January 1, 1945, The German Luftwaffe launches Operation Bodenplatte, a last desperate attempt to break loose the Ardennes Offensive that had been halted at Bastogne.  Approximately 800 German fighters are sent to attack 15 allied forward air bases.  At some bases the Luftwaffe attack is devastating, destroying aircraft and rendering airstrips useless.  At other fields only a few fighters found their targets and damage was minimal.  But at Asch the result was unlike anything the Luftwaffe had imagined.  The attack on the Asch airbase, known as Y-29, was a total disaster.  When the 11th Jagdgeschwader reached Y-29 they found 8 Thunderbolts of the 390th Fighter Squad, 366 Fighter Group circling the field and 12 Mustangs of the 487th Fighter Squad, 352nd Fighter Group just taking off.  The ensuing battle came to be know as the "Legend of Y-29".  This battle was only one of many battles that took place on new years day 1945.  But in no other battle did one unit distinguish itself so well from such a disadvantage.  For their courage and performance in the face of overwhelming odds, the 487th earned the only Distinguished Unit Citation given to a fighter squadron in the Northwestern European Theater of Operation.

Here you will find a detailed account of Operation Bodenplatte and the "Legend of Y-29".  The story being told by myself (second hand of course) and first hand through the combat logs and memoirs of some of the pilots who were there. 

A word or two about this site:  Trying to write about history nearly 60 years after the fact and not having been there turns out to be a bit conflicting.  Many of the facts given here are contradicted in other sources.  Some contradictions are even found in this site among the different accounts of events.  I have tried to verify facts through multiple sources including some surviving members of the 352nd Fighter Group (whose help I am eternally grateful for).   But I believe that the accounts of events given here are are as accurate as is possible. 

Blue Skies,