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Looking for a photo of B-25 named "Blue Plate Speciate"; 13th Air Force.


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A friend of mine is 74 and his health is starting to go downhill.  He is the son of a WWII B-25 pilot whose name was Joseph Callahan.  He was assigned to the 13th Air Force in the Pacific.  From what I know; he flew his brand-new plane into the Pacific theater.  He and his crew named the plane, "Blue Plate Special".


My friend's father and mother divorced in the 1960's.  She burned almost all of Joseph's WWII items out of spite.  My friend distinctly remembers a picture of the nose art of the plane.  It depicted a plate loaded with rockets and bombs.


Apparently Joseph arrived late in the war, I would guess spring of 1945.  But he got there in time to see combat.  My friend recalls Joseph telling some stories.  For instance Joseph said the B-25 was a "flying gunship".  Joseph would strafe the small coastal boats transporting much needed Japanese supplies.  He also recounted how when he was flying low he could see a Japanese officer shaking his samurai sword in the air in a moment of anger.  Joseph also said they would drop all their unexploded ordnance on a few small Japanese controlled islands.


I have scraped the internet for a picture of this plane for several years now to no avail.  I would really like to print and give a copy to my friend before he eventually passes away.  Any help in the sense is very much appreciated.  I am new to the forum so please forgive if I made a mistake in my post.


I am a historian and collector with a focus on several genres to include WWII.  I have been to many WWII battle sites and I also dived extensively on WWII wrecks in the south Pacific and Middle East.  So I do plan on making contributions in the future.


I attached a picture of a WWII wing or two in my collection as practice uploading to the forum.  Please forgive if it is sideways/upside down, etc.  I am new and this is my first post.  Thank you for your time and thank you in advance if anyone can assist me in this endeavor.  Thank you.


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Hello Danimal03, 


I found this oral history that Joseph Callahan did, you can read it here: http://www.justinmuseum.com/oralbio/callahanjtbio.html

He mentions flying a B-25 with a 75mm cannon. This would be a B-25G or B-25H model. Between the two models, over 1,400 were made, so, although it could be possible to cross reference their serial numbers with the unit he was in, it would be incredibly tedious.


It says he was a Captain in the 390th Bomb Squadron, 42nd Bomb Group, 13th Air Force, USAAF. This may help narrow it down.


The 390th has a memorial at the USAF Museum in Dayton, Ohio. Here are some photos: https://www.hmdb.org/m.asp?m=86464 

(If you want a picture of anything in specific, I will likely be there next week and can take some more detailed photos, if you'd like. I could film a video you could show to him.)







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Thank you very much MedrickMilitaria.  I appreciate the effort.  I have been occasionally looking for a picture of the "Blue Plate Special" off and on for about three years now.  I did find a group shot of B-25s from his specific unit but I could not spot any detail to know if that specific plane was in the shot.  


I am glad someone was able to do an interview with Joseph before he passed away.  My friend told me another story from his dad.  Apparently on a low-level mission his plane struck a tree and part of the trunk broke off and was stuck in the wing.  It damaged the aircraft fairly badly according to my friend.  Joseph managed to land the plane with the tree trunk piece still lodged in the wing.  Joseph took a picture of this and had it hanging in his house after he got home from the war.  Unfortunately this was part of the war relic/photo cache his ex-wife burned.  It is a shame she did this as there were some amazing pictures according to me friend.


If you go to the museum and see anything neat to take a picture of please do so. Thanks for helping narrow down what type of B-25 it was.  Maybe if the museum has a B-25G or H model; it may be neat to post a pic here for all of us to enjoy.  


My 74 year old friend does have his dad's squadron patch off his dad's leather jacket. It is the only thing he has from his father.  I have not seen another of this patch; though I do not chase 13th Air Force items per se.  I am more of an 8th and 15th Air Force collector and researcher.


My friend has told me I am to get his dad's patch in his will. So eventually I will likely end up with it unless someone fat fingers it during his eventual estate clearing.  It would be a shame if that happens as I would be honored to have it in my collection to honor my friend and his dad.  


I have seen the patch a couple of times.  If I had a picture of it I would post it here.  If I see it again anytime soon I will take a picture of it and add it into the thread.


Thank you.

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