401st first station when arriving in England

By: Dominic Zurella
On: 06/21/2006
I was the Radio Operator on the Pist'l Packin Mama, 324 Squadron, 91st Bomb Group, 8th Air Force. I seem to remember the 401st Bomb Group staying at our base ( Station 121 Bassinbourne ) in the fall of 1943. The reason I remember this is because I got them confused with our 401st Squadron. No one in our bomb group ( 91st ) seems to remember this. Can anyone help me out?

Re: 401st first station when arriving in England

By: Jacob Wall
On: 07/01/2006
Hello Dominic.
When the 401st came to England they came into the 351st field at Polebrook, due to Deenethorpe not being combat ready.
The 401st stayed there for about two weeks and then flew into the base at Deenethorpe.
During the stay at Polebrook the group flew practice missions and formation tactics etc the practice missions being flown to a small outcrop in the Irish sea know as Scars Rock with hundred pound practice bombs, this practice was continued at Deenethorpe.
Bill Riegler a lead pilot with the 401st 613 squadron was based at Bassingboure for about six weeks during which time he would fly the lead position for the 401st but these missions are not recorded on the 401st loadings, he also did the same flying out of Chelveston. Bill flew a total of thirty nine missions.
If I can be of further help then please feel free to call at jacob@akdamar.freeserve.co.uk
I have had the great pleasure of knowing Bill for some years and I have his taped recorded history of his combat career.
best wishes