Tempest's of the 3rd Squad RAF

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Airman 1st Class
May 6, 2005
OK its for IL-2, but thought y'all might liek to see them 8)




Profile By Chris Thomas.





Profile by Graham Berry.


JF*G - Unknown serial number

JF*E - Pierre Henri Clostermann

One of the most famous French Fighter Aces of WW2 - fought in the RAF . He is still alive and wrote an excellent book "Le Grand Cirque" (in french) or "The Big Show" (in english) revealing the very details of his long fighting experiences as well as those of his colleagues . It is worth reading these unique books for their thrilling details of air combat , the atmosphere of the life in fighter squadrons mingled with the deepest of emotions . Additionally Clostermann's work stands well as a good historical source of certain details for which no other evidence exists

He flew with Spitfires Mk Vb , VII , IX and Tempest Mk V fighting mainly against Fw190s and Me262s

He later joined De Gaull's party after the war , became a PM in France , was involved commercially with general aviation , wrote another 2 books related to the WW2 and the Algerian War, as well as ...fishing .

The only child of French parents born on the 28th of February 1921 in Brazil . When he was still 9 he was sent to Paris to study . It was in 1935 who first took himself in the air aboard hydroplanes at Biscaros SE France near a vacation place . He became immediately fond of flying . When back to Brazil he joins a local flying club . By the force of destiny he is instructed by a German named Karl Benitz , an already famous air acrobat , who will eventually become an enemy pilot to P.H. Clostermann during the war . he gets his license on the 27th 1937 and in 1938 he takes a scholarship to study to the Air College of Engineers 'Ryan' in USA . In parallel he flies as a commercial pilot in San Diego California .

At the outbreak of WW2 he tries to join the French air force but he is considered too young to fly at the time . So he has to continue his studies but in March 1942 when he is 21 he takes his chances and joins the FAFL ( Forces Aériennes des Français Libres) the Free French Air Force under the British RAF in Squadron 'Alsace' commanded by another famous French fighter Rene Mouchotte .

His joined as an NCO and his friends will call him "Clo-Clo" .

He will be detached later to the RAF Sq. 602 with a mixture of British and foreign pilots in RAF . They fly with Spitfires V and specialise on ground attacks over occupied France .

After having achieved a good number of kills in 2 years due to the stress and effort , he is grounded for health reasons . He insists to return to the active duty and despite the will of general De Gaull not to jeopardize the life of such a prominent French fighter he is sent to Holland , the base of Volkel , already trained on the Tempest Mk V , the top RAF fighetr of its time. He was first posted to the 274 squadron (code-letters JJ, and flying in the Tempest JJ-W) from February to March 1945, then he just flew some few missions with the 56 squadron (code-letters US, flying on a Tempest coded US-G and another US-W) from mid-March to the begining of April 1945, and finally was posted to the 3rd squadron (code-letters JF, flying two JF-E, serial NV 994 and NV 724) as a squadron leader until the end of the war, on 8 may 1945. The three squadrons belonged to the 122 Wing. In the last weeks of the war, he was posted as provisional Wing Leader of 122 until the arrival of the next official Wing Leader

At the end of the war he had achieved the following victories :

In the air he shot down :

19 FW-190

7 ME-109

2 Dornier 24

1 Fieseler 156

1 JU-252

1 JU-88

1 JU-290

1 Heinkel 111

On the ground he destroyed :

7 JU 88

6 DO-18

4 HE-177

2 Arado 323

1 JU-252

1 Blom-Voss

Add to it some 72 locomotives , 5 tanks , 1 submarine and 2 destroyers

He was awarded the DFC Distinguished Flying Cross and DSO Distinguished Service Order

The last paragraph of his book "The Great Circus" is representative of the spirit of those days and stands as 'a grand finale' of an heroic era :

"The Circus is over. The public was satisfied . The menu was rich and not so bad , except that the lions have torn apart the tamer.

We'll remember them again later and even when all will be forgotten , the music , the fireworks and their nice costumes , at the center of the square the trace of the big tent will remain , until the following rain shall erase it for ever.

My friends that survived the Big Circus have , luckily , not realised it - me neither for that matter- and that will be our final reward."

JF*K - Ted Kosh was killed in July 1944 when his Hawker Tempest crashed into the ground near Rye in East Sussex during a sortie to intercept V1 bombs targeted on London. Ted was a young, relatively inexperienced pilot doing his duty as he saw it. As a member of No.3 Squadron his mission, day in and day out, was to try and shoot down or tip as many V1s as possible to protect the civilian population they were targeted upon. It wasn't a very glamorous job, but it was dangerous none the less. Click on the image to the right to view a short (903kb) mpeg movie of a V1 take down.

As you can see, the explosion could be as lethal to the pursuing pilot as it could be to the drone itself and it is quite likely this was the cause of Ted's crash as his aircraft was described as "crashed in flames". Ted had three credited victories at the time of his death. Ted's family buried him at Hawkinge cemetery in Kent.

3rd Squadron History:
The oldest of RAF squadrons, No 3 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps, was formed at Larkhill on 13 May 1912 from No 2 (Aeroplane) Company. It deployed to France as part of the BEF in August 1914 on spotting duties. Late in 1917, Camels were received and the Squadron became a fighter/scout unit. After the Armistice in 1918, the Squadron disbanded and through the 1920s spent many short-lived periods at a variety of locations before arriving at Upavon in 1924 with Sopwith Snipes.

Upon its return, No 3 Sqn introduced the Gladiator into RAF service and just as the Second World War started received Hurricanes at Biggin Hill. A brief stint as part of the BEF in France was followed by relocation to Scotland on night-patrol duties. During 1943, the Squadron replaced the Hurricanes with Typhoons and switched to the anti-shipping and intruder roles. A switch to Tempests in 1944 saw No 3 Sqn destroy 288 V1 flying bombs, and move on to the Continent as part of the advance towards Germany.

The Squadron remained in Germany, converting to Vampires in 1948, Sabres in 1953 and the Hunter in 1956. A short time with Javelin fighters was followed by a long period of Canberra flying, before the Squadron received Harriers in the early 1970s. In 1977 the unit moved to Gutersloh near the old East German border, before relocating to Laarbruch with Harrier GR7s. Following the decision to close Laarbruch, No. 3 Squadron returned to the UK in the Spring of 1999, and is now based at RAF Cottesmore in Rutland.

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