David C Schilling

Military
Lieutenant-Colonel David C. Schilling, an ace P-47 Thunderbolt pilot of the 56th Fighter Group, holds an adapted hand gun. Schilling was Commanding Officer of the 56th FG between 12 August 1944 and 27 January 1945.

Object Number - FRE 202 - Major David C. Schilling, an ace P-47 Thunderbolt pilot of the 56th Fighter Group, holds a heavily modified 1911 pistol. The addition of a forward...

Schilling flew P-47 Thunderbolts and was one of the leading aces of the war. He was Commanding Officer of the 56th Fighter Group between August 1944 and January 1945, taking over from Colonel Hubert A Zemke.

Schilling became an ace in December 1944 when he shot down five German aircraft. He was the 8th highest ranked fighter ace in the European Theater. He helped the 56th Fighter Group become the first Group to destroy more than 1,000 enemy planes.

After the war he was a pioneer of long-distance jet flight, making the first non-stop fighter jet crossing of the Atlantic.

At age 37 he died in a car crash driving his sports car in a narrow lane between RAF Lakenheath and RAF Mildenhall (still US Air Force bases in the UK today).

Schilling Air Force Base, in Kansas, is named after him.

Connections

See how this entry relates to other items in the archive by exploring the connections below.

Units served with

People

  • Military/Civilian/Mascot: Military
  • Nationality: American
  • Unit: 56th Fighter Group Headquarters (56th Fighter Group)
  • Service Numbers: 0 574 019
  • Highest Rank: First Lieutenant
  • Role/Job: Communications and Photo Officer

Aircraft

A P-47 Thunderbolt (LM-W, serial number 41-6343) nicknamed "Little Cookie (The Sad Sack)" of the 56th Fighter Group. Official caption on image: 'ISAD-66-1-F365(OCT 20 '43) CRASH DAMAGE P-41 41-6343.'
  • Aircraft Type: P-47 Thunderbolt
  • Nicknames: Little Cookie
  • Unit: 56th Fighter Group 62nd Fighter Squadron
A P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft of the 56th Fighter Group (LM-S, serial number 42-26641) named "Hairless Joe" - a character from the popular cartoon strip "Li'l Abner". The image was taken at Mount Farm air base - home to the 7th Photographic Reconnaissance Group. Handwritten on slide:"LM:S Schilling P-47D at Mount Farm Astrella"
  • Aircraft Type: P-47 Thunderbolt
  • Nicknames: Hairless Joe
  • Unit: 56th Fighter Group 62nd Fighter Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: P-47 Thunderbolt
  • Nicknames: Whack
  • Unit: 56th Fighter Group 61st Fighter Squadron 62nd Fighter Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: P-47 Thunderbolt
  • Unit: 56th Fighter Group 62nd Fighter Squadron
  • Aircraft Type: P-47 Thunderbolt
  • Nicknames: Hewlett-Woodmere, Long Island
  • Unit: 56th Fighter Group 62nd Fighter Squadron

Places

Events

Event Location Date Description

Born

Leavenworth, KS, USA 15 December 1918

Died

Eriswell, Brandon, Suffolk IP27, UK 14 August 1956 Died in a car crash travelling between RAF Lakenheath and RAF Mildenhall.

Revisions

Date9 Mar 2017 19:06:46
Contributordwgdallas
Sources

From the Personal Collection of Lt. Billy J. Murray

Date4 Feb 2015 15:21:01
ContributorEmily
Sources

Selected Key image

Date1 Oct 2014 13:35:40
ContributorEmily
Sources

Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / Fighter Aces of the U. S. A. and Aces and Wingmen II; Who's Who in the Eighth Air Force and/or Biographical Directory Command & Staff Officers Eighth Air Force 1942-45 / Ted Damick, VIII Fighter Command pilots list

Date1 Oct 2014 11:46:37
ContributorEmily
Date1 Oct 2014 11:44:54
ContributorEmily
Date27 Sep 2014 18:07:00
ContributorAAM
Sources

David C Schilling: Gallery (43 items)