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42-103793

P-51 Mustang

Assigned to 369FS, 359FG, 8AF USAAF. Personal aircraft of Lt Harry F Cuzner. Re-assigned to Lt James R Parsons. Transferred to 368FS, 359FG, 8AF USAAF. Crashed fatally carrying out mock strafing attack during gunnery practice, flew into tree, ripping of a wing and exploding. Pilot Lt Merle G Aunspaugh Killed in Flying Accident (KIFA). Polebrook. 2-Mar-45.

Service

Units

  • 359th Fighter Group

    359th Fighter Group

    Group
    The 359th Fighter Group flew 346 missions from East Wretham between December 1943 and April 1945. In the main these missions were escorting bombers flying over occupied Europe. The Group, soon after converting from Thunderbolts to Mustangs, were...

  • 368th Fighter Squadron

    368th Fighter Squadron

    Squadron
    Distinguished Unit Citation: Germany, 11 September 1944.

  • 369th Fighter Squadron

People

  • Merle Aunspaugh

    Military | Second Lieutenant | Fighter Pilot | 359th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 368FS, 359FG, 8AF USAAF. Killed in flying accident carrying out mock strafing attack during gunnery practice in P-51C 42-103793, flew into tree, ripping off a wing and crashed. Killed in Flying Accident (KIFA). Polebrook. 2-Mar-45. ...

  • Harry Cuzner

    Military | First Lieutenant | Fighter pilot | 359th Fighter Group
    Element Leader Lt. Harry F. Cuzner Jr. enlisted in his hometown of Chicago, IL, on 10 August 1942. Assigned to the 369th Fighter Squadron on 29 December 1943, he flew 300 combat hours, completing his combat tour with the 359th Fighter Group on 6...

  • James Parsons

    Military | Lieutenant | Pilot | 359th Fighter Group
    Crashed into channel in P-51 'Santone Sweetheart' 44-11659, Killed in Action (KIA).

  • Felix Peretti

    Military | Corporal | Armourer | 359th Fighter Group
    Assigned to 369FS, 369FG, 8AF USAAF. Awards: WWII Victory, EAME.

Places

  • East Wretham

    Military site : airfield
    East Wretham was not improved to Class A standard. It retained its shorter runways, although eventually pierced-steel planking was laid to make take offs and landings easier for the Thunderbolt, and then Mustang, pilots. Steel matting was also laid to...

  • Polebrook

    Military site : airfield
    Polebrook was laid down for RAF Bomber Command use in 1940-1941. Built by George Wimpey and Co. Ltd, it had short runways which were lengthened for USAAF heavy bomber use. The RAF used the base for operational trials - including of B-17 Flying...

Events

Event Location Date
Manufactured Inglewood, CA, USA 1944

Built at North American Aviation.

Delivered California, USA 1944

Delivered to USAAF.

Assigned Wretham, Thetford IP24, UK 1944

Assigned to 369FS, 359FG, 8AF USAAF.

Transferred Wretham, Thetford IP24, UK 1944

Transferred to 368FS, 359FG, 8AF USAAF.

Crashed Polebrook, Peterborough PE8, UK 2 March 1945

Crashed fatally carrying out mock strafing attack during gunnery practice, flew into tree, ripping of a wing and exploding. Pilot Lt Merle G Aunspaugh Killed in Flying Accident (KIFA). Polebrook. 2-Mar-45.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
31 July 2016 17:00:41 Al_Skiff Created entry with serial number, aircraft type, production block number, manufacturer, nicknames, markings, description, events, unit associations, person associations and place associations
Sources

http://www.littlefriends.co.uk/search.php?searchString=42-103793&Submit=...
http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/dbapi.asp?Pilot=Aunspaugh%2C+Merle

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