483rd BOMB WING

The Museum of Aviation honors the 483rd Bomb Group with an exhibit extolling the unit's combat experience in Europe during 1944-1945. The exhibit features a 60-foot-long cut-away replica of a B-17 Flying Fortress complete with crew members at their stations.

As part of the 15th Air Force in WWII, the 483rd Bombardment Group (H) played a significant role in the eventual defeat of Germany's forces. Its four combat squadrons, the 815th, 816th, 817th and 840th flew a total of 5,623 sorties from 12 April 1944 to 26 April 1945, dropping more than 13,700 tons of bombs and losing 79 of its aircraft in combat. Its human losses were high: of the original 646 flying personnel sent to Italy in 1944, 39.8 percent were either killed in action or became prisoners of war.

The 483rd, stationed at Sterparone, Italy, flew B-17 "Flying Fortress" missions against critical enemy-controlled targets in Austria, Romania, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Northern Italy, Germany, Yugoslavia, Poland, Southern France, and Greece (Salamis). The group also supported ground forces during the invasion of Southern France in August 1944 and the Allied offensive in Northern Italy in April 1945. Two secret missions were flown in support of Czech patriots who held Tri Duby airdrome near Banska-Bystrica.

 

The group holds several combat records

  • Participating in the First Task Force Shuttle Mission to Russia

  • Most enemy aircraft destroyed by a B-17 on one mission by one crew (13)

  • Most Me-262 jets destroyed on one mission by one crew (3)

  • Most Me-262 jets destroyed by one gunner on one mission (2)

  • The B-17 with the greatest number of holes from combat action to return to an operating base (total 30,748)

  • The most decorated combat crew for one mission in Air Force history where each of 10 crew members was awarded a Silver Star, and four wounded members, the Purple Heart Medal.

  • The most jets destroyed by one Group during the entire war (7)

 

 

 Museum of Aviation       GA Hwy 247 & Russell Parkway      Warner Robins, GA 31088       (478) 926-6870