Another Picture and a Story – The Liberator

Sometimes I can find a picture in my dad’s collection and match it with an entry from the Journal.


 American B24 Liberator Bomber – From My Dad’s Collection


July 12/1944 (As Written by Hand in the ERK Journal)

Quiet last night, what’s going on, American Liberator came in today had troubles, actually made a good landing on our crash strip and got stopped without landing damage. We don’t do any repair work in these situations, an American ground crew will come in and do the necessary.

I rather thought they really wanted to see what was going on, on the ground. I had a good talk with them and took them over to a German fort, a lightly buried Jerry had swollen up and rolled out of the bank, they were going to rebury him and one put a shovel on him and he deflated, the smell was horrible.

 Anyway they collected up a bunch of ammunition and some other German junk including dirty underwear, gas masks, to take back with them. I would like to hear the tales they told when they got back to their Sqd. in England.

An old Anson aircraft brought in some supplies. I had to go over to start it as the crew on flight control didn’t have a clue.

Mark White

April 11, 2013.

Rare Spitfire Picture From George White’s Collection: Take Two

127 Wing Most Famous Spitfire

403 Erks Working on the Wing Commander’s Spitfire

James Edgar “Johnnie” Johnson commanded the RCAF Spitfires of 127 Wing.

This picture from George White’s collection was taken in Eindhoven Holland during Operation Market Garden.


JE-J back

Caption from Back of photo

Mark has something to ask my readers…

Hi Pierre,

I wonder if any of your readers knows why the JEJ lettering on the picture I posted is so different from the lettering that appears  on all the models or replicas of JEJ Spitfires I have ever seen.

I understand Johnson used the same aircraft for the majority of his victories. Does anyone know the identity of the aircraft in the picture I posted from my dad’s collection?

Perhaps Pat Murphy or Dean Black have the answer.

I combed through the Erk Journal looking for any references to Johnson and JEJ and I found a couple. They are typed from the handwritten notes and attached to this email



April 11, 2013.

From the ERK Journal (As Written by Hand):

July 15/1944

We really got a lemon today KH-D 403 Squadron. Explosive cannon shell still in the starboard radiator. Nice mess, glycol line, hydraulics, ave gas, holes and undercarriage. Pilot was lucky to get it down in one piece if was flying at the time. 144 airfield split up. 443 squadron is forming 127.  Their C/O is Johnny Johnson R.A.F. one of the top scoring fighter pilots still flying. They originated as a Canadian Squadron, West Coast for protection against Japan. You can tell them easily from us. Their uniforms are clean.

August 3/1944

Not many repair jobs, doing lots of inspections. Each squadron has ideally 20 aircraft on inventory, operating 12 aircraft as a squadron in the air, 13 aircraft take off in case one has a drop in revs, if not he comes down right away.

Our oldest aircraft belongs to Wing Commander Johnny Johnson R.A.F. who has flown it for all his victories and it doesn’t carry his squadron letter but his own initials JEJ.

Something big is in the wind, each aircraft has it’ own fuel dispersal, usually ringed by 4 gallon gas cans, so the fuel supply is not concentrated in one spot. Right now, each dispersal has a selection of numbered bombs (250-500 pounders), the numbers appear on the pilots maps as designated targets, bridges, road crossings, key targets etc. Our aircraft have been restricted from shooting at vehicle traffic using the roads in daylight, they keep reporting more and more German movement on the roads in daylight.