Monday, May 11, 2015

The 20th Fighter Group Project

The 20th Fighter Group was attached to the 8th Air Force. They went to England in late summer of 1943 and came home after the war was over in the fall of 1945. Starting in P-38s and the then flying P-51 Mustangs, they flew as fighter cover for the bombers over Germany.

There is a project to capture that history, The 20th Fighter Group Project. They are making a major effort to capture the history of the men, the planes, the missions, and what their lives were like during those years.

If you know anyone who served, or who's father, grandfather, or great-grandfather served with the 20th and has written or oral history to share, they want to hear it.

There are only a few of the veterans of the 20th left. I met one this weekend, got to hear fragments of his stories. He's 93, widowed after 59 years of marriage, a man who went and served and then came home and like millions of others, helped build the post-war America I grew up in.

I found the project doing some follow-up research, trying to get some background to fill the story and the notes I took.

The 20th Fighter Group lost 132 pilots during the war. 73 were killed in action, most of the rest became POWs in Germany. They flew 312 missions. 28 of them became aces. Most of of this happened while flying of the most iconic airplanes of the era, the P-51 Mustang.


Old NFO said...

Considering the average squadron had 25 pilots, that is 5X loss rate...

ASM826 said...

20th Fighter Group was 3 squadrons.

The 77th, the 79th, and the 55th.