Civilians killed by unknown Allied Aircraft - Tuscany

Discussion in 'Italy' started by Caste, Nov 25, 2022.

  1. Caste

    Caste Active Member

    Good evening,
    I'm doing some researches about 7 civilians killed - supposedly - by an unknow Allied Aircraft in Tuscany, precisely in the province of Arezzo, near Figline Valdarno - San Giovanni Valdarno - Terranuova Bracciolini.
    In the memoirs written by the then priest of my village he writes, on July 13, 1944:
    "This morning at about 10 a.m. British planes bombed Riofi and the Piantravigne road, striking on the same a caravan of wanderers among whom there were 7 killed and 2 wounded. In the evening (..) the bodies, horribly mangled, were laid to rest in our cemetery after the ritual funeral services held in the open and interrupted for a few minutes by the appearance of low-flying British planes that seemed to be targeting us."
    My question is:
    Is there any possibility of identifying the Allied plane that might have killed these civilians? I have absolutely no idea where to look, so any help would be great.
    I'll upload a map of the exact area where the civilians were killed; the red cross is where the civilians were killed, Riofi. The red circle is the little village of Piantravigne, where they were buried.
    Best regards,
    mappa strage riofi.png
  2. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Good evening Caste,

    Here's what I've found regarding Allied air activites in the period you are interested in :

    HyperWar: Army Air Forces in World War II Volume III: Europe: ARGUMENT to V-E Day, January 1944 to May 1945 Chapter 11

    Beginning with the second week of July, XII TAC (Tactical Air Command (United States Army Air Force) and DAF (Desert Air Force - Allied Tactical Air Force) switched the main part of their offensive from rearward communications to the battle area. In the six days prior to the Eighth Army's entrance into Arezzo (16 July) Kittyhawks and Mustangs flew around 900 sorties against gun positions and troop concentrations in front of the Eighth. Baltimores, Marauders, and Spitbombers added to this assault, while Spitfires directed a strong effort against roads and supply dumps close to the battle line. Night bombers continued armed reconnaissance of rear areas, attacking roads, strongpoints, and harbors.

    If the plane responsible returned safely to base there is little chance of your being able to trace it. If it crashed, there would have been a MACR (missing aircraft report) but that wouldn't necessarily have described the bombing incident.

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  3. Caste

    Caste Active Member

    Good morning Vitellino,

    Thank you for your help. So I should look at the documents related to TAC and DAF and see what i can find on 13 july 1944..that is already something.
    Where can I manage to find such documents?
    Anyone in the forum can help me?
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2022
    CL1 likes this.
  4. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    I have already looked:

    USAAF Combat Operations 1941 - 1945 (

    TACTICAL OPERATIONS (Twelfth Air Force): In Italy, medium bombers again bomb bridges in the Po River Valley; A-20s hit an ammunition plant; and fighter-bombers attack targets, mainly railroads, in areas N of the Arno River in advance of the battlefront. On Corsica, HQ 87th Fighter Wing moves from Vescovato to Furiani; and the 524th Fighter Squadron, 27th Fighter
    Group, moves from Voltone, Italy to Serragia with P-47s.

    That's all you are going to get from the general report. You now need to identify all the fighter -bomber squadrons operating on 13 July, probably from Corsica, and obtain their individual war diaries.

    That's all from me on this topic - best of luck
    CL1 and Caste like this.
  5. Caste

    Caste Active Member

    Thank you for your precious help Vitellino.
  6. Caste

    Caste Active Member

    Hello everybody,
    Vitellino gave me great help, but I'm having some problems while trying to do research.
    Are there any experts in the Allied Military Aviation forum who can give me even more precise indications of which squadrons might suit me?
    I'm not sure how to go about it, this is my first time ever researching this field of militaria.

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