Need help finding some info

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by jester63, Nov 9, 2011.

  1. jester63

    jester63 Member

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    Hey everyone! I was wondering if there was a way to find the identification number of a specific fighter? I'm trying to model my grandfathers P-47 that he flew, and wanted to see if there was any way to find what his planes numbers might have been? Any help is appreciated. Thanks
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    What was his name, squadron he was in and time period? Do you have any pics?
     
  3. jester63

    jester63 Member

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    #3 jester63, Nov 9, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
    His name was Lt. Charles R. Jones. He was in the 40th Fighter Squadron, 35th Fighter Group, 5th Airforce. He was based in New Guinea between early 1943-mid 1944. He crashed his plane after takeoff due to a collision with another fighter at the end of the runway that was not suppose to be there. His plane looked like the pic in my signature line.
     
  4. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    #4 FLYBOYJ, Nov 9, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2011
    On your pic, can you tell me the smaller numbers on the tail and do have a date of his accident?
     
  5. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    I'm showing the 40th got P-47Ds in December of 1944. Did he fly P-39s?
     
  6. vanir

    vanir Banned

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    #6 vanir, Nov 9, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2011
    I tried chasing 35FG/5AF fighters in New Guinea once for some Il2 mission building. I couldn't find them using any P-47s in PNG. Towards the end of 43 the 5th was sending P-38s to escort bombing Jap targets, but the distances were that most work was done by B-25s and Bostons and the like, converted to gunships. Roving fighter patrols were almost non-existent. You roamed in a B-25 with 10 brownings, in fighters you escorted a specific bomb run on a specific, very distant target. They used to use P-39 but they were altitude hampered and in PNG USMC Wildcats weren't available to fly top cover for them, and they were only useful for close support once all the local targets had been taken out, they couldn't make the distance to strategic targets like Rabaul.

    Moral of the story is I couldn't find any P-47 in PNG at all. Maybe they got some in 44 but as far as I know they switched from P-39 to P-38 and never looked back. The Thunderbolts appear to have been stationed in the central pacific island hop. I don't think there were even any in the Solomons. Distances too great.
    The P-47N was supposed to replace the P-47D, P-38 and P-51 in one hit, for long ranging Pacific operations. A 1943 P-47D-10 in the Pacific simply isn't going to make it back to base.
     
  7. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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  8. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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  9. jester63

    jester63 Member

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    Yea, he started out in P-39's, but transferred to P-47's. He was based at Nadzab in New Guinea. He was at a couple other too but I remember him dating he was there mostly. I have a book that a buddy pilot wrote about their time in service. I will look in there for further info, and post it.

    Here is an excerpt from that website:

    The 40th began its transition to P-47 Thunderbolts in December 1943, a big change from the P-39s. They moved in February 1944 to a base near the Ramu River which put them in striking range of the Japanese around Wewak. In April and May the 40th flew support for the Hollandia battle, then moved back to the Nadzab for recuperation.

    He told me he escorted "Black Pirate" B-24's from the 400th bomb squad 90th bomb group.

    He crashed sometime between april-august of '44.
     
  10. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Had a look through that database by Squadron, Group, New Guinea and last name. Cant find anything which matches. No-one with the last name of Jones should ever be allowed to fly anything, anywhere to judge by the search results. No offense.

    Only incident I could find for a Charles R Jones was a training accident in the States. Only incident involving a 40th FS P-47 was in August 1944 at Lae. Pilot was Steve Sobak, though the name has the additional entry, in parenthesis "NMI". Need More Information? Name May be Incomplete? Name May be Incorrect?

    Not going to sort db by aircraft type, up to you if you want to give it a shot.
     
  11. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    NMI may also mean no middle initial
     
  12. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    May also be some information here

    35th FG

    I suppose the original squadron diaries would be in an archive somewhere, though how one goes about finding such things, I don't know.
     
  13. jester63

    jester63 Member

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    I looked at that database, that only lists accidents in the US. He didn't crash in the US, he crashed in New Guinea. I would take offense to that if it wasn't one of the most common last names in the country. LOL.

    His pilot friends name was Anthony Faikus. He crashed when taking off on a mission. The night before the mission a group of P-40's had landed at their base, and were to leave before their mission time in the morning. Well they didn't. With the way his 47 sat on the ground, he didn't see it until he was just about to lift off. His belly tank was split down the middle from a prop of a P-40. His plane immediately caught fire, and so he ditched nearby. He was knocked unconscious, and was badly burned. Luckily, there was a couple guys down at the end of the runway that pulled him out. He was sent to port moresby for immediate care, and then sent to the states. He was promoted to captain, and retired in 1947.

    Is their a site that lists accidents overseas?
     
  14. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    #14 mhuxt, Nov 9, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2011
    If you're only getting results from the US, you must be doing something wrong. The 657 Joneses who've crashed in service of the US Air Force have done so all around the world, from Japan to Sardinia to Canada, according to that db.

    Maybe the db is incomplete - I haven't been able to find any reference to pilots named Faikus.

    Who knows, maybe there's even more Joneses who've crashed (grins, heheheh).

    Edit - You can search by month outside the States here:

    http://www.aviationarchaeology.com/src/AFrptsMO.htm

    I've looked between June and Sept '44, can find neither man.
     
  15. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    I just dumped the database that shows all USAAF accidents on New Guinea during WW2 into a spreadsheet. Between April-August of 1944 I only show 4 aircraft accidents. 2 x C-87's and 2 x RA-24's

    It lists 2 P-47D's with no pilot or Squad info lost but dated Feb 9, 1944
     
  16. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Also bear in mind some accidents have no country given in the relevant field, even though this should be clear from the specific location given for the home base. Lots of crashes for aircraft based in Japan for example. The crash in Lae I noted above is in the country "Pac" to cite another example.
     
  17. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    Good point. I'll dump all P-47's tonight and see if it pops up.
     
  18. mhuxt

    mhuxt Active Member

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    Is there a way to grab more than 25 at a time?
     
  19. jester63

    jester63 Member

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    #19 jester63, Nov 10, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
    Anthony Faikus wrote a short book a few years back telling of his time in the service. He wrote about a mission he had on Feb 5, 1944. He said his engine lost power, and he had to glide her in. Said he barely made it, but made a successful landing. He then said shortly after that him and my grandfather went on leave to Sydney by a C-47. He didn't say how long they were on leave, but when they got back it was right after that that my grandfather crashed. Is it possible that one of those 47's without info could be his, or is feb 5 - feb 9, 1944 to short of a period for them to have went on leave and came back? Also, according to Faikus, they were based at Gusap in NG, when he crashed.

    I have pics of Anthony Faikus's plane in that book. I will try to scan them and post them tonight if that would help any. Only bad thing is, none of them are full plane shots. Mainly just nose, and canopy shots.

    If this helps, I believe their CO's name was Carlos Dannacher. They were good friends with him. In fact I contacted him a couple years back just to ask him about my grandpa, and if he remembered him. He told me he remembered him very well, and was good friends with him.
     
  20. jester63

    jester63 Member

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    Here are the pics I was talking about:

    [​IMG]

    Tony Faikus

    [​IMG]

    Tony Faikus

    [​IMG]

    Tony Faikus

    [​IMG]

    Tony Faikus with his new P-47-D28 Bubble Canopy

    [​IMG]

    Tony Faikus's new P-51

    I noticed that both his P-47-D28, and his P-51 both had the numbers 47 on it. Did each pilot have specific numbers that they always had on each plane they flew? Does the 47 signify something specific? I dont know much about this stuff.

    Hopefully, maybe, these pics will help in some way.
     
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