Friday, 30 March 2012

50 aérodromes pour une victoire – Fifty airfields for victory, June-September 1944

North American P-51 Mustang

Lt. William B. King from the 355th Fighter Squadron, 354th Fighter Group, 9th Air Force leans on the wing of his Mustang named "Georgia Peach".

Republic P-47 Thunderbolts

9th Air Force Thunderbolts from the 50th Fighter Group at a base somewhere in France. The two nearest machines are from the 81st Fighter Squadron. Note the damaged RAF Spitfires in the background and the one damaged P-47.



New book from Heimdal  50 aérodromes pour une victoire – Fifty airfields for victory, June-September 1944

Due out in May 2012 is this latest 336-page volume from French publisher Heimdal devoted to the fifty principal Allied air forces airfields in Normandy established in the immediate aftermath of D-Day, 6 June 1944. With plans, period images and over one hundred profile artworks of the aircraft based on these airfields along with the history of the units’ participation in the Normandy campaign.

D-Day, 04:00 hours - the 834th Engineer aviation battalion is ordered to prepare two ELS ( Emergency landing strips) of 600 metres length suitable for aircraft in difficulty to put down on - location, directly behind Utah beach at Pouppeville and Omaha beach at St Laurent sur Mer. The engineers work around the clock under enemy fire. The ground is prepared but the shelling and bad weather hinders operations - the men also have to dig trenches  and fox holes to give themselves some shelter. But these temporary tracks are ready on D+1 - but are not designed to be used for mounting operations since air superiority over the front is not yet assured. This would not be the case until 19 June in accordance with the a plan drawn up by IX Engineer Command. The 368th FG P-47s would be based at 'A3 Cardonville'..


A flak damaged Thunderbolt from the 367th FS, 358th FG, 9th AF after crash-landing at an airfield in France. The pilot (Lt. Jacob C. Blazicek) was wounded by the flak and knocked unconscious when the plane nosed over. Republic P-47D-20-RE Thunderbolt s/n 42-76436


Republic P-47 Thunderbolt

P-47 Thunderbolt pilots from the 397th Fighter Squadron, 368th Fighter Group, 9th Air Force at a rough strip near St. Mere Eglise on June 15,1944. By the end of August, all 18 of the 9th Air Force's fighter-bomber and 4 of its medium bomber groups were based on the continent. (U.S. Air Force photos)


368th Fighter Group P-47 and pilots

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