Reply to post

P-51 colors – September 1944

Author
Jan Zdiarsky
Squadron Member
  • Total Posts : 15
  • Reward points : 0
  • Joined: 2003/02/12 12:35:41
  • Location: Czech Republic
  • Status: offline
2003/03/04 11:07:31 (permalink)
0

P-51 colors – September 1944

Dear friends,

this post is related to all enthusiast and experts with interest to the USAAF WWII
color schemes and especially to P-51.

As I am longer experienced, there exist some common directives used by all of 8th AF Fighter Groups, the individual group identification markings, on some cases divided also to particular Squadrons or Flights. Naturally, there were also individual differences on scheme for each aircraft... This is very difficult...

Directions about colored noses, rudders, invasion strips or other details were in each squadron or group applied in various time and with various differences.

We are trying to reconstruct possible general color scheme for P-51Ds of 38th FS, 55th Fighter Group for mid of September 1944. After studying of various sources I have prepared a webpage where I would like inform you about our current knowledge and theory.

http://www.lf.czu.cz/museum119/55/55FG_color.htm

Although our current reconstruction “project” is related especially to 38FS, we would like also to learn any detail for other Fighter Groups of 8th USAAF and that time – September 1944.

We would like evoke a discussion to this theme...
Any details or suggestions will be very appreciate.

Best regards, Jan Zdiarsky
(WWW.MUSEUM119.CZ)
[signature]

5 Replies Related Threads

    Anna
    Squadron Member
    • Total Posts : 22
    • Reward points : 2289
    • Joined: 2002/08/29 22:48:28
    • Location: Texas
    • Status: offline
    Re: [Jan Zdiarsky] P-51 colors – September 1944 2003/03/07 22:54:05 (permalink)
    0
    Info on the 55th FG can be found at and I admire your website. It is great of you to honor the airmen and preserve their memories.

    Anna
    [signature]
    p51 bill
    Cadet
    • Total Posts : 9
    • Reward points : 0
    • Joined: 2003/06/07 12:08:04
    • Location: Fountain Hills Arizona
    • Status: offline
    Re: [Jan Zdiarsky] P-51 colors – September 1944 2003/06/07 22:51:50 (permalink)
    0
    My uncle flew with the 338th fighter squadron, 55th fighter group all through 1944.I have letters written to my mom (his younger sister) from April through sept of that year.

    I am trying to get any information about this group of guys that flew with my uncle Bill.His name was Lt. William J. Leonard from Detroit Mi. His mustang had a picture of a Blonde girl- named G-String GAL on the front. I have a picture of the plane. Any body remember it?

    Please contact me with any information about the 338th - 55th fighter group. I plan to take a trip to England and want to visit the base in Wormingford were they were stationed.

    Thanks , Bill
    [signature]
    Jan Zdiarsky
    Squadron Member
    • Total Posts : 15
    • Reward points : 0
    • Joined: 2003/02/12 12:35:41
    • Location: Czech Republic
    • Status: offline
    Re: [Bill] P-51 colors – September 1944 2003/06/09 23:49:27 (permalink)
    0
    [font "Times New Roman"][size 2]
    Dear Bill Kamego,
    many thanks for your reply on my request in relation to the 55th FG. I am very pleased and honored to be in contact with you,
    a relative of Lt. William J. Leonard.
    Your Uncle was attend in the battle of 11th September 1944 which I am researching and he shot down one Me 109 of the German
    Jagdgeschwader 4 and damaged one other.
    So he is one of persons very important for the history we are keeping and remembering by the museum and other activities.
    I feel it really as very good luck to be in contact with you and very appreciate that you have wrote me.
    Yes, of course, I would like very much to share with you all information I have about your uncle and also would like to ask you for
    information about him. We would very much appreciate a good copy of him and his plane (possible your family might have also photos
    of other planes and other men of the 55th FG from his album. All what you would in copies share with us, would be greatly appreciate.
    I would like to send you a publication "Black Monday over the Ore Mountains", also as other Museum material in relation to the air battle
    on which your uncle participated.
    [font "Times New Roman"][size 2]
    I have send you an e-mail with similar text, but also a request for your regular address was included.
    I am looking for your answer.
    Best regards,
    Jan Zdiarsky,
    director of the Museum of air battle over the Ore Mountains
    on September 11th, 1944 in Kovarska, Czech Republic

    [signature]
    p51 bill
    Cadet
    • Total Posts : 9
    • Reward points : 0
    • Joined: 2003/06/07 12:08:04
    • Location: Fountain Hills Arizona
    • Status: offline
    Re: [Jan Zdiarsky] P-51 colors – September 1944 2003/09/09 19:11:59 (permalink)
    0
    Jan,

    First I would like to thank you for the book on the air battle over the Czech Republic.

    I finally received the accident report on my uncle, Lt. Willaim J. Leonard. As you remember he was involved in the battle of "Black Monday over the Ore Mountains". Since you mentioned to send any information about him I thought you might find this interesting.

    After his tour in Europe, he was assigned to Advance single engine and fighter transition, Sq. C Foster Field ,Texas.

    He was on an authorized engineering test flight on 4/29/45 when his aircraft disintegrated in flight.The aircraft was being tested following a previous pilot (Lt.Col.Turner) write-up of experiencing tail buffeting at 460 MPH on 4/26/45. The conclusion of the investigating board was that the accident was a direct result of the ammunition door being "sucked" from the left wing.

    Several pilots and ground crew interviewed remarked that they had seen aircraft namely P-51 return from combat missions with ammunition door loose and in one case missing. My uncle had stated to other pilots that he had experienced compressability several times while in combat with the P-51.

    The report also stated that"aircraft assigned to rocket gunnery are test flown at 505 MPH or the airspeed red line". After this accident all P-51 at this station were restricted to 450 MPH.

    1st Lt. William J. Leonard had a total of 310:45 combat hours and 572:25 hours - 1st Pilot.He was Awarded Air Medal on 7/13/44, 1st Oak Leaf Cluster to Air Medal on 8/31/44, Distinguished Fly Cross on 10/13/44 and Awarded 1st OLC to DFC on 11/14/44 & 5th OLC to Air Medal on 11/14/44.

    His unit the 55th Fighter Group had this record:

    1. First P-38 group in combat with 8th Air Force

    2. First 8th Air Force aircraft over Berlin- 3 March 1944.

    3. Destroyed more locomotives by strafing than any other group.

    4. Destroyed 316 1/2 enemy aircraft in the air and 268 1/2 on the ground.

    5. Awarded two Distinguished Unit Citations for enemy aircraft destroyed.

    6. Nineteen Aces who have a total of 95 victories.

    Jan, if you have any more photos of my uncle or his plane I would love to get a copy!

    P-51 Bill
    [signature]
    p51 bill
    Cadet
    • Total Posts : 9
    • Reward points : 0
    • Joined: 2003/06/07 12:08:04
    • Location: Fountain Hills Arizona
    • Status: offline
    Re: [Jan Zdiarsky] P-51 colors – September 1944 2003/09/09 19:38:59 (permalink)
    0
    Jan,

    I forgot to mention that my uncle 1st Lt. William J. Leonard was assigned 'A' flight commander on 15 September 1944 until 4 December 1944. I think that is the time period you are researching the colors of P-51s in the battle of "Black Monday over the Ore Mountains".

    Also the first operational P-51 Mission for the 338th FS was 19 July 1944.

    P-51 Bill
    [signature]
    Jump to:
    © 2014 APG vNext Commercial Version 5.0