December 20, 1944

Wednesday

There was no entry for today in Wayne’s journal. In in England, his brother, Verne, wrote:

12-20-44

Briefed on a mission to Frankfort, Germany, but it was scrubbed at last moment — bad weather. Tired tonight. Shouldn’t be since loafing all day. No mail as yet from home and sure am getting lonesome for some news. 1 Gee, I love my wife more every day that passes. Would give anything to be with her. Hope the mission tomorrow is completed. Want to get as many as I can possibly can just as soon as I can. One day closer to my wife and son.

Notes & Commentary

1 Along with his crew, Verne left Lincoln, Nebraska on November 15 and, according to the following order, arrived at Station 153 on December 2, 1944:

7. Following O and EM having rptd this Sta asgd 390th Bomb Gp per par 7 SO 336 Hq 70th Repl Depot APO 652 dd 1 Dec 1944 are further asgd to orgns indicated and will be designated by crew numbers noted:

571st Bomb Sq (H) – Crew #87

2D LT CHARLES W SIDDEN (1091)
2D LT JOSEPH M MCALLISTER (1091)
F/O MICHAEL J BURCIN (1034)
T/Sgt (748) George W. Gouldthrite
Cpl (757) Alvin Goldberg
Cpl (612) Boyce L Pruitt
Cpl (612) Robert F Powers
Cpl (612) Verne R Gray
Cpl (612) Carlton D Fisher

Special Order 310, Extract, 2 December 1944. >. Headquarters, AAF Station 153, 390th Bombardment Group (H). 2 December 1944, microfilm B0426, Maxwell AFB, AL: Air Force Historical Research Agency, 1973, frame 781.

Crew #87’s ten men were just a tiny part of the overall complement of Station 153. At the end of December 1944, Station 153 had 552 officers and 2,719 enlisted personnel assigned, a total of 3,271. The 571st Bombardment Squadron to which Crew #87 was assigned had a complement of 131 officers and 451 enlisted men. Many of the men, perhaps, came from towns with populations smaller than that of Station 153.

”Consolidated Strength Report, AAF Station 153, APO 634, U.S. Army, 31 December 1944” S-1 Section Historical Report for December 1944. Headquarters, AAF Station 153, 390th Bombardment Group (H). 2 December 1944, microfilm B0426, Maxwell AFB, AL: Air Force Historical Research Agency, 1973, frame 677.

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