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The flying milk jug - P.47 Thunderbolt


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Bigger than a P.51 Mustang, with an engine displacing twice the volume of the Merlin. Fastest dive speed in WWll. From D-Day until VE day, Thunderbolt pilots claimed to have destroyed 86,000 railroad cars, 9,000 locomotives, 6,000 armored fighting vehicles, and 68,000 trucks. In the air claimed 20 Messerschmitt Me 262 jet fighters and four Arado Ar 234 jet bombers in aerial combat as well as fistfuls of Me109s and Fw190s.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwqTN5fhMR8:963

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One minor correction.

 

I tend to agree with you there. A juggernaut in current English usage, is a literal or metaphorical force regarded as merciless, destructive, and unstoppable. This usage originated in the mid-nineteenth century. The English loanword juggernaut in the sense of "a huge wagon bearing an image of a Hindu god" is from the seventeenth century. The figurative sense of the word has origins in mechanics comparable to figurative uses of steamroller or battering ram to mean something overwhelming.

 

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Just adding a bit here. First off check out the ww2 training films on how to fly the jug - Pretty cool:

 

On a personal note I used to fly from a DDay era airfield called Headcorn in Kent, UK. While driving around I found a small dedication to a group of about a dozen WW2 pilots who died flying from there. They gave their lives flying Jugs with most of them cut down within a few months of DDay on very dangerous ground attack sorties - cutting Axis communication lines and close in ground support for the Allied coastal bridgeheads.

 

I checked out each of the pilots names on the internet and became focused on one guy in particular called George Rarey. He was killed in late June 1944 and never met his unborn son. Before the war he was a budding New York newspaper cartoonist and kept a cartoon diary of his wartime experience [he also painted personalised all the nose art for the pilots in his squadron].

 

His son published his work online and its a bitter sweet experience to read it: George Rarey's World War II Air Force Cartoon Journals

 

It’s a little off topic but if you’re interested in the P47 there’s some interesting insights here.

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One minor correction. The P47 was nicknamed "Jug", which was short for "Juggernaut".

Not sure where I saw it now, but I read somewhere that the "Jug" referred to the fact that when stood on its nose, it resembled a milk jug.

Wikipedia backs that up (not an infallible source, I know) and has as its citation "Dorr and Donald 1990, pp. 84–85, 88."

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A French memorial to Capt. George Rarey in the link below. Damon Rarey, his son, is now also deceased. Makes you realise just how far back WW2, is now.

I noticed the number of WW2 veterans in our Anzac Day march, start to fall away rapidly about 10 or so years ago. It won't be long before the last WW2 veteran is gone.

 

https://www.database-memoire.eu/prive/en-us/normandy-all-soldiers/64-colleville-r-us/1326-rarey-george-w-379-fs-362-fg

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