The original air echelon
comprising fifty-nine crews departed the U.S. from Morrison
Field, West Palm Beach, Florida, on 28th February 44 and
soon after opened sealed orders to discover the final
destination. The route to England would take the crews the
southern ferry route with first stop Trinidad; followed with
a take off to Belem, then Natal, Brazil; the southern
Atlantic sea-crossing to Dakar, Senegal, then on to
Marrakesh, then Valley airfield Wales before the final and
permanent base of Rackheath near Norwich. Crews began
arriving at Rackheath from around 8th March 44 onward - -
one crew failed to arrive crashing in the Atlas Mountains
enroute with loss of all on board.
The original B24s that were flown over were almost all "H"
models from block 15 from the Ford plant at Willow Run,
Consolidated at Fort Worth, and the Douglas manufacturer at
Tulsa. As replacement crews arrived during the summer months
of 44, B24 "J" models became common among the Groups
aircraft, later H2X Pathfinder B24Js and B24"L" and "M"
models were all used by 467th crews. At the close of
hostilities in May 45 a number of the "H" models were still
in evidence, a number having flown up to and over 100 combat
missions. Those aircraft which survived both combat missions
and the PMI Inspection were flown back to the U.S. carrying
a crew of ten plus a number of passengers who were ground
personnel at Rackheath.