Maurice Johnson, mission July 3, 1944

17. July 3, 1944

Giurgiu Oil Refinery and Tank Farm, Romania - Lead aircraft took us over Bor, Yugoslavia at 8000 ft. enroute. Lost 4 B-24's, flak hit nose and destroyed flight instruments, hydraulics, wiring, nose turret controls, waste, wings and tail had holes. Proceeded to target. Attacked by 40 German fighters. 10 ME 109's hit us putting 20 mm shells under bombsight. Another missed pilots head by about 6" and exploded in bomb bay. Nose gunner damaged ME 109 who left smoking, vacuum system shot out, lost all hydraulic fluid. Bomb doors would not open so bombardier dropped bombs on to them tearing them off. Cranked wheels down to emergency landing without brakes, threw out oxygen bottles, machine guns, and ammo to reduce load for landing. Rolled past end of runway before we stopped. Many aircraft made emergency landings at base.