Supermarine Spitfire Mk V – Buckeye-Don, 336th FS Don Gentile USAAF 1942
2 in stock
2 in stock
Corgi Aviation Archive Flying Mule Collection 1/72 Scale US31926: Supermarine Spitfire Mk V Buckeye-Don of 4th FG, 336th FS, as flown by ace pilot Don Gentile, RAF Debden, England, October 1942. Limited Edition of 750 Pieces. Intended primarily for US issue. PLEASE NOTE: The box illustration shows a bubble canopy spitfire, but the model itself is the usual Spitfire Mk V shape.
Length 5 inches Wingspan 6.25 inches
Dominic Gentile was an American pilot who was eager to contribute to the Allied effort against Germany even before the United State’s official involvement in World War II. Lacking the two years of college education required by the American Air Force, Gentile chose instead to join the Royal Canadian Air Force, where he completed a difficult two-month training program in just two weeks. The young pilot impressed his superiors so much that he was soon transferred to Great Britain, where he was appointed an RAF Pilot Officer. In 1942, he joined the No. 133 Eagle Squadron, an elite flying force consisting entirely of American born pilots.
On August 1, 1942, Gentile was in the cockpit of a Supermarine Spitfire when he earned the British Distinguished Flying Cross. On that day, Gentile achieved the remarkable feat of shooting down two German aircraft-a Fw 190 and a Ju 88. The two aircraft were destroyed within 10 minutes of each other.
The next month, Gentile and his fellow Eagle Squadron pilots were transitioned from RAF duty to the US Air Force 336th Fighter Squadron, Fourth Fighter Group, a unit that went on to become one of the most successful air combat units of WWII. The 336th continued to fly Spitfires until the P-47 Thunderbolt came on the scene in 1943. This Spitfire – BL255 – was Gentile’s uniquely marked Fourth Fighter Group aircraft, and was the only plane he flew that was christened Buckeye-Don. Gentile chose unique names for his P-47D (Gentile’s P-47 is also available as a Flying Mule Edition) and later his P-51B, but continued to use the boxing eagle motif as his personal emblem. The boxing eagle eventually became the emblem of the US Air Force 336th Fighter Squadron.
By 1944, Gentile was the American Air Force’s leading ace, with 21.88 aerial victories and 6 ground victories.
Designed by R.J.Michell to meet a British Air Ministry specification, the Supermarine Spitfire first flown on March 5th, 1936. With its combination of beautiful fighter design, the excellent performance of its Rolls-Royce Merlin powerplant and firepower provided by twin cannons and four machine guns, the Spitfire became an unrivaled symbol of victory. The Spitfire had 40 major variants and was built in greater numbers than any other British aircraft of the time. It flew operationally on every front between 1939 and 1945 and was engaged in every one of the Royal Air Force’s major actions.