"MUSTANG MAYHEM"

BY NICOLAS TRUDGIAN

Autographed by Capt. Richard Braley, Maj. Gen. Carroll McColpin and Col. Steve N. Pisanos.

L/E of 600. Signed and numbered by the artist.

Size: 34 3/4" x 23 1/2"

Price: $175.00

— SOLD OUT —


Of all the 4th Fighter Group's many famous actions in World War II, it saved one of the most remarkable 'til last. In its final major mission of the war on 16 April 1945, in two blistering airfield attacks, its pilots destroyed no feweer than 105 enemy aircraft.

While the "A" Group attacked airfields in the region of Prague, "B" Group, consisting of the 334th Squadron led by Major "Red Dog" Norley, devastated the Luftwaffe base at Gablingen in 40 minutes of continuous strafing. That same day, other 8th Air Force fighter groups attacked Luftwaffe airfields all over Germany, claiming a total of 752 aircraft destroyed. The Luftwaffe never recovered from this terrible and devastating blow.

Nocolas Trudgian's new limited edition relives that momentous aerial assault in graphic detail with a superbly realistic view of the snow-covered Gablingen airfield in Bavaria. As "Red Dog" Norley's P-51D screams across the field at Hangar height with his squadron's Mustangs fanned out behind him, the 4th Fighter Group pilots jink through the intense groundfire.

In the foreground a couple of FW-190 pilots make a gallant attempt to get airborne while an assortment of Luftwaffe aircraft - ME-262s, ME-410s, JU-88s, Stukas and FW-190s - come under fire. Ground personnel take cover as best they can. In the distance hangars and aircraft are on fire and a fuel dump has exploded.

The painting is packed with action and all the accurate detail for which this talented artist has become so well-known. In addition to the 334th's P-51s, there are over 20 aircraft visible on the ground as well as the remains of others destroyed in earlier attacks.

With each print in the edition individually signed by three distinguished World War II P-51 combat pilots, "Mustang Mayhem" would be an outstanding addition to any aviation art collection!


THE SIGNATORIES


Each print in the edition is hand-signed and authenticated by three outstanding P-51 pilots from World War II, together with the artist:

Captain Richard Braley
Richard Braley joined the Royal Air Force as a volunteer in March, 1942. He flew Spitfires with 64 Squadron before being personally recruited by by General McColpin to join 133 Squadron - the third "Eagle" squadron to be formed by the RAF. On September 12, 1942, the Eagle Squadrons were transferred to the USAAF and activated as the 4th Figher Group. Richard Braley was one of the squadron P-51 strafing experts - attacking and destroying numerous trains, a bridge and an electrical plant. He flew over 210 combat missions, first in Spitfires, then in P-47s and P-51s - including 3 missions as Flight Commander of 336 Squadron on D-Day.

Major General Carroll W. McColpin
A pilot since 1928, Carroll "Red" McColpin volunteered for the RAF in 1940. After serving with No. 607 Squadron, he became the second Eagle "Ace" after shooting down two ME-109s on October 2, 1941 and is the only pilot known to have fought in aerial combat "to a draw!" with Werner Molders, the high-scoring German Ace. "Red" McColpin commanded 133 Eagle Squadron up to the transfer to the USAAF in September, 1942, when he joined the 4th Figher Group. He later led the 40th Fighter Group in support of the D-Day invasion and the drive across Europe. In 400 missions, he recorded 11.5 victories and collected 29 awards for gallantry. Following the war, McColpin remained in the Air Force, serving in several command and senior staff positions, ultimately becoming the commander of the 4th Air Force. He retired as a Major General in August, 1968.

Colonel Steve N. Pisanos
Born in Athens, Greece, Spiro Nicolas "Steve" Pisanos came to America on a tramp steamer. Arriving in New York in 1938 speaking no English, he worked in a bakery and hotels to earn money for flying lessons. Prior to America's entry into World War II, he joind the Royal Air Force, was trained in California and England and eventually assigned to the 71st Eagle Squadron, comprised of American volunteers. Transferred to the USAAF 4th Fighter Group in September, 1942, he was commissioned a Lieutenant and became an American citizen, the first ever to become such outside the continental U.S. He became an Ace on January 1, 1944. On March 5, 1944, his P-51 crash-landed south of Le Havre, France while returning from an escort mission. He evaded the Germans for 6 months and worked with the French underground and the OSS on sabotaging missions. Following the war he served as a test pilot and in assignments with NATO and the USAF in Europe, followed by a tour in Vietnam and retirement as a Colonel in 1973.