Welcome to the Mighty Eighth Air Force WW2 Calendar

This calendar covers the Missions and other events of the 8th Air Force, European Theater of Operations during the four year period from January 1, 1942 through May 7, 1945. The Calendar is set up so that you can quickly find the Missions by number or by date. There were 985 Missions completed by wars end.  Most of the missions occurred in 1944 with a record number of 79 Missions in August.

Resources for the data found in this calendar can be found at http://www.usaaf.net/chron/index.htm  It has been brought to my attention that some of the KIA as reported in the above resource are incorrect in that the numbers may have been calculated from the KIA that returned on the bombers and did not include those crews of lost planes that were listed as Missing in Action and later reported KIA.  If anyone knows of a resource that might have more exact figures for the KIA losses by the 8th Air Force in Europe, I would appreciate hearing from you. You can contact me here.
The links directly below will take you to January of the year that you select.  From there you can link to each of the months in that year.

1942 | 1943 | 1944 | 1945

If you prefer, you can locate a particular mission by clicking on the Mission Links below.

Mission 1-27 | Mission 29-171 | Mission 174-773 | Mission 774-985

The daily calendar links are depicted by the five images you see below.

Movement of Planes and General Information: 
on this day link blankwhite

Bombing Missions with no Losses:
bombing missions no losses  

Bombing Missions with Losses:
Missions with loss of aircraft  

Leaflet Drop Missions:
Leaflet Drop  

Food Drop Rescue Missions:

food drop

The first Bombing Mission flown by the Eighth
Air force was on August 17, 1942

As you go from month to month, you can see the gradual buildup of Eighth Air Force in England.  The 8th AF became the greatest air armada in history. By mid-1944, the 8th Air Force had reached a total strength of more than 200,000 people (it is estimated that more than 350,000 Americans served in 8th AF during the war in Europe).

At its peak, the 8th Air Force could dispatch more than 2,000 four-engine bombers and 1,000 fighters on a single mission. For these reasons, the 8th Air Force became known as the "Mighty Eighth".

The Mighty Eighth compiled an impressive record in the war. This achievement, however, carried a high price. The Eighth Air Force suffered half of the U.S Army Air Forces' casualties in World War 2 (47,000-plus casualties with more than 26,000 dead). They flew 985 Combat Missions losing  6130 Bombers and Fighters. The Eighth's personnel also earned 17 Medals of Honor, 220 Distinguished Service Crosses, 850 Silver Stars, 7,000 Purple Hearts and 46,000 Air Medals. Many more uncounted awards were presented to the 8th Air Force veterans after the war. There were 261 fighter aces and 305 gunner aces in the Eighth in World War 2, and 31 fighter aces had more than 15 or more aircraft kills.

1942 | 1943 | 1944 | 1945