Mission#23 and #24 September 22, 1943 – Capt. Charles J. Hoey and Lt. Jesse W. Gonnam Claims

Date: Sept 22, 43

Dispatched: 43 Aborts: 3

Mission: Rodeo Sweep Field Order: 3/138b

Time Up/Down: 11:25 hrs 13:13 hrs Leader: Major Duncan

Target: Dutch Islands

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

Group made landfall at Zandvoort, 28,000ft, 12:11 hrs. Continued on course and made right turn to the west of Utrecht to 20 miles south east of Rotterdam where Major Duncan heard on the radio that the 352nd Fighter Squadron were engaged. Made 180 degree turn flying to Boskof. Unable to locate engagement so a turn to the south was made at Gravendeel, turning right at this point coming out at Westhoofd, 27,000ft, 12.35 hrs. Just after the Group made landfall at Zandvoort, eight e/a were observed flying due west at 8 o’clock. Maj. Duncan believed these to be decoys which later proved to be correct, because the 352nd FS were bounced from 4 o’clock at Schoonhaven by 6 Me109s painted dark gray. They turned into them and engaged in combat, destroying tow Me109s. Just in the vicinity of Gilze Rijen, one flight of the 350th FS were bounced by 12 + e/a who were flying 2 to 3,000ft above in trail. One aircraft went down on the deck and returned home. Three other aircraft landed at North Coates. Just off Antwerp 351st FS were bounced by 4 Me109Gs painted with white bellies who came out of the sun at 31,500ft. Maj. Christian immediately broke up sun thereby causing e/a to undershoot. E/a continued on down and were not seen again. Two Me109s destroyed, one by Capt. Charles J. Hoey and one by 1st Lt. Jesse W. Gonnam, both 352nd FS. Capt. Rose and Capt Stafford of the HQ participated.

350th: Major Duncan. T/U 11:22 hrs. T/D 13:10 hrs. Total flight time 1:48 hrs. Squadron made landfall over Zandvoort and swept east of Rotterdam. E/A were sighted 20 miles east of Rotterdam. Red flight (Lt. Hurst) were bounced by 12 plus bandits. A 109 got on the tail of Lt. Tanner flying wing to Lt Hurst. He had to dive from 30,000 to 6,000 ft to escape and came out on the deck. Flight was split up, one plane coming home on the deck, and three planes landing at N Coates. No claims or battle damage were made.

Major Glenn E. Duncan (Sqdn Ldr)
1st Lt John B. Rose
1st Lt John L. Devane
2nd Lt John Zolner
Capt Stanley R. Pidduck (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt Melvin P. Dawson
1st Lt William W. Odom
2nd Lt Joseph Rosenberg
1st Lt Wilford F. Hurst (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt William F. Tanner
2nd Lt William J. Price
2nd Lt Robert C. Peters Pipeful 53
Capt Robert E. Fortier (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Charles O. Durant
1st Lt John Sullivan
2nd Lt Roland N. McKean
1st Lt Charles W. Dinse
1st Lt Robert L. Newman
2nd Lt Joseph F. Furness

351st: Major Christian. T/U 11:17 hrs. T/D 13:11 hrs. Total flight time 1:54 hrs. Route in at Zandavoort, Utrecht, Antwerp and out at Niewe Sluis.

Major Shannon Christian (Sqdn Ldr)
2nd Lt Herbert K. Field
1st Lt Frank N. Emory
2nd Lt Francis L. Edwards
Capt Walter C. Beckham (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt Gordon B. Compton
1st Lt William J. Maguire
2nd Lt Edgar J. Albert
Capt Jack R. Walsh (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Lloyd A. Thornell
Capt Charles L. Stafford
2nd Lt Richard D. Stanley
1st Lt Vernon A. Leatherman

352nd: Major Bailey. T/U 11:32 hrs. T/D13:14 hrs. Total flight time 1:42 hrs. Course: Zandvoort, Utrecht, Antwerp, Nievwesluis. After being bounced by Me109s at Schoonhaven, Capt. Hoey and Lt. Gonnam claimed one Me109 destroyed each. Flight plan as per Squadron records.

Major William B. Bailey (Sqdn Ldr)
Blue#2 2nd Lt Wilton W. Johnson
1st Lt Charles W. Kipfer
White#3 1st Lt Jesse W. Gonnam
Blue#4 2nd Lt Clifford F. Armstrong
Blue#1 Capt Charles J. Hoey (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt George S. Dietz
2nd Lt Donald J. Corrigan
Blue#3 1st Lt Clinton H. Sperry
2nd Lt Victor L. Vogel
2nd Lt Edison G. Stiff

Date: Sept 22, 43

Dispatched: 38 Aborts: 3

Mission: Sweep (2nd mission) Field Order: 139/4

Time Up/Down: 15:10 hrs     16:41 hrs Leader: Major Duncan

Target: Lille/Ghent

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

Group made landfall at Furness, 28,000ft, 15:46 hrs. Came in behind the 352nd FG. Flew over Lille, Ghent and out north of Knocke 27,000ft, 16:02 hrs. No e/a or flak seen – no flak. Small fast boat going east of Flushing.

350th: Major Rimerman. T/U 15:17 hrs. T/D 17:35 hrs. Total flight time 2:18 hrs. Squadron led by Major Rimerman left English coast about 12,000ft and entered enemy coast at 27,000ft between Ostend and Blankenburgue. Swept south to Lille, made left turn and on to Ghent, left turn and went north to northwest coast. They proceeded along coast to about Knocke and then out at Niewe Sluis. Visibility unlimited. No E/A. No flak.

Major Ben Rimerman (Sqdn Ldr)
2nd Lt William F. Tanner
1st Lt John L. Devane
2nd Lt John Zolner
Capt Robert E. Fortier (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Charles O. Durant
1st Lt John Sullivan
2nd Lt Roland N. McKean
Capt Stanley R. Pidduck (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt Wayne K. Blickenstaff
1st Lt Charles W. Dinse
2nd Lt Dwight A. Fry
1st Lt Robert L. Newman
2nd Lt Joseph F. Furness

351st: Major Duncan. T/U 15:10 hrs. T/D 16:40 hrs. Total flight time 1:30 hrs. Route in south Walchern Island, Ghent, Courtrai and came out at Furness.

Major Glenn E. Duncan (Gp & Sqdn Ldr)
2nd Lt Benedict E Kraft
1st Lt William R. Burkett
2nd Lt Harold J. Morris
1st Lt Vernon A. Leatherman (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Richard D. Stanley
1st Lt William J. Maguire
2nd Lt Edgar J. Albert
Capt Jack R. Walsh (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Lloyd A. Thornell
1st Lt Vic L. Byers
2nd Lt Jack Terzian

352nd: Major Bailey. T/U 15:17 hrs. T/D 16:45 hrs. Total flight time 1:28 hrs. Course: Furness, Lille, Ghent, Niewe Sluis. Flight plan as per Squadron records.

Major William B. Bailey (Sqdn Ldr)
Capt Charles J. Hoey (Flt Ldr)
2nd Lt Donald J. Corrigan
1st Lt Robert P. Geurtz
1st Lt James N. Poindexter
2nd Lt George S. Dietz
1st Lt Wilbert H. Juntilla (Flt Ldr)
1st Lt Leslie P. Cles
2nd Lt Wilton W. Johnson
1st Lt William F. Streit
2nd Lt Victor L. Vogel
2nd Lt Clifford F. Armstrong
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