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A-2 flying Jacket


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#1 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 03:40 AM

You may know this A-2 Jacket from my collection topic.
I have bought it without any info 11 years ago from ebay.
Inside was an old stamp with an address but i was never able to find out anything. I was close selling it. :pinch:
Until yesterday....... I was able to match an old phonenumber to that address and find the same number with another address not to far from the old location. I gave it a try and to my surprise talked to the son of the airman who once owned the jacket. He was very friendly and told me a lot of his fathers service and he also mentioned how relieved he feels about his fathers jacket being with someone who cares for it and it's history. This was a great compliment for me.

The jacket was worn by Ray Parker from Ohio, SSgt in the 576th Bomb Squadron, 392nd Bomb Group.
He joined the AAF in 1943 and trained as a ball turret gunner on a B-17. Ironically he ended up in a B-24 as waist gunner in the 392nd BG flying out of Wendling, England. He flew his first mission on the 24th December 1944 and added 30 more to his records until the end of the war in 1945.

This was a great day for me and i feel honored to be the caretaker of that piece of history and story of one brave mans service.

The front of the jacket shows the insignia of the 392nd bomb group and a painted Indian Chiefs head and a RAF emergency whistle is hanging from the collar.

A_2_jacket_392nd_BG.JPG

Regards,
Stephan.

Edited by Rattle, 07 August 2009 - 03:43 AM.


#2 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 03:42 AM

The back, showing a Duck's head smoking a cigar and wearing a flying helmet and goggles. Also painted are 31 bombs for 31 missions flown.


A_2_jacket_392nd_BG__1_.jpg

#3 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 03:46 AM

The 392nd NG "crusaders" leather patch.

A_2_jacket_392nd_BG__2_.JPG

#4 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 03:49 AM

The Raczko crew. 576th BS 392nd BG.
Ray keeling front row, second from left.

Raczko_crew___MAdkins.jpg

#5 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 03:52 AM

Most of their missions were flown in this B-24 AC #409.

409.JPG

Sometimes they also flew in Birdie Schmidt.

Christening_Birdie_Schmidt_1__BSchmidt_.jpg

#6 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 03:57 AM

As usual, a little selfmade picture.

Ray_Parkernew.jpg

regards,
Stephan

#7 bobgee

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 04:22 AM

Outstanding!!!!! Bobgee

#8 BEAST

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 04:57 AM

Wow! Great detective work! Amazing how a small sliver of information can yield big results! Well done!!

#9 AustinO

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 07:13 AM

I cant believe you're making international calls "on a whim!" Way to tie it all together! :thumbsup:

#10 Pfc-Grunt

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 09:03 AM

Is the label still in your A2?
If so who is the maker?

#11 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 09:20 AM

Thanks to all for the great response.
Pfc- Grunt, sorry but he cut out the lable.

Regards,
Stephan

#12 JDK

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 12:57 PM

Nice jacket! I'm glad you got the extra info. It always makes a item more interesting.
JD

#13 renfield

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 01:20 PM

Outstanding jacket and history. You are a lucky man to have it and keep it safe. It is nice to know that the family is happy to know it will be taken care of. Winners all around. Thanks for showing it to us.
Steve

#14 Rattle

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 01:29 PM

Nice jacket! I'm glad you got the extra info. It always makes a item more interesting.
JD


Hello JD,
thanks for the response. I take your response one step further. For me, this kind of information is the cause for my collecting, the person and the history behind it. Without it, for me, the piece of militaria is just a piece of old cloth, leather or metal. It is why i collect militaria, to remember the people behind the items. I do not collect for the item itself but for the person and the history, to remember them and let them not be forgotten.

Regards,
Stephan

#15 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 02:01 PM

Hello JD,
thanks for the response. I take your response one step further. For me, this kind of information is the cause for my collecting, the person and the history behind it. Without it, for me, the piece of militaria is just a piece of old cloth, leather or metal. It is why i collect militaria, to remember the people behind the items. I do not collect for the item itself but for the person and the history, to remember them and let them not be forgotten.

Regards,
Stephan



Exactly

:twothumbup:

#16 Rattle

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Posted 09 August 2009 - 12:43 PM

Exactly

:twothumbup:


Thanks Kurt.

Regards,
Stephan

#17 JDK

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Posted 09 August 2009 - 04:50 PM

Hello JD,
thanks for the response. I take your response one step further. For me, this kind of information is the cause for my collecting, the person and the history behind it. Without it, for me, the piece of militaria is just a piece of old cloth, leather or metal. It is why i collect militaria, to remember the people behind the items. I do not collect for the item itself but for the person and the history, to remember them and let them not be forgotten.

Regards,
Stephan


I couldn't agree more! Well said! :thumbsup:
JD

#18 Rattle

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Posted 13 September 2009 - 11:59 PM

I couldn't agree more! Well said! :thumbsup:
JD



Thanks JD :thumbsup:

#19 USMC_GAU-21

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 05:33 AM

Stephan,

Very well said indeed. You should be proud of your preservation of that mans service to our country. I really like the montage picture. Very, very nicely done.

This is why we collect and preserve.

When I go to crash sites of WWII aircraft, and I find little bits and pieces, I always try and put together the whos and the wheres. In late June of 1995, I was visiting a very early USAAC, Y1B-17, that crashed in 1940, the wreck site is in the mountains above Palm Springs. It was a terrible crash and all died. During our initial search I found a mans West Point ring.

I did some research at March AFB, where the crew was out of, and found the pilots name and was able to track down his Granddaughter and returned her Grandfathers ring, a dog tag, and a set of Captains Bars to her family. Made the 5 years I spent researching the wreck, and the many long weekends hiking and finding nothing worth every minute and mile.

On my way home, I admit I needed a few tissues. Even for an old Marine like me.

Great display and research, thanks so much for sharing.

v/r

Gunny Dan :thumbsup:

#20 bobgee

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 09:48 AM

Stephan,

Very well said indeed. You should be proud of your preservation of that mans service to our country. I really like the montage picture. Very, very nicely done.

This is why we collect and preserve.

When I go to crash sites of WWII aircraft, and I find little bits and pieces, I always try and put together the whos and the wheres. In late June of 1995, I was visiting a very early USAAC, Y1B-17, that crashed in 1940, the wreck site is in the mountains above Palm Springs. It was a terrible crash and all died. During our initial search I found a mans West Point ring.

I did some research at March AFB, where the crew was out of, and found the pilots name and was able to track down his Granddaughter and returned her Grandfathers ring, a dog tag, and a set of Captains Bars to her family. Made the 5 years I spent researching the wreck, and the many long weekends hiking and finding nothing worth every minute and mile.

On my way home, I admit I needed a few tissues. Even for an old Marine like me.

Great display and research, thanks so much for sharing.

v/r

Gunny Dan :thumbsup:



Outstanding, Gunny! Semper Fi.......Bobgee

#21 Bluehawk

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 11:59 AM

Rattle,

Based upon, and credited to, your research I have started a Remembrance for this airman at this link:

http://airforce.toge.../...n&ID=108359

It is not complete yet, so suggestions for improvement would be welcome.

A link back to it will also be posted eventually in the Tribute Gallery of the USAF National Memorial.

#22 Nack

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 12:17 PM

Wow - sweet jacklet. Made even better by the choice of colors for the back - scarlet & gray :thumbsup:


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