To commemorate a little known group of Naval Aviators who played an important part in the events of June 6, 1944, this is a mannequin I put together to represent the 17 U.S. Navy pilots who flew Spitfires and carried out gunfire spotting missions for the battleships and cruisers offshore during the opening of the Normany campaign. For the full story, please visit the two part article on my web site here: https://pilotsmanyou...om/Page_80.html
and here: https://pilotsmanyou...m/Page_185.html
and my post in the Forum's Aviation section here: http://www.usmilitar...ay-remembrance/
Based on vintage photos of the unit's pilots, this display represents the typical clothing and equipment of these fliers. You will note the mix of standard Navy flight gear and RAF equipment they put to use. We see here components of the aviation working green uniform (shirt and trousers) combined with an M-422a intermediate flight jacket, summer flying gloves, AN-6530 goggles, nylon scarf (from a Navy parachute canopy), .38 Victory revolver in issue shoulder holster, Mark I knife and Navy standard seat parachute with AN-6520 pararaft. RAF items include a fully wired type C flight helmet, type G oxygen mask (converted to a microphone carrier by removing the oxygen tube) 1941 Mae West (complete with bladders and survival accessories) and 1943 escape boots with sectional charts of the French coast. Personal items are an issue pilot's watch, crash bracelet and Corpus Christi graduation ring.
Having just returned from a cross-Channel flight, our pilot awaits the rearming and refueling of his Spitfire before the day's second mission. He is seated on an Air Ministry folding wooden chair. Having finished his tea (from a NAAFI 1/2 pint mug) he is about to enjoy a smoke while scanning the latest Invasion headlines in the June 7th "midnight" edition of the London Daily Mirror. Enjoy!