Mission#44 November 13, 1943 – Target: Bremen – Lt John H. Winder’s Purple Heart.

Date: Nov 13, 43

Dispatched: 39 Aborts: 7

Mission: Withdrawal support to 3rd Div 180 B-17’s. Field Order: 180

Time Up/Down: 10:51 hrs 14:03 hrs Leader: Major Duncan

Target: Bremen

Claims Air: 00-00-01 Claims Ground: 00-00-00 Lost/Damaged: 00-02

Made landfall at Egmond 8 minutes early at 25,000ft at 11:55 bombers were seen to the right believed to be in the vicinity of Neuhaus escorted by P-38’s. Before takeoff, Wing advised our R/V same place but 43 minutes later than briefed which would make our R/V time 12:09 hrs to meet the 3rd Air Division rather than the 1st. Major Duncan proceeded on course arriving at R/V at 12:08 hrs where turn was made. No bombers seen. Smoke pots seen in the target area. At 12:07 hrs, one pilot received call bombers 26 minutes from target and being attacked flying course 254 degrees. Came out attempting to catch bombers. One complete turn was made at approximately Neuhaus, another approximately Dalfsen where contrails seen to the rear were believed to have been made by the bombers. Left enemy coast at Ijmuiden at 13:15 hrs at 25,000ft. One pilot returning early with two others engaged 2 Fw190s in the vicinity of Meppen who had rockets and belly tanks. These e/a were about to attack B17s from 5-7 o’clock below. Attack dispersed. 1 e/a damaged. The same pilot saw 20+ Me109s seen at 22,000ft flying parallel and below course of the bombers with P-38 escort seen above bombers 10 miles south of Emmen. This pilot attacked by flight of these Me109s who evaded by hitting the deck shooting a locomotive on the way out believed to be at Coevoiden. Radio whine was extremely intense, interfered with reception. Was able to contact bombers on C channel. Intense flak seen in distance in target area also in Haarlem area. Only Major Duncan of the Group HQ participated in the mission. 2nd Lt. John H. Winder of the 350th made an emergency landing at Hardwick because of a shoulder wound.

350th: Major Rimerman. T/U 10:54 hrs. T/D 14:05 hrs. Total flight time 03:11 hrs. No R/V made with bombers. One force of bombers sighted covered by P-38s. Others failed to show up. When Red flight leader aborted, Lt. Dinse, Red three, took over. Red two, Lt. Hart, dropped behind leaving Lt. Dinse and Lt. Winder Red four as the only element in Red flight. Dinse and Winder dropped behind to give Hart protection but couldn’t see Hart. By that time it was too late to catch up with the rest of the Squadron so Dinse started back with Winder as wing man. Dinse sighted B17s at 24,000ft and P38 escort at 28,000ft. Also sighted 20 plus Me109s at about 22,500ft flying parallel course of bombers. 2 Fw190s below and to rear at 22,000ft were positioning themselves for an attack on B17s. Dinse bounced these with wing man damaging second FW10 seeing strikes on wings. Action took place vicinity of Meppen at 12:00 hrs. Dinse closed to 50 yards. The e/a had rockets and belly tank. When Dinse pulled up he was 3000ft above Lt Winder and saw that Winder had 5 Me109s on his tail. Gave Winder this information on R/T causing him to break. Dinse dived through the formation of Me109s breaking them up. After hitting the deck Dinse fired on a lone locomotive observing strikes. Vicinity of Coevorden. Extensive battle damage sustained by Dinse’s ship. Lt. Winder reported down at Hardwick suffering from wounds. Plane is to be inspected to determine extent of damage. Weather 8/10 cloud over enemy territory. No sea or ground activities observed.

Major Ben Rimerman (Sqdn Ldr)
1st Lt Charles O. Durant
1st Lt Robert N. Ireland
2nd Lt Chauncey Rowan
Capt Dewey E. Newhart (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Robert S. Hart
1st Lt Charles W. Dinse LH-O 42-74669
2nd Lt John H. Winder (wounded) LH-N 42-22475
Capt Stanley R. Pidduck (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Carl W. Mueller
1st Lt John Sullivan
1st Lt Roland N. McKean
1st Lt John L. Devane (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt John Zolner
1st William W. Odom
1st Lt Joseph F. Furness

1st Lt. Charles W. Dinse’s combat report:

Red 2 couldn’t keep up so I took my wing man back to give him protection. We couldn’t find Red 2 and by this time it was too late to catch up with the Squadron, so we turned back for home. I saw some B17’s at approximately 27,500ft, with P-38 escort above. I saw 20 + Me109’s at about 25000ft, flying parallel to the course of the bombers, and 2 Fw190’s were below us and to the rear of the bombers at about 24000ft, positioning themselves for an attack on the bombers. I bounced these with my wing man, pressing my attack on the second Fw190 to about 50 yards. I saw strikes on the right wing. The e/a had rocket guns and a belly tank. When I pulled up I was 3,000ft above my wing man, and saw that he had 5 Me109’s on his tail. I told him to break over the R/T, which he did, and then I dived through the Me109’s breaking up their formation. I was flying in cloud to evade the attack of Me109’s. After getting in a large cumulus cloud, I split ‘S’d for the deck. On the route out I fired two long bursts at a lone locomotive, observing strikes in the vicinity of the locomotive.

1st Lt. Charles W. "Chuck" Dinse of the 350th FS. (353rd FG Archive)

1st Lt. Charles W. “Chuck” Dinse of the 350th FS. (353rd FG Archive)

Dinse was flying Bill Tanner’s “Prudence” which was badly shot up in the action an occurance that annoyed its owner immensely.

Battle damage to the prop of LH-O (a/c 42-74669) flown by Lt. Dinse. (353rd FG Archive)

Battle damage to the prop of LH-O (a/c 42-74669) flown by Lt. Dinse. (353rd FG Archive)

Lt Bill Tanner was apparently not pleased that his aircraft LH-O "Prudence" was damaged while on loan to Chuck Dinse for the mission. (353rd FG Archive)

Lt Bill Tanner was apparently not pleased that his aircraft LH-O “Prudence” was damaged while on loan to Chuck Dinse for the mission. (353rd FG Archive)

Dinse’s wing man, 2nd Lt. John H. “Jack” Winder, was in even more trouble:

I noticed 20 plus e/a at 10 o’clock to us or 3,000ft above and about 5 to 6000 yards away. I reported these facts and as we started our attack we observed 3 Fw190’s heading for the bombers. We shifted our bounce to the Fw190’s and on the way down an Me109 got on my leaders tail. I turned into him and fired a short burst- e/a broke to the deck; no strikes seen. A Me109 flew directly across my line of flight and I turned to get on his tail losing sight of my element leader. I was bounced by several e/a receiving shell fragments in my left shoulder. I broke for the deck but was unable to lose the e/a until I leveled out at 4,000ft and ducked into a cloud. The e/a followed me for approximately 30 minutes until I finally lost them in a large cloud. When I finally broke through I was nearing the coast, north of the Zuider Zee. Between clouds I observed 2 Me109’s preparing to deliver an attack so I waited until they were almost within range and then turned into them. I fired a short burst from head on and they broke off the attack. I continued home without further incident.

Winder’s aircraft was severely damaged in the attack and he had to nurse it back to land at Hardwick. The damage proved so bad that the aircraft was sent for salvage. Lt. Winder was awarded the Purple Heart for the shoulder wound he received in the action.

Battle damage to the tail of LH-N (a/c 42-22475) flown by Lt. Winder (353rd FG Archive)

Battle damage to the tail of LH-N (a/c 42-22475) flown by Lt. Winder (353rd FG Archive)

Damage to the other side of LH-N November 13, 1943 (353rd FG Archive)

Damage to the other side of LH-N November 13, 1943 (353rd FG Archive)

LH-N (a/c 42-22475) "Kalamazoo Gal" was actually the aircraft of Lt Melvin Dawson who was from Kalamazoo, Michigan. He later flew a replacement LH-N "Kalamazoo Gal II" a/c 42-76294 (353rd FG Archive)

LH-N (a/c 42-22475) “Kalamazoo Gal” was actually the aircraft of Lt Melvin Dawson who was from Kalamazoo, Michigan. He later flew a replacement LH-N “Kalamazoo Gal II” a/c 42-76294 (353rd FG Archive)

Although Lt. Winder's aircraft had taken a great deal of punishment, he was still able to make an emergency landing at Hardwick (353rd FG Archive)

Although Lt. Winder’s aircraft had taken a great deal of punishment, he was still able to make an emergency landing at Hardwick (353rd FG Archive)

Damage inside the cockpit of LH-N (353rd FG Archive)

Damage inside the cockpit of LH-N (353rd FG Archive)

Another photo of damage (to the right of the shot) inside the cockpit of LH-N (353rd FG Archive)

Another photo of damage (to the right of the shot) inside the cockpit of LH-N (353rd FG Archive)

After he had recovered from his wounds and return to his Squadron, Lt Winder was awarded the Purple Heart by Col. Murray C. Woodbury of the 66th Fighter Wing in January 1944. Lt Winder went on to fly two tours of duty with the 350th FS.

After he had recovered from his wounds and returned to his Squadron, Lt Winder was awarded the Purple Heart by Col. Murray C. Woodbury of the 66th Fighter Wing in January 1944. Lt Winder went on to fly two tours of duty with the 350th FS.

351st: Major Christian. T/U 10:50 hrs. T/D 14:15 hrs.Total flight time 03:25 hrs. Route: In at Egmond to Bremen without making R/V. Out at Harlem.

Major Shannon Christian (Sqdn Ldr)
2nd Lt John G. Treitz
Capt Frederick H. Lefebre
1st Lt George N. Ahles
Capt Walter C. Beckham
2nd Lt Herbert K. Field
1st Lt William J. Maguire
1st Lt David C. Kenney
1st Lt Gordon B. Compton
2nd Lt Don M. Hurlburt
2nd Lt Harry D. Milligan
2nd Lt Richard D. Stanley
2nd Lt George F. Perpente
F/O Cletus Peterson
2nd Lt Edgar J. Albert
2nd Lt Irving Toppel

352nd: Major Duncan. T/U 10:51 hrs. T/D 13:56 hrs. Total flight time 03:05 hrs. Squadron made landfall at 11:41 hrs, eight minutes early. Sighted bombers 15 miles south in vicinity of Emmen. Reached target at 12:06 hrs. Made landfall out at 13:15 hrs. Did not escort the group of bombers seen because they were not positively identified as being Third Bomb Division.

Major Glenn E. Duncan (Gp & Sqdn Ldr)
1st Lt Leroy W. Ista
1st Lt Leslie P. Cles
2nd Lt Hildreth R. Owens
Major William B. Bailey (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt. James N. Poindexter
1st Lt Edward M. Fogarty
2nd Lt William S. Marchant
Capt Raynor E. Robertson (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Wilton W. Johnson
1st Lt Robert P. Geurtz
2nd Lt Victor L. Vogel
1st Lt Thomas J. Forkin (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt William J. Jordan
1st Lt William F. Streit
2nd Lt Russell E. Moriarty

Group Aborts/ERTNS/Battle damaged:

42-8393 ABT   radio went dead LH-Q Capt.   Newhart
42-8687 ABT   radio out SX-R
42-[2]8390 ABT   pilot illness SX-I?
42-8376 ERTN   escort SX-Q
42-22475 BD Cat   B LH-N Lt.   Winder
42-74669 BD Cat   B LH-O Lt.   Dinse
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