Hellcat NF Mk.II, No. 892 Naval Air Squadron, Drem Airbase, Great Britain, May – August 1945
No. 892 Naval Air Squadron was reformed in April
1945 as a night fighter squadron with 16 NF Mk.II
Hellcats. After a short deployment onboard HMS
Premier, the squadron was subsequently underta-
king night fighter training at Drem Airbase till the
end of the WWII. The Hellcat depicted was built for
the US Navy and bore the BuNo. 79015. It was purchased then by the Royal Navy and coded KD 127.
The British roundels were applied on the original
US camouflage scheme. The wing armament option is
not clear from the reference photo, but it seems the
20-mm cannons were mounted.
F6F-5N, BuNo. 78669, Maj. Bruce Porter, CO of VMF(N)-542, Yontan Airfield, Okinawa, May 1945
Hellcat BuNo. 78669 was the personal mount of
five-kills ace Maj. Bruce Porter, Commanding Officer
of VMF(N)-542. He inherited this F6F-5N from his predecessor. The Hellcat carried a big red heart and the
white name “Millie Lou” on the nose. Porter ordered
his ground crew to overpaint it immediately after
his arrival and a big bottle of Schenley bourbon and
“Black Death” in white overpainted the previous nose
art. Porter downed three Zeros over the Solomons
in June/July 1943 while serving with VMF-121.
On June 15, 1945 he added two more kills to his
tally, shooting down a Kawasaki Ki-45 “Nick” heavy
fighter and a “Betty” bomber carrying an Ohka
suicide rocket plane.