Virtual Museum

This page represents our vitual museum which displays various militaria from members of the 486th Bomb Squadron.  The items are identified if possible.  We are always looking for more items  to share.   If you have an item and would like to add it to the display just send a photo along with the  history and I will add it to our virtual museum.                                                                                                 

Welcome to the 486th Bomb Squadron Virtual Museum.  We are always looking for more items related to the 486th.  If you are looking to donate or sell your items please contact us and we would be glad to give them a home here so that everyone can see them and enjoy.

We are interested in uniforms, jackets, patches, photographs, documents and anything else that is related to the squadron.

Squadron Patches

 

 

 

 

486th Bomb Squadron Patch
1st Variation

 

This is the 1st variation of the squadron patch. Note the dark brown boarder.  This patch can be seen in some of the earliest photos from the squadron.  The photo above is from early 1943, and to the left you can see Lt. Fred Mayhew is wearing an example of this style.

2nd variation

As you can see the second version of the squadron patch is nearly identical to the first.  With the exception of the boarder being a lighter brown and a shinier look that can be seen very well in the pink threads. the brown felt used on the boarder seems to be a favorite of moths as most examples you'll find will have some damage there.  Lt. Bob Mell had this patch and he served with the squadron from March 44 - Aug 44.  Lt William Overly also had this example however he did not get to the squadron until Jan 1945.

486th Bomb Squadron patch, 3rd variation

This version is identical to the first 2 versions with the exception of the boarder not being present.  When examining the patch it appears that the patch was manufactured this way and it did not just have the boarder cut away.  Though hard to tell the photo below depicts Lt Paul Gilley wearing this style.

486th Bomb Squadron Patch 4th Variation

This is an early patch most likely made between January of 1944 to May of 1944.   The Avengers in bullion at the bottom of the patch is in reference to the 340th Bomb Group known as the Avengers.  The Isle of Capri was known as a place where soldiers could get bullion patches made so that could be the place of origin for the bullion examples as that was the main rest camp for the squadron from 1944 through 1945.

Captain Nelson L. Dozier is shown here wearing an example of this patch style.

486th Bomb Squadron Patch, 5th variation

Here we have another example that uses bullion thread.  This example belonged to Lt. Bill Laney who served with the squadron from February 1944 to August 1944.  This example appears to be in perfect condition never having been used.  While the example below belonging to Art Nomland shows the typical wear from daily use.

486th Bomb Squadron Patch, 5th variation

This is an early example of a painted patch worn by Lt Bill Laney,  he was assigned to the unit from Feb 44 to August 1944

486th Bomb squadron Patch 6th Variation

 

This is a very unique patch it's painted on leather and dates to December 1944 to January 1945. It's identified to 1st Lt. Paul N. Gilley.  Paul served with the unit from May of 44 to January of 45.

Notice the 70 bombs representing the number of combat missions he flew with the unit, as well as the countries he flew missions over.

Deke Slayton's 486th Bomb Squadron patch, 7th variation

This patch belonged to Deke Slayton, who later went on to NASA and was one of the original Mercury 7 crew.  The patch is attached to his flight jacket from WWII on display at the Kennedy Space Center.  The patch appears to be a combination of cloth and leather.  The design of Bugs Bunny is similar to the bullion examples listed above.  It's also important to note that this is the

earliest example of the patch with

the blue background instead of

the yellow.  In the photo you can

see Deke at home on leave

wearing the jacket with this patch.

486th bomb squadron patch, identified to aerial gunner carney. h. dowlen,
8th variation
9th, variation

This is another variation of the painted 486th patch.  It belonged to Joseph Yarworski, a Radio Operator with the squadron.  This patch is unique.  It's hard to tell in the picture but the words Keller's Killers and 486th bomb squadron are stamped into the leather.  On the back the initials A.S. or A.J. and 250 are written.

11th Variation 

This unusual version is painted on leather and shows evidence of being sewn to a jacket.  its in excellent condition with very little paint loss.  notice that bugs bunny is facing the opposite direction and that the bomb is in the other hand.  Also his leg is not kicked out but crossed over the other.  The pose is similar to another squadron's patch that uses Bugs Bunny, but the colors are spot on for the 486th.

12th Variation

This is a later patch which follows the design originally approved by the army in 1943.  The original design called for a blue sky with clouds as a background and for Bugs Bunny to be holding a carrot in his opposite hand.  This is the primary design you find in the post war patches used during the Korean War and the cold war.  Evidence suggests that Lt. Willy Mravinec was responsible for the design change seen on the later patches showing the clouds and carrot.

Ephemera

486th 1st Anniversary Program from Sept 15th 1943, Catania Sicily
1st Anniversary Program for the 340th Bomb Group
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
2nd Anniversary program for
     the 340th Bomb Group
340th Bomb Group 
   Christmas Card

CLOTHING

A-2 FLIGHT JACKET

This is an A-2 Flight Jacket Identified to Carney H. Dowlen.  He was a radio gunner who got to the squadron in May of 1944.  Note the bombs stenciled on the left.  They signify the number of missions he flew.

Collections

The following is from the collection of Brian Walter.  It contains the memorabilia for Lt William Overly Jr.  He was a pilot with the squadron from Dec 44 to July 45

A-2 Flight Jacket       
   and B-2 Hat

This flight jacket and hat belongs to Nick Loveless, a tail gunner and mission photographer from the 486th bomb squadron.  The jacket has the 340th group patch as well as the 12th air force painted patch on the shoulder.  The leather wings can bee seen about the group patch.  On the opposite side you can see the number of missions he flew with the words finished the war written in Italian.  The 486th spent a majority of the war stationed at various bases in and around Italy.

  486th Bomb Squadron

    340th Bomb Group

© 2015 by  J. C. Gilley  Last updated  2019

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