Original U.S. WWII B-17 Bomber Special Delivery A-2 Flight Jacket - 527th Bomb Squadron
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. This is an exceptional A2 leather flight jacket issued to a member of the crew of the B-17 Flying Fortress SPECIAL DELIVERY. It is offered in very good condition in size 38 chest.
The best aspect of this incredible jacket is the hand painted SPECIAL DELIVERY with pin up girl with a flower in her hair holding a massive bomb on the back of the jacket.
The front of the jacket bears the painted insignia 527th Bomb Squadron and the left shoulder has a painted 8th Air Force insignia. Sadly the crewman's name and another patch were removed at some point as evident by empty the stitch holes on the right breast area.
Overall condition of the jacket is very good. There is some minor wear in places and some paint loss. The liner and cuffs are period replacements and it has a a complete fully working original TALON zipper.
Established in late 1942 as a B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bomb squadron; the 527th Bomb Squadron trained under Second Air Force. Deployed to the European Theater of Operations (ETO) in early 1943, being assigned to VIII Bomber Command in England.
Began long range strategic bombardment operations over enemy-held Europe on 19 May 1943; engaged primarily in bombardment of strategic targets such as industries, oil refineries, storage plants, submarine pens, airfields and communications centers in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Norway and Poland. Specific targets included a chemical plant in Ludwigshafen, an aircraft assembly plant in Brunswick, ball-bearing plants at Schweinfurt and Leipzig, synthetic oil refineries at Merseburg and Gelsenkirchen, marshalling yards at Hamm and Reims and airfields in Mesnil au Val and Berlin.
On several occasions the squadron attacked interdiction targets and operated in support of ground forces. It bombed V-weapon sites, airfields, radar stations and other installations before the Normandy invasion in June 1944, bombed defended positions just ahead of the Allied landings on 6 June and struck airfields, rail choke points, and gun emplacements during the campaign that followed.
During the Northern France Campaign, the squadron bombed enemy positions to assist ground troops at St Lo during the breakthrough, 24–25 July 1944, attacked German communications and fortifications during the Battle of the Bulge, December 1944 - January 1945, and bombed bridges and viaducts in France and Germany to aid the Allied assault across the Rhine, February–March 1945, combat ending with the German Capitulation in May 1945.
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