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LT  John W. SIMMONS

UNIT: 350th BOMB Sqdn POSITION: CP
SERIAL #: John W. STATUS: KIA
MACR: 08843 CR: 08843

Comments1: 3 SEP 44 BREST GUNS (EXP - CS)

COMMENTS & NOTES

MEMO 1:

CREW

2ND LT JOHN E. DAVID                      P KIA 3 SEP 44  BREST
2ND LT JOHN W. SIMMONS             CP KIA 3 SEP 44  BREST
2ND LT THERON J. STOOKESBERRY NAV KIA 3 SEP 44  BREST
2ND LT EDWARD J. MIKOL            BOM RFS  Grounded after 27 Missions  (See Goethel record for and amazing saga of
S/SGT HENRY J. HENDRICKSON        ROG REC 3 SEP 44 BREST              bravery & endurance in the North Sea)
S/SGT FRANK BARILI, JR                TTE KIA 3 SEP 44  BREST
   SGT CLARENCE E. WOOD            BTG POW
   SGT FRANK E. YATES                  LWG WIA 7 JUN 44    NANTES 
   SGT WALTER E. POTTER             RWG KIA 3 SEP 44  BREST
   SGT FRANCIS J. WALDSCHMIDT       TG KIA 3 SEP 44  BREST

350th Sqdn.. Crew, as above, joined the 100th on 26 May 1944. When this crew joined the 100th on 26/5/44, Lt Edward J.Mikol  was the bombardier, Sgt.Clarence E.Wood the ball turret gunner, and Sgt.Frank E.Yates a waist Gunner.  Sgt Frank Yates was wounded in action on 7 Jun 44 and fill in gunners were used until crew was reduced to nine men. Fill in Gunners and missions:

SGT P.J. HAHN (spare gunners pool)
12 JUN 44  ROSIERES & DUNKIRK SHORE DEFENSES
15 JUN 44  WILSTER
19 JUN 44  CORME ECLUSE 

S/SGT FRANCIS X. KERIN (from Lt Delbert Pearson Crew)
20 JUN 44 FALLERSLEBEN
21 JUN 44 RUHLAND
26 JUN 44 DROHOBYCZ

S/SGT H. LECAT (spare gunners pool)
3  JUL 44 ARAD, RUMANIA

SGT CLARENCE F. CHERRY (from the crew of Lt Julian Rogers)
11 JUL 44 MUNICH
12 JUL 44 MUNICH
14 JUL MAQUIS SUPPLY DROP
17 JUL 44 AUXERRE
18 JUL 44 KIEL 
24 JUL 44 ST LO

CREW REDUCED TO 9 MEN ON 25 JUL 44 MISSION TO ST LO. 
 
On 3 Sep 44 this crew went down in the North Sea. Lt Mikol, Sgts Yates and Sgt Wood were not aboard. Hendrickson was picked up by British sea boat and returned to Thorpe Abbotts. The six men KIA are memorialized on the Wall of the Missing at the Brittany American Cemetery.
Lt John D. Goethel, from the W.G.Stansbury crew, was aboard in place of E.J. Mikol and was rescued . S/Sgt CARL FONG was aboard in place of Wood and was also rescued. Lt Goethel became the crews Bombardier starting 14 Aug 44 mission to Ludwigshaven. 

Diary compliments of Lucy Hughes (11/30/2004):
I have come into possession of a diary written by someone from this crew (John E. David crew), but frustratingly there is no name. It is, however, a fascinating record of all the crew's missions until they went down on 3rd Sep '44. Here's the first part just to see if anyone recognises any names. . . 
Mike Faley observation (12/1/2004):

There is only ONE choice for the writer of this log based on the excerpt you posted. Based on the loans owed and the fact the diary ends after 31 missions, it really comes down to  S/SGT FRANK BARILI, JR TTE . The reason for this deduction is that the opening of the diary has them going to the Walsh for gunnery practice, that would eliminate the officers. That leaves the enlisted men and based on process of elimination from the loans, that leaves S/Sgt Barili. 

Left Camp Kilmer, New Brunswick, New Jersey, April 22 1944. Boarded that date. 
Sailed from New York N. Y. April 23 1944 on the British Merchantman “Arawa” 14. 000 tons. 
Docked on May 6 1944 at Liverpool, England. 
First Base in England; Nelson Hall, about 3 miles from Stone, about 40 miles South East of Liverpool. Building look as if they were formerly used to house women war workers: and are fairly new. 
Left Nelson Hall 5-12-44 went to gunnery school at the “Wash” near Snettisham Eng. Lived in tents. Left gunnery school 5. 27. 44. 
Came to the 100 bomb group the 350 bomb squadron. 
Base is about 18 miles SSW of Norwich Eng. 
Made my first mission on June 2 1944. Bombed coastal guns in Pas de Calais area just north of Boulougn (sic. ). It was the milk run of all milk runs. Flak was seen a long way off. 
ON JULY 26 WE GOT A SEVEN DAY FLAK LEAVE. 
Went to the rest home which was three miles east of Worcester. Its name was Spetchley Park. It was a beautiful old home build (sic) in the middle of the 19th Century. Lot of pictures and a hugh (sic) library, also had a suit of armour valued at more than £400. Met the very nicest bunch of Red Cross girls that I’ve ever met. Their names were Alice Hanly (?), Joyce Palmer, Martha Brush, Mikey McKee and Muscles (?) (Marge). 
The C. O. was Major Smith. Adj was 2LT Evans. The medical Officer was a swell fellow from Houston Tex. I shot skeet, played tennis, volleyball, baseball, fished and went horseback riding. Breakfast was from 8. 00 to 10. 00. Dinner was at 13. 00, supper was at 19. 30. Had afternoon tea at 16. 00 and a snack at 23. 00 (?). Had the best time I’ve had in two years. Leaving was like leaving home. 
RECORD OF OPERATIONAL MISSIONS
N. 1 June 2
Sent up as air spares. Got a place in formation. Target: coastal guns about 2 miles north of Boulogne, France. No fighters. Light flak about 1. 5 miles off. 
N. 2 June 4
Target: coastal guns south of Boulogne, France. No fighters; light flak about a mile ahead of us. 
N. 3 June 5
Mission briefed for visual bombardment of Abbeyville, France. Overcast at primary target prevented bombing. Flak was light to medium and very accurate. When in on secondary target from new I. P. and bombed Boulogne area. Flak here light and inaccurate. No fighters. 
N. 4 June 6
INVASION BEGINS
Awakened at 23. 15, briefing 01. 15; take off at 03. 35. Our target was on Cherbourg peninsula, coastal gun installations, 400 yard inshore. Our bomb dropped 400 yards on height/right? ahead of our own troops. Zero hour was 07, 35. Bombs away was 07. 17. Bomb load was four tons including two 1000lbs carried externally and twelve 500 lbs internally. There were 10, 000 allied aircraft out that morning. Bombing altitude was only 15, 000 ft. There were aircraft as far as one could see coming over the invasion coast in waves. Didn’t see much on the ground. 
N. 5 June 7
Target; bridge at Nantes, France. Flak was light to moderate but very accurate. S/Sgt. Frank E. Yates our left waste gunner was hit just below the kidney by flak. Bomb load was two 2000 lbs bombs. Our prop ran away twice. Once on the bomb run due to faulty adjustment of prop governor. 
N. 6 June 11
Sent up as air spares. Briefed to bomb flak installations at La Havre (?) France. There were no abortions in our group. We got in with another group with a square K on their tail. Made bomb run but bombs were not dropped. Turned back to make second run, but our engine began to smoke and catch fire. Had to feather dive and return. 
N. 7 June 12
Target: enemy airfield in France. Field was already hit. We flew around France; got over Dunkirk and got light scattered flak that was very accurate. Saw one of our ships hit to the rear of 4 catch afire, explode and go down. Load was 100 lbs demo’s (?). 
N. 8 June 15
Target: oil refineries near Hannover, Germany. Undercast bombing of primary, secondary and last short targets. The 95 and 390 groups headed for home. We went back in after a target of opportunity (?). Hit unidentified installation at Wilster, Germany. Flak came up almost constantly while we were over Germany. Bombing alt. 20, 000 ft. 
N. 9 June 19
Target: airfield in southern France about 100 miles from Spain. I counted only 9 bursts of flak. This was my longest raid to date. 
N. 10 June 20
Target: plant making Ju. 8 wings and parts at Feldershavan Ger. Smoke from target rose 10, 000 ft also other targets in area hit. Smoke from oil refinery near Hanover rose about 18000 ft. These bombed targets were one of the greatest sights I’ve seen. 
N. 11 June 21
Target, oil refinery at Rhurland Ger. About 40 miles south east of Berlin. Saw Berlin. Continued on to American airbase in Russia. Landed at MIROVGRAD. We thus completed the first England to Russia bombing mission. Flying time was 11. 45. 

Three planes left formation due to lack of fuel, made Russian bases. We only had a few minutes fuel left when we landed. The wing was hit by Me 109s (?) just after we passed by Warsaw Poland. An enemy recon plane photographed us just after our landing. 

June 22, we flew to Karkov for fear of enemy bombing. They did bomb later that night. 

At Poltava they caught the 96 and destroyed 40-42 B17s. 

June 23 + 24 + 25 Stayed and slept in a wrecked building in the suburbs of Karkov. Food was terrible. The latrine was a ments? People interested in us and ship. Seem to like us and ship. The last night we slept under plane’s wings in sleeping bag. Went back to Mirovgrad, and that we when to KIRVOGRAD slept again in sleeping bags. In the morn we again went back to Mirovgrad bombed up. 

N. 12 June 26
Target, oil refinery at DROHOBYCZ in Polish Galicia? Flak was light. Fighter were around but escort took care of them. Flying time nine hours. Landed at 463th Bomb Group near Foggia, Italy. Assigned to 773th Sqdn for quarters and rations. Took it easy, visited Foggia and swam in the Adriatic for the next few days before and after the next mission. 
N. 13 July 3
Flew with 15th air force. Target; marshalling yards at ARAD, RUMANIA. Light nearly no flak. No fighter. Easiest one yet…
N. 14 July 5
Target: marshalling yards at Beziere France on coast near Marseilles. Light flak at target. Few fighters, escort took care of them. Saw a B25 of 15 A. F. go down at Marseilles. Saw two P51s jump a Ml (?)109. Flying time about ten and a half hour. Shuttle run was 1000 miles of combat flying and made military history. 
DAWS MARRIED JULY 7. 
N. 15 July 11
Target: jet propelled plane plant at Munich Ger. Light flak, no fighters. Bomb load was five 1000 lbs S1 said we hit 31 miles from target. Bombing was by P. F. F. because of 10/10 cloud cover. 
N. 16 July 12
Same target as yesterday. Heavy flak at target. It left a path through the middle through which we flew. No fighters. Bomb load was four 500 lbs and 5 cluster of incendiaries. Bomb alt. 24500. 
N. 17 July 14
Took supply bombs to partisans in France. Dropped them on a big meadow in the hills near Toulle France. Dropped chests from 500 ft. 
N. 18 July 17
Target was a railroad bridge at Auxerre. Flak was light saw no fighters. Bomb load was two 2000 lbs. 
N. 19 July 18
Target was dock installations at Kiel Germany. Heavy flak was moderately accurate. No fighter. Bombing altitude was 26000 ft. 
N. 20 July 24
Target: German troops ahead of our troops near St. Lo. Bomb load was anti personnel bombs. Moderate flak. Saw a B24 go down. Due to overcast we did not drop our bombs. F. T. 09. 00
No. 21 July 25
Same target as the last mission. Dropped our bombs from 12000 ft due to overcast. Saw a crew bail out of a B17 that was hit by flak. Flak was light and there were no fighters.  (mpf.  Crew reduced to 9 men)
JULY 25, 1944 STARTED FLAK LEAVE. 
N. 22 Aug. 4
Target: oil refinery at Harburg Ger. Bomb run took us over Hamburg Ger. Bomb load was twenty 250lbs. Bomb alt was 26000 ft. Fighters were in area. Flak was intense. S2 said we in range of 170 heavy guns. Had mixture (?) control on n. 2 engine shot away. F. T. 07. 00
N. 23 Aug 5
Target: The Krupt Works at Magdeburg Ger. Plant made tanks. Bombing results were excellent. Flak was a moderate barrage just before and up to target. Bombing altitude was 24000 ft. Fighters were in area three different times, were beat off by escort. Saw a B17 get a direct flak hit. It blew up bombs and everything. Bounced our ship aournd. It made an orange burst of fire. I couldn’t see the ship, only the huge sheet of orange and brown gray smoke. It was hit just under us. When it exploded it set afire another ship that went down in flames. Two chutes came out of the one that blew up, but Wally, our tail gunner, said that they both looked dead. No-one could have lived through that. I thought it got our tail gunner it was so close. Bomb load was five 1000 lbs F. T. 07. 00
N. 24 Aug 6
Target: Berlin Ger. Factory making engines for FW190s and Ju88s, three miles south of center of city. Flak was intense but inaccurate, there were no fighters seen. Formation spread out after bombs away. Bomb load was ten 500lbs. Bomb alt. Was 26000 ft. Ran short of O2 due to leak in rt waiste (?) system. Ball turret had to get out at Hamburg on way back. F. T. 08. 30
N. 25 Aug 7
Target; Bridge hear La Fare Fran. Clouds cover over target and secondary target prevented dropping bombs. Brought the six 1000lbs home. Went right over Brussels Belg. In a huge cloud. F. T. 6. 30. 
N. 26 Aug 8
Target; was near Caen, Was German Hq and front lines which were holding up British tank advance. Bomb load was twelve 500s internal and two 1000lbs external. Bomb alt was 11. 000ft. Flak was extremely accurate. I saw a B17 get a direct hit behind the ball turret. Its tail broke off and broke up. The ship nosed down and went down. I saw no-one get out. Lead ship was hit on n. 2 engine cut. One blade nearly all off. Ships were badly shot up. Many had wounded aboard. 
N. 27 Aug 13
Target: was a road. We bombed in 3 ship elements. We bombed German lines of retreat, helping to close the trap. There were hundreds of columns of smoke coming up from France where elements had bombed. We bombed somewhere between Le Mans and Caen. Bomb load was thirty-eight 100lbs. Demolition bombs. Bomb alt. Was 18. 800 feet. Flying time 5. 30 hours. Saw 3 of our ships go down, two of them looked like direct flak hits. No fighters. 
N. 28 Aug 14
Target: was the S. B. Farben oil refinery at Ludwigshafen Ger. We had to abort after we had been over Holland 15 mins due to a blown exhaust stack and subsequent loss of manifold pressure on n. 1 engine. We landed with our bomb load. 
N. 29 Aug 15
Target; an airfield near ????? Holland. The RAF was there too hitting other fields in the area. Saw two of them go down. We carried twenty 250lbs bombs with delayed action fuses. Bomb alt was 20200 ft. F. T. 4:60. 
N. 30 Aug 24, 44
Target: was for the second time the oil refinery at Ruhland Ger. Flak was heavier than last time: was medium to heavy of barrage type. Bomb load was ten 500 lbs, bombing alt. Was 24, 600 ft. No fighters. Visiual bombing, results excellent. F. T. 08:15
N. 31
???

OUTSTANDING LOANS
W. Sorter 418 Sqn
W. Bean 390 B. Gr. 
J. Held 447 B. Gr. 
F. Yates
C. Wood
W . Potter
H. Hendrickson
J. David
T. Stooksberry
W. Potter
Witteri (? illegible because wrote PAID on top)



A/C #42-97924 "PARTY TONIGHT"   MACR # 8843, Microfiche # 3248

EYEWITNESS: "A/C #924 aborted at 0843 hours with #2 engine on fire At 0846
 hours the plane began its turn back,losing altitude fast and two men bailed out.
 At 0848 hours, three more men bailed out.  At 0852 hours, the A/C hit the water
 and exploded."

 Those rescued believed they were in the water about an hour before being picked
 up by Britlsh sea craft.

When this crew joined the 100th on 26/5/44, Lt Edward J.Mikol  was the bombardier,
Sgt.Clarence E.Wood the ball turret gunner, and Sgt.Frank E.Yates a waist Gunner.
On this last mission the A/C went down in the North sea a, according to the Sqdn.
History, and only Goethel, Fong and Hendrichson were rescued.

T.N.H.I.S.G. p.129 :  Apparently the A/C had mechanical problems and on way
to target David warned the crew to Jump.  Immediately the A/C plunged and
only three men got out.   "I don't know exactly what happened,"  Goethel sald
later.  "We got out of the ship somehow and I was falling end over end. I pulled
at the rip cord on the chute but it wouldn't work. Then I tore open the flaps
with my hands and the chute finally came out.  I wasn't very high off the water
then.  All three of us fell into the channel about the same place though as the tlme
went on we drifted farther and farther apart. We didn't have any dlnghy and so
it was up to us to keep afloat as best we could. . .  . . . ."
As the three of them floated in the water,  a British destroyer came along slde and 
scooped first one and then another.  They had been in the sea about 1.5 hours
but recovered and came back to the base from Portsmouth by train.

MEMO 2:

KIA / MIA / EVA / INT INFORMATION:

TARGET: Brest DATE: 1944-09-03  
AIRCRAFT: "Party Tonight" (42-97924) CAUSE: Mechanical Problem - C  

BURIAL INFORMATION

PLOT: ROW:  
GRAVE: Wall/Misng CEMETERY: Brittany Am Cemetery  
ID: 4772