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Built by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation (LAC) in Burbank. Delivered to the U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) as P-38L-5-LO Lightning serial number 44-25930. This aircraft had a natural aluminum finish. Disassembled and shipped overseas and reassembled.
Assigned to the 5th Air Force (5th AF), 475th Fighter Group (475th FG) "Satan's Angels", 433rd Fighter Squadron (433rd FS) "Possum". Assigned to pilot 1st Lt. John E. Purdy. Assigned to pilot 1st Lt. John E. Purdy. Nicknamed "Lizzie V" painted in blue on the left side of the nose. On the left side of the nose was a scoreboard of two rows of Japanese flags (4x3) representing Purdy's seven aerial victory claims. Squadron Number 174 painted in blue on the tail and each outer engine cowling. The propeller spinners, rear fuselage booms and tail upper and lower tips were painted blue outlined by a thin white line at each edge.
On January 9, 1945 took off from Dulag Airfield on Leyte piloted by 1st Lt. John E. Purdy on a mission and was hit by anti-aircraft fire. Damaged, this aircraft crash landed south of Malabang on Mindanao. Purdy survived the landing and was later rescued.
P-38L Lightning 44-53097 displayed at the Museum of Flight is painted in the markings of this aircraft.
P-38 Lightning Aces of the Pacific and CBI (1997) by John Stanaway pages 56 (profile 40), 89 (Appendices P-38 aces, 475th FG pilots), 95 (color plate descriptions)
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