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Bongs P-38 in photo?


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#1 P-59A

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Posted 13 April 2019 - 10:49 PM

Is this Richard Bongs P-38 in the back of these photo's? The kill numbers sure look like it.

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#2 sundance

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 12:23 AM

Can you get us a better shot of the 2 P-38 photos? I'm guessing you don't have these photos in hand. Could be Bong's plane - that's a lot of meatballs painted on there.



#3 P-59A

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 02:14 AM

I count 27 kills. 5 deep by 5 wide plus 2 to the side. Bong had a total of 40 kills. It can only be one of three guys. Mac Donald had 27 kills in a P-38 in the South Pacific. McGuire had 38 kills in a P-38 in the South Pacific or Bong.


Edited by P-59A, 14 April 2019 - 02:21 AM.


#4 P-59A

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 02:26 AM

That is Bong's P-38

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#5 Swifter

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 09:05 AM

Not sure it's Bong's Lightning.  "Marge" is missing.  Did a quick search on Google to find out how many different (late model) 38s were actually assigned to him--in theater.  Didn't come up with an answer.


Edited by Swifter, 14 April 2019 - 09:06 AM.


#6 aznation

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 09:16 AM

I believe it is Bong's Lightning.

 

Source:  https://www.historyn...ace-of-aces.htm

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Edited by aznation, 14 April 2019 - 09:16 AM.


#7 gwb123

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 09:46 AM

You believe which photo is Bong's P-38?  The photo in your post, or the two photos that were shown at the top of this thread?



#8 P-59A

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 01:15 PM

NOTICE ANYTHING? Like the two different ways her name is spelled, or one is new and the other not? Look at the nose .50 barrel nearest us in the photo, two different placements. The larger photo has not even had the kill marks put on it.

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Edited by P-59A, 14 April 2019 - 01:20 PM.


#9 P-59A

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 01:33 PM

Both clearly Bongs P-38, but notice things change.

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  • Bong-27-960_640.jpg


#10 P-59A

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Posted 14 April 2019 - 01:36 PM

 Bong's P-38 with different tail numbers 42-104380 or 42-103993? Take your pick.

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Edited by P-59A, 14 April 2019 - 01:40 PM.


#11 Government Issue

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 04:14 PM

Did Bong's 38 come back stateside on a war bonds tour? I know there's a Lightning with Bong's paint scheme on it, and if it's his original it may account for the discrepancy. I'd assume it's similar to the Memphis Belle and her combat and war bond tour livery differences. 



#12 Government Issue

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 04:19 PM

Looking at that 3993 photo it appears to me that there is a coat of paint under the last four numbers, which could also mean that it was given a new tail number at some point, too. 



#13 P-59A

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Posted 15 April 2019 - 08:16 PM

Looking at that 3993 photo it appears to me that there is a coat of paint under the last four numbers, which could also mean that it was given a new tail number at some point, too. 

The new P-38 looks to me to be the war bond tour aircraft. The way "Marge" is done is not seen on any war time theater photo's I can find. 3993 looks to one he flew before 4380. The 3993 has two pilot ID styles. The white with black letters then the black with white letters seen near the canopy. The black with white letters shows at the time Marge is painted on.  It shows up until the 27 kill mark then 4380 shows. The two theater aircraft have different style flags. The washed out nose numbers are just that, not re numbered.


Edited by P-59A, 15 April 2019 - 08:23 PM.


#14 38Driver

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Posted 17 April 2019 - 03:11 PM

Bong had more than one 38. The image without Marge is definitely his bird. The image was blown up and attached to the 38 not painted, meaning it could wear off. Other images of that same bird show that you can see where the image had been. Remember that planes got done up nice for the cameras after the fact. William Shomo’s 51 was devoid of markings on the day he won his MoH yet we all know his Mustang as “The Flying Undertaker”. Similar with The nicely shined up War bond drive “Marge”

#15 38Driver

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Posted 17 April 2019 - 03:12 PM

If you look close at the image in the original post you can see the spot where the image of Marge had been at one point

#16 38Driver

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Posted 17 April 2019 - 03:30 PM

From my own little photo collection.  Bong's bird minus Marge on the nose.  You can see the remains of the rough outline where the blown up image was attached to the nose panel.

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#17 38Driver

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Posted 17 April 2019 - 03:33 PM

Blew up the original image and outlined where you can see the image had been at one point.  Definitely Bong's bird.

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  • Marge.jpg


#18 P-59A

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Posted 17 April 2019 - 04:10 PM

Blew up the original image and outlined where you can see the image had been at one point.  Definitely Bong's bird.

Outstanding! Thanks for going the extra mile. Well done!




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