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A valiant hunter


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    A valiant hunter
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  • Contribution
    Erwan LR
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A valiant hunter
A valiant hunter

October 11, 1943, Colonel Neel KEARBY volunteered to lead a reconnaissance flight with four fighters, they were to reconnoiter the fortified base at Wewak. They observed four enemy airfield installations and reinforcements. Their reconnaissance mission completed, with valuable information for the allies, they could return.

At this point, Neel KEARBY observed under his formation, a group of 12 enemy bombers protected by 36 Japanese fighters .

Despite a ratio of 12 to 1 in favor of the Japanese forces, Colonel KEARBY decides to give his patrol the attack signal. They'll have to move fast, as fuel reserves are low.

The four American P-47s dive into the Japanese forces. N. KEARBY quickly destroys three opposing aircraft. Observing that one of his comrades was being pursued by two Japanese fighters, without a second to lose Colonel KEARBY sets course to help his wingman. He managed to shoot down the two Japanese fighters, putting an end to the pursuit suffered by his brother-in-arms.

The enemy fighters split up and concentrated on the colonel's aircraft. He decides to make one last pass no matter how many fighters are chasing him. The American fighters will then take refuge in the clouds before returning to their airfield.

Later, on March 5 1944, Colonel N. KEARBY was shot down by a Japanese fighter over Tadji (Papua New Guinea). He scored 21 victories.

Image credit: National Museum of the US Air Force photo 101015-F-1234S-002

A valiant hunter
A valiant hunter.

A valiant hunter

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