Tuesday, March 13, 2012

73rd Bomb Wing B-29 Flagship 500 Print

Here's my newest art print to be available soon. It's called "You Can't Keep A Hot Rodder Down". I found a photo of this little modified on Saipan in "An Unofficial Pictorial History of the 500th Bomb Group", published in 1946, and I was intrigued. I looked for information on who built it for several months but never could find out any information, even from the 500th BG Association. It looks like it has elements of a Japanese Type 95 car, and aircraft wheels and tires in the front, but who knows what else. Unlike the ETO, the guys in the Pacific had very little to occupy their free time. And like any hot rodder would, this guy found a way to pass the time. The foreground B-29 is "Flagship 500" which survived the war after 11 combat missions (named "4th Marine Division" on the starboard side) and is on display today at March AFB painted in 500th Bomb Group markings, but named "Three Feathers" which also carried the number Z Square 49, hence the confusion based on available information at the time. The background B-29 is Z Square 42 named Supine Sue, which at the end of the war had amassed 48 combat missions and 6 Japanese kills.

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