Urban Drew - Detroit Miss II

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by paletteone, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    Hi everyone, it came to my attention that Urban Drew was transferred to the Pacific in 1945 and flew Thunderbolts out of Iwo. I was not aware of his involvement in the Pacific, but some mentioned that he flew "Detroit Miss II", a Thunderbolt. Is that correct? If so, does anyone have any images or info regarding the aircraft ie: colours, serial number, markings etc. Any help is appreciated. Thank You!
     
  2. Arossihman

    Arossihman Member

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    Urban L."Ben"Drew flew P-47N -5-RE "682" SN 44-88492 named Detroit Miss 2 out of Iwo Jima in 1945. I could'nt find photos of that particular plane however i can tell you since it was an "N" model it had clipped wing tips and also carried extra fuel in the wings. Most of the "N" variants i have seen pics of had the shiny finish with no camo. I could be wrong but that is what i have seen. On Iwo he flew with the 413th Sqdrn,414th Fg. I found the info on warbirdresourcegroups website.

    Tony
     
  3. Arossihman

    Arossihman Member

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    #3 Arossihman, Dec 13, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 5, 2012
  4. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    Thanks Arossihman,

    I would like to do a portrayal of his aircraft approaching into Iwo. IMO it would make for an unusual depiction of a famous pilot in his "alternate" aircraft and theatre of operations. Cheers!
     
  5. Arossihman

    Arossihman Member

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    That would be sweet i would love to see it when its finished!
     
  6. Hugh Greenwald

    Hugh Greenwald New Member

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    Several months ago I had to place my wife in a skilled nursing care home. One day I noticed a resident in a wheel chair wearing a P51 Fighter Pilot cap. I never got a chance to talk to him until last night. As I was walking down to hall to visit my wife this fellow in a wheel chair asked me to push him to his room. I asked him if he had flown P51s during WWII. He told me he was an Ace. So, I took note of his name and found this site when I Googled URBAN DREW. I am an aircraft afficinando and have ben collecting Air Classics since the mid 70s. Tonight I brought him a box full of old Air Classics and the 2 most recent issues which had P51s on the cover. He was pretty tired so he didn't look at them tonight but I'll check with him and keep the site posted. I never expected to meet an Ace on a person to person basis although I've listeded to several on the "tour" circuit. Urban is easily tired but mentally alert. It's really great to meet such a person and give him a little pleasure in his declining years.
     
  7. Alte Hase

    Alte Hase Member

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    #7 Alte Hase, Jan 4, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2012
    What an amazing story! Firstly that Drew flew in the PTO too, after VE Day ( kind of a reverse of what J. D. Landers did!), but secondly what Hugh Greenwald posted.

    It is always an honour to meet a WW2 veteran, even more so an ace, and even more than that, the man who claimed the first Me262 double kill. He sounds like a fascinating individual too, having been involved in aviation long after the war too.

    What an honour to meet him!

    PS: Hugh Greenwald, please check your Private Messages.
     
  8. Wurger

    Wurger Siggy Master
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    I have corrected the dead link in the post #3. Now the site is accessible.
     
  9. TheMustangRider

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    What an honor you had Hugh, talking to any WWII veteran that was in the thick of it and managed to survive is such a great experience.
    I had the great pleasure to meet a 56th FG fighter pilot two years ago and I can tell you how exciting the experience is.
    An exciting experience for us as it is for them since it reminds them their deeds and sacrifices will never be forgotten.
     
  10. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    Just getting back to checking in here, Yes, a fascinating story Hugh about how you met him. I wrote Urban a letter regarding this topic so I hope that he will be able to respond and I can try and start to work on this project.
     
  11. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    #11 paletteone, Feb 22, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2012
    Here is my best guess as to how the "logo" may have looked on his "Jug", the only difference being the bomb graphic being removed from behind the logo. In this case the type is not reversed out but painted black in keeping with the shiny, clean finish and no camouflage. The tail would be yellow with a black vertical bar behind the "star bar" insignia. I plan to do a version of this in color.
     

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  12. TheMustangRider

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    Excellent work paletteone!!!
    I must say I'm astonished at the level of detail you put into this drawing, from the Jug itself to the thick clouds and the somber-looking Iwo down in the corner.
    You have my respects mate.
     
  13. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    Thanks for your comment. I uploaded an updated version (above), I had forgotten the antenna. Thx again.
     
  14. Lee Johnson

    Lee Johnson New Member

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    #14 Lee Johnson, May 15, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2012
    My Father, Francis W. (Frank) Johnson, flew in the 413th Fighter Squadron, 414th Fighter Group, 7th Fighter Command while it was based on Iwo Jima. Major Paul Wignall was Squadron Commander and shared a tent on the island with my Father.

    I attach 3 photos to help you identify the P-47N version of the Thunderbolt used by the 413th and the markings used by the squadron. The first is a photo taken in flight of Lt. Scott Coley in his Jug somewhere in and around Iwo. He flew my Father's wing on their first combat mission to the Empire of Japan. Lt. Coley was lost during bad weather on that mission. The second photograph is of 3 fighters that I believe were also in the 413th. The third photo is a photo of my my Father's ground crew standing with my Father on the airstrip at Iwo next to his plane, the "Lady Esther", named for my Mother. My Father had just been married and had his orders delivered to him while he was on his honeymoon. He told me that he was never sure where they were going until they arrived off Iwo Jima on July 8, 1945.

    These men were all heroes. I do not know how well my Father knew Urban Drew, but he certainly would have known him and I have no doubt that Lt. Drew would have been highly respected. My Father died on the anniversary date of his second and final combat mission from Iwo, August 9th, 2009. He was a Captain while stationed on Iwo and retired as Lt. Colonel from the USAFR. He and my Mother are buried at the Arlington National Cemetery. Major Wignall, later promoted Colonel, died in 2009 also.

    Best regards to all, Lee Johnson
    P-47N Thunderbolt copy.jpg
    Republic_P-47N-5_three_ship_formation_061020-F-1234P-037 copy.jpg
    Dad with Thunderbolt.jpg
     
  15. bobbysocks

    bobbysocks Well-Known Member

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    welcome to the forum Lee. interesting stuff
     
  16. eagledocf15

    eagledocf15 New Member

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    I talked extensively with Urban Drew. He stated that the P-47N was named Miss Detroit. He reversed the name around. Thanks
     
  17. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    Thanks for all of your input guys. Lee, I find your story very interesting, you must be extremely proud of your father's service, may he rest in peace. I'm glad to know that Urban renamed his aircraft "Miss Detroit" before I went ahead and started on my colour depiction. I've also been planning to do a ground scene of a Jug on Iwo, also in colour, perhaps I could use Urban's aircraft as the subject for that one as well, we'll see.
     
  18. Calvin Moser

    Calvin Moser New Member

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    Mr. Greenwald,

    In response to your post on Urban Drew, Jan, 2012, I would like to ask if you would pass on a message from my Father-in-law, Edward Benya. Ed was in the Army Signal Corp when he met up with Urban at a chow hall in Germany. They reminiscised of times past in Denby High School in Detroit Michigan. At that time Urban gave my father-in-law a pair of Aviation Sunglasses that he holds very special today. Ed wants to contact Urban and wondered if Urban would give us his address or phone number. If you could ask that of Urban, we would certainly appreciate it. He is a very special man indeed. Thank you and God Bless you. Calvin Moser
     
  19. Hugh Greenwald

    Hugh Greenwald New Member

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    Urban passed away in early April, 2013 of complications from pneumonia.
    Hugh Greenwald
     
  20. paletteone

    paletteone Member

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    #20 paletteone, Sep 16, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
    I have chosen to depict his "Jug" being serviced on Iwo Jima in 1945, with "Miss Detroit", not "Detroit Miss II" as the aircraft's name. I'll most likely add some little tidbits of detail such as tools and things in the foreground. I will portray this same scene in oil pastel as well.
     

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