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Captured B 24 Blond Bomber II

Italian Forces

Captured B 24 Blond Bomber II

"Blonde Bomber II" summary: This 98th bomb group B-24D U.S.A.A.F. #41-23859, damaged and off course after a raid on Naples on 20 February 1943, looking desperately for a landing mistook the Sicilian airfield at Pachino for Malta and made a forced landing there. It was repainted with Italian markings for pictures but was soon on it's way to the Luftwaffe evaluation center and was eventually taken on strength by KG200 and for some reason, retained it's original desert pink color. It was found on the ramp at Rechlin heavily damaged by 8th Air Force fighter bombers personnel at the end of war. Here the translation from Italian text by google: The growth, with the proceed of adverse events of war, raids on the peninsula leading to the capture by the Royal Air Force a B.24, certainly one of the most important war booty gained during the Second World War and perhaps the first of this kind of aircraft from Axis forces. The unit, to be precise, a Consolidated B.24D-1-CO Liberator based in Benin (Libya) Serial No. 41-123659, pursuant to 98 ° ° BS BG/343 the 12th AF, with which first pilot Lt. Col. Dan Story and crew mixed Anglo-American, as evidenced by the "very flash" British on both sides of the drifts. It has the typical coloration of the dorsal and lateral surfaces Sand 49 Neutral Grey FS30279 and FS 36173 for the lower 43. on the right side of the snout bears the name "Blond Bomber II together with symbols of the twenty five missions, while on the left the relative well-executed portrait of nose art (for the inimitable Blue Sky). On both sides of the third body are white streaks to scribble on the meaning undefined. During action on the shelling of Naples, it is hit by flak and has an engine in poor condition. Unable to return to Libya, the crew plans to make an emergency landing in Malta. Coupling instead on the extreme southeastern tip of Sicily, it is deceived by some signals from our makeshift camp located in Pachino. The plane lands es'impantana alluvial bottom, so that it is vain to attempt to ridecollare men on board as soon as they realize the error. While our military flock around the enemy plane, a crew member trying to destroy the target of a revolver pointing el'autopilota which are the most interesting devices on board. A few days later, the plane stopped on the ground is subject to an attack with very modest results by aircraft from Malta. Pilots of Air Force Command Sicily trying in vain to move it to a more secure, but without success: in taxiing, and ignore the particular characteristics of the fuel circulation system, is a loss of power to the engines. He then called for help pilots and specialists in the Centro Sperimentale di Guidonia. On February 24, 1943 Pachino and they come to grapple with the aircraft damaged, the secrets of his power, the airport's small size. On 4 March, the pilot Captain John Raina, assisted by engineer Aldo Stagliano of trust (the clear illustration of this specialist, Bronze Medal of Valor aeronautics, we have already had occasion to speak on the topic "flying sull'Heartland") takes off, however, regularly with little fuel left and landed at Catania-Fontanarossa to stock up on gasoline in Germany (we are not suitable for engines of the aircraft). On March 6, the same driver as you carry flight to Guidonia but during the trip, despite the attachment of a white band crosses the tail and the plane did sign a new anti-reaction that causes damage in the tail. A Guidonia the aircraft is completely repaired even with regard to the damage done by the target tracking. This complex of particular interest to the Air Force already on 11 March 1943, advised by his staff present in Catania - Fontanarossa, has made an explicit request to consider the B.24 D "Blonde Bomber II". Meanwhile, the Royal Air Force aircraft carried out with the testing of fire and aviation. The livery of the unit, perhaps, changes in olive green and blonde pin-up disappears, removed by vigorous brush strokes (horrors!!). The violent bombings of May 1943 at Naples, at Lido di Roma seaplane base, the port of Civitavecchia, Grosseto suggest very exposed Guidonia home airport. In early June, our B. 24D is not centered about Foligno. A few days later it returned to Guidonia to undertake a visit of courtesy "for two weeks in Germany, following further German demands. On June 19, 1943 Captain Raina moved to the Monaco of Bavaria and the next day at the Experimental Center of the Luftwaffe, in Rechlin: during the trip, the plane door next to our banner civil war with the serial number I-RAIN. The Germans are very kind to our drivers, allowing you to try flying the Heinkel bomber and Boeing B.17 He.177 U: S: Army Air Force, captured in Holland after a crash landing. After a test flight at the controls the Hans Werner Lerche and only German personnel on board, "Blonde Bomber II" is still to finish taxiing on a special strip of land intended for testing (for breaking) of the carts. The incident almost certainly unintentional, causes damage to the front semicarrello immobilizing the aircraft and preventing their return to Italy. DVX