By Carl Molesworth
Staffed with green USAAF pilots and led by way of a handful of pro veterans of the yank Volunteer workforce (AVG), the twenty third FG used to be shaped within the box at Kunming, in China, on July four, 1942 and flew strive against missions that very same day. The group's 3 squadrons - the 74th, seventy fifth and 76th Fighter Squadrons - have been firstly outfitted with war-weary P-40s passed down from the AVG. those have been supplemented via the connected sixteenth FS, flying new P-40Es, and all squadrons decorated the noses in their airplanes with fearsome and iconic sharksmouth designs.The twenty third FG fought a guerrilla conflict opposed to the japanese, gradually relocating pilots and plane from one distant air base to a different to maintain the enemy off stability. simply because China may well merely be provided via air from India, there have been consistent shortages of plane, gasoline and ammunition with which to contend. The twenty third FG met those demanding situations head-on and via the top of the battle its pilots had compiled a ranking of 594 aerial victories and approximately four hundred floor kills. one of the forty seven aces who flew within the twenty third have been colourful characters reminiscent of David L 'Tex' Hill, Robert L 'Bob' Scott and Clinton D 'Casey'. The human expense used to be excessive, although - 126 pilots misplaced their lives in China whereas serving within the twenty third.
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Additional resources for 23rd Fighter Group: Chennault's Sharks (Aviation Elite Units)
My speed was srill up, so I broke inro rhe edge of rheir circle. One rried ro dive our so 1gave him a 30-degree bursr. 1missed, and all ofa sudden rhere were four orher "Oscars" coming in on me from behind. They were shooring, bur rheir deRecrion was off - all trailing. I dived a lirde and anorher P-40 came scooring by and scarrered rhe Japs. I came back over rhe field ar 500 fr and saw a "Tojo" going wesr. 1 overhauled him and rook a 5degree deRecrion shor and rhen cur ir down ro 20 degrees.
1had ro duck again ro avoid a collision. I saw him go down smoking like a chimney. 'There was a squirrel cage formarion sourh of rhe field wirh eighr "Oscars" chasing rheir rails and edging away from rhe main flghr. My speed was srill up, so I broke inro rhe edge of rheir circle. One rried ro dive our so 1gave him a 30-degree bursr. 1missed, and all ofa sudden rhere were four orher "Oscars" coming in on me from behind. They were shooring, bur rheir deRecrion was off - all trailing. I dived a lirde and anorher P-40 came scooring by and scarrered rhe Japs.
On rhe posirive side of rhe ledger, rhe 23rd FG was credired wirh 27 aerial vicrories, of which LrJames Folmar of rhe 75rh FS claimed four. The group also claimed a roral of five aircrafr desrroyed on rhe ground roo. The 74rh FS began using Kanchow inrermirrendy in July, and ir would move rhere permanendy in early Seprember under rhe command of greyhaired Maj John C 'Pappy' Herbsr. Legend held rhar Herbsr had downed a German aeroplane over Europe while Rying wirh rhe Royal Canadian Air Force in 1941, and his performance since arriving in China in June seemed ro supporr ir.