384th Bomb Group Library

As Briefed

As Briefed ... A Family History of the 384th Bombardment Group

by Walter Owens

A contemporary, anecdotal history of 384th Bombardment Group Operations, thru post-war European duties. The original edition was published in 1946 (drafts appear in the microfilms!). Later editions, with some additional material, were published in 1980 and 1990.

The author, a newspaper reporter before the war, served as an intelligence officer with the 384th, debriefing crews returning from missions. This duty gave him broad insight into the operational experiences of combat crews, which are described very effectively.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.


Memories of the 384th Bombardment Group

by Ken Decker

Day-by-day history of the 384th with innumerable personal eyewitness accounts. Extensive personnel list containing 6500 names, with rank, crew position and service dates (where known). Special section recognizing the support crews. Over 840 pages packed with stories, facts, and more than 1000 photos. 316 missions are covered by date, including crew listings by aircraft for all losses and special events. Stories and important facts such as the fate of those missing are included as well as those seriously wounded or killed in returning aircraft. Aircraft listings by serial number and name.

Out of print - rarely available thru used book sources.


Keep The Show On The Road

by Linda Fayers-Hallin and Quentin Bland

A history of 384th Bombardment Group Operations, from activation on 28 December 1942, thru post-war European operations. An incredible wealth of facts on missions, with personal accounts to provide the human side of the picture. The book - 684 pages in all - describes formation of the group, its early training, movement to England, and combat operations, month-by month, from June 1943 thru April 1945.

Out of print - rarely available thru used book sources.

Out of print - rarely available thru used book sources. Inquiries may be directed to the author, below.

Linda Fayers-Hallin
Telephone: (+44) 01480 896631 (United Kingdom)
Email: Linda & Vic Fayers-Hallin.

Lippincott, ISBN 0-394523-69-5

Heritage of Valor

by Colonel Budd Peaslee

Original 384th Group Commander Peaslee's autobiography, giving his personal account and experiences of his tenure with the 384th BG. As the Group's first Commanding Officer, he led what was initially a very small cadre personnel in the planning, growth, organizing, equipping, and training into what would become a fearsome fighting outfit. He was relieved of command - some believe unfairly - after combat losses threatened group morale. He continued to serve in the European Theater with innovation and distinction.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

Algonquin Books, ISBN 0-912697-99-7

Screaming Eagle: Memoirs of a B-17 Group Commander

by Major General Dale O. Smith

384th Group Commander Smith's autobiography, giving his personal account and experiences of his tenure with the 384th BG. Smith was Peaslee's replacement (Col Lacey was assigned temporarily until Smith arrived) and served until the Fall of 1944. Although a memoir is necessarily biased, those wanting to learn more about the operation of bomber groups of the Mighty 8th Air Force will find this a worthwhile read.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

ISBN 978-15708780225

INITIAL POINT - Reminiscences of a World War II B-17 Bomber Crewman

by Lt. Col. David C. Lustig, Jr. USAFR (Ret.)

March 2014: Dave Lustig has published Initial Point - Reminiscences of a World War II B-17 Bomber Crewman, a memoir primarily recounting his wartime service in the 384th Bomb Group flying out of Grafton Underwood in England. A significant portion of the book is devoted to his vivid recollections and descriptions of combat missions as a radio operator/gunner on B-17s in the 384th BG, the men he flew with and his friends and family who went to war, but never returned.

Very likely one of the very last memoirs of an actual combat veteran of the 8th Air Force in World War II, Dave's book provides candid insight into the evolution of a new recruit into a seasoned crewman, the day-to-day life of bomber crews at Grafton Underwood and the hijinks of boys thrust into the crucible of war. Interspersed with historical and factual information and photographs to place the events in context, Dave's book also provides us with thought provoking reflections on his various experiences and the meaning of war.

Dave wrote this book as a tribute to the men he served with, both during the war and afterwards, who are no longer here to tell their stories themselves.

Available from Amazon.com.

ISBN 1499624883 / 9781499624885

Als Leisnig [German], and Leisnig - Witness to Disaster [English]

by Klaus Schumann & Horst Ries

May 2014: Of the many events in WWII, the authors have chosen to relate an event from their childhood, which happened right in their home town of Leisnig, Germany. On 6 April 1945, as the war drew to a close, two B-17 bombers collided over Germany, and the fates of the surviving crewmen depended on the citizens of Leisnig and neighboring communities. This book follows the crews on their bombing mission, through the circumstances of the accident, and how the Germans into whose midst they were thrust treated them with humanity.

The authors tell the story of their research, how they navigated a widening network of eyewitnesses, participants, and researchers on two continents, and how good fortune smiled on their quest. Leaving no stone unturned, they here present all that can be told of that air disaster so long ago.

The 384th Bomb Group is indebted to the authors, Klaus Schumann and Horst Ries, for their research into the loss of our two aircraft and crews on 6 April 1945.

Available from

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, ISBN 978-1492260035

25 June 1943 MIA

by Tony Crawford

October 2013: Subtitled The Search for Miss Deal and The Early Raiders of The Reich, the book describes many wartime events surrounding the loss of the B-17 named "MISS DEAL," of which the author's Uncle Charlie was the ball turret gunner. Like many of us, the author was curious about his relative's service, about his early life, and of course, how he met his fate. We are taken along on his quest, meeting witnesses, helpers, researchers, and many others who assisted.

This is not a mere recounting of facts, but rather an intimate view of the individual and how he came to die in a distant foreign land. It is also clear that the author's search struck a nerve with the many people who aided him. They gave of themselves wholeheartedly, and the result is a very informative, entertaining read.

Available from Amazon.com

Mission Number Three

Mission Number Three: Missing In Action

by Charles A. Fisher

Fisher recounts his experiences during his daring escape from fortress Europe after being shot down on the September 6, 1943 mission to Stuttgart, Germany.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

ISBN 978-1-4116-0125-3

Stories of a B-17 Bomber Pilot

by Dewayne "Ben" Bennett

In Ben's own words: "I flew combat in the 384th bombardment group in the 545th squadron out of Grafton Underwood, England. Some of these stories have added humor and some reflect the true combat situations. My name is Dewayne 'Ben' Bennett and I'm the author of this little endeavor for which I'm very proud. I became known as, and answer to the name of, 'The Squawkin' Chicken Skipper' because the name of our B-17 airplane was the 'Squawkin' Chicken.' Along with my crew we flew 31 combat missions over the war-torn countries of Germany, France, Belgium, Holland, and Poland. Thankfully we all survived."

This little book is 6 by 9 inches, contains 93 pages and is a paperback.

The author has passed away, but copies are often available on eBay.



by Lt. Colonel James Edwin Armstrong, USAFR, Retired

Relive Armstrong's war experiences with the 384th, and his daring escape from fortress Europe after being shot down on the September 6, 1943 mission to Stuttgart, Germany.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

A Dying Breed

A Dying Breed: The Courage of the Mighty Eighth Air Force

by Neal B. Dillon

This excellent book chronicles the experiences encountered by the William Kaczaraba crew (547th BS) from flight training through being shot down over Denmark on 1/4/1944, throughout POW life. Author Neal Dillon writes the book in remembrance of his brother-in-law, TSGT John Samuel Honeycutt, Engineer on the crew.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

Southern Heritage Press, ISBN 0-941072-46-0

Trails and Trials of a WWII Pilot and His Bride

by Louise Sullivan

The author's husband, James D. Sullivan, flew 30 missions with the 546th Bomb Squadron from 24 April to 7 July 1944 - Oberpfaffenhofen to Leipzig. This book describes his training and each mission that he flew over Europe. It includes personal memories of how they met at Sebring Air Base where she was working, and the different stations where they lived - and how they lived. It tells about the small town of Clewiston, Florida, where Louise lived with her parents when she was unable to be with Jim. It also tells of the RAF Flying School and a German Prison of War Camp in Clewiston. It includes many pictures.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

Southern Heritage Press, ISBN 0-941072-46-0

8th Air Force Lottery

by Harold I. Rochette

The story of a pilot's training and preparation for combat, and his experiences while serving with the 384th. Assigned to the 544th Bomb Squadron on 29 April 1944 as co-pilot of the Robert H James crew, Hal Rochette flew 31 missions in 66 days, completing his combat tour in July 1944.

Available from Barnes & Noble and used book sources.

Although the author passed away, copies may still be available from the family at the address below.

Rochette Family
206 Swain Avenue
Meriden, CT 06450

Business Images, Inc, Vienna, VA, no ISBN assigned

Combat Tour With Umbriago

by E. A. 'Jerry' Jerome

Jerry Jerome takes the reader thru his crew's 35-mission combat tour, ending with the final strategic bombing mission of the European Theater of Operations on 25 April 1945.

Published in 1993: out of print - occasionally available thru used book sources.

Gorham Printing, Rochester, WA, ISBN 0-615-12623-5

B-17 Bombardier

by Vern Arnold

How much training did it take to produce a skilled bombardier? The author details it all, and goes on to describe his experiences and feelings during his 30-mission combat tour.

Beginning in mid-1944, his performance in combat soon brought him to the attention of his superiors. This led to his re-assignment as a "lead" bombardier - a prestigious designation to be certain, but one that meant his time with the 384th was rather protracted: "lead" crewmembers flew far less often than usual. So his combat tour, usually 3-4 months, stretched to 8 months.

One feature of this volume is that Vern shares his feelings about doing his job well. The reader learns about the limitations of the equipment, and the conditions he had to cope with, as well as the pressure from his leadership, his crew, and especially from what he expected of himself.

Published in 2004: out of print - rarely available thru used book sources.

No Photo

"The Joker", On the trail of the crew

by Isabelle Engels

On 13 April 1944, a Flying Fortress returning from a mission to attack the ball-bearing plants at Schweinfurt crashed at Béresmenil (La Roche-en-Ardenne), Belgium. This book, updated in 2006, presents what is known about the crew prior to the mission, the events of that day, as well as later experiences of the members of the crew and the people into whose midst they had fallen.

Privately published in 2006.

ISBN-10: 0960556206, ISBN-13: 978-0960556205

"Project W-47"

by James Les Rowe

An interesting description of "other activities" at Wendover. The author describes supporting atomic bomb development efforts, including building the test bombs and integrating them with Col. Tibbetts' B-29 aircraft.

Published in 1978. Available at Amazon.com in 2019.

ISBN-13: 978-0764348396

Evasion and Escape Devices Produced by MI9, MIS-X, and SOE in World War II

by Phil Froom

A 2015 release, this book describes the design, manufacture, covert shipment and use of the many ingenious evasion and escape devices provided to Allied troops during WWII. The book concentrates not specifically on MIS-X or MI9 – although their histories are fully covered - but on the innovative, little known and unique devices themselves, and includes over 650 unique colour, and over 50 period black and white images of these immensely rare evasion and escape devices.

Available from Amazon.

GMS Enterprises, ISBN 1-870384-84-9

Airfield Focus: Grafton Underwood

by John N. Smith

A 2001 release, the 44th in a series of books covering the airfields of England. A really great book that includes a complete history of the field, and a wealth of rare photos.

Out of print - available thru used book sources.

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Remember that used book inventory changes constantly and unpredictably. Check different vendors frequently until you find the item you want, at an acceptable price (including shipping).