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VIII Fighter Command FO - 34 FIGHTER SWEEPS

31 May 1943

Official description

Not yet known


110 P-47s from 4FG, 56FG and 78FG are despatched on fighter sweeps over France in the Knokke/Courtrai/Dunkirk area. 1 P-47 is MIA but due to a mechanical failure in oxygen system. Pilot killed.

Mission details




Aircraft type

P-47 Thunderbolt


Fighter sweep over Knokke/Courtrai/Dunkirk area. One P-47 of 56th Fighter Group rolled over in a vertical dive and crashed into the ground. Cause thought to be anoxia of the pilot.


  • 4th Fighter Group

    4th Fighter Group

    Some of the pilots of the 4th Fighter Group had seen many hours of combat by the time they joined the 4th Fighter Group as they had volunteered with the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Royal Air Force. The three 'Eagle Squadrons' of RAF Fighter...

  • 56th Fighter Group

    56th Fighter 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...

  • 78th Fighter Group

    78th Fighter Group

    The 78th Fighter Group was initially based at Goxhill but moved to Duxford in April 1943 and stayed there until October 1945. The 78th FG flew each of the three US built principal fighters of the AAF in the ETO. In their Thundetbolts, the 78th FG ...

Mission Statistics

Number of aircraft Sent 110
Number of aircraft Missing In Action 1
Number of people Killed In Action 1


Date Contributor Update
04 January 2015 21:53:50 Lee8thbuff Changes to name and description

Lee Cunningham 4-Jan-2015. Added description based on "The Mighty Eighth War Diary" Roger A. Freeman.

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:43:20 AAM AAM ingest

Lee Cunningham, 8th Air Force missions research database / Stan Bishop's 'Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces', the Combat Chronology of the US Army Air Forces and the work of Roger Freeman including the 'Mighty Eighth War Diary'.