USAAF Nose Art Research Project


The Big (Ass) Bird
B24J-10-CO 42-73113

380th Bomb Group, 529th Bomb Squadron

Nose art painted by
American Red Cross, attached to 380th Bomb Group
Fenton, Australia & New Guinea

The Big (Ass) Bird
Toni Robin painted a cute cartoon donkey on this Liberator to avoid the use of the word "ass". Many of her contemporaries in the Pacific region were far less sensitive about such things when they painted their nose arts. Perhaps this was one of the differences between the sexes during the era of WWII. Kaoe Bay was the destination for the aircraft's first mission on 24th November 1943 - the start of a long 7-month campaign. The final number of missions flown has yet to be determined but on 8th June 1944, Japanese fighters caught the plane and badly damaged it. Unable to make it back to base, it was forced to put down at Wakde Island where it was left and eventually scrapped. A second, similarly named Liberator was also painted by Ms Robin.

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© Ray Bowden 13 July 2024