No other aircraft of WWII could fly as high, go as far, or fight as hard as the famed Mustang. Piloted by a record 281 Aces, this agile and ferocious dogfighter tallied more kills than any other Allied airplane. As the bombers of the Eighth Air Force fought their way deep into Hitler's Germany, it was the Mustang that cleared the skies of Luftwaffe fighters. The powerful Rolls-Royce Merlin engine gave the Mustang a speed of 445 mph. Re-styled with an aerodynamic bubble canopy for greater visibility, and outfitted with 6 fast-firing .50 caliber machine guns, the P-51 became the best fighter of the war.
Pictured here is a limited edition 1:48 scale replica of a P-51C Mustang that was nicknamed "Big Dick" and piloted by Major Richard A. Hewitt of the 82nd Fighter Squadron, 78th Fighter Group during June 1945. "Big Dick" is an exacting replica of Hewitt’s unforgettable P-51 Mustang, which helped him claim 8.3 victories between 1943-45, including 4 in the air. Only 1,000 pieces produced.
Historical Account: "Big Dick" - Dick Hewitt was born in December 1920 as one of six sons of a western New York farmer. He enlisted in the US Army Air Corps in 1941, shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Hewitt graduated from cadet flight school and was part of one of the first replacement pilot groups to travel overseas in P-47 aircraft. He completed two tours of combat in the P-47 before completing 144 hours in the P-51 Mustang in December 1944.
Hewitt finished World War II with 425 hours in 140 combat missions, all with the 78th Fighter Group. He retired from the Air Force reserve in 1963 with over 20 years of service.