484th Bombardment Group Association papers, 1939-1998
- 17 boxes
- English .
- Preferred citation:
- 484th Bombardment Group Association papers. Institute on World War II and the Human Experience, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida. http://purl.fcla.edu/fsu/WWII_02_0047.
Access and Use
- Conditions Governing Access:
This collection is open to all researchers.
Permission to publish, exhibit, or broadcast works from the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience must be requested and granted in writing by the director of the Institute. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Institute on World War II as the owner of the physical items and the copyright holder. Possession of a copy of an item does not constitute permission to publish, exhibit, or broadcast it. The Institute on World War II and the Human Experience reserves the right to refuse permission to individuals and publishers who have not complied with its policies. Permission fees must be paid before images are provided. Please contact the director of the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience for current publication and duplication rates.
- Scope and Content:
This collection relates to the 484th Bombardment Group (Heavy) that was assigned to the 5th Air Force and based in Torretta, Italy as a component of the Foggia Airfield Complex during World War II and assigned B-24 Liberator heavy bombers. The materials contained in this collection were subsequently assembled during the post-war period by the 484th Bombardment Group Association. The collection contains official reports, data sheets, statistics, newspapers, Missing Air Crew Reports, personal histories, photographs, and unit histories.
- Biographical / Historical:
Constituted as 484th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on September 14, 1943, the group officially activated on September 20th. Trained for combat with B-24 Liberator heavy bombers, the group transferred to Torretto Airfield in Italy during March and April 1944. Torretta airfield (also known as Cerignola #3) served as a semi-permanent heavy bomber airfield located approximately 14km (9 miles) southwest of Cerignola in Apulia, Italy. This airbase would eventually form part of the Foggia Airfield Complex. Assigned to Fifteenth Air Force, the group was redesignated the 484th Bombardment Group (Pathfinder) in May 1944 but did not perform pathfinder functions. Again, redesignated 484th Bombardment Group (Heavy) in November 1944, the group operated primarily as a strategic bombardment organization through to April 1945. The group attacked targets such as oil refineries, oil storage plants, aircraft factories, heavy industry, and communications in Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Rumania, and Yugoslavia. On June 13, 1944, a heavy smoke screen prevented the group from bombing marshaling yards at Munich. In spite of severe damage from German flak and fighters, and despite heavy gunfire encountered at the alternate target, the group bombed marshaling yards at Innsbruck and received a Distinguished Unit Citation (DUC) for its persistent action. The group received a second DUC for performance on August 22, 1944, when, unescorted, the organization fought its way through an intense opposition to attack underground oil storage installations in Vienna. In addition to strategic missions, the 484th supported the allied ground drive toward Rome by bombing bridges, supply dumps, viaducts, and marshaling yards from April to June 1944. Furthermore, the group ferried gasoline and oil to Allied forces in southern France during September 1944 and supported the final advance through northern Italy. Moved to Casablanca in May 1945, the group was assigned to Air Transport Command and subsequently deactivated in French Morocco on July 25, 1945. Squadrons assigned to the group included the 824th, 825th, 826th, and 827th. Stations assigned for the group during the war included Harvard AAF, Nebraska from September 20, 1943, to March 2, 1944; Torretta AAF, Italy from April 1944-May 1945; and Casablanca, French Morocco, from May 25 to July 25, 1945. The assigned commanders included Colonel William B Keese from October 1943 to April 1945 and Lieutenant Colonel Chester C. Busch from April 1945 to deactivation
History of The Torretta Flyer newsletter:
Bud Markel wrote the history of the 484th Bomb Group and preserved it in The Torretta Flyer. He and his wife Bea organized the first reunion of the 484th and 461st Bomb Groups in May of 1981. In December of 1981, the 461st and 484th Bomb Groups Association were incorporated in the state of California as a non-profit corporation. Starting with a newsletter bulletin to keep early members up to date on the fledgling organization, the name The Torretta Flyer was first applied to newsletter number 4. In 1992 the 484th and 461st Bomb Groups formed their own separate associations. Bud was the president of the 484th BG Association and the editor of The Torretta Flyer until the association was disbanded in 2001. An excellent writer, photographer, aviation historian, and organizer, Bud published The Torretta Flyer twice yearly for 20 years. With the help of Bea, he also organized and hosted annual reunions for the association. The Torretta Flyer evolved from a mimeographed newsletter into a fine glossy magazine filled with photographs, data compiled from official sources, letters and stories written by members, and scholarly contributions from writers in the historical aviation field. When the 484th BG Association was disbanded, Bud and Bea donated 50 1200 page bound two-volume sets of The Torretta Flyer to various libraries and museums around the country. Bud Markel flew 35 combat missions as a B-24 engineer between January and May of 1945. He was employed as an A&P mechanic for United Airlines in Los Angeles from 1948 until retirement. He was especially proud of the 484th BG Association scholarship fund which was originally conceived as a living memorial to the 484th and 461st Bomb Groups. Through this fund, the association donated $53,000 to deserving high school students from the area around Cerignola, Italy. The Torretta Flyer is copyright © 484th Bomb Group Association
Link to The Torretta Flyer newsletter index: http://www.484th.org/Torretta%20Flyer/Torretta%20Flyer.htm
"484th Bombardment Group (H)." www.484th.org. Accessed June 8, 2018. http://www.484th.org/.
Note written by Dick Olson, 484th Bombardment Group Association Historian