44-13761, flown by Capt. Jack M. Ilfrey, 79th FS, 20th FG, 8th AF, A USAAF Station 367
Kings Cliffe, Northamptonshire, Great Britain, Autumn 1944
Captain Jack Ilfrey became an ace in North Africa, where he claimed 5½ kills (and 2 damaged)
while flying P-38F “Texas Terror”. He joined 20th FG, 79th FS at USAAF Station Kings Cliffe in
England on April 20th, 1944, serving as Ops Officer from June 14th, 1944. He claimed two more
Bf 109Gs on May 24th, flying P-38J “Happy Jack´s go Buggy”. He was shot down behind enemy
lines in France on June 12th, but he successfully evaded capture walking and cycling 150 miles to
Allied lines in Normandy with help of French civilians. He became 79th FS CO on September 7th,
leading the unit until December 9th, 1944. He completed 142 combat
missions over ETO and MTO.
The 20th FG did not replace their P-38Js with P-51Cs until July 1944, changing them for P-51Ds
shortly afterwards. The early Mustangs of the 20th FG are known to have upper surfaces overpainted with
green color, probably with RAF Dark Green, with irregular splitting line between green upper surfaces and
silver/natural metal bottom surfaces. The 20th FG was nicknamed “Loco Busters” because made
significant number of attacks against railroad network.
INFO Eduard - November 2021