345th Bomber Group Ided A2 Jacket
The 345th Bombardment Group was established in late 1942 and sent to the Pacific Theater of Operations (PTO) in June 1943 with the Fifth Air Force. This unit was supplied with B-25 Mitchell medium bombers that were used in ground attack and troop support roles in the New Guinea campaign. This airplane was modified in various configurations using long range fuel tanks and additional .50 caliber machine guns in the nose and front fuselage. The 345th flew these attack aircraft and saw considerable combat throughout the Pacific until December of 1945.
Leslie L. Isaacson was a Sgt. with the 501st (Black Panthers) squadron and this jacket (A2) was purchased from the vet’s son a few collectors ago. The jacket has two rare Australian made patches, one is an oversized, embroidered 5th Air Force patch and the other a circular leather based 501st insignia showing a hand painted black panther mascot. Both patches and name tag are original and have been machine sewn to the jacket, which appears to be a private purchase or Australian made A2. Sgt. Isaacson is listed as a Purple Heart recipient and was from the Twin Cites in Minnesota.