In 1952, Major Ervin C. Ethell led a group of 35 P-51D Mustangs to Keflavik International Airport to begin providing an air defense capability for the island. The aircraft were pulled from the California Air National Guard based at George AFB to form the 192nd Fighter Bomber Squadron. The only major USAF command in the area was MATS ( Military Air Transport Service ) which when paired with fighters were an "odd couple" at best - and with a lack of effective air defense radar, the Mustangs were considered a token force. The Mustangs would operate in Iceland from September 1, 1952 until they were replaced on March 27, 1953 by F-94Bs flown by the 82nd FIS. Major Ethell is shown leading an aerial gunnery training sortie, as one Mustang tries to get behind and above the towed target sleeve, and hopefully put some holes in it with his six fifty caliber machine guns. Major Ethell was the father of the late, great author, historian and warbird pilot Jeff Ethell.
*This painting is available for purchase by contacting the artist by the phone number listed on this site. Reference "Mustangs over Iceland." Painting size in inches: 24 x 30 and is acrylic on gessoboard.
Prints are available through his website by clicking the "add to cart" navigation button. Print size in inches: 15 x 20 on 18 x 24 paper.
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Mustangs over Iceland
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