit with success
reports at a later date showed that out of 800 people [killed], 775 were Germans
all Norwegian workers were out on a 20-minute lunch period
the timing was good
the Norwegian government sent a letter of thanks for the timely bombing

*****

25 July 1943
five a/c alerted for this mission
Lt. Hermance - a/c 709
Lt. Belongia - a/c 612
Lt. Johnson - a/c 897
Lt. Gibson - a/c 884
Lt. Foster - a/c 776

target supposed to be Kiel naval installations
the three groups in the wing rendezvous to meet the larger group, which they missed
leader of this group, which was Lt. Gibson, decided 38 planes going in alone would be unwise

the remainder of the VIII AAF carried out the mission on two targets
successful with medium losses

*****

26 July 1943
Lt. Casey and crew of the 327th ditched in the North Sea
entire crew was safe after a little drenching
a/c 42-29961
were rescued by the British Air Sea Rescue

mission for today was rough

planes and crews making the mission were as follows:
Lt. Hermance - a/c 709
Lt. Belongia - a/c 612
Lt. Johnson - a/c 897
Lt. Campbell - a/c 802
Lt. Foster - a/c 776

the target was Hanover, Enemy Industrial Power
500-lb. general purpose bombs used
dropped from altitude of 26,000 feet
take-off time 0850
time of landing 1243
100-150 fighters encountered
flak heavy
two enemy fighters claimed by our combat crewmen
bomb drop successful, followed by fires

Lt. Hermance and crew of
F/O Cates - C/P
Lt. Corkery - N
Lt. Lauffer - B
Sgt. Ellenberg - R
S/Sgt. DeMasters - E
S/Sgt. Smith - TG
Sgt. Landers - WG
Sgt. Semrad - WG
Sgt. West - BT
missing in action

various reports have come in that seven or eight chutes were seen to have opened

Lt. Campbell was killed in action
S/Sgt. Weaver, T.C. - E - was severely wounded by a 20-mm shell
he insisted on being helped out so that he might be able to get first aid for his arm, which was cut deeply* and causing a great deal of loss of blood

*NOTE: Sgt. Weaver's arm was blown off close to the shoulder.

Lt. Belongia and crew of
F/O Davis - C/P
F/O Eaton - N
S/Sgt. Sztorc - NG
S/Sgt. Lovett - R
S/Sgt. Few - E
S/Sgt. Walsh - TG
S/Sgt. Barner - WG
S/Sgt. Combs - WG
in 42-29612
on return ditched and the Fort sank in 15 seconds
Lt. Casey's plane stayed above water 31 minutes
Lt. Belongia's entire crew also picked up
six full crews were picked up on this particular day by the British Air Sea Rescue

*****

27 July 1943
three new planes were assigned to the squadron
daily office work
situation is somewhat more settled in this office

*****

28 July 1943
four planes alerted for the mission
target Kassel, Germany, against enemy air power (a/c plant)

Lt. Johnson - a/c 776
Lt. Foster - a/c 975
Lt. McLaughlin - a/c 712
Lt. Wolfe - a/c 962
all returned except one plane that was borrowed by the 327th: 42-29798
Lt. Smotherman and crew missing in action

250-pounders plus British incendiaries used
dropped from altitude of 27,500 feet
75-100 enemy e/a encountered
two claimed by our men
11,500 rounds of 50-cal. expended

take-off time 0600
landing time 1310
heavy flak
successful mission with fires left burning

*****

29 July 1943
target for today's mission was Kiel, Germany, naval installations
four planes made trip without any casualties

Lt. Stone - a/c 231
Lt. Gibson - a/c 165 (327)
Lt. Holden - a/c 975 (one crew of four that were transferred in several days ago)
Lt. McLaughlin - a/c 712

Lt. Stone and Lt. Gibson completed their 22nd mission this date
leaving total of three each to complete the operational tour of 25

50-75 enemy fighters encountered
flak medium to heavy

500-pounders were used
mission successful with many fires burning
bombs dropped from 27,000 feet

two enemy fighters claimed by our men
S/Sgt. Urbis on Lt. Stone's crew has three enemy a/c destroyed up to his tenth mission
which brought him the DFC [Distinguished Flying Cross]

this month the 8th AAF made a total of ten raids
one more than other high score of nine during the month of June
during past week of intensive bombing 108 heavy bombers were lost
the RAF were out doing the night work

*****

30, 31 July 1943
regular office duties mixed with ground school classes

the 31st, Saturday afternoon, was declared a holiday for all men
the warmest day in England to date, of which there are few
trucks took men to Peterborough to enjoy some swimming
all combat crews were issued two days layoff after last week