Air Enthusiast 1998-05
L.Hellstrom - Philippine Front Line
The dawn of a new era: the Sabres arrive. The Mustang on the left is the personal aircraft of the 8th FS Commander; note the red stripes around the wings and fuselage
Lt Narco Catahan in his Mustang, towards the end of the type’s career with the Philippine Air Force.
The last Mustang in the Philippines, seen at Basa AB in 1996. The true identity of the aircraft is unclear and the markings are at least partly spurious.
Captain Jesus Z Singson’s ‘Red Knight’ on display at Zamboanga airfield. The aircraft had already been repainted, not completely accurately. The name and figure appeared on both sides.
A very anonymous Mustang in 1957, carrying the ‘pencil’ drop tanks often used by the PAF.
Believed to have been taken during a visit to Taiwan, the Mustangs as they looked during the first few years of PAF service. Note the second aircraft in line, very likely the first ‘Shark of Zambales’ used by the 5 th FG Commander.
A close-up of the 5th FG insignia. The person in the middle is Lt Florendo ‘Flotz’ Aquino.
Leonardo Banzon’s mount inexplicably seems to have carried a tactical number of the 6th FS, but the yellow squadron markings of the 8th FS. Note the black edging to the latter.
‘Mayumo Boy’ was the former ‘Don Juan’, in a later guise
SATAG Mustangs often had spinners striped blue and white. Also note the mission marks on the cowling
The dawn of a new era: the Sabres arrive. The Mustang on the left is the personal aircraft of the 8th FS Commander; note the red stripes around the wings and fuselage
Mustangs on the alert pad in March 1957 included Lt Cesar Gamboa’s unnamed aircraft, which carried unusual chequerboard markings. (Merle Olmsted)
Jaime Piamonte’s aircraft of the 8th Fighter Squadron at Nichols in April 1957. The yellow paint on the rear part of the spinner is all but invisible in this view.
The aircraft of the 5th FW Operations Officer, Lt Col Emmanuel Casabar, at Nichols Field in April 1957. Note the faded blue paint on the Mustangs’ unit badges in the background.
Personnel of the 7th FS, just after the squadron moved to Nichols in 1956: (back row, from left) Ramon V Flores, Benjamin A Narciso, Roberto L Esguerra, Antonio T Reyes, Antonio Dedal, Romeo D Almario, Guillermo T Garcia (CO 7th FS), Cornelia V Buencamino, Domingo Rodrigues, Modesto G Supnet (Supply Officer), ‘Moy’ Espiritu (Engineering Officer), Lino C Severino, Jr, Petronilo P Tataro; (front row, from left:) Justin L Sevilla, Oscar Guerzon, Ernesto A Aquino, Ricardo Madamba, Clemente Rodrigues, Florendo A Aquino Jr, Solomon V Aherrera, Carlos J Martel (53-A), Lino C Abadia, Ruben Tejano and Henry C Seveses.
Aerial view of two Mustangs of the 8th FS. From around 1954, the squadron colour (in this case yellow) was only applied to the rear part of the spinner. Note the tail wheels fixed in the down position.
An engine change was just about the limit of the PAF’s maintenance know-how - more extensive requirements would normally lead to the aircraft being struck off charge
A personal greeting to ‘Huk’ leader Luis Taruc.
Lt Domingo Polotan, Class 49-B, with his ‘Cannon Ball’ of the 7th FS. The Mustang had apparently been ‘zapped’ by 67th FS, USAF, which was based at Clark 1947-1950.
Early days at Zamboanga, during the operations against the Moslem rebels.
An artist’s view of ‘The Shark of Zambales’ in its final paint scheme, with a shark’s mouth added. Note that the red bands have been replaced by lightning bolts.