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363rd Fighter Squadron

Founded :
Country : US
Fate :

363rd Fighter Squadron

363rd Fighter Squadron Artwork


P51D Mustangs, January 1945 by Barry Price.

Struggle for Supremacy by Robert Taylor.

Aces for : 363rd 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.
NameVictoriesInfo
Donald H Bochkay14.83
Charles E Yeager11.50The signature of Charles E Yeager features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.
Frank L Gailer Jr5.50The signature of Frank L Gailer Jr features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.
William R OBrien5.50The signature of William R OBrien features on some of our artwork - click here to see what is available.
Aircraft for : 363rd Fighter Squadron
A list of all aircraft known to have been flown by 363rd Fighter Squadron. A profile page including a list of all art prints for the aircraft is available by clicking the aircraft name.
SquadronInfo

Mustang



Click the name above to see prints featuring Mustang aircraft.

Manufacturer : North American

Mustang

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.
Signatures for : 363rd 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.
NameInfo

Brigadier General Frank L. Gailer
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Brigadier General Frank L. Gailer
25 / 3 / 2009Ace : 5.50 Victories
Brigadier General Frank L. Gailer

General Gailer was born in Bakersfield, Calif., in 1923. Shortly thereafter, his family moved to New York, finally settling in Great Neck, Long Island. He graduated from Staunton Military Academy, Staunton, Va., in 1941, and attended Hofstra College, Hempstead, N.Y., until June 1942. He then entered the aviation cadet program and received pilot training at Parks Air College, Garden City, Kan., and Eagle Pass, Texas, where he earned his pilot wings and commission as second lieutenant. Frank Gailer was posted to England, joining the 357th Fighter Group at Leiston. Flying with the 363rd FS he went into combat in august, and in the next few months destroyed 6 enemy aircraft before being shot down in November 1944. Captured by the Germans, he was interned in Stalug I. After the war, in Vietnam, he commanded the 35th TFW at Phan Rang AB, flying over 500 hours combat on F-100s. In 1969 he returned to England once again, to command the 48th TW, and then as Vice-Commander of Third Air Force, USAF Europe.




Captain William Bee OBrien
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by or with the mounted signature of Captain William Bee OBrien

5 / 3 / 2006Died : 5 / 3 / 2006
5 / 3 / 2006Ace : 5.50 Victories
Captain William Bee OBrien

William O'Brien was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. His father Terence O'Brien was an oil-field worker, and his mother, Agnes, was a nurse. Obee O'Brien graduated from Oklahoma Military Academy and trained as a pilot before joining the U.S. Army Air Corps service in 1942. He took flight training at Luke Field in Phoenix and in Nevada before arriving in England in late 1943. Willaim OBee O'Brien flew P-51 Mustangs with the 357th Fighter Group, scoring his first enemy plane on March 6th, 1944, during a bomber escort mission to Berlin. He flew 77 combat missions, most with the 363rd Fighter Squadron, and became an Ace, with 5 victories. During his service with the 357th Fighter Group's 363th Fighter Squadron of the 8th US Air Force, O'Brien also earned eight Air Medals, including Distinguished Flying Crosses and the French Croix de Guerre. The French decoration was a unit citation bestowed in recognition of the role of the 357th Fighter Group in the liberation of France. After the war, O'Brien earned bachelors and masters degrees at the University of Tulsa, becoming a geophysicist for Stabdard Oil Company. Sadly Captain William Bee O'Brien died on Sunday 5th March 2006 of heart problems. He was 84.



Captain William B. Overstreet
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Captain William B. Overstreet
Captain William B. Overstreet

Posted to England in November 1943 to join the 363rd fighter Squadron, 357th Fighter Group at Leiston Bill Overstreet flew his P51 combat mission on 12th February 1944. He commanded nearly 50 combat missions during his tour with the 357th FS, taking part in escorting the big raids to Berlin, Frankfurt, Leipzeig and many other city targets as well as participating in escort missions to Russia from Italy. Shot down once he managed to escape to freedom after two days capacity. Returning stateside in October 1944.



Brigadier General Charles E Yeager
Click the name or photo above to see prints signed by Brigadier General Charles E Yeager
5 / 3 / 2006Ace : 11.50 Victories
Brigadier General Charles E Yeager

Charles Yeager. Born February 13th 1923. He enlisted as a private in the United States Army. Chalres Yaeger became a aircraft mechanic at George Air Force Base in California. Yaeger showed a talent as a pilot and became a Flight Officer on March 10th 1943 and joined the 357th Fighter Group. He trained on the P-39 Airocobras and in November 1943 went to Britain with his Squadron. He was stationed at RAF Leiston and flew P 51 Mustangs, his aircraft being Glamoras Glen. His first air victory was on March 5th 1944 but he was shot down over France. With the help of the French Resistance he escaped through Spain and back to the UK. Chalres Yaeger was the first pilot in his group to become an ace in a day, by shooting down a total of 5 enemy aircraft in a single mission. In his total of 11.5 victories was one of the first Me262 jet fighter kills, claimed on 6th November 1944. After the war In 1947 at the age of only 24 Charles Yaeger became the first Pilot to travel faster than sound in level flight in the experimental Bell X-1 at 45,000 feet. In his career Yaeger commanded fighter squadrons in Germany and during the Vietnam war, being promoted to the rank of Bragadier General in 1969.


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AVIATION PRINTS

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 Just as the name Zeppelin had become the common term for almost every German airship that ventured over Britain, so the name Gotha became generically used for the enemy bombers that droned across the English Channel during 1917-1918, inflicting considerable damage to coastal ports and the capital. As the massed raids of Bombengeschwader 3 increased, a public inquiry in England brought about the formation of the Royal Air Force as an independent service to counter this new threat and fighters from Europe were brought home to defend against these marauding giants. As a result, heavy losses on the German side meant that daylight raids had to be abandoned and all operations were henceforth conducted by night. Here, a pair of Gotha G.Vs begin to turn for home as searchlights play fruitlessly over distant fires, the grim result of another successful nights work.

Gothas Moon by Ivan Berryman.
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After take off a Sunderland of Coastal Command flies low over its base at Rosneath on the Gareloch, as Royal Navy battleships lay at anchor around the naval base of Faslane, near Helensburgh, Scotland during 1945.

Sunderland Over the Gareloch by Geoff Lea.
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 Two Spitfire Mk1Bs of 92 Squadron patrol the south coast from their temporary base at Ford, here passing over the Needles rocks, Isle of Wight, in the Spring of 1942.

In Them We Trust by Ivan Berryman. (AP)
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 On 31st August 1944, 6 Mosquitoes of 305 Polish Squadron, Lasham, 2nd TAF were led by Wing Commander Orlinski to attack oil refineries at Nomexy, south of Nancy, France. Diving down and releasing their bombs before escaping at tree top height they destroyed 4 large containers and several smaller ones. All aircraft safely returned after their four and a half hour sortie. Fl Lt Eric Atkins DFC(bar) KW(bar) and his navigator Fl Lt Majer can be seen exiting the area to reform on the other 3 Mosquitoes who have already finished their bombing run. This was Atkins 61st operation, finishing the war with 78 ops over 3 tours.

Mosquito Attack by Graeme Lothian. (Y)
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 Following the initial parachute drops at Maleme (West) and Canea (Middle) Group East, comprising of Fallschirmjager Regiment 1 and 2nd battalion FJR2, prepared for their descent on Crete. Charged with the capture of Heraklion and its aerodrome, their departure was postponed until late afternoon due to the repairs and refuelling needed for the returning Junker 52 transports.

The Second Wave, Greece, 20th May 1941 by David Pentland. (Y)
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 The heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen slips quietly through the waters of Kiel Harbour as one of her own Arado Ar.196s flies overhead. In the background, Bismarck, wearing her Baltic camouflage, is alongside taking on supplies.

Prinz Eugen by Ivan Berryman (AP)
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 At 3.30am on the 23rd June 1945, a Dakota of 357 (special duties) Squadron took off from Mingaladon airfield nr.  Rangoon , to travel the 600 miles, 300 of them behind enemy lines, to rescue a downed American Liberator crew deep in the jungles of   Siam  .  The Dakota was flown by pilot Fl Lt. Larry Lewis, who already held the DFM awarded to him for 33 ops as a rear gunner on   Wellingtons  in 1941. Two crews had already failed when Lewis was asked to attempt this hazardous mission. Flying between 5,000 - 6,000ft he flew over The Hump, a ridge of mountains running down the spine of   Burma  . Local villagers had cleared a rough airstrip 800yds long with Lewis finding it by the time dawn broke. With monsoon clouds gathering, the Liberator crew aboard and the Dakota sinking in the wet ground, he managed, just, to get airborne. Flying at zero feet and looking out for Japanese Zero fighters Lewis took a different course back. Although being fired on from the ground they managed to make it all the way to the airfield at Dum Dum nr.   Calcutta ,  India  . Lewis was awarded an immediate DFC. By the end of the war he had completed 63 ops, held the rank of Squadron Leader with his service from 1938-1945, and was awarded the Air Efficiency Medal.

Larry Lewis DFC by Graeme Lothian. (B)
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The leading ace of the mighty Eighth Air Force, Gabby Gabreski. He finished the war with a total of 28 air victories and 2 1/2 enemy aircraft destroyed on the ground by strafing airfields. Gabreski also scored 6 1/2 air victories in the Korean war.

Return From Bremen by Simon Smith.
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NAVAL PRINTS

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The cruiser HMS Frobisher dominates this scene off Houlgate at the Normandy landings of 1944.  The monitor HMS Roberts lies beyond Frobisher with a Large Infantry Landing Ship or LSI (L) unshipping its LCAs on the extreme right of the picture.  In the foreground, a motor launch attends a group of LCP (L)s as they head for the French beaches.  Two Spitfire Mk.IXs conduct sweeps overhead as Operation Neptune gathers momentum.

HMS Frobisher and HMS Roberts at Normandy by Ivan Berryman (P)
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In the spring of 1942, USS Washington was the first of Americas fast battleship fleet to participate in combat operations when she was briefly assigned to the Royal Navy. On 28th June 1942, together with HMS Duke of York, HMS Victorious and an accompanying cruiser and destroyer force, she formed part of the distant covering force to convoy PQ17, bound for Russia. In the Pacific later that same year, she became the only modern US battleship to engage an enemy capital ship, sinking the Japanese battlecruiser Kirishima.

Arctic guardian - USS Washington by Anthony Saunders (P)
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 HM submarine H.28 enters Scapa Flow anchorage, passing the forlorn Battle Cruiser SMS Derfflinger and a group of sunken destroyers H.28 was one of the H class submarines. Launched in March 1918, she was finally scrapped in 1944.

Scapa Flow Graveyard by Robert Barbour.
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B216P.  HMS Colossus by Ivan Berryman. Together with her sister ship, Hercules, HMS Colossus acquitted herself well at the Battle of Jutland where she fired 93 12in rounds, but received only two hits from enemy fire which caused minor damage and left nine crew injured.  She was sold for scrap in 1928.

HMS Colossus by Ivan Berryman (P)
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 Grand Harbour, Malta, April 1932. The R-Class battleship HMS Revenge slips majestically past the carrier HMS Furious as she lies at anchor as three of her Fairey IIIFs fly overhead on a routine training sortie.

HMS Furious with HMS Revenge by Ivan Berryman. (Y)
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Seen here from the deck of an escorting destroyer.
HMS Prince of Wales by Ivan Berryman.
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The Pedestal Convoy of August 1942 was one of the most heavily protected convoys in the history of sea warfare.  Fourteen of the fastest cargo ships of the time were protected by 4 carriers, 2 battleships, 7 cruisers and 32 destroyers.  The destroyer HMS Ashanti is in the foreground of the painting.  Also depicted are the carrier HMS Indomitable, with her Hurricanes cirling the convoy overhead, and the cargoe ship Port Chalmers to the right of the picture.

Pedestal Convoy by Anthony Saunders (B)
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 Between 24th may and 4th June 1940 an extraordinary armada of craft, large and small, naval and civilian, embarked on one of the greatest rescue missions in history. the evacuation of 330,000 British and French troops from the beaches of Dunkirk in northern France. the destroyer HMS Wakeful dominates the foreground here as troops pour onto the beaches and harbour moles in search of salvation. Both Wakeful and distant HMS Grafton were lost during the evacuation.

Dunkirk by Ivan Berryman.
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WORLD WAR TWO MILITARY PRINTS

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 OT34 Flamethrower tank and men of Col. Krickmans 6th Guards Tank Brigade take part in the Soviet counter attacks of 13th-27th September in defence of the southern factory district of Stalingrad before the final offensive in October.

Motherland, The Battle of Stalingrad, September 1942 by David Pentland.
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 Replacements from 1st Battalion Irish Guards and Sherman tanks of the 46th Royal Tank Regiment move through the debris of Anzio town towards their jump-off positions for the Battle of Campoleone Station.

Anzio, Italy, February 1944 by David Pentland. (GL)
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Leading 30th Corps assault across the Seine at Vernon, 43rd Wessex Division gained an initial foothold on the east bank.  Heroic efforts however by the Royal Engineers of 71st, 72nd and 73rd Field Companies, succeeded in constructing a Class 9 Bailey bridge (David, shown left) and a Second Class 40 bridge (Goliath, shown right)  Despite constant enemy fire this amazing feat was achieved in only 2 days, and allowed 15/19th Hussars Cromwells and 4.7th Dragoons Guards Shermans to cross just in time to repulse a serious German counter attack by Tiger IIs of SS Panzer Abteilung 101.

David and Goliath, Vernon, France, 27th August 1944 by David Pentland. (GL)
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 British MK1 Grant tanks of the Staffordshire Yeomanry 8th Armoured Brigade, 10th Armoured Division, breakout from El Alamein.

Operation Supercharge, 4th November 1941 by David Pentland. (P)
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DHM289P.   Arnhem Drop 17th September 1944 by Simon Smith.

Arnhem Drop 17th September 1944 by Simon Smith (P)
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 Superb figure study of the 82nd Airborne in 1944.

82nd Airborne by Chris Collingwood. (Y)
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 Bastogne, Ardennes, Belgium, 20th December 1944.  Newly arrived 81mm Mortars of 2nd Battalion, 506th PIR, 101st Airborne Division, fire in support of U.S. Paratroopers defending against German probes to the north of Bastogne.

Fire for Effect by David Pentland. (AP)
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  Trapped within a rapidly decreasing perimeter, the exhausted BEF along with elements of the French 1st Army appeared to be at the mercy of the mighty Luftwaffe.  No one though had reckoned on the brilliant leadership of Admiral Ramsay nor the gallant and unstinting efforts of the military and civilians who managed to rescue over 330,000 troops in nine days.

Operation Dynamo, Dunkirk, France 24th May - 4th June 1940 by David Pentland. (GL)
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