Date: Nov 25, 43
Dispatched: 52 Aborts: 0 Mission: Dive bombing Field Order: 190
Time Up/Down 10:24 hrs 12:08 hrs Leader: Lt Col. McCollom
Target: St Omer/Ft Rouge Airfield
Claims Air: 00-00-00 Claims Ground: 00-00-00 Lost/Damaged: 01-06
16 aircraft from the 351st carried a 500 lb bomb fused 1/10 second nose, 1/100 second tail [first fighter bomber mission for the Group]. 350th Squadron and 352nd Squadron acted as close cover [with the 78th as high cover]. R/V with the 78th A & B Group was made at Cape Gris New at 11:02 hrs. The 351st Squadron with bombs were at 15,000ft, 350th Squadron at 17,000ft and the 352nd Squadron at 20,000ft. Course was flown to IP approximately 5 miles south of the target. After a left turn the bomb run was made from 14,000ft. Bombs released from 8 to 10,000ft. Most bombing believed to be short of the target and south of the airdrome, but 3 hits seen on the south dispersal. Out enemy coast at Cape Gris Nez, 11:17 hrs 12,000ft. Just prior to reaching the IP Lt Col. McCollom’s A/C received a direct hit by flak in the belly of the A/C. The skin of the belly was torn away from the cowling to the tail. A/C made two complete turns to the right and chute was seen to open approximately four miles east of Lumbres. 14 A/C dropped bombs and one jettisoned in Channel. No E/A seen. Flak intense from enemy coast to the target, accurate for altitude and direction. 6 ships of the bombing squadron suffered flak damage. Weather: Clear en route to Channel where 6/10 strata cumulus breaking to 2/10 over the Coast and target area. Extensive stratocumulus decks seen to north and south of the target. 2/10 altocumulus at 13,000ft. Visibility good.
350th: Major Rimerman. T/U 10:24 hrs. T/D 12:07 hrs. Total flight time 1:43 hrs. Squadron entered enemy coast at 17,500ft at Cape Gris Nez. Swept south of target. At IP one plane was hit by flak, parachute seen to open. Flak heavy and accurate as to height and lead. No e/a seen. Weather: low cloud at 7 to 10,000ft 7/10. Visibility: Horizontal unlimited.
|1st Lt||Joseph F.||Furness|
|1st Lt||Wayne K.||Blickenstaff|
|Capt||Wilford F.||Hurst||(Flt Ldr)|
|2nd Lt||William F.||Tanner|
|1st Lt||Melvin P.||Dawson|
|2nd Lt||Richard A.||Stearns|
|Capt||Stanley R.||Pidduck||(Flt Ldr)|
|2nd Lt||Walter L.||Angelo|
|1st Lt||John L.||Devane|
|1st Lt||John||Sullivan||(Flt Ldr)|
|1st Lt||Roland N.||McKean|
|1st Lt||Robert N.||Ireland|
|Capt||Dewey E.||Newhart||(Flt Ldr)|
|1st Lt||Francis T.||Walsh|
|1st Lt||William W.||Odom|
351st: Lt Col McCollom. T/U 10:16 hrs. T/D 12:01 hrs. Total flight time 1:45 hrs. Route: In N of Cape Gris Nez, south of St Omer, out at Blanc Nez.
|Lt Col||Loren G.||McCollom||(Sqdn & Gp Ldr)||YJ-S||42-8395|
|2nd Lt||Herbert K.||Field|
|1st Lt||Frank N.||Emory|
|2nd Lt||Francis L.||Edwards|
|Capt||Frederick H.||Lefebre||(Flt Ldr)|
|2nd Lt||John G.||Treitz|
|1st Lt||David C.||Kenney|
|1st Lt||George N.||Ahles|
|Major||Glenn E.||Duncan||(Flt Ldr)|
|1st Lt||Gordon B.||Compton|
|2nd Lt||George F.||Perpente|
|1st Lt||William J.||Maguire||(Flt Ldr)|
|2nd Lt||Richard D.||Stanley|
|1st Lt||Francis N.||King|
|2nd Lt||William T.||Thistlethwaite||(Spotter)|
1st Lt. Frank N. Emory was flying second element in Lt. Col. McCollom’s flight:
I was flying Roughman White three, in Lt. Col. McCollom’s flight. As we neared our I.P., we closed formation and throttled back to slow up. As we came into position for the attack, Lt. Col. McCollom nodded his head to me and started to turn onto the target. Heavy flack [sic] was bursting close around us, and one evidently hit the Colonel’s plane in the engine.
There was a large black and orange flash, and most of the fuselage skin was either burnt off or blown away. The forward two-thirds of the fuselage was burning fiercely. The Colonel reversed his roll, turning into me, and rolling on his back. I could see into the lower part of the cockpit thru the open sides of the airplane. The canopy had turned a dirty orange color so that I could not see what condition the Colonel was in.
I barely managed to get out of his way as he rolled on his back. I did not see his canopy open, and assumed he had been killed. His bomb was still intact and in normal position.
I turned back onto the target as soon as I could, so did not see him or the airplane after it passed behind me.
1st Lt William J Maguire was able to confirm that the Colonel managed to bail out of his stricken aircraft:
I was leading Roughman Yellow flight as we neared the target, called my flight close in and put my attention on the lead flight.
The lead flight, led by Lt. Col. McCollom, pulled up for its dive on to the target. As the flight pulled up there was a blinding flash in the middle of the flight and the Colonel’s plane pulled up and rolled to the right out of his flight in flames. The plane did a two turn spin and then I saw a chute open behind and to the left of the ship.
Chute looked OK and looked like it was going to land just outside the town of Lumbres south of the target.
All the members of my flight saw the Colonel’s chute open, Lt. Stanley #2, Lt. King #3, and Lt. Toppel #4.
352nd: Capt. Raynor E. Robertson. T/U 10:27 hrs. T/D 12:08 hrs. Total flight time 1:41 hrs. [Mission report missing]
|Capt||Raynor E.||Robertson||(Sqdn Ldr)|
|1st Lt||James N.||Poindexter|
|2nd Lt||Edison G.||Stiff|
|1st Lt||Edward M.||Fogarty||(Flt Ldr)|
|1st Lt||Leroy W.||Ista|
|1st Lt||Leslie P.||Cles|
|2nd Lt||William S.||Marchant|
|1st Lt||Thomas J.||Forkin||(Flt Ldr)|
|1st Lt||William J.||Jordan|
|1st Lt||Robert A.||Newman|
|2nd Lt||Glenn G.||Callans|
|1st Lt||Jesse W.||Gonnam||(Flt Ldr)|
|1st Lt||Gordon L.||Willits|
|1st Lt||Gordon S.||Burlingame|
|1st Lt||Charles W.||Kipfer|
|2nd Lt||Clifford F.||Armstrong||(Spare)|
Group Losses/Battle Damaged:
|42-74671||BD Cat A||YJ-T||“Diseron”|
|42-22483||BD Cat A||YJ-G||“Rabbit”|
|42-8002||BD Cat A||YJ-E||“Sis”|
|42-8402||BD Cat AC||YJ-F||“Devil’s Thumb”|
|42-8401||BD Cat A||YJ-R||“Dottie”|