Nous citons ici les extraits du journal de guerre
en ligne du 225e bataillon Searchlighters de l’US
Air Force pour les quatre jours de juin 1944 où eurent lieu
des bombardements d’Étampes en citant tout ce qui concerne ces journées
pour donner une idée du contexte massif dans lequel prenaient place
ces bombardements du point de vue allié.
Nous en donnerons une traduction française ultérieurement.
|14 juin: 69 bombes
||15 juin: 45 bombes
||22 juin: 33 bombes
||25 juin: 12 bombes
|WEDNESDAY, 14 JUNE 1944|
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): Mission 412: Bad weather again covers all strategic targets in Germany except one in the extreme N; a major effort is against tactical objectives, mainly in France; 1,357 of 1,525 bombers dispatched hit the targets listed below; 14 bombers are lost:
1. 502 B-17s are dispatched to hit airfields in France, i.e.: Le Bourget (134 bomb), Coulommiers (24 bomb), Creil (25 bomb), Bretigny (69 bomb), Melun (50 bomb), Creil (66 bomb) and Etampes (69 bomb); they claim 0-5-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 11 B-17s are lost and 139 damaged; 6 airmen are KIA, 14 WIA and 97 MIA.
2. 466 B-24s are dispatched to hit airfields at Chateaudun (103 bomb), Orleans/Bricy (97 bomb), Eindhoven, the Netherlands (63 bomb) and Coxyde, Belgium (7 bomb); and 61 hit the Emmerich, Germany oil refinery, 50 hit Beauvois, 44 hit Domleger, 12 hit targets of opportunity and 4 hit the Normandy beaches; 33 B-24s are damaged.
3. Of 191 B-24s, 7 hit Ham-sur-Somme, 32 hit targets of opportunity, 52 hit Lille/Vendeville, 12 hit Calas Tres, 12 hit Denain Drousey, 39 hit Laon/Athies and 70 hit Chievres; 2 B-24s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 56 damaged; 10 airmen are KIA, 2 WIA and 4 MIA.
4. 351 B-17s are dispatched to hit targets in Belgium: 35 bomb St Trond Airfield, 95 hit Florennes Airfield, 52 bomb Le Culot and 61 attack Brussels/Melsbroek; 1 B-17 is lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 73 damaged; 1
airman is MIA.
5. 7 of 15 B-24s hit the Ham-sur-Somme Bridge and 5 use Azon missiles against targets of opportunity; no losses. Escort for the bomber missions is provided by 103 P-47s; 2 P-47s lost, the pilots are MIA.
Other fighter missions are:
1. 168 of 176 P-47s fly fighter-bomber missions against Luftwaffe HQ at Chantilly, France and Panzer columns; they claim 0-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft.
2. 234 of 242 P-38s, 178 of 190 P-47s and 171 of 197 P-51s fly beachhead patrols and sweeps in front of the bomber force; they claim 4-1-7 Luftwaffe aircraft; 3 P-38s, 1 P-47 and 1 P-51 are lost (all pilots are MIA; and 1 P-38 is damaged beyond repair.
Mission 413: 3 of 4 B-17s drop leaflets in France during the night.
20 B-24s fly CARPETBAGGER missions.
TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force): 500+ B-26s and A-20s attack rail communications SW of Paris and highway communications centers S of the beachhead area; junctions, bridges, marshalling yards, gun emplacements and various defensive strongpoints are included; 15+ fighter groups fly escort and attack numerous ground targets, including rail lines running from SW of Paris to the Rennes area, and highway traffic on the Cherbourg Peninsula and S of the beachhead area to the Loire River.
15 JUNE 1944
ICELAND (Iceland Base Command): HQ [Head Quarter] 24th Composite Wing is disbanded.
STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): Mission 414: 1,361 bombers are dispatched in 8 forces to bomb an oil refinery Germany and numerous tactical targets in France, including 9 airfields, an aircraft plant, a CROSSBOW (V-weapon) sites, 11 bridges, a marshalling yard, and various scattered targets; 2 B-17s are lost:
1. Of 747 B-17s dispatched, 172 hit the Hannover/Misburg oil refinery, 16 hit Wilster, 16 hit Wesermunde, 2 hit the Hannover area and 1 hits Helgoland Island, Germany; in France, 144 hit Bordeaux/Merignac Airfield, 71 hit Nantes railroad bridge N, 71 hit La Poissonniere rail viaduct, 70 hit Angouleme marshalling yard, 59 hit Beauvoir V-weapon site, 46 hit Nantes railroad bridge S, 12 hit Gael Airfield and 10 hit a viaduct N of Nantes; 2 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 267 damaged; 7 airmen are WIA and 18 MIA.
2. Of 614 B-24s dispatched to France, 89 hit Le Port Boulet railroad bridge, 61 hit Evreux/Fauville Airfield, 59 hit Tours-la-Frillerie, 54 hit Tours-La Rice railroad bridge, 46 hit Guyancourt Airfield, 45 hit Etampes/Modesir [sic] Airfield, 44 hit Cinq Mars bridge, 27 hit St Cyr, 21 hit Buc Airfield, 12 hit Tours-La Riche highway bridge, 12 hit Le Mans Airfield, 12 hit Orleans/Saran Airfield and 8 hit targets of opportunity; 12 B-24s use Azon missiles against Etaples railroad bridge and 7 others use the missiles against the Pecrone railroad bridge.
Fighter operations are:
1. 96 P-38s, 202 P-47s and 211 P-51s escort the bombers and claim 5-0-5 Luftwaffe aircraft; 2 P-38s and 1 P-51 are lost with the pilots MIA.
2. 36 of 48 P-47s bomb Etaples, France; 1 P-47s is lost (pilot is MIA).
3. 177 of 185 P-38s fly a fighter sweep in front of the bomber forces without loss.
TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force): 550+ B-26s and A-20s direct main attacks against fuel and ammunition dumps, rail and highway communications, and armored division HQ S of the bridgehead on the Douve River; 1,400+fighters fly armed reconnaissance in the Valognes-Cherbourg area, the W part of the Cherbourg Peninsula, and along communications lines S to Loire; fighters also attack shipping between the Channel Islands and the Cherbourg Peninsula.
22 JUNE 1944
| STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): Because
of the attack on B-17s at Poltava, USSR, on yesterday's shuttle mission,
the B-17s at Mirgorod and P-51s at Piryatin are moved farther E; they are
to be returned to Mirgorod and Piryatin to be dispatched to bases in Italy
as soon as the weather permits; the move is fortunate as German bombers strike
both Piryatin and Mirgorod during the night of 22/23 Jun.
Mission 431: In a morning mission 85 of 108 B-17s and 132 of 194 B-24s attack 12 CROSSBOW (V-weapon) installations in the Pas de Calais area; 1 B-17s is lost; 64 B-17s and 59 B-24s are damaged; 10 airmen are MIA. Escort is provided by 165 P-47s and 97 P-51s; some of the support fighters strafe coastal defenses; 1 P-51 is lost and 2 P-47s are damaged beyond repair; 1 pilot is KIA and 1 MIA.
Mission 432: During the afternoon 797 bombers are dispatched to attack 22 targets in France and Belgium; 9 bombers are lost:
1. Of 319 B-17s dispatched, 76 hit Lille/Fimes marshalling yard, 69 hit Ghent/Maritime marshalling yard, 35 hit Rouen oil depot, 13 hit La Vaubaliers, 13 hit Furnes Airfield, 13 hit Tingry, 12 hit Abbeville, 12 hit a tank area N of Rouen, 12 hit Douai railroad, 11 hit Mazingarbe, 10 hit Pont a Vendin, 1 hits Douai railroad; 3 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 81 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA, 5 WIA and 29 MIA. Escort is provided by 108 P-47s; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft.
2. Of 149 B-24s, 46 hit Guyancourt/Caudron Airfield, 43 hit St Cyr Airfield, 36 hit Buc Airfield, 13 hit targets of opportunity and 5 hit Tours/La Riche bridge; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 67 B-24s are damaged; 1 airmen is KIA and 3 MIA. Escort is provided by 187 of 200 P-38s and 36 of 46 P-47s; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 5 P-38s are lost (pilots are MIA) and 1 damaged beyond repair.
3. Of 216 B-17s, 70 hit Nucourt V-weapon site, 38 hit Brie-Comte-Robert Sug, 33 hit Etampes Airfield, 11 hit Lieusant railroad, 11 hit Melun bridge and 11 hit Melun marshalling yard; they claim 1-0-0 Luftwaffe aircraft; 4 B-17s are lost, 1 damaged beyond repair and 187 damaged; 2 airmen are KIA and 30 MIA. Of 113 B-24s, 101 hit an oil dump at Paris and 1 hits Dreux Airfield; 2 B-24s are lost, 3 damaged beyond repair and 37 damaged; 1 airman is KIA, 2 WIA and 23 MIA. Escort is provided by 78 of 86 P-51s; 3 P-51s are lost (pilots are MIA).
4. 9 of 10 B-24s use Azon glide bombs against the Samur Bridge; escort is provided by 41 of 43 P-51s.
Mission 433: 1 B-17 flies a daylight leaflet mission to La Glacrie, France.
Mission 434: 9 of 9 B-17s drop leaflets in France and the Low Countries during the night.
10 B-24s fly CARPETBAGGER missions in France during the night.
TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force): In France, around 600 B-26s and A-20s and 1,200+ fighters fly missions during the day; the main effort consists of an attack on the tip of the Cherbourg Peninsula in support of the US VII Corps assault on the port of Cherbourg; beginning 1 hour before the ground attack and continuing until the attack begins fighters and fighter-bombers pound the whole area S of the city from low level; as the ground assault begins, B-26s and A-20s strike a series of strongpoints selected by the US First Army, forming a 55-minute aerial barrage moving N in advance of ground forces; later in the day B-26s attack marshalling yards, fuel dumps and a German HQ; fighter-bombers fly armed reconnaissance over various railroads and bomb rail facilities, trains, road traffic and gun emplacements; 25 fighter-bombers are lost during the day's operations.
25 JUNE 1944
| STRATEGIC OPERATIONS (Eighth Air Force): Mission
441: During the morning 658 bombers are dispatched to hit targets in France;
7 bombers are lost:
1. Of 263 B-17s, 104 hit Toulouse/Francazal Airfield, 72 hit Toulouse/Blangnac Airfield and 64 hit Montbartier oil depot; 5 B-17s are lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 114 damaged; 10 airmen are KIA, 5 WIA and 45 MIA. Escort is provided by 46 P-38s, 36 P-47s and 146 P-51s; they claim 10-0-1 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot is MIA).
2. Of 258 B-24s, 43 hit targets of opportunity, 23 hit Beuvry, 18 hit Mazingarbe, 12 hit Aube-sur-Risle, 12 hit Doullens, 12 hit La Vaupalier, 12 hit Peronne Airfield, 11 hit Amiens/St Maurice, 11 hit Calais, 11 hit Tingry, 10 hit Abbeville, 10 hit St Omer/Longuenesse, 8 hit Boulogne, 8 hit Holque, 7 hit Nunque, 7 hit Pont-a-Vendin, 2 hit Chocques; 1 B-24 is lost, 1 is damaged beyond repair and 26 damaged; 1 airman is KIA and 2 WIA. Escort is provided by 68 P-47s and 34 P-51s without loss.
3. Of 137 B-24s, 59 hit St Avord Airfield and 48 hit Bourge Airfield; 1 B-24 is lost; 10 airmen are MIA. Escort is provided by 102 P-38s and 44 P-47s; they claim 8-0-4 Luftwaffe aircraft without loss.
Mission 442: During the midday 463 bombers are dispatched to targets in France; 6 bombers are lost; escort is provided by 127 P-38s, 35 P-47s and 181 P-51s; they claim 4-0-3 Luftwaffe aircraft; 1 P-51 is lost (pilot is MIA):
1. Of 274 B-24s, 63 hit Villacoublay air depot, 35 hit Bretigny Airfield and 11 hit Buc Airfield; 5 B-24s are lost, 2 damaged beyond repair and 104 damaged; 11 airmen are KIA, 7 WIA and 59 MIA.
2. Of 189 B-17s, 70 hit Soigny Bridge, 38 hit Sens Bridge, 28 hit Clamecy, 21 hit Auxerre Bridge, 21 hit Nanteuil, 20 hit Nogent, 18 hit Orly Airfield, 13 hit Romilly-sur-Seine, 12 hit Folous, 12 hit Etampes/Mondesir Airfield and 3 hit Orly marshalling yard; 1 B-17 is lost and 20 damaged; 2 airmen are WIA and 19 MIA. 41 of 43 P-47s fly a flight-bomber mission against Evreux/Fauville landing ground.
In the USSR, B-17s and P-51s are flown, at daybreak, from dispersal bases to Poltava and Mirgorod and loaded and fueled with intentions of bombing the oil refinery at Drohobycz, Poland and proceed to base in Italy. Bad weather cancels the mission until the tomorrow. The aircraft return to dispersal bases for the night as precaution against air attacks.
24 B-24s fly CARPETBAGGER mission.
TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Ninth Air Force): In France, 400+ B-26s and A-20s hit fuel dumps at Foret d'Andaine, Foret d'Ecouves, and Senonches, and rail bridges at Cherisy, Chartres, Oiseme and Epernon; 14 fighter groups send aircraft on escort, and on armed reconnaissance and dive bombing missions over the Chartres, Dreux, Argentan, Tours, and Orleans areas; transports fly supply and evacuation missions; and HQ 50th Fighter Group and 10th and 81st Fighter Squadrons move from Lymington, England to Carentan with P-47s.
|Source: http://www.strandlab.com/usaaf/june44.html (en ligne en 2003).|
ANONYME, «The USAAF in the ETO. Combat Chronology: June 1944», in Skylighters. The Story of the 225th Searchlight Battalion From Omaha Beach to V-E Day. 1942-1945, http://www.strandlab.com/usaaf/june44.html, en ligne en 2003. [Comprenez The USA Air Force in the European Theatre of Operations; Searchlight signifie Projecteur].
Bernard GINESTE [éd.], «225e bataillon Searchlight: Bombardements d’Étampes-Mondésir les 14, 15, 22 et 25 juin 1944» [d’après le site searchlighters.com], in Corpus Étampois, http://www.corpusetampois.com/che-20-194406searchlighters.html, 2003.
Bernard GINESTE [éd.], «Paroisse Saint-Gilles: Liste des victimes du bombardement d’Étampes du 10 juin 1944», in Corpus Étampois, http://www.corpusetampois.com/che-20-19440610listedesvictimes.html, 2003.
Bernard GINESTE [éd.], «Robert Rameau: Étampes bombardé (7 clichés du 11 juin 1944)», in Corpus Étampois, http://www.corpusetampois.com/che-20-19440611guillon.html, 2003.
G.T. KELLEY, John HAGGERTY, Ray INGHAM, «Bombardement d’Étampes-Mondésir (Journaux de guerre des 532e, 533e et 535e escadrons de bombardiers, 1er août 1944)», in Corpus Étampois, http://www.corpusetampois.com/che-20-19440801mondesirbombarde.html, 2003.
Étampes et l’Aviation dans le Corpus Étampois
Bernard GINESTE, «Étampes et l’Aviation: quelques documents», in Corpus Étampois, http://www.corpusetampois.com/index-aviation.html, 2006.
Toute critique ou contribution seront les bienvenues. Any criticism or contribution welcome.