B-26 Marauder 320th Bomb Group

B-26 Marauders in formation

 

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Brief History

History of the 320th Bombardment Group from the
Department of the Air Force
.

 

Constituted as 320th Bombardment Group (Medium) on 19 June 1942.
Activated on 23 June 1942. Trained with B-26 aircraft. Most of the group moved to North Africa via England, August-December 1942. Crews flew their planes over the South Atlantic route and arrived in North Africa, December 1942-January 1943. Began combat with Twelfth AF in April 1943 and operated from bases in Algeria, Tunisia, Sardinia, and Corsica until November 1944. During the period from April to July 1943, flew missions against enemy shipping in the approaches to Tunisia, attacked installations in Sardinia, participated in the reduction of Pantelleria, and supported the invasion of Sicily. Then bombed marshalling yards, bridges, airdromes, road junctions, viaducts, harbors, fuel dumps, defense positions, and other targets in Italy. The 320th bomb group supported forces at Salerno and knocked out targets to aid the seizure of Naples and the crossing of the Volturno River. Flew missions to Anzio and Cassino and engaged in interdictory operations in central Italy in preparation for the advance toward Rome. Received the French Croix de Guerre with Palm for action in preparation for and in support of Allied offensive operations in central Italy, April through June 1944. Received a DUC for a mission on 12 May 1944 when, in the face of an intense anti-aircraft barrage, the group bombed enemy troop concentrations near Fondi in support of Fifth Army's advance toward Rome. From June to November 1944 operations included interdictory missions in the Po Valley, support for the invasion of Southern France, and attacks on enemy communications in northern Italy. Moved to France in November 1944 and bombed bridges, rail lines, gun positions, barracks, supply points, ammunition dumps, and other targets in France and Germany until V-E Day. Received a DUC for operations on 15 March 1945 when the group bombed pillboxes, trenches, weapon pits, and roads within the Siegfried Line to enable a breakthrough by Seventh Army. Moved to Germany in June 1945 and participated in the disarmament program. Returned to the US, November and December.
Inactivated on 4 Dec 1945.

Want to learn more?-Click on a base location

Mac Dill/ Drane, Florida(June '42 - Oct. '42)  

Tafaraoui, Algeria (Nov. '42 - April '43)

Montesquieu, Algeria (April '43 June '43)

Massicault, Tunisia (June '43 - July '43)

El Bathan/Djedeida, Tunisia (July '43 - Nov '43)  

Decimomannu, Sardinia (Nov. '43 - Sept '44)

Alto, Corsica (Sept. '44 - Nov. '44)

Dijon/Longvic, France (Nov. '44 - April '45)

Dole/Tavaux, France (April '45 - June '45)

Herzogenaurach, Germany (June '45 - Dec. '45)


Group and Squadron Diaries

 

Now being added are the Group, Squadron, and Wing Diaries associated with the 320th. One will need acrobat reader to view and print the files.

Free download of Acrobat Reader can be obtained here

 

1942

Month

320th BG

441st BS

442nd  BS

443rd BS

444th BS

42nd Bomb
Wing

304th
Air Service

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November

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December

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1943

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November

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1944

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1945

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August

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September

 

 

 

 

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Combat Statistics

Total combat missions
Sorties flown
Bomb tonnage dropped
Aircraft lost in combat
      Flak
      Enemy fighters

      Other
Enemy aircraft destroyed
      Air
      Ground

582
13,314
18,891
80
39
17
24
267
84
183

 

 

Accolades

 

Distinguished Unit Citation: 12 May 1944.

    In the face of an intense antiaircraft barrage, the 320th bombed enemy troop concetrations near Fondi in support of the Fifth Army's advance toward Rome.

Distinguished Unit Citation: 15 March 1945

    The Group bombed pillboxes, trenches, weapon pits, and roads within the Siegfried Line to enable a breakthrough by the Seventh Army.

 

French Croix De Guerre

Presented to the 42nd Medium Bomb Wing on 6 September 1944 for action in support of French Expeditinary Corps in central Italy, April-June, 1944.

 


[Mac Dill/Drane, Florida][Tafaraoui, Algeria][Montesquieu, Algeria][Massicault, Tunisia][El Bathan/Djedeida, Tunisia][Decimomannu, Sardinia][Alto, Corsica][Dijon, France][Dole, France][Germany]

 

 

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