Martin B-26G-20-MA Marauder
Squadron Code: FW-V
Crew Chief: S/Sgt. Bernard F. Hellige
Asst. Crew Chief: Cpl. George E. Allard
|I was radioman on Captain Jim Neff's crew during the mission to Magdeburg,
Germany. This was our crew's last combat mission, and my 42nd one since
we joined the Squadron in mid August of 1944. It was also one of the longest
missions flown by the Group. On this mission Captain Neff led the II-Box
of the Group's formation--the last of eleven bombing groups of the IX Bomb.
Division to support the 30th Inf. Div. and the 2nd Armored Division's attack
on the defended city. Our II-Box's TOT was 1440-1445; the ground forces
attacked within five minutes. The city on the Elbe River fell the following
day to the Ninth Army units.
The last sorties of #071/FW-V on April 19 were also the last combat
missions flown by the 387thBG during WWII. Two outstanding lead crews were
aboard #071 that day. They were:
– William J. Thompson, Jr., 556th Bomb. Squadron, B-26 Marauder Reference and Operations Guide, p. 68.