Up at 7:30
after a wonderful nights sleep, breakfast,
briefed at 10 o'clock, take off at 11:20,
left the field at 11:40 for a coordinated
raid with he 97th on the airports at Gabes.
The weather was perfect. We were loaded with
fragmentation bombs. There is six bombs to
each cluster and each bomb weighs 20 lb.
Loaded with 24 clusters making a total of
144 bombs in each ship, there was 46 planes
in the formation, and each bomb breaks up
into 1,000 fragments. The
raid was a success but we caught plenty of
hell from fighters and flak, one ship was
lost, one gunner killed and another injured
on another ship. Colonel
Walker led the formation. I led the 2nd
element with Capt. Thraler our new squadron
I was on the
raid yesterday when Kuncel, my tentmate,
came back from Algiers where he had been
having their ship repaired and he didn't
know whether to move in with me or not and
didn't until I got back. He
was really surprised at what I had done and
after looking around he decided that I had
built the best one in the Area. It
is cold and damp outside but very
warm and comfortable in here.
February 7, 1943
out on a test hop as first pilot.