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362nd Fighter Squadron
362nd Fighter Squadron
362nd Fighter Squadron Artwork
Mustang Escort by Graeme Lothian.
|Aces for : 362nd Fighter Squadron|
|A list of all Aces from our database who are known to have flown with this squadron. A profile page is available by clicking the pilots name.|
|Charles Elon Weaver||8.00||The signature of Charles Elon Weaver features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Arval J Roberson||6.00||The signature of Arval J Roberson features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Joseph Z Matte||5.00||The signature of Joseph Z Matte features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Morton David Magoffin||5.00||The signature of Morton David Magoffin features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.|
|Aircraft for : 362nd Fighter Squadron|
|A list of all aircraft known to have been flown by 362nd Fighter Squadron. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.|
Manufacturer : North American
The ubiquitous North American P-51 Mustang, which many consider to be the best all-around fighter of WW II, owes its origins to the British Air Ministry. Following Britains entry into WW II in 1939, the RAF was interested in purchasing additional fighter aircraft from American sources, particularly the Curtiss P-40. Curtiss, which was busy, was unable to guarantee timely delivery so the British approached North American Aviation as a possible second source for the P-40. North American chose to propose its own fighter design which would use the same Allison engine as the P-40. Utilizing new laminar flow wings, the North American fighter was expected to have performance better than the P-40. Developed in record time the new aircraft was designated as a Mustang I by the Brits, whereas the USAAF ordered two for evaluation which were designated XP-51 Apaches. Intrigued with the possibility of using this aircraft also as a dive bomber, North American proposed this to the USAAF which decided to order 500 of the P-51 aircraft to be modified for dive bombing use. Designated as the A-36 Invader, this version of the Mustang utilized dive flaps, and bomb racks under each wing. Some reinforcing of the structural members was also required because of the G-forces to be encountered in dive bombing. A-36s entered combat service with the USAAF prior to any P-51s. In early 1943 the 86th and 27th Fighter Bomber Groups of the 12th Air Force began flying A-36s out of Northern Africa. Despite some early problems with instability caused by the dive flaps, the A-36 was effective in light bombing and strafing roles. It was not, however, capable of dog fighting with German fighters, especially at higher altitudes. Despite these drawbacks one USAAF pilot, Captain Michael T. Russo, who served with the 16th Bomb Squadron of the 27th Fighter Bomber Group, was credited with five confirmed aerial victories in the A-36, thereby becoming the first mustang ace.
Production Began : 1943
Number Built : 15683
Alexander Kartveli was a engineer with Seversky Aircraft who designed the P-35, which first flew in 1937. With Republic Aviation Kartveli supervised the development of the P-43 Lancer. Neither of these aircraft were produced in large numbers, and neither was quite successful. However, the Republic Aviation P-47 Thunderbolt, also nicknamed the Jug, was quite a different story. The Jug was the jewel in Kartvelis design crown, and went on to become one of the most produced fighter aircraft of all time with 15,683 being manufactured. The P-47 was the largest and heaviest single seat fighter of WW II. The P-47 immediately demonstrated its excellent combat qualities, including speed, rate of climb, maneuverability, heavy fire power, and the ability to take a lot of punishment. With a wingspan of more than 40 feet and a weight of 19,400 pounds, this large aircraft was designed around the powerful 2000 HP Pratt and Whitney R-2800 Double Wasp radial engine. The first P-47 prototype flew in May of 1941, and the primary variant the P-47D went into service in 1943 with units of the U.S. Armys Eighth Air Force. The Jug had a maximum speed in excess of 400 MPH, a service ceiling in excess of 42,000 feet, and was heavily armed with either six or eight heavy caliber machine guns. With its ability to carry up to a 2,500 pound bomb load, the Jug saw lots of use in ground attack roles. Until the introduction of the N model, the P-47 lacked the long range required for fighter escort missions which were most often relegated to P-51 Mustangs or P-38 Lightnings. In his outstanding painting entitled Bridge Busting Jugs, noted aviation artist Stan Stokes depicts Eighth Air Force Jugs in a ground attack mission in the Alps in June of 1944. The top P-47 ace was Francis Gabreski who had flown with the 56th Fighter Group, the first unit to be equipped with the P-47. In August of 1943 Gabreski attained his first aerial combat victory (over an Fw-190) and by years end he had reached ace status with 8 confirmed victories. As Commander of the 61st Squadron, Gabreski continued to chalk up victory after victory, and on seven different occasions he achieved two victories during the same mission. However, in July of 1944 Gabreski damaged the prop on his Jug during a low level attack on an airfield near Coblenz. Forced to make a crash landing, he was captured and remained a prisoner of war until Wars end in 1945. Following the War Gabreski returned to military service with the Air Forces 4th Fighter-Interceptor Wing in Korea. Flying the F-86 Sabre Jet, Gabreski attained 6.5 more aerial victories in 1951 and 1952 becoming an ace in two different wars
|Signatures for : 362nd Fighter Squadron|
|A list of all signatures from our database who are associated with this squadron. A profile page is available by clicking their name.|
First Lieutenant Joseph Black
Click the name above to see prints signed by First Lieutenant Joseph Black
| First Lieutenant Joseph Black |
Joe Black joined up in November 1942, arriving in England to join the 357th Fighter Group. Flying with the 362nd Fighter Squadron, he flew the first of his 28 combat missions on 1st February 1945, and participated in a massive escort raid to Berlin escorting B17s for his second. Joe served with the 362nd right up until the end of hostilities in Europe, leaving the service early in 1946.
First Lieutenant Raymond T Conlin
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| First Lieutenant Raymond T Conlin |
'Ted' Conlin joined the service in July 1942, arriving in england in March 1944 to join the 362nd Squadron, 357th Fighter Group, flying P-51s. He flew the first of his combat missions on 13th May 1944, and the next few weeks saw much activity in the build up to D-Day. In September he took part in the air operations in support of Market Garden, the airborne landings in Holland around Arnhem and Nijmegen, and also escort on the 'Russian Shuttle' missions. He finished his combat tour in November 1944.
Captain Harvey Mace
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| Captain Harvey Mace |
Harvey Mace arrived in England at the end of 1943 to join the 357th Fighter Group who were then stationed at Raydon.He flew all his 59 combat missions in P51 Mustangs with the 362nd Fighter Squadron, notching up three victories over Me109s along the way. Flying primarily on B17 bomber escort missions, Harvey went to nearly all the major strategic bombing targets in Europe, including the Shuttle missions from England to Russia, Italy and back again.Towards the end of his tour he was appointed Squadron Operations Officer, and then assigned as Fighter Controller of the 3rd Bomb Group.
Colonel Morton Magoffin
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| Colonel Morton Magoffin |
Morton Magoffin went to West Point in 1933 to be trained as a soldier, but preferred to be a flyer instead, graduating for the Service in 1937. Serving first with the 94th Pursuit Squadron, in April 1941 he was posted to jom the 15th Pursuit Group as Squadron Commander in Hawaii, and was present at the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Posted to Europe, Mort arrived in England in November 1943. Group Commander of the 362nd FG - the first P-47 Group m the 9th Air Force based at Wormingford. In addition to the regular search and destroy missions of the 9th, Mort took part in the early March escort missions to Berlin. On August 10, he was shot down and wounded by flak near Falaise, luckily being liberated from a Paris hospital by the Allies a few days later. Mort was an Ace with 5 victories in World War II. Sadly, he passed away on 9th July 2007.
Colonel Joe Matte
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| Colonel Joe Matte |
Col. Joseph Joe Zannet Matte was born on the 23rd July 1920 in Port Arthur, Texas and graduated from North Texas State University. Joe Matte joined the Army Air Corps in 1942, and flew the P-40 and P-47 in training before arriving in England and being assigned to the 362nd Fighter Group - one of the four original Fighter Groups making up the 9th Air Force in England. After flying 75 high altitude bomber escort and ground support missions over the entire European battle front, on August 20th, 1944, he scored his first air victory. Leading a flight of 8 aircraft on a German convoy strike, they were attacked by 12 Me109s. In the ensuing battle Joe Matte downed no fewer than four of the enemy aircraft. On November 8th, Matte was credited with another 3 aircraft, Fw190s, when leading 16 P-47s on a low-level dive bombing mission in support of General Pattons 3rd Army. To add to his air victories he was also credited with numerous aircraft destroyed on the ground by gunfire and bombs. Matte became senior advisor to the Military Assistance and Advisory Group (MAAG) in Taipei, Taiwan. His final assignment was as Chief of Maintenance, Air Training Command, Randolph AFB, Texas where he retired after 31 years of distinguished service to his country. His numerous decorations, medals, and citations include the Distinguished Service Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross w/OLC, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal w/18OLC, Air Force Commendation Medal w/OLC, Presidential Unit citation w/OLC, European Campaign Medal, WWII Victory Medal, National Defense Service Medal, and a special award of Chinese Pilots Wings presented to him by the Taiwanese Government. Matte lived in San Antonio where where he had a successful career in oil and gas exploration and residential home construction. Joe Matte was an active member of the American Fighter Aces Association, the 362nd Fighter Group Association, the 9th Air Force Association, the Air Force Association, and the Order of the Daedalions. Sadly Colonel Joe Matte, at the age of 83, passed away on February 10th 2004 in Fredericksburg.
Major James McLane
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Major James McLane
| Major James McLane |
Flew P-51 Mustangs with the 357th Fighter Group. James C. McLane Jr. left Clemson College in 1943 to join the Army Air Corp. He graduated in Class 44B at Marianna, Florida, being commissioned a 2nd Lt. Rated Pilot. He instructed Advanced Single Engine student pilots for two classes, and then at Punta Gorda in the Fighter Pilot Replacement Unit he received 6 months training in P-40 aircraft. Early in 1945 McLane was assigned to fly P-51s with the famed 357th fighter group, the “Yoxford Boys” stationed in Leiston England. He was placed in the 362nd fighter squadron led by 3 times ace Leonard K. “Kit” Carson. Initially he flew borrowed aircraft, but then was assigned G4-V, tail number 414798. This plane had seen lots of action, first as Master Mike and later as Butch Baby, the mount of Col. Joseph Broadhead and Lt. Julian H. Bertram respectively. The P-51 was stripped of paint and re-identified on the nose as Dainty Dotty in honor of his wife Dorothy. McLane flew bomber escort and experienced a memorable mission as Carson’s wingman hunting for ME-262’s. After the war, he flew C-123 and C-130 aircraft in the Air Force Reserves, retiring as a Major.
Colonel Arval J. Roberson
Click the name above to see prints signed by Colonel Arval J. Roberson
| Colonel Arval J. Roberson |
Joining the Army Reserves in 1942, ‘Robby’ Roberson was commissioned and rated a pilot in May 1943. Transferring to the 362nd Fighter Squadron, 357th Fighter Group, he flew 76 combat missions on P51s, sharing his first victory against an Me110 over Berlin on 6th March 1944. He became an Ace on 19th September, and scored his 6th and final air victory at the same time. During the Korean War he flew an additional 100 combat hours with the 18th FBG, and in Vietnam managed to get in 26 support missions on C47s. He retired in 1973. Arval Roberson passed away on 7th December 2007.
Captain Charles E Weaver
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Captain Charles E Weaver
| Captain Charles E Weaver |
American WW2 pilot with eight victories, including : 19th Sep 1944, an Me109; 17th Nov 1944, 2 Fw190s; 23rd Dec 1944, an Me109; 14th January 1945, an Me109 and an Fw190; 24th Mar 1945, an Me109; 18th Apr 1945, an Me262. He died 19th November 2008.
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