Skip to main content
Edit entry 

VIII Fighter Command FO-98 BOMBER ESCORT

12 August 1943

Official description

Not yet known


A combined force of 131 P-47s from 4FG; 56FG; and 78FG are despatched to provide fighter escort for 1st Bomb Wing B-17s despatched to bomb the synthetic oil refineries at Bochum, Germany. The fighters are equipped with pressurised belly tanks to give them additional range. This is the first time these type of belly tanks are used. Fighter opposition against the bombers is estimated at 100-150 German fighters attacking the bomber stream. Most attacks occur as the bombers are leaving their targets. Flak is intense. The fighters claim 2-1-4 of the attacking fighters. The escort has no losses.

Mission details




Aircraft type

P-47 Thunderbolt


First use of pressurized belly tanks for fighters. Fighters escort Bochum raid.


  • 4th Fighter Group

    4th Fighter Group

    Some of the pilots of the 4th Fighter Group had seen many hours of combat by the time they joined the 4th Fighter Group as they had volunteered with the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Royal Air Force. The three 'Eagle Squadrons' of RAF Fighter...

  • 56th Fighter Group

    56th Fighter Group

    Flying P-47 Thunderbolts throughout their time stationed in England, the Group, known as "the Wolfpack", had more ace pilots than any other Eighth Air Force Fighter Group. The 56th Fighter Group also destroyed more enemy aircraft in air combat than any...

  • 78th Fighter Group

    78th Fighter Group

    The 78th Fighter Group was initially based at Goxhill but moved to Duxford in April 1943 and stayed there until October 1945. The 78th FG flew each of the three US built principal fighters of the AAF in the ETO. In their Thundetbolts, the 78th FG ...

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 131
Number of aircraft Effective 131
Enemy aircraft claimed as Destroyed by Fighter Command 2
Enemy aircraft claimed as Probably Destroyed by Fighter Command 1
Enemy aircraft claimed as Damaged by Bomber Command 4


Date Contributor Update
15 May 2015 17:26:27 Lee8thbuff Changes to event

Lee Cunningham 15-May-2015. Added fighter claims and corrected number despatched to Mission Statistics based on "The Mighty EIghth War Dairy", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
15 May 2015 17:24:18 Lee8thbuff Changes to name and description

Lee Cunningham 15-May-2015. Added Mission Narrative based on "The Mighty EIghth War Dairy", Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:43:21 AAM AAM ingest

Lee Cunningham, 8th Air Force missions research database / Stan Bishop's 'Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces', the Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces and the work of Roger Freeman including the 'Mighty Eighth War Diary'.