Jump to content

Two AAF Blouses- Lead Crew Pilot & Bombardier


Recommended Posts

I've had both of these cut down four pocket blouses for a long time and have never photographed them in their entirety. Today, I decided it was time to get some uniforms out of the closet and shoot some photos. three of four years ago, I posted a photo of the lead crew patch and the interesting combat crew backing, but here is the "whole shooting match."

 

This pilot's Ike jacket was picked up at a yard sale many, many years ago. The pilot has to have been one heck of a pilot and undeniably a brave man. The pilot earned a Silver Star, two Distinguished Flying Crosses and at least eight Air Medals. The ribbons are English made and are sewn to brass mounting bars. The 8th AF patch is English made, machine embroidered on felt and then enhanced with some gold bullion "tress" sewn around the border. There is matching bullion tress sewn around the combat crew wing background. The wing is a classic, US made pilot wing made by Fox. It is clutch back.

 

 

 

 

post-151-0-14155200-1398720083.jpg

post-151-0-75314600-1398720097.jpg

post-151-0-87670800-1398720112.jpg

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Even the Distinguished Unit Citation is British made. The overseas bars are stamped metal and crimped to the cuff.

 

One of the most interesting things to me about the jacket is that the Captain's bars are also English made. Unfortunately, they are a mismatched pair, but there has to be a story to this. Inside one of the pockets is the mate to one of the bars. It is marked "H & Co" and the pin is broken just short of being able to fit under the retaining catch. The pilot obviously broke the pin at some point, put the broken bars in his pocket and pinned another set of railroad tracks on to replace it. I have thought many times over the years about replacing the broken pin with a replacement and putting the mate back on the jacket, but since the jacket has been this way for such a long time, I just haven't been able to do it.

 

I hope you like this one. I sure do!

 

Allan

post-151-0-92984600-1398720432.jpg

post-151-0-17726200-1398720442.jpg

post-151-0-22891900-1398720644.jpg

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Now for the bombardier. This one has also been a "keeper" forever. Again, we're looking at a cut-down officer's 4 pocket blouse, tailored into the classic English Battledress style. This bombardier was an "old goat" and has to have been one of the first airmen to reach the ETO. Note the number of overseas bars on the cuff. The 8th AF patch is the Stubby Wing pattern. The chest sports an English made, bullion, bombardier wing sewn above a four place ribbon bar with DFC, AM with 4 olcs, ETO ribbon and a French Croix de Guerre ribbon with a gold star device. Above the sewn on bar is a single Bronze Star ribbon that probably came out of the medal case when it was awarded. Yes, the ribbon is out of order, but was probably pinned on rather than replacing the sewn on bar.

 

Perhaps the most fascinating piece on the uniform is the British Observer wing on the right chest. It is a bit unusual in that it is machine embroidered and the wing has a pronounced curve to it rather than the straight pattern normally seen on RAF tunics. The DUC is a standard US made example.

post-151-0-31825600-1398721135.jpg

post-151-0-77784700-1398721147.jpg

post-151-0-05893900-1398721160.jpg

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

The bombardier eventually achieved the rank of major as evidenced by the bullion insignia on the shoulder strap. The photo also gives a good view of the Stubby wing patch.

 

Comments are welcome.

 

Allan

post-151-0-24781600-1398721637.jpg

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Both great uniforms! I really like the bombadiers uniform! Were either of these named?

Looking for any WWII 104th "Timberwolf" Division items.

Including items from the 413th, 414th, and 415th Infantry Regiments 104th Recon Troop, 329th Engineer Battalion, 329th Medical Battalion

385th, 386th, 387th, and 929th Field Artillery Battalions 804th Ordnance Company 104th Quartermaster Company 104th Signal Company

555th Anti-Aircraft Battalion, 750th Tank Battalion 692nd Tank Destroyer Battalion 817th Tank Destroyer Battalion

 

donation2014.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the responses. Both uniforms have names associated with them, but I haven't ever researched them. Back in the day, there wasn't much you could do in the way of research if you didn't get the info straight from the vet or his family. Now days, you can get a whole lot of information if you contact a researcher to do it for you.

 

Allan

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Those are both some fantastic uniforms Allan! I love seeing great AAF items like these! Thanks for posting.

 

JD

AAF Collector...........
**Always Buying WW2 Aviation Related Items: Especially Operation Tidal Wave items (1st Ploesti Raid) ..... WW2 Fighter Ace Related Items.....Higher End A-2 Flight Jacket Groups....AAF Related Valor Medal Groups**

donation2017.gif
donation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't decide which I like uniform I like more; both are incredible!

donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif
donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif



" We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm. "

View my website honoring the men and women of Indiana: http://indianavets.wix.com/indiana-at-war and follow my updates on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/IndianaModernAgeofWar/
Interested in US uniforms? Join the Association of American Military Uniform Collectors! http://aamuc.org/or find us on Facebook! facebook.com/AAMUC.ORG

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

A wonderful range of insignia. Any USAAF collector would love to have such examples in their collection!

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

donation2010.gif

donation2011.gifdonation2012.gifdonation2013.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

This bombardier was an "old goat" and has to have been one of the first airmen to reach the ETO. Note the number of overseas bars on the cuff.

 

AM with 4 olcs, Yes, the ribbon is out of order, but was probably pinned on rather than replacing the sewn on bar.

 

Perhaps the most fascinating piece on the uniform is the British Observer wing on the right chest.

 

Allan,

These are STUNNING uniforms. I have a couple of questions.

 

Does the British observer wing mean that he flew with the RAF before the US entered the war?

 

How many missions does the AM with 4 OLCS equate to? He obviously flew on a lot of missions.

 

If he did fly with the RAF, the overseas bars would equate to his number of years with just the USAF correct?

 

Thanks for showing such beautiful uniforms.....Kat

 

donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

 

donation2011.gifdonation2012.gifdonation2015.gifmsg-24355-0-77312200-1449362814.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to all for the kind words. I am glad that you have enjoyed looking at them.

Kat- to answer your questions, I do not believe that the Bombardier ever flew for the RAF. There were a number of instances where wings were exchanged when training (or observing) with the RAF. A good example of this was that the RAF was conducting Night Bombing missions when the AAF was doing daylight missions. Night flying, and more importantly bombing at night were skills that were much rarer among the American aviators than their British and commonwealth brothers. As early as the major was operating in the ETO, I would assume that each award of the air medal was for five missions and the award of the DFC was for 25 missions. Depending on the unit, the bombardier most likely flew thirty missions- AM's for 5, 10, 15, and 20 missions, the DFC for the 25th mission and another AM for the 30th mission. My assumption is that after completing his operational tour, he went on to staff work at the Group or Air Force level where he did planning, liaison work, bombing efficiency reviews, or some other administrative type function. If he did fly for the RAF, then I would have expected there to have been some RAF related ribbons. This is all an assumption on my part. He could very well have flown for the RAF and simply not worn his ribbons. I believe that the o/seas bars would only have been awarded for service with the AAF.

 

Allan

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Allan:

 

Both of those are incredible! It's amazing to see uniforms like these, exactly as I'd expect to see them after 70 years. Just WOW......

 

Dave

Only a weak society needs government protection or intervention before it pursues its resolve to preserve the truth. Truth needs neither handcuffs nor a badge for its vindication. -Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Peace is not the absence of war, but the defense of hard-won freedom. -Anton LaGuardia


donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2011.gif

donation2012.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2014.gifdonation2015.gifdonation2016.gif
donation2017.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gifdonation2020.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave,

After having gotten to see some of the great pieces that you picked up while you were collecting AAF and RAF, I can only say that your words are high praise indeed.

 

Allan

Never under-estimate the power of prayer.

 

donation2007.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 years later...

I've had both of these cut down four pocket blouses for a long time and have never photographed them in their entirety. Today, I decided it was time to get some uniforms out of the closet and shoot some photos. three of four years ago, I posted a photo of the lead crew patch and the interesting combat crew backing, but here is the "whole shooting match."

 

This pilot's Ike jacket was picked up at a yard sale many, many years ago. The pilot has to have been one heck of a pilot and undeniably a brave man. The pilot earned a Silver Star, two Distinguished Flying Crosses and at least eight Air Medals. The ribbons are English made and are sewn to brass mounting bars. The 8th AF patch is English made, machine embroidered on felt and then enhanced with some gold bullion "tress" sewn around the border. There is matching bullion tress sewn around the combat crew wing background. The wing is a classic, US made pilot wing made by Fox. It is clutch back.

A nice example of the lead patch as worn by Maj Joseph L. Thury, 505th Fighter Squadron, 339th Fighter Group. A P-51 pilot, he was credited with 28.5 air-to-ground kills and 2.5 air-to-air kills. Photo dated 20 SEP 44.

 

Shade Ruff

post-5196-0-60932100-1563393499_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.