Original U.S. WWII 363rd Fighter Squadron Insignia from Leather Flight Jacket - Hand Painted
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. This is something we do not see very often at all. This is a circular cut out piece from a fleece-lined leather flight jacket, with the logo of the 363rd Fighter Squadron hand-painted on the surface of the leather. After the war the flight suit was most likely being removed from service, or had deteriorated, so the logo was cut out and kept as a memento.
The 363rd Fighter Squadron was a part of the 357th Fighter group, along with the 362nd and 364th Fighter Squadrons. They were part of the first P-51 Mustang Group in the Eighth Air Force, training with them from November 1943 at Raydon, England and entering combat with them in the February of the following year from their new base at Leiston. The Group was awarded two Distinguished Unit Citations, first for defending bombers on what was their first mission over Berlin on 6 March 1944 and on a mission over Leipzig on 29 June 1944. The second was awarded for breaking up a group of enemy aircraft endangering bombers and destroying many of them on mission over Derben, Germany on 14 January 1945. On this mission the Group made a claim for 56 air victories, the highest enemy aircraft claim for a single mission.
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