I am on the Board of Directors for the National Eighth Air Force Historical Society. Our annual reunion will be held in Kansas City this October. We are featuring a special symposium this year about the famous mission Kassel Mission flown on September 27, 1944.
On that day, the 8th Air Force suffered it's largest single one Group / one day loss of the entire European aerial campaign. The 445th Bomb Group lost 25 aircraft in a matter of just a few minutes near Kassel, Germany.
In the mayhem of the attack, the 445th BG Commander screamed for allied fighter cover. They were all alone and were under attack by numerous Luftwaffe fighters. Pilots of the 375th Fighter Squadron answered the call and flew to the rescue of the American Liberators.
Would anyone have any information in regards to the pilots that participated on that mission. Even better, would anyone have any information if any are still with us today?? The Kassel Mission Memorial Association would like to invite any surviving pilots to be a part of there last reunion. I personally would like to invite a participating 375th FS pilot that flew that mission to join our symposium panel.
The symposium will be moderated by myself and Roger Freeman. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
8th AFHS Board of Directors
Mark, are you sure you're asking about the correct squadron?
Reason I ask is,in that fight, the 376th shot down 18 (and I believe later revised to 21) of which Bill Beyer shot down 5 to become the groups only 'ace in a day'.
The 376ths scoring was;
Some of those could be subject to correction but the 376th did the scoring that day of the Kassel mission, not the 375th.
Of those pilots, Bill Beyer and Bob Volkman are still with us, not sure about all the rest.
Thank you very much for your response. I really appreciate it. I am terribly sorry for the mistake Craig. You are correct, it was the 376th FS, not the 375th.
I have Mr. Beyer's address and will contact him.
Do you know if the 361st FGA is going to meet this fall??? Thank you for all your help Craig.
Mark, the group is meeting this year in Orlando.
The dates are OCt. 17-21
Best Western Lake Buena Vista
2000 Hotel Plaza Blvd
Buena Vista Fl
Be happy to send you a copy of the info if you send me your mail addy.
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org