Doolittle’s Pilot Lt Col Richard “Dick” Cole with the original April 1942 B-25J Panchito (Plane #01 S/N #402244, 34th Bomber Sq), at Charlotte County Airport in Punta Gorda, Florida on Friday, March 25, 2011. © 2011 Robert Seale (Source : www.www.robertsealeblog.com)
The Doolittle Raid of April 18, 1942, was the first air raid by the United States to strike the Japanese home islands during World War II. The mission was notable in that it was the only operation in which United States Army Air Forces bombers were launched from a US Navy aircraft carrier. It was the longest combat mission ever flown by the B-25 Mitchell medium bomber.
This raid had its start in a desire by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, expressed to the Joint Chiefs of Staff in a meeting at the White House on Dec 21 1941, that Japan be bombed as soon as possible to boost public morale after the disaster at Pearl Harbor. The Japanese people had been told they were invulnerable … An attack on the Japanese homeland would cause confusion in the minds of the Japanese people and sow doubt about the reliability of their leaders. There was a second, and equally important, psychological reason for this attack … Americans badly needed a morale boost. Doolittle, later in his autobiography, recounted that the raid was intended to bolster American morale and to cause the Japanese to begin doubting their leadership, in which it succeeded.
I have got this archives from a friend in the USA. I am not an expert into Army Air Force codes and abbreviations but I’ll do my best as usual.
Ball Turret Gunner Lyndon C. Allen
Eighth Army Air Force
MacDill Field, Fla, 15 Jan 1941
Barksdale Field, La, Feb 1942
Will Rogers Field, Okla, Jul/Aug 1942
Shipham, UK, Oct-1942 Jun-1945
Sioux Falls AA Fld, SD, 27 Jun 1945
Great Bend AA Fld, Kan, 25 Jul 1945
Smoky Hill AA Fld, Kan, 14 Dec 1945/12 Jul 1946
Constituted as 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) on Nov 20 1940, the Group was activated on Jan 15 1941 and was trained with B-24’s. The 44-BGH became an operational training unit in Feb 1942 and in Jul, began intensive preparations for combat until moved to England, Aug-Oct 1942, for service with Eighth Air Force. Operations consisted primarily of assaults against strategic targets in France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Romania, Austria, Poland, and Sicily. The bombers pounded particularly submarine installations, industrial establishments, airfields, harbors, shipyards, and other objectives in France and Germany during the period Nov 1942 to Jun 1943. (Source : US 8-AAF)
B-24 Bomber Diamond Lil (Source : warbirdsnews.com)