North American Aviation P-51K Mustang – Mrs Bonnie, Bill Dunham, 460th FS, 348th FG, Okinawa 1945 1/48
2 in stock
2 in stock
Hobby Master 1/48 scale HA7738: P-51K Mustang “Mrs Bonnie” Lt. Col. Bill Dunham, Deputy CO/348 FG, Okinawa, August 1945. Production run of only 500 models.
Length 8 inches Wingspan 9.25 inches
Dinghy’ Dunham scored his first seven victories in a P-47D-2 called ‘Bonnie’ but by late 1944 had moved onto a P-47D-25 also called ‘Bonnie’ and now extravagantly showing a host of kill markings. As the 348th FG’s second most successful ace, Dunham almost certainly scored his final four P-47 kills in this particular fighter. He left his beloved 460th FS in mid-December 1944 to become assistant group operations officer, prior to returning home in January 1945 to attend a gunnery course. He re-joined the group in May 1945 to find the P-47’s replaced by Mustangs and it was in one such P-51K called ‘Mrs Bonnie’ that he scored his sixteenth and final victory on 1st August.
Later in WWII the Allied bombers were flying deep into Germany and Japan but suffered tremendous losses because of the lack of range the fighter escorts had. German and Japanese fighters would wait beyond the range of the Allied fighters and then attack the vulnerable bombers. Once the P-51 called Mustang by the British had the Allison engine replaced with a British Merlin it possessed the high performance that had been lacking. With drop tanks the P-51 had the range to escort bombers all the way to Berlin or Tokyo and back.