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43-6865

P-51 Mustang

This aircraft was initially assigned to 486FS, 352FG, 8AF USAAF. Trasnferred to 496FTG, 8AF USAAF.

Transferred from the 496th Fighter Training Group sometime during the month of November 1944 when the Fighter Training Groups were disbanded and the training of new combat pilots was accomplished by the main line Fighter Groups.

The aircraft shows up on the 20th Fighter Group Monthly Inventory List on 6 December 1944 and remained with this Group until it was transferred to the 434th Fighter Squadron/479th Fighter Group on 9 April 1945.

For about 2 weeks at the end of March 1945 the aircraft was on Detached Service with the 56th Fighter Group.

Service

Units

  • 8th Air Force

    8th Air Force


    Eighth Air Force Bomber Command became the Eighth Air Force on February 1944, it oversaw bombardment of strategic targets in Europe until 1945. ...

  • 20th Fighter Group

    20th Fighter Group

    Group
    In August 1943, the 20th Fighter Group arrived in Clyde, Scotland, before travelling to Kings Cliffe, Northamptonshire, which was to be their base for the rest of the war. The Group flew 312 missions before their last mission on 25 April 1945. The...

  • 352nd Fighter Group

    352nd Fighter Group

    Group
    The 352nd Fighter Group were based at Bodney, Norfolk from July 1943 until November 1945 but in the winter months of 1944/1945 detachments moved to bases in Belgium to provide extra air support to ground forces during the Battle of the Bulge and to...

  • 479th Fighter Group

    479th Fighter Group

    Group
    The 479th was the last Fighter Group to join the Eighth Air Force, which they did on 14 May 1944. Known as "Riddle's Raiders", after their first Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Kyle L. Riddle, the Group flew escort and fighter sweep missions before D-Day....

  • 496th Fighter Training Group

    496th Fighter Training Group

    Group
    Activated as 496th Fighter Training Group on 11 December 1943 at Greencastle by VIII Composite Command. ...

  • 56th Fighter Group

    56th Fighter Group

    Group
    Flying P-47 Thunderbolts throughout their time stationed in England, the Group, known as "the Wolfpack", had more ace pilots than any other Eighth Air Force Fighter Group. The 56th Fighter Group also destroyed more enemy aircraft in air combat than any...

  • 434th Fighter Squadron
  • 486th Fighter Squadron
  • 55th Fighter Squadron

People

  • Joseph Gerst

    Military | Second Lieutenant | 352nd Fighter Group

  • John Kidwell

    Military | Major | 306th Bomb Group The Reich Wreckers

  • Earl Mundell

    Military | Second Lieutenant | 352nd Fighter Group

  • Merton Stover

    Military | Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 352nd Fighter Group

Places

  • Bodney

    Military site : airfield
    Before the Americans arrived Bodney was a grass-surfaced airfield. So when the 352nd Fighter Group arrived with heavy P-47 Thunderbolts, work was carried out to strengthen its roads and runways with steel matting, concrete and tarmac. Nissen huts also...

  • Goxhill

    Military site : airfield
    Goxhill opened in June 1941 as an RAF Bomber Command airfield, before being handed over to RAF Fighter Command in December. The Eighth Air Force took ownership in August 1942, and used the airfield, which they quickly dubbed 'Goat Hill' for operational...

  • Wattisham

    Military site : airfield
    Built in 1938 as a medium bomber station with a grass airfield, Wattisham was occupied by the RAF until handed over to the Eighth Air Force in September 1942. The 68th Observation Group was the first American unit to occupy the station from October to...

  • Wittering

    Military site : airfield
    Wittering, now in Cambridgeshire, began as RFC Stamford in 1916. By the end of the First World War, it had been renamed RAF Wittering, and was used by both British and American aircraft. It had six hangars, fifteen aircraft sheds and many other...

Events

Event Location Date
Manufactured Long Beach, CA, USA 1944

Built at North American.

Delivered Beale AFB, CA, USA 1944

Delivered to USAAF.

Assigned Bodney, Thetford IP26 5BX, UK 1944

Assigned to 486FS, 352FG, 8AF USAAF.

Assigned Goxhill, Barrow-upon-Humber DN19, UK November 1944

Transferred to 496FTG, 8AF USAAF.

Assigned West Wittering, UK 6 December 1944

Transferred to 55FS, 20FG, 8AF USAAF. War Weary.

Assigned Wattisham, Ipswich IP7 7JY, UK 9 April 1945

Transferred to 435FS, 479FG, 8AF USAAF. Converted to 2 seat configuration.

Crashed Wattisham, Ipswich IP7 7JY, UK 22 September 1945

Landing Accident Wattisham (Sta 377) Cat 2 damage Lt John W Kidwell, 22-Sep-45.

P-51B 43-6865WW - 435FS 479FG 8AF

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
10 July 2018 17:25:30 Al_Skiff Changes to production block number, manufacturer, nicknames, markings, description, events, unit associations, person associations and place associations
Sources

http://www.littlefriends.co.uk/search/
American Fighters Over Europe: Colors & Markings of Usaaf Fighters in WwII
http://www.joebaugher.com/usaf_serials/usafserials.html
http://www.joebaugher.com/usaf_serials/1943_2.html

Date Contributor Update
27 April 2015 12:47:40 Lucy May Created entry with serial number, aircraft type, description, unit associations and media associations
Sources

Correspondence with researcher Ted Damick.

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