The 94th Bombardment Group was a B-17 unit that took part in the US Strategic campaign over Germany from 1943 to the end of the war in Europe as well as directly supporting the D-Day landings and the land campaign in Europe.
The Group was activated in the United states in June 1942 and spent the next few months training to use the B-17 Flying Fortress before crossing the Atlantic in April-May 1943,
The group was one of five B-17s groups to officially become operational in May 1943 (forming the 4th Bombardment Wing), greatly increasing the strength of the Eighth Air Force, which had suffered when units were moved to North Africa to support Operation Torch. Its first combat mission came on 13 May and was an attack on a Luftwaffe base at St. Omer. After that the group took part in the strategic bombing campaign, attacking targets at St Nazaire, Kiel, Kassel, Hannover, Ludwigshafen, Frankfurt, Merseburg and Eberhausen along with many others. The group also took part in the 'Big Week' attack on the German aircraft industry (20-25 February 1944).
The group suffered heavy losses on 13 June 1943 when nine aircraft were lost during an attack on the U-boat yards at Kiel.
The group was awarded a Distinguished Unit Citation for its role in an attack on the aircraft factory on Regensburg on 17 August 1943. Only one aircraft was lost during the raid.
The group was awarded a second Distinguished Unit Citation for its role in an attack on an aircraft parts factory in Brunswick on 11 January 1944, pressing home the attack despite a combination of bad weather, heavy flak defences and persistent Luftwaffe attacks.
The 94th also took part in a number of tactical missions. It was used to attack V-weapon sites, airfields and coastal targets in the build-up to D-Day. On 6 June it was used to attack German troops in Normandy. In July it supported the American troops fighting at St Lo and in August it took part in the fighting at Brest.
The group helped support Operation Market-Garden, the attempt to cross the Rhine at Arnhem. It was used to attack German transport links and airfields close to the German lines during the Battle of the Bulge. Finally it attacked transport links during the crossing of the Rhine and the advance into Germany.
After the end of the fighting the group was used to drop leaflets over Germany. It returned to the United States in December 1945 and was inactivated in the month.
|The Schweinfurt-Regensburg Mission, Martin Middlebrook. A very detailed account of the costly American daylight raids on Regensburg and Schweinfurt of 17 August 1943, a pair of maximum effort attacks that were meant to cripple parts of German industry but instead made it clear that even the heavily armed B-17 Flying Fortress couldn't operate without fighter escort. [read full review]|
1942-1945: Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress
|28 January 1942||Constituted as 94th Bombardment Group (Heavy)|
|15 June 1942||Activated|
|April-May 1943||To England and Eighth Air Force|
|December 1945||To United States|
|21 December 1945||Inactivated|
Col John G Moore:
Col Frederick W Castle: Jun 1943
Col Charles B Dougher: 17 Apr 1944
Col Nicholas T Perkins: 16 Mar 1945
Lt Col Ernest B Maxwell: 3 Jun 1945-unkn.
MacDill Field, Fla: 15 Jun
Pendleton Field, Ore: c. I Jul 1942
Davis-Monthan Field, Ariz: Aug 1942
Biggs Field, Tex: 1 Nov 1942
Pueblo AAB, Colo: Jan-Apr 1943
Earls Colne, Essex, England: May 1943
Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England: 15 Jun 1943-c. 12 Dec 1945
Camp Kilmer, NJ: c. 20-21 Dec 1945.
331st Bombardment Squadron: 15 June 1942-29 November 1945
332nd Bombardment Squadron: 15 June 1942-15 December 1945
333rd Bombardment Squadron: 15 June 1942-1 December 1945
410th Bombardment Squadron: 15 June 1942-19 December 1945
1943-February 1944: 4th Bombardment Wing; 3rd Air Division; VIII Bomber Command; Eighth Air Force
February 1944-1945: 4th Bombardment Wing; 3rd Air Division; Eighth Air Force; US Strategic Air Forces Europe
1945: 14th Bombardment Wing; 2nd Air Division; Eighth Air Force