PILOT'S PERSONAL ENCOUNTER REPORT
B. 25 November 1943.
C. 38th Fighter Squadron, 55th Fighter Group.
E. Near Lille.
G. ME 109.
I. I was flying Swindle White No. 3. Ten minutes after crossing the French Coast at 19,000 feet, we were nearly to Lille. We saw contrails of enemy aircraft at two o'clock some five thousand feet above us. They were trying to get into the sun to attack us. Major Shipman immediately began to climb. We had reached about 22,000 feet when the six ME 109's started to dive at us. Major Shipman turned directly into them and the sun. we were still climbing and met them head on at about twenty five thousand feet. I fired at the second man from the starboard side to us. The burst was about a second and observed no strikes. The enemy fired for about four seconds and continued through our flight. The plane I fired at passed between myself and my wingman. After landing I found out that one 20 MM slug entered the lower part of my left engine nacelle but did no mechanical damage.
WILLIAM K. BIRCH,
2nd Lieut., Air Corps.
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