In England, conditions are favorable and a mission is finally launched . . . .
01-28-45 — 6th Mission DUISBURG
Completed a mission to Duisburg. Visual run and we dropped our 1,000# bombs on the bridge. One less escape route for them. Moderate flak and plenty accurate. No hits on our ship. Quite lucky. No mail today. Have six missions now and am eligible for the medal (Air Medal1).
On the Duisburg mission, Verne flew on the newly arrived, unamed Boeing-built B-17G #338769 piloted by Maj. Linn E. Wilde. This was 390th Bombardment Group mission 248.
On 28 January, the Group went after a railroad bridge, and hit two bridges. The assigned one was the Duisburg rail bridge which carried supplies to the armies facing the British front.
Haze was found in the target area, but a visual run was made. A loose pattern fell on the rail bridge, scoring two direct hits, and scattered to a highway bridge to the north. The 35 planes attacked without loss.2
On returning to base, the 390th Bombardment Group aircraft had to dodge aircraft from the 100th Bombardment Group. The mission aircraft landed at Station 153 in the midst of a snowstorm.3
Notes & Commentary
1 Unlike his brother, Wayne, serving with the 13th Air Force in the South Pacific, Verne was eligible for the Air Medal after six missions with the 8th Air Force. Wayne had to complete 20 (http://waynes-journal.com/2014/08/30/august-24-1944/).
2 United States and Albert E. Milliken. The story of the 390th Bombardment Group (H). [New York]: Priv. Print., 1947. p. 121.
3 Operations Narrative of Mission Number 248, 28 Jan 45, Headquarters 390th Bombardment Group (H), 30 January 1945, microfilm B0426, Maxwell AFB, AL: Air Force Historical Research Agency, 1973, frames 945-946.