70 years ago: the 362nd takes it to an all-but-grounded Luftwaffe

On April 9, 1945, the 362nd Fighter Group chased down the Luftwaffe on the ground. One mission from each squadron shot up airfields in the Erfurt-Weimar area, claiming 20 destroyed and 12 damaged. The targets included a large number of Bf 108s. Later, two tanks were also destroyed, and again reconnaissance Mustangs did a good job leading P-47s to concentrations of enemy vehicles hiding in the woods. The 378th flew five missions in support of XX Corps, and during the third mission they spotted 16 enemy planes, apparently flying simply as decoys designed to get the P-47s to drop their loads and give chase. The fifth mission hit an airfield near Weimar, destroying three Bf 108s, two Bf 109s, and a biplane on the ground. The 379th also flew a mission to breach the dam at Salburg, a mission that Lt. Joe Muller said was flown in the face of “beaucoup flak.”

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