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Needing some help finding wings for soon to be 95 year old PawPaw


dbrown0398

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Guys, I am out of my element & could use some help finding a set of wings like the ones my PawPaw would have worn on his collar & over his breast pocket when he was a P47 Thunderbolt pilot in WW II. He was a first lieutenant in the 78th Fighter Group, based out of Duxford, flying bomber escort & interdiction missions throughout 1944. I thought it would be neat to find a set of the wings, like those worn on the collar, as well as a pair that those he would have worn over his left breast, to frame up, but holy crap, there are a lot of different wings out there! I thought collecting USMC items could be overwhelming. Can someone shoot me some pics of the type of wings he would have worn? Also, if anyone can recommend reputable sellers on Ebay, or somewhere I could buy true sterling WW II issue items, I would be very grateful.

 

Thanks & Semper Fi,

Derek Brown

dbrown0398@aol.com

Derek Brown

USMC 1988-1995

Alabama Army National Guard 1996-1999

Member VFW, American Legion, Garand Collectors Association, and NRA Life Member

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Check out Bob Schwartz site for a myriad of ww2 pilot wings. http://www.ww2wings.com/wings/usaaf/usaafpilot.shtml

If you figure out which type of wings you like on his site I'd be happy to help you find an authentic example.

 

You might ask him if he had a metal wing or cloth wing. Also if he bought one in Britain. There are several British makers including Ludlow, Firmin, and JR Gaunt but you need to be extremely careful buying one of those british wings as there are more fakes than real examples. It won't be overly difficult finding one if you like the British wings but before purchasing post it here and ask I'm sure someone will be happy to help out. Do you have a photo of him in uniform we could see what type of wing he's wearing?

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I'm pretty sure I can give you some of the branch of service collar brass. As for a pilot wing, I may have an issue wing (probably similar to what he would have received after graduation from flight school) that I can give you as well... but I have to look to make sure. All would be WWII vintage.

 

On the other hand, if you wanted something more "esoteric" like an English made wing (which would be on the higher end of prices) you may need to find a good dealer in militaria.

 

There is a vast range of wings that live in the middle and would be rather easy to find. LGB, AMICO, AMCRAFT, NS Meyer, Bell, Juarez, etc all made nice handsome wings that would look great in a frame. You could probably pick up a nice wing off of eBay for about 50-75$ or so, with a bit of patience. I have always felt that AMCRAFT are my favorite, but it goes to your tastes.

 

As I said, I am more than happy to give you some of the AC wings (I think all of us collectors have a box of these things sitting around). IF I have one, I will also be happy to give you a graduation wing. Just let me know.

 

Best regards

Patrick

 

PS It is a nice thing you are doing for your grandfather.

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For example, this is an eBay auction for an Amcraft pilot wing.

 

http://www.ebay.com/itm/World-War-II-U-S-Army-Air-Force-3-Sterling-Pilot-Wings-/201397166406?hash=item2ee434e146

 

Just for comparison sake, I am not endorsing this auction. I see that their are many more around the 100-125$ range with Buy it now options. Frankly, I think with patience, you can find one closer to $50.

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I agree.. my price range on wings like that is $40-$60 depending on what they are..

 

-Brian

GOT SEABEE ITEMS? PM ME!

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I'm pretty sure I can give you some of the branch of service collar brass. As for a pilot wing, I may have an issue wing (probably similar to what he would have received after graduation from flight school) that I can give you as well... but I have to look to make sure. All would be WWII vintage.

 

On the other hand, if you wanted something more "esoteric" like an English made wing (which would be on the higher end of prices) you may need to find a good dealer in militaria.

 

There is a vast range of wings that live in the middle and would be rather easy to find. LGB, AMICO, AMCRAFT, NS Meyer, Bell, Juarez, etc all made nice handsome wings that would look great in a frame. You could probably pick up a nice wing off of eBay for about 50-75$ or so, with a bit of patience. I have always felt that AMCRAFT are my favorite, but it goes to your tastes.

 

As I said, I am more than happy to give you some of the AC wings (I think all of us collectors have a box of these things sitting around). IF I have one, I will also be happy to give you a graduation wing. Just let me know.

 

Best regards

Patrick

 

PS It is a nice thing you are doing for your grandfather.

 

Very cool of you Patrick!

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I'm pretty sure I can give you some of the branch of service collar brass. As for a pilot wing, I may have an issue wing (probably similar to what he would have received after graduation from flight school) that I can give you as well... but I have to look to make sure. All would be WWII vintage.

 

On the other hand, if you wanted something more "esoteric" like an English made wing (which would be on the higher end of prices) you may need to find a good dealer in militaria.

 

There is a vast range of wings that live in the middle and would be rather easy to find. LGB, AMICO, AMCRAFT, NS Meyer, Bell, Juarez, etc all made nice handsome wings that would look great in a frame. You could probably pick up a nice wing off of eBay for about 50-75$ or so, with a bit of patience. I have always felt that AMCRAFT are my favorite, but it goes to your tastes.

 

As I said, I am more than happy to give you some of the AC wings (I think all of us collectors have a box of these things sitting around). IF I have one, I will also be happy to give you a graduation wing. Just let me know.

 

Best regards

Patrick

 

PS It is a nice thing you are doing for your grandfather.

Patrick, that is extremely gracious of you & I appreciate any help you can give me. I spoke to him via phone & email yesterday & I sent him the link to Bob's website & asked if any of those looked familiar & his response was that he couldn't believe there are so many variations! He did say that they were about three inches long, he remembered them being Sterling, & having a pin back. He earned his wings in 1943, flew out of Duxford for most of 1944, including multiple missions on D Day, & thankfully made it home without being wounded, but about two thirds of the guys he shipped over with were shot down, with most being killed, some taken as POW, & a couple managing to escape & evade, making their way back to the squadron. If you could drop me an email at dbrown0398@aol.com, I would love to discuss further with you & work out details of how much I owe you. The amount of kindness & generosity that I have encountered from the members of this forum has been amazing. It is nice to be in the company of good people in this day & time.

 

Thanks & Semper Fi Guys,

Derek Brown

 

PS: I haven't learned how to attach pictures yet, but I am going to try & get the one picture we have of him in uniform uploaded soon. Hopefully tomorrow evening after church.

Derek Brown

USMC 1988-1995

Alabama Army National Guard 1996-1999

Member VFW, American Legion, Garand Collectors Association, and NRA Life Member

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Gentlemen,

Thanks for the tips on prices of the wings. I have held off buying any on Ebay because so many of them are well otside that price range. My wife, while supportive of both family history & military history, is still an accountant who would nail my butt to a tree for over paying "outside of alloted funds." I am working from a tablet, & still haven't figured out how to upload pictures, but hopefully tomorrow night I will be able to get on the desktop computer & get his picture posted.

 

Semper Fi,

Derek

Derek Brown

USMC 1988-1995

Alabama Army National Guard 1996-1999

Member VFW, American Legion, Garand Collectors Association, and NRA Life Member

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