4th Fighter Group 03/23/1944
FOURTH FIGHTER GROUP
A.P.O. 637, U.S. ARMY
Pilot’s Personal Combat Report
VIII Fighter Command F.O. 278
- 23 Mar 1944
- 334 Fighter Squadron
- 1105 hours
- East of Munster
- 7/10ths cloud up to 6,000 feet; clear above & below.
- Me 109s and locomotive
- 2 Me 109s Destroyed Locomotive Damaged
- Narrative - - - - - -
I was flying Pectin White 1 as we made a starboard turn near Hanover and sighted a box of bombers west of us. As we approached them we could see that they were heavily under attack, and I saw several bombers going down, one of them in flames, another minus a wing. P-38s could be seen circling above and around the bomber formation. There were many e/a around and then an Me 109 made a head-on pass through our squadron, circling around behind as though to come in again, so I turned after him. He dived to about 12,000 feet and as I started to close on him, he suddenly pulled up into a steep climb, so I opened everything and went after him. Closed slightly at first, then fell back a little between 15,000 and 18,000 feet where I operated the second blower manually to get full boost and was able to close again. At about 25,000 feet, was in range and got good strikes on him, he began to smoke and dived for cloud at 6,000 ft. I got on his tail as he came out of cloud and clobbered him again, but he stuck to his airplane and crash-landed in a field. I started the a/c on the ground, but as I cam around again, I saw the engine beginning to flame and the pilot getting out of the cockpit. He ran very fast across the field and fell behind a fence post as I came over again.
Made a pass at a freight train and got good strikes on the locomotive.
Climbed to cloud level at 3,000 feet and saw an Me 109 flying with its wheels down so turned after him, but he went into cloud. Saw tracers going past my port wing, so made a quick break to starboard and saw another 109 behind. He pulled up into cloud and as I came around in the turn he dived down, allowing me to get on his tail. Fired short bursts and saw many flashes, and he jettisoned his hood so I fired again, got more strikes and oil from the e/a covered m windscreen. The pilot bailed out at about 1,000 feet but the chute did not open; his a/c crashed nearby and burst into flame.
I claim 2 Me 109s destroyed and one locomotive damaged.
935 rounds fired.
Captain, Air Corps.
Official US Army Air Forces Combat Report by Duane Beeson of the 4th Fighter Group. This material is a transcription of official reports-testimonials of Duane Beeson's combat experience.
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