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david leigh-smith
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On This Day…April 25th.

April 25, 2019 · in Photo Collections · · 20 Comments

Hurricane Mk IIds of RAF 6 Squadron, Gabes, Tunisia.

These photos of the ‘Flying Tin Openers’ (tank busting squad, see emblem below) were all taken April 1943.


Soviet and US troops meet up across the river Elbe in Germany, April 25th, 1945, effectively (and portentously) cutting Germany in two.


April 25th, 1945; Italian Liberation Day and two little ones get in the spirit. The US MPs adopted this 14 year old boy as their ‘mascot’ and he clearly has the body language locked in.


Lancaster bombers in action over Wangerooge Island, off the coast of Netherlands, 25th April 1945


‘White 3’ flown by Guido Mutke and confiscated by Swiss authorities when he emergency landed there due to low fuel. 25th April, 1945.


Captain Robert S. Johnson (Purple Heart, Silver Star and DFC Medal) in his T-Bolt, April 25th, 1944.


Beaufighter MkVI RAF 144 Squadron in Tain, Scotland, 25th of April 1943.


Very nice photo of a Spitfire Vb of 154 Squadron in Souk El Khemis (Tunisia) 24th April, 1943. The details and nuances of weathering are really interesting (for example the wear in the inner side of the prop) and the picture really pulls you in.


A F2A-3 Buffalo (a real favourite on ‘OTD...) of USMC squadron VMF-212 (‘Hell Hounds’) being serviced under camouflaged revetment at Air Station Ewa, Hawaii, 25th of April, 1942.



20 responses

  1. Brilliant set today Dave , I really go for North Africa campaign aircraft ,oh and Beaufighters in any guise you care to treat us with.
    Thanks mate.
    Hey, not an aircraft carrier in sight...

    • Oops...Ah, well...sorry about that...couldn’t help myself...

      Two Douglas Skyraiders of VAW-12 fly over the USS Forrestal (CVA-59) in the Mediterranean with the Sixth Fleet, April 25th, 1960.

      @neil-foster

  2. Nice set of photos David.
    The meeting of the troops on the bridge is very interesting. The ground crew working on the Spitfire also makes for an interesting subject.
    I was looking at some pictures of the Lancaster the other day with the new Wingnut Wings Lancaster in mind, when I came across a diagram showing the size of the three British heavy bombers. I never realised the Stirling was so much bigger than the Lancaster.

    • Thanks for your thoughts, Julian. Don’t know if this is the diagram you were looking at, but yes, the Stirling was not only bigger, but considerably so.

      Thanks for supporting the series, Julian.

  3. If he’s still around, that little MP would be my dad’s age. Same body language I’ve seen in photos of my dad. But nope, my dad was still in Illinois in 1945. 🙂

    Nice set of photos David, especially after adding the carrier. 🙂

  4. Thanks, Gary. I tried to hold off on the carrier photo, but the heart wants what the heart wants.

    Cheers, Gary.

  5. That Spit photo is interesting. The wear on the prop is not so unusual to me, as I worked on many aircraft belonging to ranchers in West Texas who operated routinely off dirt and gravel airstrips, so the props got to be like that in very short order. The code letters are definitely non standard and appear to be red, while the fin flash looks pretty clean. That airplane is the perfect example of "standard" going all to hell once an airplane is in the field!

  6. hey...i just started on my tin-opener last night and was out today...give me just a little more time pal...dirty little mind reader...you've got to have ESPN

    2 attached images. Click to enlarge.

  7. No mind reading, Bob. That said, be careful on that intersection of Washington and Old Stage...and tell that sister of yours she’s left the coffee machine on again...

  8. reminds me of that twilight zone ...the fortune teller with that devils head in the booth...william shatner..only answered yes and no and drove them crazy...spooked the hey out of me till i was about 20...and my son lives right off of old stage road...stop it you little Svengali

  9. Nice early shot of the F. I. D. [Forrestal].

    1 attached image. Click to enlarge.

  10. Great stuff again, David.

  11. I'm thinking a Sterling is in my near future. I followed a build in Meng Air mag, and wanted to "replicate" it in 1/72 with my ole' Airfix kit. After all the elbow grease in the Privateer though, I needed a break from an intense and "large" (for my scale) build!

    • Greg, that Privateer is amazing.

      If you can make a Sterling as well as that - I’ll be all over a work in progress.

      @gkittinger

  12. I love the Hurricane photos, David. And they serve to confirm something I wondered about: I built my Hurricane and the pilot looked so low in the cockpit, I thought it was a mistake (since I placed it naturally and the figure I had is molded pretty upright). But it looks like the pilot really did sit rather low.

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