The 362nd Fighter Group


The 362nd Fighter Group


Information regarding the 362nd Fighter Group


Items in this collection are a part of the 362nd Fighter Group history. This means that items can pertain to the 377th Fighter Squadron (F.S.), the 378th F.S., and the 379th Squadron. Items that pertain to more than one F.S. will be placed here, even if one of those squadrons is the 379th. Whether the group commander was Colonel Morton Magoffin or Colonel Joseph Laughlin at the time of creation will not relegate items to this collection or that of the 379th F.S.; it is the content and context of the item itself.


National Museum of the United States Air Force
National Museum of the United States Air Force - Research Division


United States Air Force


March 1943- December 1945

Collection Items

A Flying Formation
An example of a flying formation of the 362nd fighter group, shown by pilots of the 379th fighter squadron. The lead plane is Colonel Joseph Laughlin. The plaid color on the nose signifies that he is group commander.

The Chateau Outside Reims, France
This was the chateau located outside the city of Reims that was "acquired" by Colonel Joseph Laughlin for the pilots of the 362nd Fighter Group. They were the nicest accommodations they would have during the war, and no one wanted to leave.

"Ready in Pairs" - Bombs Ready for Action on P-47 Thunderbolts of the 362nd Fighter Group
A pilot from the 362nd Fighter Group poses for a picture with his foot on a bomb. With the caption "Ready in Pairs" on the back, it is also noted that the air strip used to be in No Man's Land during World War I.

Outhouse for the 377th Fighter Squadron
This outhouse was located near the operations tent for the 377th Fighter Squadron. Not even enclosed, it afforded no privacy for those who needed it the most. The 362nd Fighter Group spent nearly 2 months in Reims.

A Farmer Working the Land Outside Reims
The men of the 362nd F. G. were encouraged by their commander, Colonel Joseph Laughlin, to do whatever was necessary to relax. He wanted them to take their minds away from the troubles of war to help them cope. Some of the men took that time to…

A German POW Among the 362nd Fighter Group
According to the caption on this photo, a German POW is directed to dig a latrine for the 362nd Fighter Group near their tents. Note the soldier on the far left, his guard. You can just make out a smirk on the face of the seated airman. The caption…

Men From the 362nd Fighter Group Play Volleyball
Pilots and grounds crew were encouraged to take their minds off of the war by their commander, Colonel Joseph Laughlin. He did not want his pilots to get battle fatigue or his grounds crew to suffer exhaustion so he made sure they had something else…

Pilots from the 377th Fighter Squadron Pose Atop a Captured Flak Gun
377th Fighter Squadron pilots Lt. Robert J. "Red" Campbell and Lt. Roy D. Christian hang onto a previously camouflaged 88 mm flak gun. These larger flak guns were used to target high-altitude planes, like the P-47. Sadly, Lt. Christian was KIA a few…

Colonel Joseph Laughlin and Officers of the 362nd Fighter Group in Front of the Chateau Outside Reims
From left, 1st Lt. Joe Lane, Colonel Laughlin, 1st Lt. John Hill, and an unknown pilot stand in front the the chateau outside of Reims. Colonel Laughlin managed to "acquire" it, and it was large enough to house all of the pilots of the 362nd Fighter…

Before and After of the Linder Dam outside Dieuze, France and Story
The before and after shots of the Linder Dam show the short term effect of the damage done by squadrons of the 362nd Fighter Group. The 378th and 379th squadrons took part in the bombings, with Colonel Laughlin leading the way. The pilots were…
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