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  P-38L-1-LO "Pudgy IV" Serial Number 44-????? Tail 131
USAAF
5th AF
475th FG
431st FS

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USAAF c1944

Aircraft History
Built by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation (LAC) in Burbank. Constructors Number 422-???? (four digits unknown). This aircraft had a natural aluminum finish with olive drab upper nose and inner sides of the engines. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as P-38L-1-LO Lightning serial number unknown, likely between 44-23769–44-25058. Disassembled and shipped overseas to the South West Pacific Area (SWPA) and reassembled.

Wartime History
Assigned to the 5th Air Force (5th AF), 475th Fighter Group (475th FG) "Satan's Angels", 431st Fighter Squadron (431st FS) "Hades". Assigned to Major Thomas B. McGuire, Jr. Squadron Number 131 (Red 131) was painted on the nose and tail in red. Nicknamed "Pudgy IV" after his wife painted in red with quotation marks around Pudgy and the roman numeral IV inside the tail of the "g". Painted on the left side of the cockpit was "Major T. B. McGuire Jr." and below a rectangular scoreboard with Japanese rising sun flags indicating McGuire's 22 aerial victory claims in five rows (5-5-5-5-2). Below were the names of the crew chiefs. The Satan's Angel motif was painted on the outer intercooler doors on both sides of the booms. A pair of diagonal red stripes were on both booms rear of the intercooler doors. The tail had a red upper and lower tips with squadron number 131 painted in red.

This was the fourth aircraft that bore the this nickname and squadron number, including P-38H "Pudgy", P-38H "Pudgy II" 42-66817, P-38L Pudgy III, this aircraft "Pudgy IV" and later and P-38L "Pudgy V" 44-24155. Each aircraft had squadron number 131 on the nose and tail.

This P-38 operated from Mokmer Drome on Biak Island. McGuire did not claim and victories in this aircraft before it was crashed or written off by another pilot. Ultimate fate unknown, likely scrapped or otherwise disappeared.

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Last Updated
November 30, 2019

 


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