Portela Airport - Lisbon
USAAF 31 FG
Bell P-39L Aircobra 42-4527
Land's End (GB) → Port Lyautey (Marocco)
1Lt. Jack Gompf USA
The squadron was using a B-25 as guide plane, but it went too far into the Atlantic Ocean in result of a navigation error. When it was impossible for the fighter’s to reach Gibraltar because of fuel shortage, they where guided to Lisbon.
While the bomber kept flying to North Africa the fighters had to land in the Portuguese airport. This aircraft landed on 15.03 hours. It will part of the P-39 and P-400 fighters bought by Portugal for 20.000 dollars.
It belonged to the OK Squadron from the Portuguese Aeronáutica Militar. Gompf should have made the flight with the 31 Fighting Group but his airplane had problems just before the take off, so he just followed another group of planes that left some minutes latter.
The pilot was interned in Elvas for some time.
* “Aviões da Cruz de Cristo” – Mário Canongia Lopes
* "Spitfires e Hurricanes em Portugal - Mário Canongia Lopes.
* ARQUIVO ANA -Aeroportos de Portugal
* Site: "http://raf-112-squadron.org/index3.html"
* Robert Brown