01 June 1945
07 June 1945
The Osaka strike of 1 June found fifteen aircraft of the 39th
in the air. Air opposition to the bombers was almost nil as
a result chiefly of the presence of a fighter escort provided
by the VII Fighter Command from Iwo Jima. The sight of those
P-51D's along with the B-29's was certainly welcome to our combat
crews. For so long the air had been filled only with enemy fighters
and now the boys found that it would be a pleasure to brush
up on their recognition of American fighters.
encountered at Osaka this time was not too heavy and not too
accurate, although two of our planes sustained battle damage
from ground fire.
other attack mounted on Osaka on 7 July was carried out by twenty-nine
aircraft from the group. Only thirteen enemy planes were seen,
and these were met with mostly between the target and land's
end. Between five and ten aggressive attacks were reported by
our gunners, with one enemy fighter claimed damaged. Flak was
said to be from meager to moderate and inaccurate.
the latter mission 10/l0ths cloud was discovered over the target
and radar bombing was necessary, but results were good. Report
indicated that after the strike of 7 June, 2.27 square miles
of Osaka were missing in addition to previous damage. Total
damage to the city to that date was 13.46 square miles, or 22.5
percent of the place.
1 June strike was particularly noteworthy to the group because,
as a result of his work on the mission, Captain Bill Orr of
the 61st Squadron was personally presented with the Distinguished
Service Cross by General Carl Spaatz.
after landfall that day, Orr and his Crew 30 had trouble with
an engine, but they refused to abandon the mission and went on
to the target just before bombs away, a direct flak hit struck
another engine and put it out of commission. [click
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