96th Bomb Group


96th BG Unit Markings

Squadrons of the 96th BG

337th Bombardment Squadron - Heavy
338th Bombardment Squadron - Heavy
339th Bombardment Squadron -Heavy
413th Bombardment Squadron - Heavy

Assigned 8th AAF: April 1943

Wing/Command Assignment

VIII BC, 4 BW, 401 PCBW: 12 May 1943
VIII BC, 4 BW, 403 PCBW: 23 Jun 1943
VIII BC, 3 BD, 45 CBW: 13 Sep 1943
3 BD, 45 CBW 8 Jan 1944
3 AD, 45 CBW 1 Jan 1945

Combat Aircraft:

B-17F
B-17G

Stations

GRAFTON UNDERWOOD 16 Apr 1943 to 27 May 1943
ANDREWS FIELD 13 May 1943 to 11 Jun 1943
SNETTERTON HEATH 12 Jun 1943 to 11 Dec 1945

Group COs

Col. Archie J. Old Jr. 6 August 1942 to 6 September 1943
Col. James L. Travis 6 September 1943 to June 1944
Col. Robert W. Warren June 1944 to 27 May 1945
Lt. Col. Robert J. Nolan 27 May 1945 to late 1945

First Mission: 14 May 1943
Last Mission: 21 Apr 1945
Missions: 321
Total Sorties: 8,924
Total Bomb Tonnage: 19,277 Tons
Aircraft MIA: 189

Major Awards:

Distinguished Unit Citations:
17 August 1943: Regensburg
9 April 1944: Poznan

Claims to Fame

Second highest MIA losses in the *th AF, and highest in the 3 BD.
Highest loss rate sustained by any 8th AF group in Jan to May 1944
First double-strength bomb group in 8th AF
Led first Shuttle mission to Regansburg, Africa on 17 August 1943


Early History:

Activated 15 July 1942 at Salt Lake City AAb, Utah. Unit formed at Gowen Field, Idaho, where Group established on the 6th August 1942. Then the unit moved to Walla Walla AAB, Washington on the 14th of August 1942, and to Rapid City AAB in South Dakota on the 30th of September 1942. Acted as operational training unit at Pocatello AAB, Idaho, where Group moved on the 30th of October 1942. Reverted to training for combat when moved to Pyote AAB, Texas on the 3rd January 1943. The aircraft began overseas movement on the 4th of April 1943, taking the northern ferry route via Presque Isle, Newfoundland, Iceland to Prestwick. the ground unit left Pyote on the 16th of April 1943 for Camp Kilmer, NJ and sailed on the Queen Elizabeth on the 5th of May 1943, arriving in Greenock on the 11th of May 1943.

Subsequent History:

Scheduled for occupational duties in Germany but the plans were revised in September of 1945. During the later part of 1945 they flew training and transportation flights over Europe. Assigned to the 1 AD on the 12th of August 1945, but reassigned to the 3 AD on the 28th September 1945. The aircraft were flown back to the US or transferred to continental units on November 1945. the squadrons were inactivated and remaining personnel left Snetterton in early December 1945. They sailed on the Lake Champlain on the 12th of December 1945. The unit arrived in New York on the 20th December 1945 and the Group was inactivated at Camp Kilmer in New Jersey on the 21st of December 1945. The unit was again activated as a B-47 wing in the 1950s. Later as a B-52 wing at Dyess AFB, Texas.