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P-38 Lightning

Built by Lockheed as a P-38J, field modified at Langford Lodge into a 'Droop Snoot*' configuration.

* The 'Droop Snoot' field conversion entailed the removal of the nose armament and associated equipment to make room for a prone bombardiers position with the installation of a plexiglass nose, a Norden bombsight, side windows and an emergency hatch. The theory was for a formation of P-38's to drop their bombs on the formation lead 'Droop snoots' signal with the precision of the Norden bombsight ensuring the accuracy of the formations bombing. An idea championed by Lt Col Cass Hough and Lt Col Dan Ostrander.



  • 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. ...

  • 9th Air Force
  • 370th Fighter Group
  • 479th Fighter Group

    479th Fighter 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....

  • 55th Fighter Group

    55th Fighter Group

    The 55th Fighter Group were the first P-38 Lightning Group to go fully operational from England. The pilots flew long-range escort missions for bombers flying over occupied Europe and racked up 'kills' of their own by destroying enemy aircraft in...

  • 343rd Fighter Squadron
  • 434th Fighter Squadron
  • 485th Fighter Squadron
  • Base Air Depot 3


  • Anthony Piscitelli

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot, Pilot | 55th Fighter Group
    Anthony Piscitelli was pilot of P-38 #42-67866. Hit by Flak while strafing the Coulommiers airfield on 10 April 1944. Killed in Action (KIA). His plane crashed at 200m from the Western edge of the Coulommiers-Voisins airfield (Commune of Maisoncelles...

  • Bailey Williams

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Pilot | 479th Fighter Group


  • Langford Lodge

    Military site : airfield
    Planned to be a Satellite Landing Ground for No. 23 Maintenance Unit at RAF Aldergrove, Langford Lodge was selected in October 1941 to be developed as an air deport for the maintenance and repair of USAAF aircraft. A scheme was devised whereby the...

  • Nuthampstead

    Military site : airfield
    Built during 1942-43, Nuthampstead was the nearest Eighth Air Force heavy bomber base to London. It had three concrete runways, 50 loop hardstandings and two dispersed T2 hangars. It was first occupied from September 1943 to April 1944 by the 55th...

  • 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...


Event Location Date
Manufactured Burbank, CA, USA August 1943

Built at Lockheed aviation as P-38J.

Delivered Long Beach, CA, USA September 1943

Delivered to USAAF.

Crashed Nuthampstead, Royston, Hertfordshire SG8, UK 20 February 1944

Taxiing accident Nuthampstead/Sta 131 Cat 3 damage, pilot Lt Anthony L Piscitelli, 20-2-44.

343FS 55FG 8AF Coded CY-R.

Field modified Langford Lodge, Ireland April 1944 – May 1944

Field modified to 'Droop Snoot*' configuration.

Crashed Wattisham, Ipswich, Suffolk IP7, UK 26 August 1944

Landing accident Wattisham/Sta 377, Cat 3 damage, pilot Lt Bailey A Williams, 26-8-44.

434FS 479FG 8AF

Crashed 02120 Guise, France 3 January 1945

Crashed due to bad weather Guise, France Cat 4 damage pilot 2nd Lt Roy H Napier KIA, 3-1-45.

485FS 370FG 9AF


Date Contributor Update
13 November 2016 19:45:08 Al_Skiff Changes to mission associations

Date Contributor Update
03 January 2016 19:08:34 Al_Skiff Changes to markings, events, unit associations, person associations and place associations

Date Contributor Update
02 January 2016 22:23:18 Al_Skiff Created entry with serial number, aircraft type, production block number, manufacturer and description