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Google Earth Plug-in: 461st BG (H), Mission 163, Brod Railway Bridge

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19 January 1945

Target: Brod Railroad Bridge, Yugoslavia

On the 19th of the month Major Mixson led a three flight formation on an attack on the railroad bridge across the Sava River at Brod, Yugoslavia. Despite the fact that some of the bombs were over, there was a solid concentration and direct hits on the target. The mission was scored at 43 percent, the highest average for visual bombing obtained during the month of January. Again the enemy flak in Yugoslavia was extremely accurate though not too intense. The flak caused a fire in the nose of the lead plane which compelled the 764th Squadron Navigator, 1st Lt. Robert A. MacDiarmid; the Squadron Bombardier, 1st Lt. Robert A Herold; and the nose turret navigator, 1st Lt. John F. Chaklos to abandon the plane near the target. The fire was eventually extinguished and Major Mixson and his pilot, Lt. Parsonson, returned it to the base. Nine other planes in the formation were damaged by flak and two men were wounded.

In Yugoslavia, 400+ B-17s and B-24s attack N and S marshalling yards, a railroad bridge, and a highway bridge at Brod; because of overcast, only 1 of 112 bombers sent against the Zagreb marshalling yard bombs the target while others abort; 46 P-38s bomb the S railroad bridge at Doboj and 59 P-51s sweep from Zagreb to Gyor, Hungary. Other P-38s fly reconnaissance missions and reconnaissance escort and cover Mediterranean Allied Tactical Air Force (MATAF) B-25s on a supply run.

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