|Pilot 2nd Lt George T. Helveston, O-432247 (survived)
Crashed September 1, 1942
Built by Bell in Buffalo, New York. Assigned Royal Air Force (RAF) serial number BX146 and painted in a three-color camouflage scheme. Instead, delivered to the U. S. Army. Disassembled and shipped overseas to Australia and reassembled.
Assigned to the 5th Air Force, 8th Fighter Group, 80th Fighter Squadron. Nose letter Q. No known nose art or nickname. Later assigned to the 35th Fighter Group, 41st Fighter Squadron with tail number 213 painted in white or yellow.
On September 1, 1942 took off from Port Moresby on a mission. This Airacobra that crashed near the Bulolo River, one mile from Durand Drome (17-Mile Drome) near Port Moresby. Pilot Helveston bailed out and landed unhurt. Officially, this aircraft was listed as "surveyed" on January 24, 1944.
Joe Baugher "Airacobra I for RAF, P-400"
Thanks to Edward Rogers for research and analysis
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February 9, 2018