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39th Bomb Group (VH)
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B-29 # 44-69769

7th Mission - Oita Airfields

The entire crew received a Certificate of Commendation from Col. Carl R. Storrie for a mission on Oita Airfield 4 May 1945.

The Colonel said, "The members of this B-29 crew merit the Certificate of Commendation for their contribution to the successful bombing attack of on Oita Airfield. They are herewith presented this certificate and highly commended. Their performance was largely responsible for the accurate bombing of their entire unit and the success of the mission. Their skill, devotion to duty and courage reflect great credit on themselves and their organization, and is the source of pride of to this headquarters."

The following is an excerpt from the diary of Lt. Jennemann on their seventh mission for the crew to Oita.

"We were alerted about noon on Thursday May 3. They had pre-mission chow for us at 2100. Briefing was at 2200 and we had take off at 010. Major Carpenter rode in the co-pilot's seat as Command Pilot. We flew at 7100 feet most of the way. Our course doglegged to Iwo Jima and them to our assembly point on the southeastern tip of the Japanese home island of Shikoku.

Ours was lead plane in the group and we assembled our squadron at 17,500 feet. From there our group flew to the target, the Oita Naval Air Base on the northeastern coast of the island of Kyushu. The bombing run was made at 17,000 feet. The bomb load was twenty general-purpose bombs. Time of "bombs away" was 1006 Friday morning Guam time. WE MADE A GOOD HIT ON TARGET.

Just before and after bomb release time, we had some fighter inception, mostly twin-engine planes. There were 5 to 10 fighters and they made about 8 attacks on our formation. We also saw a couple of bursts of flak. Our formation had eleven planes, as did the 61st and 62nd Squadrons.

We came back singly and landed at Guam with 580 gallons of fuel at 1715, logging 15 hours, 45 minutes of Form One Time. After interrogation we had a good supper.


2nd Lt Jennemann was awarded the Purple Heart for the 28 April mission to bomb Kushura Airfield on the Kusha Island. The crew had a 50 minute running battle with Zero's and Zeke's. Lt. Walker was credited with downing 2 Japanese planes and CFC Harley got one. Jennemann was hit in the area of the left shoulder by a Jap bullet, which bounced off of someone's flak suit.
Sources: "History of the 39th Bomb Group" by Robert Laird, (crew 5) and David Smith (crew 31)