Dear Cass, I Love You

Rudy's Room -- Rudy Hildenbrand -- U.S. Army Air Corps

Cast of Characters
Introduction -- The Four Star German American Family
Chapter 1 -- Short History of Germany & the Hildenbrand Family Early Years
Chapter 2 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- Pre-Draft & Marraige
Chapter 3 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- June 1943 -- Basic Training
Chapter 4 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- July 1943
Chapter 5 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- August 1943
Chapter 6 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- September 1943
Chapter 7 -- Letter To Cass & Dutch -- October 1943
Chapter 8 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- November 1943 -- From U.S. to North Africa
Chapter 9 -- Letters To Cass & Dutch -- December 1943
Chapter 10 -- Letters to Cass & Dutch -- January 1944
Chapter 11 -- Letters to Cass & Dutch -- February & March 1944
Chapter 12 -- Prisoner of War Letters & Postcards -- April 1944 to January 1945
Battle of Casino
Going Home
Prisoner of War Book -- Part I
Prisoner of War Book -- Part II
Letters to Dutch & Cass From Friends/Family
Rudy's Room -- Rudy Hildenbrand -- U.S. Army Air Corps
Eric's Room -- Eric Hildenbrand -- Marines
Herbie's Room -- Herbert Hildenbrand -- Navy
Family Photos
Family Plot
Other Links of Interest




Distinguished Unit Citation for Mission to Oschersleben, Germany, 11 January 44. XI--BATTLE HONORS.-1- As authorized by Executive Order No. 9396 (sec. I, Bull. 22, WD 1943); superseding Executive Order No. 9075 (sec.III, Bull. 11,WD, 1942). Citation of the following unit by the Commanding General, Eight Air Force, in General Orders, No-355t 11 May 1944, under provisions of section IX, Circular No- 333, War Department, 1943, in the name of the President of the United States as public evidence of deserved honor and distinction, is confirmed. The citation reads as follows:
The 1st Bombardment Division (H), is cited for extraordinary heroism, determination, and esprit de corps in action against the enemy on 11 January 1944. On this occasion the 1st Bombardment Division led the entire Eighth Air Force penetration into central Germany to attack vital aircraft factories. After assembly was accomplished and the formation was proceeding toward Germany, adverse weather was encountered which prevented effective fighter cover from reaching the 1st Bombardment Division. Taking full advantage of the relative vulnerability of the lead division, the enemy concentrated powerful forces against it. The scale of the enemy attack is graphically indicated by the fact that 400 encounters with enemy aircraft were recorded by; units of the 1st Bombardment Division. The gunners met these attacks with accurate fire, and the division continued toward the targets as briefed where bombs were dropped with excellent results. On the return trip the enemy continued to concentrate his efforts on the 1st Bombardment Division. Figures of enemy aircraft claimed by our gunners indicate that the heroism of this division inflicted heavy losses on the enemy in the air as well as on the ground. Two hundred and ten (210) enemy aircraft, the largest number ever claimed by any division of the Eighth Air Force for any one mission were confirmed as destroyed, 43 probably destroyed and 84 damaged. The division lost 42 heavy bombers and many of those which returned were heavy damaged. Four hundred and thirty (430) officers and enlisted men failed to return, 2 were killed, and 32 others wounded. The extraordinary heroism and tenacious fighting spirit demonstrated by the 1st Bombardment Division in accomplishing its assigned task under exceptionally difficult conditions reflect highest credit on this organization, the Army Air Forces, and the armed forces of the United States.
By order of the Secretary of War:
G. C. Marshall, Chief of Staff





Rudy Hildenbrand's Enlistment Record


National Archives Enlistment Record

Copyright James A. Hildenbrand 2009, 2010, 2011