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Decorated in silver with red nose and rudder and green anti glare shield, our American WWII P-51 Mustang with military markings QP-S belonged to Lt Arthur Reed Bowers, who had joined the volunteer ‘Eagles Squadron’ of the RAF, based at RAF Debden in Essex. He came over from Illinois to join the 4th Fighter Group of the 334th Squadron in November 1944 and remained in the UK with the ‘Fighting Eagles’ until the end of the war, during which time he was credited with six enemy aircraft destroyed.
His Mustang was named ‘Sweet Arlene’ after his wife back home and the saucy nose art was painted by one of the US Sergeants on the base S/Sgt Donald E Allen, who was kept busy with similar nose art requests from the American pilots, as well as recording their ‘kills’ beneath the cockpit windows. Lt. Bowers retired from a varied post-war civilian career in 1983.
Monday to Friday: 9am to 5pm
Saturday: 9.30am to 3.30pm
210a St. Asaph Street
Christchurch, New Zealand
Phone +64 3 366 6117