P-51D, “MISS STRESS”, N4034S
This Mustang was built in 1944 with the serial 44–63889 was assigned to the 318th Fighter Squadron in 1944 and thus belonged to the well-known ‘Checkertail Clan’ of the 325th Fighter Group.
Stationed on the Italian mainland at Lesina Airfield, approximately 57 km north of Foggia. The 318th Fighter Squadron, together with the other squadrons of the 325th Fighter Group, flew bomber escorts from Russian bases against Romanian airfields.
The clan escorted heavy bombers that attacked either petroleum processing plants in Romania or synthetic fuel plants across Germany, Czechoslovakia, Austria or Hungary. Unfortunately, nothing is known about the exact role of 44–63889 with the 318th, so it can only be assumed that it took part in such missions.
She came back to the USA after the end of the war and was first registered civilly in 1963 by Harry Padley as N7710C. Several owner changes followed in the years to come and in 1973 she was sold to the McCann family in Canada and re-registered as CF-FUZ. Then the Mustang was sold to John Anderson in 2002 and first registered as N4034S.
Anderson sold to the warbird collector Stu Davidson from Port Elizabeth in South Africa.
Davidson christened the machine the ‘Queen of Hearts’. She got a blue nose to commemorate the famous ‘Blue-nosed Bastards of Bodney’. That was the name of the USAAF’s 352nd Fighter Group, which existed between 1942 and 1945.
Davidson and bis son flew the Mustang in South Africa.
In 2018 Achim and Elmar Meier from MeierMotors brought the machine to Germany.
Part of the overhaul by MeierMotors was a new engine, a new name ‘Miss Stress’, and the hull was polished.
Aircraft type: Fighter Operator: Flying Legends Manufacturing date: 1944 Serial number: 44–63889 Livery: USAAF’s 352nd Fighter Group