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  P-38G-1-LO Lightning Serial Number 42-12709  
5th AF
8th FG
80th FS

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John Douglas July 2006
Pilot  2nd Lt. Richard S. Strommen, O-746216 (survived) Jefferson County, WI
Crashed  September 15, 1943
MACR  none

Aircraft History
Built by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation (LAC) in Burbank. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as P-38G-1-LO Lightning serial number 42-12709. Disassembled and shipped overseas and reassembled.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 8th Fighter Group, 80th Fighter Squadron "Headhunters". No known nickname or nose art.

Mission History
On September 15, 1943 took off from 3 Mile Drome near Port Moresby piloted by 2nd Lt. Richard S. Strommen on a mission. During the flight, this Lightning became lost in bad weather and Strommen bailed out and landed safely.

Strommen was later rescued and returned to Port Moresby.

This P-38 crashed near Baimuru (Ibiko village) roughly fifteen miles northwest of Kikori in Gulf Province. The tail boom has traces of a tail letter (letter unknown). The 80th Fighter Squadron used letters the tails of aircraft.

NARA World War II Army Enlistment Records - Richard S. Strommen

USAF Serial Number Search Results - P-38G-1-LO Lightning 42-12709

PNG Museum Aircraft Status Card - P-38G Lightning 42-12709
National Archives 90th Fighter Squadron History Frame 359 Microfilm 1065#3
Tales of a War Pilot chapter 3 "Escape from the Stone Age" pages 29-50 recounts Strommen's loss and return

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Last Updated
August 11, 2019


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