s/n 44-13321, Capt. John M. Simmons Jr., 317th FS, 325th FG, 15th AF,
Lesina, Italy, August 1944
John M. Simmons, native of Gadsden in Alabama, joined army reserves in June 1942 and in January 1943 started his pilot’s training.
After the graduation he was dispatched to 317th FS in the Italian
theater. From the second half of April he flew P-47 with this unit, in
May the whole 325th FG was re-equipped with superior Mustangs.
While flying combat during the World War Two John Simmons shot
down total of seven enemy aircraft and after the war, he remained
in the USAF service. On January 18th, 1961 he perished in the T-33
crash during the final approach.
Since their African assignment the 325th FG aircraft were marked
with yellow-red checkerboard painted on the tail surfaces to distinguish them from the bombers they covered and which gave them
the nickname “Checkertails”. The checkers’ dimensions were 10 by
10 inches. The plane marked with number 27 carried the inscription Devastating Dottie on the port side of the nose, the starboard
side sported the name Lady Janie VII. All the aircraft the crew chief
Ebert serviced were marked Lady Janie.
Historically first release of the version without the dorsal fin fillet
INFO Eduard - October 2019