USAAF Nose Art Research Project


The identity of this 358th Fighter Squadron Thunderbolt remains a mystery but it is thought to have been assigned to Capt James McConnell. It may also have been one of the nose arts painted by Art DeCosta but this is unconfirmed. DeCosta was well skilled at painting the female form having created numerous murals on the walls at Steeple Morden.

Capt McConnell was lost on a mission on 29 March 1944 when his engine failed and he bailed out to become a POW. He was flying a Mustang (43-6317) at that time but German reports incorrectly identified the aircraft as a P-47. Possibly because the 355FG had been flying Thunderbolts up until earlier in the month and only recently transferred to P-51 Mustangs.


© Ray Bowden 12 August 2022