CONFIDENTIAL

PILOT'S PERSONAL ENCOUNTER REPORT

A. Combat.
B. 21 February, 1944.
C. 343rd Fighter Squadron, 55th Fighter Group.
D. About 1545.
E. Northeast of the Ruhr Valley.
F. Air to air visibility good.
G. Me 109.
H. One (1) Me 109 damaged.
I.  I was flying Careful White No. 3 in the lead flight of the Squadron at about 27,000 feet. We were in a slow turn to the right when one Me 109 bounced Careful Red Leader. Red Leader called saying he would bring the e/a across our path since he had been to the left and now faced us. We levelled off to get position on the e/a, who was now riding the tail of Careful Red No. 2. Careful White No. 2 fired a burst and head-on at about 70 degrees deflection. I opened fire at about 250 yards continuing to a range of 100 yards with a 2 second burst. I broke to the left as the e/a split S'd for the deck, and I did not follow the e/a because our third flight, coming in at 4 o'clock to Red flight, was in better position to press the attack. At the same time another 109 above appeared ready to make a bounce and I was watching it. The e/a upon which I fired continued its flight to the deck, trailing smoke, as we turned to escort Careful Red No. 2 home. I claim one Me 109 damaged.
 

PAUL S. DRIPPS,
1st Lt., Air Corps.

 

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