Historical Data Pertaining To The
Headquarters, 391st Bombardment Group (Medium), was constituted and authorized to be made active by War Department letter, file AG 320.2 (1-14-43) OB-I-AF-M, dated 15 January 1943.(1)
Headquarters, 391st Bombardment Group (Medium), was activated on 21 January 1943, at MacDill Field, Tampa, Florida, and was assigned to the III Bomber Command, per paragraph 1, GO No. 5, Headquarters, Army Air Base, MacDill Field, Florida, dated 21 January 1943,
Headquarters, 391st Bombardment Group (Medium), was redesignated as Headquarters 391st Bombardment Group (Light), effective 7 July 1945. (2)
Headquarters, 391st Bombardment Group (Medium)
Type of Aircraft Used
B-26 Marauder (13 February 1943 - 9 April 1945)
MacDilI Field, Tampa, Florida: 21 January 1943 - 23 May 1943 (Activation)
Departure Overseas (3)
Camp Shanks, New York: January 1944 - 15 January 1944
The Ground Echelon departed from Godman Field, Kentucky, on 31 December 1944 and arrived at Camp Shanks, New York, on the following day. Its members sailed, 16 January 1944, on HMT Ile de France, docking at Gourock, Scotland, nine days later. Traveling in two sections, they reached their station at Matching in Essex County, England, on 26 and 27 January 1944.
Hunter Field, Savannah, Georgia, 30 December 1943 - 3 January 1944
The Flight Echelon flew from Godman Field, Kentucky, on 30 December 1943, to Hunter Field, Savannah, Georgia. At the Modification Center there a final check was given to all aircraft, after which the unit departed on 3 January 1944 for Morrison Field, West Palm Beach, Florida, where it remained for three days. Flying by the South Atlantic route, overnight stops were made at Borinquen Field, Puerto Rico; Atkinson Field, British Guiana; and Belem, Brazil. Two nights were spent at Natal, Brazil, before taking the "hop" to Ascention Island, which the Echelon left on 12 January, for Roberts Field, Liberia. Due to weather conditions, the departure was not made until 21 January. On the following day, the unit flew from Dakar, Senegal, to Marrakech, French Morocco, where it was weathered in for a week, before proceeding to St. Mawgan, England, on 30 January 1944. That same day, the unit reported at Matching (4) where the Ground Echelon had already taken station.
Matching, Essex, England: 26 January 1944 - 19 September to 1 October 1944
Colonel Gerald E. Williams (6) 23 January 1943 - 28 October 1943
(1) Cited in GO No. 22, Headquarters, Third Air Force, 20 January 1943.
(2) Organization Order No. 4, Headquarters, 9th Air Division, dated 3 July 1945.
(3) Ltrs, WD, 370.5 (11 Dec 43) OB-S-E-AKROO-M, subj: "Movement Orders, Flight Echelon, Shipment 1458," dated 12 December 1943, and WD 370.5 (13 Dec 43) OB-S-E-M, subj: "Movement Orders, Shipment 1458," dated 15 Dec 1943.
(4) The first section included the Commanding officer in charge of 43 B-26 aircraft; the remaining 14 aircraft arrived on 14 February 1944.
(5) As late as 10 October 1945, the 391st Bombardment Group was reported by the 26 Statistical Control Unit as being at the Staging Area.
(6) Col. Williams was the first man assigned to the 391st Bombardment Group (M).
(7) Major Samuel was the Group Operations Officer until appointed Deputy Group Commander on 5 October 1943.
(8) Lt. Colonel (then Major) Ljunggren, assigned to the 573rd Bombardment Squadron (M), was appointed Group Operations Officer on 5 October 1943.