22nd BOMB GROUP
DUCEMUS - We Lead!

Chronology of the 22nd Bombardment Group
During World War II

Blazon:
Ducemus  
Shield: Azure, a cougar's left gamb erased palewise claws to base or armed glues.
Crest: None.
Motto: Ducemus We Lead.

22 Dec 1939 - Constituted as the 22nd Bombardment Group (Medium).

1 Feb 1940 - Activated at Michel Field, NY. Consisted of the 2nd, 19th, 33rd Bomb Squadrons; 18th Recon Sqd was attached. Assigned to CHQ Air Force. Trained in Douglas B-18s. The Commander was Lt. Col. Ross F. Cole

2 Apr 1940 - Lt. Col. John L. Moore assumed command.

14 Nov 1940 - Moved to Langley Field ,VA.

16 Jan 1941 - Assigned to Northeast Air District, 2nd Bombardment Wing.

20 Feb 1941 -Maj. Lewis M. Merrick assumed command.

22 Feb 1941 - USAAF accepted the first four B-26 Martin Marauders and assigned them to the 22nd BG.

26 Mar 1941 - Assigned to First Air Force, 2nd Bombardment Wing.

19 Jun 1941 Insigne was approved.

5 Sep 1941 - Assigned to First Air Force, First Bomber Command.

Oct 1941 - Maj. Mark L. Lewis Jr. assumed command.

8 Dec 1941 - Called to report for duty and without time to pack, the crews and Marauders of the 22nd were ordered to Muroc Dry Lake and March Field , California for coastal antisubmarine patrol duties.

10 Dec 1941 - Lt. Col. Millard L. Haskin assumed command.

31 Jan 1941 - Ground echelon boarded a ship at San Francisco and sailed to Australia.

6 Feb 1942 - Disassembled Marauders were loaded on ships, bound for Hawaii.

Feb 1942 - B-26s were unloaded at Hicham Field. The planes flew sea patrol duty while being fitted with bomb bay tanks for their island hopping flight to Australia.

1 Mar 1942 - Ground echelon moved to Amberley Field, Ipswich.

Mar 1942 - Air echelon departed in groups of six; two planes of the 18th Recon Sqd remained behind for torpedo training.

22 Mar 1942 - First flight of B-26s arrived at Amberley Field, Brisbane, Australia; others followed.

Apr 1942 - Assigned to Allied Air Force, South West Pacific Area; moved to Garbutt Field, Townsville.

5 Apr 1942 - Group planes flew to Port Moresby, New Guinea, where they refueled for their first combat mission against heavily defended Rabaul on New Britain, the key Japanese air and shipping base in the Southwest Pacific . Each B-26 carried a 250 gallon fuel tank and a 1000 pound bomb load in its bomb bay. This was also the first time the Marauders were used in combat.

12 Apr 1942 - Mission by three 19th Sqd B-26s against shipping in Rabaul Harbor. Crews reported one hit on stern of carrier in the Kaga class.

May 1942 - When heavy bombers arrived in Australia and took over the strikes on Rabaul, the Groups B-26s were used against targets on New Guinea.

7 May 1942 - First of two-day participation of the Group in the Coral Sea Battle.

20 May 1942 -Lt. Col. Dwight D. Divine assumed command.

4 Jun 1942 - Two Marauders of the 18th Recon Sqd which had remained in Hawaii, fitted with torpedoes, joined two from the 38th BG in a diamond formation to attack Japanese warships at Midway. One from each unit returned, both heavily damaged.

5 Jul 1942 - Moved to Woodstock, Australia.

4 Jul 1942 - Lost to date in 84 sorties against Lae were three Marauders.

Sep 1942 - Assigned to Fifth Air Force, Fifth Bomber Command.

2 Oct 1942 - Moved to Iron Range, Queensland, Australia.

1942 - During the year, the 22nd�s Marauders had destroyed 93 enemy planes in combat, a record for land based medium bombers in the South Pacific.

11 Jan 1943 - With only enough left for one squadron, the group�s Marauders were grounded for overhaul. The 19th and 33rd returned from Iron Range to Woodstock , to join the 2nd and the 408th, still at Reid River, for combat rest.

4 Feb 1943 - Returned to Woodstock, Australia.

Mar 1943 - Lt. Col. Roger E Phelan assumed command.

27 Jul 1943 - The 19th Squadron, flying the refurbished Marauders, now known as the Silver Fleet, the first to return into combat, moved to Dobodura, New Guinea.

Oct 1943 - The other three squadrons, now flying B-25 Mitchells, joined the 19th at Dobodura.

5 Nov 1943 - Earned Distinquished Unit Citation by knocking out enemy entrenchments on New Guinea in support of Australian ground forces.

13 Jan 1944 - 2nd and 408th Squadrons moved to Nadzab, New Guinea.

11 Feb 1944 - Redesignated 22nd Bombardment Group (Heavy) and equipped with B-24 Liberators. During the period 1 Feb - 26 Feb the Group was under the operational control of the 309th Bombardment Wing.

Mar 1944 - Col. Richard W. Robinson, assumed command and the group came to be known as the Red Raiders, from the name of the red headed colonel�s first plane, �Red Raider.� Targets included Japanese airfields, installations and shipping in Borneo, Ceram and Halmahera.

Jun 1944 - Assigned to Far East Air Force, Fifth Air Force, Fifth Bomber Command.

16 Aug 1944 - The first of the Group�s personnel moved to Owi, Schouten Islands. During absence of Col. Robinson from 17 Aug - 2 Oct 1944, Col. Rufus O. Miller was in command.

Sep 1944 - Began attacks against Japanese bases in the Philippines.

7 Nov 1944 - Ground echelon departed by sea for Leyte, Philippine Islands.

15 Nov 1944 - Ground echelon arrived at Leyte.

26 Nov 1944 - Moved to Anguar.

1945 -Struck airfields, installations, industries and shipping on Formosa and China and provided ground support to Australian forces on Borneo and American forces on Luzon.

20 Jan 1945 - Moved to Samar, Philippine Islands.

21 Jan 1945 - Col. Leonard T. Nicholson assumed command.

12 Mar 1945 - Moved to Clark Field, Luzon.

5 Aug 1945 - Men and officers, other than the rear echelon, embarked on LST #898 at Subic enroute for Okinawa.

15 Aug 1945 - Main body debarked on Okinawa, moved to Motobu.

25 Aug 1945 - Three Red Raider Liberators flew their first armed recon mission of several from Okinawa over Japan.

15 Sep 1945 - Okinawa was swept by a typhoon.

16 Sep 1945 - Crews and planes of the 22nd were transferred to the 380th BG. to await further orders for return to the United States. The group was redesignated as 22nd Bombardment Group (L).

24 Sep 1945 - Col. Leonard T. Nicholson was relieved as commander and assigned to V Bomber Command; he was replaced by Lt. Col. James E. Sweeny.

7 Oct 1945 - Lt. Col. Charles W. Johnson assumed command.

17 Oct 1945 - Major John E. Pryor assumed command.

Nov 1945 - Assigned to Far East Air Force and transferred without men or machines to Fort William McHenry. Luzon , Philippine Islands.

Cy Klimesh
cyklim@klimesh.com

I am proud to have served with the Red Raiders


Squadron insignia from THE MARAUDERS, courtesy of Bob Crawford

Keep 'em Flying!