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Pooler in Chatham County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943

Second Schweinfurt
Memorial Association

 
 
Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, February 28, 2013
1. Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker
Inscription.
In Memory Of The
Courageous Airmen Of The
United States Army
8th Air Force


Who Against Overwhelming
Odds And Savage Defiance
Attacked And Severely Damaged
The Ball Bearing Factories In

Schweinfurt,
Germany
14 October 1943

Officially Known As
Mission No. 115

Known By Those
Who Were There As
Black Thursday
1st Air         3rd Air
Division      Division

Groups       Groups
91 ST                 94TH
92 ND                95 TH
303 RD             96 TH
305 TH             100 TH
306 TH             385 TH
351 ST             388 TH
379 TH             390 TH
381 ST                          
384 TH                          

 
Location. 32° 6.951′ N, 81° 14.231′ W. Marker is in Pooler, Georgia, in Chatham County. Marker can be reached from 175 Bourne Avenue. Touch for map. Located adjacent to I-95, Georgia exit 102, (US 80 east), at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum. Marker is in this post office area: Pooler GA 31322, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. James H. Doolittle (here, next to this marker); 364th Fighter Group
Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2013
2. Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker
(here, next to this marker); 355th Fighter Group (here, next to this marker); 487th Bomb Group (a few steps from this marker); 356th Fighter Group (a few steps from this marker); 453rd Bomb Group (a few steps from this marker); 479th Fighter Group (a few steps from this marker); 493rd Bomb Group (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Pooler.
 
Regarding Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943.
8th United States Army Air Force who flew on Mission 115 - October 14, 1943 over Schweinfurt, Germany.This day is also known as "Black Thursday".
At dawn, on October 14, 1943, in foul weather, the 8th Army Air Force, also known as the Mighty 8th, dispatched 291 B-17 bombers to the town of Schweinfurt Germany,a flight of some 800 miles. Since this city was vital to the ball bearing industry, it was at the top of the list of strategic targets for the allied forces and had already received a first attack on August 17, 1943.
The bombers were initially protected by friendly fighter escort, which were forced to turn back about half way to the targets.
Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2013
3. Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker
Arriving at the target, the bombers were attacked by an estimated 1,100 enemy fighters firing cannon and large caliber rockets manned by the German Lufwaffenhelfer (LWH) or flak-helpers. The vicious attacks were continued and repulsed until the bombers reached the English Channel on the return flight to England.

The battle brought great loss to both sided. Sixty heavy bombers and 600 airmen perished. Many lost their
lives in the burning, badly damaged, crashed planes. Many became prisoners of war. Fifteen additional aircraft were so damaged they could never fly again. On the ground, 276 people died and countless more were injured. Businesses and homes were razed. Valuable and treasured possessions perished.
Consequently, October 14, 1943 - Mission 115, became known as "Black Thursday" in American military history and one of the greatest air battles of World War II.

Thirty years later some of the survivors from the Mighty 8th, including Colonel Budd Peaslee, S/Sgt. Phillip Taylor and 1st Lt. William Allen, decided to form an organization to commemorate their fallen comrades-in-arms. They called it the Second Schweinfurt Memorial Association, Inc. (SSMA), giving it direct connection to the second air raid on Schweinfurt.

The full members of this association are all veterans of the 8th Air Force who flew on Mission 115. Every year the members,
306 Bomb Group 369 Squadron Noack's Crew image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2013
4. 306 Bomb Group 369 Squadron Noack's Crew
Black Thursday 10-14-43 Schweinfurt
and their families and friends, meet in a different city in the United States around the
14th of October to honor their dead fellow airmen.
 
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. more Second Schweinfurt Memorial
 
Categories. War, World II
 
94th Bomb Group 332nd Squadron Mullinax Crew image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2013
5. 94th Bomb Group 332nd Squadron Mullinax Crew
All Crew POW Black Thursday Oct 14, 1943
Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum image. Click for full size.
By Mike Stroud, 2013
6. Black Thursday    Oct 14 1943 Marker at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 17, 2013, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 1,030 times since then and 101 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on March 18, 2013, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.
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