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Meet the Left waist gunner of the B-17 Mrs Geezil


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Hello Gent's,

 Well my WONDERFUL wife bought me a mannequin for my Father's day gift.

 I did it up to recreate what Phil Chaperon told me he wore on the day they were shotdown on a mission to Schweinfurt . These are the M1938 coveralls I just picked up.

 I have a set of WW2 low quarter boots coming to put some shoes on those feet. The second pic  is my display to Honor my Great Aunt and Phil.

  Meet Phil!

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This is my display to Honor my Great Aunt Annie and Phil.

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Semper Fi

Phil

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Thanks Dave!

I'll try those A-9's on it after I get the boots in.

 I need to find a F-1 heated flight suit and a B-2 cap to make this complete.

 

Semper Fi

Phil

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2 hours ago, phantomfixer said:

Sorry just had to Phil...great display!

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LOL!!! The picture on the wall behind Phil is my uncle Joe. Phil was clean shaven!

We bought my Daughter on of those Cricket design printer/cutter's. I thought when I get another manniquin to do Joe, I would have her make me a decal for a Stache for his display.

Thanks!! That was good. It made me laugh and was a great way to start my day!!!

 I know some have seen this pic ,but for those just chimimg in,1782345359_Fioretticrew.jpg.7594c593c0bd7a26376c8d53f9250cdd.jpg this is Phil in the coveralls in March or 1944.

Thanks again Phantomfixer!!!!

 

Thank you Dirk!

 

Semper Fi

Phil

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Phil,

 

This is a great looking display and tribute to some wonderful people..

 

Best regards

 

Leigh (Smitty)

 

"Pain is only Weakness Leaving the Body"

MSG Leigh E Smith Jr
US Army (Retired)

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Thanks Smitty,

This is going to be a family reunion and will include my Great Uncle Walt's uniforms. He was US Navy and  joined at 17 and served from WW2 to Vietnam.

I already got his photo on the Wall of Great's and his daughter(my Cous) is going to send me his uniforms when all these issues clear up and she feels safe to take thing to the post office. 

He served on the  USS Kiskisca from its dry dock in San Diego to the Aleutians,  Then to the Pacific all the way up to Tokyo Bay for the signing then to China. I made a 44 minute recording of his service when I went to Biloxi for training and stop by the Old Veteran Home there to see him.

Here he is on the wall on the right!

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Semper Fi

Phil 

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17 hours ago, AZPhil said:

Thanks Smitty,

This is going to be a family reunion and will include my Great Uncle Walt's uniforms. He was US Navy and  joined at 17 and served from WW2 to Vietnam.

I already got his photo on the Wall of Great's and his daughter(my Cous) is going to send me his uniforms when all these issues clear up and she feels safe to take thing to the post office. 

He served on the  USS Kiskisca from its dry dock in San Diego to the Aleutians,  Then to the Pacific all the way up to Tokyo Bay for the signing then to China. I made a 44 minute recording of his service when I went to Biloxi for training and stop by the Old Veteran Home there to see him.

Here he is on the wall on the right!

1156642150_UncleWaltontheWall.jpg.0b15ccfb47109c548230f57845f0ba32.jpg

 

Semper Fi

Phil 

 

Phil, sounds like your Great Uncle was supporting my relative during the Battle of Attu! Love the display and the family history. One day I'll need to do the same.

Cheers

Hunt

I am an amateur collector of US military items of the 20th century.

 

Looking for items related to:

-The Aleutian Island Campaign of WW2, Alaskan Theater, Alaska Defense Command, and more specifically the Battle of Attu

-Items related to the 50th Combat Engineer Regiment/Battalion

-Items related to Wheelus Air Force Base Libya, particularly from 1957-1960

-WW2 items belonging to service members from Northern Virginia

-WW2 Uniforms (all branches and services)

-Cheap/Throwaway WW2 named uniforms

-Smaller WW2 Groupings

-7th Infantry Division Items

-WW2 Photos and Letters (all branches, theaters, services, etc)

 

^^ PM ME!!

 

Instagram: @surplus_central https://instagram.com/surplus_central/

eBay: http://www.ebay.com/usr/giovachm

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Hello All,

I had some free time to play dress up and put the items that I picked up on Phil, So I added the low quarter boots and the A-9 flight trousers.
The boots worked out great. They went on easy and they don't look like clodhopper clown shoes on the display.
I was afraid being size 14 they might not look good. But NOPE!!!
The A-9 trouser are size 40 and they fit perfect. All buttons are buttoned and no material is being stressed or stretched out. The suspenders leather tabs have no weigh being put on them and the elastic is just laying over the shoulders.

So I am down to a B-2 cap and set of leather F-2 gloves ,a set of A-6 flight boots and a A-10 jacket to get me to the first stage of this. Stage 2 will be the the B-4 life preserver and Parachute harness. I think I will put stage 2 on the back burner and start working on my Uncle Joe's display. For him I'll need the A-2 leather jacket and the B-4 life preserver to replicate the Damned Yankee II crew pic.

A member over on the WRF was kind enough to colorize some new pic's of Phil I got. Phil's daughter found some nice one's of him in his flight gear and sent them to me. I need to get more frames to hang that up. I think I'm going to move the Navy Uncle over with my Aunt and put the pic of Phil next to Joe and the Phil display!!!.

 

Semper Fi

Phil

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Hello again Folk's

Well I mentioned that a member here and on WRF (John) colorized a pic of Phil for me and I got a frame to hang it.
So Here is Phil in 1943 at the 384th Base at Grafton Underwood,

 My friend cropped this pic from this picture that Phil's daughter sent me.

So I moved my Navy uncle over on the wall next to my WAC aunt and put Phil next to his display.

 

Semper Fi

Phil
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Phil, based on this pic and the earlier discussions, I would say that is the AN-H-16 flight helmet - at least in this photo. A tricky one to find. Of course the B-3 jacket over the A-4 flight suit, B-3 Mae West, A-10 gloves, and A-6 boots.

Great photo!

Dave

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Hello Dave,

Yes I did notice the flight helmet, It even has the chinstrap with shearing on it.  So yes an AN-H-16. Now this is October of 1943 and when I asked Phil about what he wore on the day they were shot down,(April 13th 1944) He said he had the tan material flight helmet. So yes I have what he wore then, But not this one from this pic. Like I mentioned. In the future I'll probably be adding

a AN-H-16 to the collection. I can pick which picture I'm try to duplicate, But one at a time! The way he dressed that day they were shot down went as follows and this is what he told me. He put on thermal underwear, Then his uniform and the F-1 blue bunny suit and the mechanic coverall. From there he said he wore the green pants with alpaca lining.( So I went with the A-9 for that time frame) when I just recently talked to him, he said when It got cold he put on the leather jacket like what Fioretti (Pilot) wore in that picture. Which is the B-3. I'm trying to replicate that pic of them by the Damned Yankee II. I'll have to add more equipment to this to make that 1943 picture. I have to start on my Uncle Joe's display before I do the 1943 pic.

Thanks for the ID of the gloves he wearing. 

 Also I noticed that the leg on the left( right leg) of the picture has a zipper on it. The A-4 I have has the open pocket and I thought the next one had a button on the pocket. Is that an A-4 he is wearing in that pic?

It is a great pic, I was really happy his daughter sent me those. I did share the colorized version with her and she is going to show it to Phil.

 

Take care

Semper Fi

Phil

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I have several A-4s. Some have zips and some have open pockets. The later suits appear to have been more uniform in that respect.

Great work!

Dave

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  • 2 weeks later...

 

 

The A-4 flight suit has baffled me a little in regards to the zippers on the leg and breast pockets. The suit was adopted in 1930 so there will be some amendments to it I'm sure. An early version did have buttons on the pockets. I've seen the zipper modification in images from early 1943 but also in conjunction with those without. So I'm curious if it was an actual manufacturing amendment or a clothing repair application. 

These images below are from repair facilities in England, so any alteration such as that can be done quite effectively. 

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Hello Dustin,

 The Fioretti crew photo above posing next to the Damned Yankee II was taken after their March 1944 flight on it.

On April 13th 1944 while flying in the B-17 Mrs Geezil , They were shot down on a Schweinfurt mission.

Those that survived the attack and the B-17 exploding in mid air, became guest of Germany at Stalag XVIIB for the duration of the war.

 

In the crew pic, Phil told me what he wore. That is why the coveralls for this display.

 

Great photographs!!!

They are dated for the day my Uncle was shot down...

 

Semper Fi

Phil

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I do have another question about what trousers Phil is wearing in the October 1943 pic.

The A-4 I have and others that I looked at that have the open pocket mid shin area.

Even if they added a zipper to the A-4 pants Phil is wearing. 

Why is that zipper up on the thigh area and not down on his shin?

Did they change the position of the leg pocket?

 

Semper Fi

Phil

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Hey Phil

 

relocating or adding a pocket higher up on the leg has been seen on flight suits...it was not common to do so, but certainly it was done....much easier to grab and store items higher up... the parachute shop on base could do the mod easy enough for a crew member

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Thanks John,

 I just keep going back to that 1943 photo of Phil and looking at the finer details. I just wanted to make sure that what I'm seeing is an A-4 flight suit.

 I just don't see the right lower pocket on the leg. But I do not own multiple/ modified A-4 suits to compare it to. All the ones I'm seeing have the lower shin pocket either opened of with a button.  Also I'm not seeing the zippers on the lower legs like a A-9 trousers, But it has a pocket right where that zipper is on the 1943 Phil pic.

 

 I did pick up an A-4.But that was going to be for my Uncle's display. But now wondering if I need to look for a modified one to make it fit the picture of Phil and be put on the Gotta Look For list.

 

 I'm really liking the 1943 pic better than the Crew photo. It has Phil wearing more flight gear than the coverall pic. 

 To be honest this display started out with the coverall's. Now I got that completed, I'm looking at it thinking I need to add to this and with that pic of Phil next to it, I'm think B-3 jacket, But that is another thread. ( Will need help with that one also)

This one is about the trousers he is wearing in that 1943 pic.

 

Semper Fi

Phil

 

 

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Hey Phil,

I think the answer to your question about the position of the pocket in the photo is pretty simple. My opinion is that you are seeing a later production A-4 suit being worn by Phil, with the zipper pockets. I'm also of the opinion, based on past inspection of actual examples, that the zippers were added at the time of production, not later in the field. The brand of zippers and the color of the backing tape match the main front zipper of the flight suit, which probably would not have been possible if just a field modification. The top of the leg pocket was below the kneecap from the factory. Unlike most Navy flight suits of the era, which came in "short", " regular" and "long" lengths, the A-4 suits are only marked for size with the chest measurement. Depending on an individual's body proportions, when actually worn , the top of the pocket could fall at, or above, the kneecap. In the photo below, the man second from right has the zipper pockets (you can see the leather tab on the leg pocket zipper pull) with his eclectically heated gloves stowed in the leg pocket. Normally, you would expect the snaps at the bottom of the flight suit legs to be down by his ankles, but as you can see here, they are up above the top of his boots. The relative position of the pocket appears similar in Phil's photo to my eyes.

Regards, Paul

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I replied at the same time as above. Like I stated below and as Paul pointed, note the third from the left, the parachute harness is really hiking those things up!

Suits are going to fit body shapes differently. Size of suits are short and long and when you look at pics sometimes you see the pocket near mid shin and on other guys its closer to the knee. Flights suits are often baggy in the crotch. Note Phil has the crotch strap of the life preserver secured, this would hike up the suit a few inches. Body shape, suit size and the crotch strap of the vest pulling up, I think what you have is an illusion that the pocket was installed that high but really not.

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Ok I see what you are both talking about.

 That crotch hike does bring everything up and depending on what size(Length) Phil is wearing the pocket would ride high on the leg.

 

Alrighty then, an A-4 with a zipper pocket goes on the list. I haven't seen many with a zipper, But you Gent's mentioned having them, So I'll just keep my eye's opened and try to keep this display on track!!

 

Thanks Gent's!

 

Semper Fi

Phil

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