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January 28, 1945

Sunday, 28 January 1945

Soviet units took possession of the port of Memel, Lithuania. The last of the German forces, the 58th Division, had evacuated the town a few hours earlier. The Red Army completes the liberation of Lithuania. Um Kräfte für den Aufbau einer Riegelstellung im Samland zu gewinnen, wird das XXVIII. Korps aus dem Brückenkopf Memel über das Eis auf die Kurische Nehrung überführt (24.-28.1.), Flüchtlinge und Verwundete werden mit Schiffen, u.a. Fährschiff Deutschland (2972 BRT), abtransportiert.
Am 25.1. laufen als erste Schiffe von Pillau die Robert Ley, Pretoria, Ubena u.a.m. mit zusammen 7100 Flüchtlingen aus, Ende Januar folgen weitere Schiffe, bis zum 28.1. sind bereits 62.000 Flüchtlinge verschifft.

3rd Byelorussian Front attacking around Koenigsberg, captures Bischofsberg and Sensberg

German 4th Army attacking 48th Army of Soviet 2nd Byelorussian Front in an effort to break out from encirclement

The advance of the 1st Belorussian Front reaches German Pomerania. 1st Byelorussian Front attacking around Sepolno and Meseritz and besieging Posen. Sepolno and Leszno are taken on the flanks of the advance.

Berlin: Civilians are ordered to start digging anti-tank ditches around the city.

1st Ukrainian Front troops complete the capture of Katowice, in the Dombrova coal basin.
1st Ukrainian Front captures Katowice, Beuthen and Leszno, and repulses counterattacks by XXIV Panzer Korps and Grossdeutschland Panzer Korps

2nd Ukrainian Front clears Margit Island in the Danube
Between January 7-28, 1945, the long time suffering and impoverished German population is called for the ‘Volksopfer’ (sacrifice people) to euip the ‘Volkssturm’ (Home guard). Hitler orders Volkssturm units deployed at the front
General Johannes Blaskowitz takes command of German Army Group H

British forces report progress on the Roer River.

Eisenhower returns the command of the US Ninth Army, temporarily given to Montgomery, to Bradley.
US 1st Army opens new attacks toward West Wall and Euskirchen. The US 1st Army launches attacks east of St. Vith in the Ardennes.
US 3rd Army clearing west bank of Our River and pushing east

French 1st Army attacking Colmar pocket
US 9th Air Force aircraft provide direct support for ground operations and attack targets around Mayen, Eller, Sinzig, Remagen, Kaiserslautern, and elsewhere

J.M. (Norway): The coaster was bombed and sunk in the Norwegian Sea off Larsnes, Møre og Romsdal by Allied aircraft. All crew survived.
USS Pompon attacked a Japanese convoy off Syo-kokuzan To in the Yellow Sea as a member of a wolfpack and observed the sinking of two Japanese ships by fellow submarine USS Spadefish.

Kume (IJN): Convoy HI-19: The Ukuru class escort ship was torpedoed and sunk off Kokuzan To northeast of Shanghai in the Yellow Sea (33°54′N 122°55′E) by USS Spadefish (SS 411), commanded by Commander Gordon.W. Underwood. 89 crewmen lost. Survivors rescued by Kamikaze (IJN).
 USS PT-338 was grounded off Semimara, Luzon in the Philippines and scuttled.
R-57 (Kriegsmarine): The Type R-41 minesweeper was sunk in a collision with U-1163 (Kriegsmarine).
Sanuki Maru (IJN): Convoy HI-19: The transport was torpedoed and sunk northeast of Shanghai in the Yellow Sea (33°54′N 122°55′E) by USS Spadefish. 87 Shinyo suicide boats were lost as cargo. 330 Navy personnel and her C.O. were killed. Survivors rescued by Kamikaze (IJN).
The submarine USS Spadefish (SS 411), commanded by Commander Gordon.W. Underwood, attacked Japanese Convoy HI 91 and torpedoed and sank the 4,273 ton Japanese merchant cargo ship Tairai Maru in the Yellow Sea off the west coast of Korea.
Varp (Norway): The fishing vessel was bombed and sunk in Røvdefjord.
Viborg (Denmark): The cargo ship was torpedoed and sunk by K-51 (Soviet Navy) off Rügenwalde. Am 28.1. versenkt K-51 (Kpt. 2. Rg. Drozdov) bei Bornholm den dänischen Dampfer Viborg (2028 BRT).

North Sea RN cruisers Diadem and Mauritius intercept Kriegsmarine destroyers Z-31, Z-34, and Z-38 as they attempt to transfer to the Baltic. Z-31 damaged, and all three German destroyers return to Bergen
Norwegen Bei dem Versuch der 4. Z-Flottille (Kpt.z.S. v. Wangenheim), mit Z 31, Z 34 und Z 38 aus norweg. Gewässern in die Ostsee zu verlegen, wird die Flottille vor Bergen durch die brit. Kreuzer Diadem (VAdm. Dalrymple-Hamilton) und Mauritius abgefangen. Im Gefecht wird Z 31 beschädigt, Rückkehr nach Bergen, von wo Z 34 und Z 38 am nächsten Abend erneut in See gehen und trotz brit. Angriffe nach Anlaufen von Stavanger am 1.2. Kiel erreichen. — Das dt. Räumboot R 57 sinkt nach Kollision mit U 1163 im Trondheim Fjord.

Convoy KMF 39 departs the Clyde for Gibraltar. Convoy UC 54A departs Liverpool for New York City. Convoy HX 335 departs New York City for Liverpool. Convoy UGS 71 departs Hampton Roads for southern France

US 8th Air Force conducts raids on the Ruhr industrial area and the Rhine with 1000 bombers. Oil plants and bridges are the nominal targets. US 8th Air Force attacks Cologne with 342 bombers, Hohenbudberg with 169 bombers, Kaiserstuhl with 115 bombers, Duisburg with 90 bombers, Gneisenau oil facility with 58 bombers, secondary targets and targets of opportunity with 81 bombers

27/28 January 1945 12 Mosquitos to Berlin: 8 bombed this target and 3 bombed alternative targets. No aircraft lost.
28 January 1945 153 Lancasters of No 3 Group attacked the railway yards at Cologne/Gremberg in conditions of good visibility. Some of the bombing fell on the target but some overshot. 3 Lancasters were lost and 1 crashed in France.
RAF Bomber Command sends 602 aircraft to attack Stuttgart, 67 aircraft to attack Berlin overnight

Seven V-2 rocket launches against uncertain targets
20 V-2 rocket launches ((3) failures). Batt. 1., 3./485, 1./836, SS 500. Impact:
West Ham. 30 Dead, 1 seriously injured. Direct hit on house. 11 Properties demolished.
East Ham. Direct hit on Anderson shelter. 16 Dead, 27 seriously injured. 6 Properties demolished. Buses and ambulances damaged by blast.
London – V2 rockets add to misery of cold Home Front

US 12th Air Force aircraft attack targets around San Michelle all'Adige, Milan, Pavia, Cremona, Nervesa della Battiglia, Treviso, Genoa, Padua, and Lake Maggiore

U-2535 was commissioned. Her first commander was Kapitänleutnant Otto Bitter.
Cruiser Köln departed for Wilhelmshaven, Germany for repairs.

Swedish ships bring food to starving Netherlands

Friedrich Christiansen stepped down as the commanding officer of the German 25th Army.

Quisling meets with Hitler

CANADA: Patrol vessel HMCS MacDonald paid off and returned to Dept of Fisheries.

HF: … At 12 cycled over to Sherebourne Mill. In Pound Lane saw Moorhouse’s men carting muck, with 4 horses, 3 of them Suffolks, moving slowly and the snowy fields under the grey snowy sky. As I turned in at the drive gate, a boy was driving cows over the ridge of the hill, his cries of “hup! hup!” very clear in the cold silent air. Mrs Belfield and Penelope were there. She has recently come back from Paris, where she was with the Admiralty.
Joy very kindly gave me a drink of milk, (now such a luxury to me) and a small pot of home-made marmalade to take away.

Back to Boxted at 11 p.m. and went to bed, hoping for a quiet night.  Few ‘planes about, and an occasional explosion, one sufficiently near to rattle the windows.

Aerial view of Yokohama, Japan, 28 Jan 1945

Volcano Islands US 7th Air Force attacks Iwo Jima with 20 B-24 bombers

China Hunan-Kwangtung-Kiangsi operations: 27th Infantry Division of Japanese 20th Army captures Suichuan airfield
US 14th Air Force attacks transportation targets around Wuhu, Sinyang, Linfen, Sinsiang, Hantan, Loyang, and Pinghan with 23 fighters
Burma British 14th Army attacking Japanese positions at Kabwet with strong air support. Anglo-Indian troops captured Pauk
US 10th Air Force supports ground operations around Banwe, Molo, Molo Ywama, and Namhkam with 40 fighters, attacks Japanese positions, supply dumps, and other targets around Namsangsok, Namlan, Pangmakmo, Wengnan, Kutkai, and Mu-lwat with 80 fighters

Thrasher versenkt vom 22.-28.1. vor der Westküste Burmas insgesamt elf Dschunken
Gen “Vinegar Joe” Stillwell & truck convoy reopen Burma Road to China. The first supply convoy using the Ledo Road arrives. First US-Chinese convoy from India crosses the border from Burma into China. Chiang Kai-shek renames Burma Road the Stilwell Road

US 6th Army battling around Clark Field and Fort Stotsenburg on Luzon. US FEAF aircraft attack Cavite naval base, Laoag airfield, Corregidor Island and other targets
Three USMC R4D5 (DC-3; C-47 type) aircraft from Squadron VMR 152 navigated for a flight of SBDs from Peleliu to Luzon. They arrive Luzon on the 29th. The SBDs were sent to assist the army for their dive bomb capabilities.

East Indies RAAF aircraft attack Celebes Island
Approximately 100 carrier-based aircraft from RN Pacific Fleet attack oil facilities on Sumatra, claim more than 60 Japanese aircraft destroyed in the air and on the ground. Japanese aircraft unsuccessfully attack RN Pacific Fleet, losing all 12 bombers to interceptors and flak
Dutch airplanes dump pamphlets on Java

Captain Giles Elza Short was named the commanding officer of USS Ticonderoga. She then departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands for Puget Sound Navy Yard, Washington, United States via Pearl Harbor.
USS Sennet departed the Bonin Islands area.
USS Brill departed Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii for her first war patrol.
Air Group 80 was transferred aboard USS Hancock.

Submarine I-369 arrived at Minamitorishima (Marcus Island)

USS Antietam (CV 36) was commissioned. Her first commander was Captain James R. Tague. Destroyers USS Everett F Larson and Fred T Berry launched.

On it’s second flight in the UK the Lockheed P-80 fighter jet, YP-80A-LO , USAAF s/n 44-83026, msn 080-1005, crashes killing the pilot Major Fredrick Austin Borsodi.

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