LOST WORLDS flight jacket collection Orig. 343rd Bombardment Squadron 98th Bombardment Group Korean War A-2 LOST WORLDS flight jacket collection orig. A-2 G-1 B15-A flight jackets Buco Trojan Beck Leathertogs motorcycle A-2 Flight Jacket 6166 Recconnaissance Wing Korean War


LOST WORLDS
 FLIGHT JACKET COLLECTION

A-2 FLIGHT JACKET

 6166 AIR WEATHER RECONNAISSANCE WING, KOREAN WAR

 


Korean War A-2 Flight Jacket 6166 Weather Reconnaissance Wing B-26 Invader
 

Korean War A-2 Flight Jacket 6166 Weather Reconnaissance Wing James Welch B-26 Invader
 

We obtained this unusual and beautiful A-2 in trade from its owner, James Welch, who was issued it in 1946 when he joined the AAF. A fine Russet Horsehide, the jacket has atypical features: no collar snaps or hang loop, a cotton khaki twill lining and late- or postwar Talon zipper. Very heavy hides, not unlike the horsehides we use on our own LOST WORLDS A-2 jackets.

When the Korean War broke out in 1950, the USAF was caught napping and lulled both by post WWII demobilization and a belief that our atomic arsenal would deter further wars. The air Order of Battle was sadly lacking many important components, one of which was accurate knowledge of the Korean Peninsula and accurate weather forecasting for strike planning. The 6166 Weather Reconnaissance Wing was hastily formed to redress this weakness. In black-painted B-26s, the 6166 flew dangerous, low altitude night reconnaissance, to pinpoint weather conditions and Red targets for both tactical and strategic bombing missions; then as the squadron patch indicates, the unit's tasks were expanded to pick up Red radio transmissions through electronic snooping.

The stunning, large Japanese-embroidered "Snooper" patch boasts spectacular artwork and absolute rarity.

Yet another of the countless, fascinating combat sidelights one encounters whenever he comes into contact with the history behind the artifact. The jacket is an index to the airman's valor and commitment, not vice versa, as some wannabes would think.

 

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