Cpl. Alton D. Miller
Today I made my debute on
my first mission. For this, I drew a hot target, Vienna, Austria. Naturaly my
nerves were pitched to the highest point. The mission was nothing more than
any routine flying until we got to the I.P. From there on to the target it was
a barrage of hell. Flak burst everywhere.
Just before bombs away we
had number 4 engine to conk out on us. That isn't a very pleasant feeling to
lose an engine over the target in enemy territory. We had our bombs just over
the target and circled the city until our formation had gone on to the target
and was coming back and away. Then we moved out through the flak to join the
formation. With only 3 engines we could not keep up with the formation.
Our Pilot, 1st
Lt. Pillsbury, for that day, called for fighter escort which didn't find us for
about 45 minutes. It was really swell to see them flying along with us.
We made it back ok with
only one flak hole in our plane..
Quite an exciting day in my
Target for today –
Today, my second mission,
my nerves were not pitched to quite the tension of my first.
When we got to the target
it was the most peaceful looking place I have ever seen.
Located down in a valley
completely blanketed with snow, Innsbruck made me think of a peaceful little
village back in the states at Xmas time. Nice and white, smoke rising from the
chimneys a picture of perfect peace.
As we came over the target
they began throwing flat at us.
When we left, Innsbruck was
a roaring torrent of hell. Smoke and flames leaping up leaving behind us a
battle scarred town.
Why they continue fighting
when they know it is hopeless is beyond me. Maybe someday they will learn.
Number two completed only
33 to go. Only one Flak hole today. We flew in Bachelor Blitz ship was 441.
January 8, 1945
For Today: Linz, Austria
Today the Fifteenth Air Force put up
maximum effort 845 bombers all to the same target.
It was the largest number
of planes I have ever seen in the air at one time.
It was a beautiful sight
all the vapor trail the planes left. They were crisscrossed something like a
We had an undercast when we
went over the target. That I was thankful for. Their shooting accuracy isn't
near as good that way.
We dropped our bombs at
26,000 ft. The flak was reported heavy, but I say it was very little.
Our bomb baydoors, were
frozen and couldn't get them closed on one side. Foolishly, I made an attempt
to close them alone just after we left the target.
My oxygen hose came loose
from the oxygen bottle and by the time I noticed it I was so weak I couldn't
get it back in the bottle. I passed out on the closed side of the bomb bay.
Without a parachute. The bomb bay doors are supposed to give way from a
hundred pound of weight. With my luck it didn't.
My Pilot and Armor Gunner
came to my rescue. They finally got me survived with a walk around bottle and got
me back to the flight deck. I can give my thanks to Will, Charlie and to God
that I am alive and well.
My leg was frostbitten just
above the ankle.
Another mission completed.
Only 32 more to go. Our Ship was number 954.
Letters Home to Consta Miller Parton
Information courtesy of Zack Magnusson