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ANNÉES
1945 à 1949

Mise à jour : 20/06/22
1 9 4 5

CHIFFRES DE L'ANNÉE

Superficie: 760 hectares

AVIONS

Log Avion : 1940 à 1949

1ère fois: B29, L.049

COMPAGNIES

AUTRES

Commandant Orly: Colonel SMITH

JANVIER 1945

Construction d'une nouvelle tour de contrôle près des pistes (en métal). Le mois a été difficile à cause

des conditions climatiques (neige, gel), manque de nourriture, baisse de l'électricité, manque de fuel,

conduites gelées.

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16 JANVIER 1945

Après une mission de bombardement sur Berlin et Dresde (mission 29, 46th Bomb Group), de nombreux B-24 (42-110161 "Jail Bait", "Henry",...)  se sont retrouvés à court de carburant à cause du mauvais temps et du vent. Ils ont choisi de se poser à Orly où ils resteront 3 jours jusqu'à l'arrivée de carburant depuis l'Angleterre.

Témoignage de Bill A. Rosser paru dans la revue des vétérans du 44th Bomb Group '8 Ball Tails' (hiver 1995):

"We landed at Orly, as you indicated, on Jan. 16. Had fields on the continent not been available, it is doubtful that the mission could have been completed as flown because a great many planes were low on fuel. I don't remember how many landed at Orly, but there were a lot of them. Someone ran off the taxi strip into deep mud and stranded several planes. Since there was no equipment available to free him, we were "stuck1' in Paris for three days. I told you we were lucky! © 8 Ball Tails

Témoignage de Roy Owen paru dans la revue des vétérans du 44th Bomb Group '8 Ball Tails' (hiver 2007):

"Our Primary Target on 16 January 1945 was the Marshalling Yards at Berlin, but we did not have good intelligence,” Roy Owen
(506 Sq.) remembered. “The weather was so bad, we couldn't see the target, so we headed to our secondary assignment, the railways
at Dresden.” Owen (Co-pilot on the William Smith crew) later learned that the railroad lines at Dresden were jammed, not only with
army personnel, but also civilians who were trying to move west to escape the onslaught of the Russian troops. “People were jammed into box cars, sitting on flat cars and hanging onto anything that was moving,” he said. “Those of us who were on that bomb run could feel guilty about adding to the human misery below them; however, we can take satisfaction from the fact that we missed the target. We hit the western edge of the Marshalling Yards. It was not a good job.” The headwinds were fierce, snow was falling, and many planes didn't have enough fuel to get back to Shipdham. The Allies had already taken Paris, so Orly was the logical place to stop. William Smith brought # 00-829 down, only to find an airfield full of '17s and '24, all with the same problem. “The first night they put us into a gymnasium.” Owen continued. “The next two nights we spent in a Red Cross Hotel with all its unusual amenities. It was the first time
the men had ever seen a bedea, so that sparked some interesting questions and speculation about this luxurious equipment.
“Of course, we had to leave two men with the plane, so one immediately set forth to acquire some local beverages. Then, somehow
they got into a scuffle with another B-24 crew, throwing snowballs at each other. As the beverages flowed, the battle advanced
to firing flare guns. The next day the snow banks were full of black holes.” Three days later, fuel arrived from England, and it became necessary to leave the luxuries and the Mademoiselles of Gay Paris behind.
On that same mission, #42-50660, from the 68th Squadron, piloted by John Testa was abandoned in France, #42-52293 Judy's Buggy (67th) crashed near Metz, but did not burn. It was salvaged 4 February 1945; Hellza Droppin' (68th) got back to Shipdham but the airfield was fogged in solid. The crew bailed out, Gerald Lindsay, pilot, put the A/C on autopilot and it is believed to have crashed in the North Sea. Bill Rosser, pilot of Big Time Operator reported being delayed among others because someone ran off the taxi strip into deep mud and stranded several planes. The records indicate that fourteen men were injured on that mission."
© 8 Ball Tails

Témoignage de ? paru dans la newsletter de l'association Second Air Division Veteran (Mars 1974):

"The crew elected to name our new ship 'HENRY' [...] Several weeks later, we received an original 'Henry' standing on top of a B-24 with a bomb in a slingshot. Mission #29 was to Dresden, Germany, and it was our good luck to be diverted to Orly, France on the return
trip because of bad weather in England. Funny thing happened in Orly, it took us three"
© Second Air Division Veteran

FEVRIER 1945

Les américains construisent des hangars en métal pour les Douglas C-47 français et continuent la construction de bâtiments (55 au total). 1 481 avions ont atterris ce mois-ci dont 170 C-54.

Témoignage de Jacqueline DELCUS entrée en février 1945 sur les conditions de vie: "Il y avait transport et transport. Celui du personnel était très rudimentaire au lendemain de la guerre : c'était un camion bâché, équipé de bancs longitudinaux et peint en bleu, d'où son nom "l' Oiseau bleu" A chaque coup de frein, nous tombions dans les bras les uns des autres: la journée commençait et se terminait par des rires. Dans nos bâtiments très vieux, on voyait le jour à travers des cloisons que nous calfeutrions l'hiver avec du papier journal! Les souris passaient à travers les lames du parquet. L' hiver où il fit très froid, notre bureau fut transformé en patinoire: les tuyaux avaient
éclatés. Nous avons acheté de petits poêles à pétrole... à la fin de la journée, nous étions tout noirs et intoxiqués..."


Constant LEROY évoque, lui aussi, les tout premiers bâtiments administratifs: "Du côté navigation aérienne civile, existait un bâtiment
qu'on appelait le commandement, en bordure de la RN7, à la hauteur de la porte dite de la Pergola. C'est Mlle Deutch de la Meurthe qui l'aurait fait construire (il était appelé, avant la guerre. le Roland Garros). Les Américains occupaient le rez-de -chaussée. Aux étages, les bureaux du commandant Drouet pour les problèmes administratifs et le mien pour les problèmes de télécommunications et les relations
avec les Américains."
 
[extrait du livre "Aéroports de Paris, une aventure humaine"]

22 FEVRIER 1945

Mission "OO-LA-LA" du 448th Bomb Group / équipage #46

"We (meaning Joe, Richard & John Roche) had a chance to fly to Paris on official business with Colonels Thompson and Miller. Going across France at 2500 feet we had a beautiful view of the battle area, destruction on an unbelievable scale. Burned out tanks, trucks, and all kinds of rolling stock. There were bomb and shell craters everywhere. A Spitfire came up and flew off our right wing to give us the once over and then flew off. We circled the Eiffel Tower and landed at Orly Airfield about 6 miles outside Paris. Taxing back to the control tower we went off the runway and got stuck in the mud with one gear. French laborers came up to the plane and seemed to be astonished at the size of the B-24 and kept pointing to our .50 caliber machine gun turrets and ammunition on board. Finally with help, we got out of our predicament and back on the taxi way. Paris finally, and what a city from what we saw of it during our brief stay. Cognac and champagne flowed like water, beautiful women strolling about, you would never know there was a war going on a few hundred miles away. We walked by Notre Dame Cathederal and saw the Louvre from a distance. We also walked the Rue de Palais, Paris's Fifth Avenue. We were only in Paris 4 hours, not long enough. The three of us, John Roche, Dick Best and I, spent about
$300.00. Silk stockings (675 francs a pair, about $12), 14 bottles of perfume ($50), silk handkerchiefs, case of champagne ($64), 6 bottles of cognac ($32), and several smaller items. We finally got back to our plane for a late evening departure. As a matter of
fact it was almost dark when we left Paris. We flew back to England and had to identify ourselves coming over the coast by switching on our IFF (IDENTIFICATION FRIEND OR FOE) equipment. We had a wonderfuland unforgettable trip. No bombing for a change. JHZ"
. © A replacement crew in the ETO by John Rowe.

MARS 1945

La Marine française revient à Orly avec l'arrivée des Mureaux de l'escadrille 31S avec notamment ses Bloch 161 Languedoc (8 exemplaires, grosse maintenance faite par Air France) et ses SO 30P Bretagne.

Anecdote de Brand Robert (publié sur anciens-cols-bleus.net): "A la 31S Orly, au début des années 50, les matelots et Q/M opérant sur les Languedoc ne disposaient d'aucun équipement de travail adéquat mis à part le "bleu de chauffe" que personne n'utilisait. Notre magasin d'habillement "le marché aux puces" de la pote de Clignancourt où il était facile de se procurer des boots d'aviateur de la RAF et des combinaisons et casquettes d'origine diverses, une partie de la solde y passait. L'Etat Major de la 31 S autorisait ces tenues hétéroclites, l'essentiel étant que les Languedocs soient parés pour assurer la ligne."

insigne 31S.jpg
07 AVRIL 1945

Arrivée du 843rd Engineer Aviation Battalion qui remplace le 831st Engineer Aviation Battalion.

30 AVRIL 1945

Départ du 843rd Engineer Aviation Battalion qui est remplacé par le 877 Airborne Engineer Aviation Battalion.

Ce même mois, Orly a reçu 400 prisonniers libérés et évacués 3000 blessés américains.

12 MAI 1945

Le 877 Airborne Engineer Aviation Battalion est remplacé par le 829th Engineer Aviation Batallion. Ce même mois arrive les infirmières du 817th MAES.

MAI 1945
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