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An interesting WWII 1911 story reminiscent of early WWI aerial combat.

 

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There have been several cases of American's shooting down enemy plane with Colt 45 autos.
One was a case of a pilot who bailed out and was about to be strafed in his parachute by a Japanese pilot.
As the Zero made a close pass the American figured to go down shooting and opened fire with his .45, killing the Japanese pilot.

Another case that I never heard confirmation of was a soldier on the ground at Pearl Harbor shooting down an attacking Japanese plane with his .45.

During WWII it was apparently a "thing" for Army observation pilots and observers to shoot at German ground troops with .45's and Thompson guns. There were reports of some success at this.

During the First World War the US Army developed a cage device and an extended magazine for the 1911 pistol for use in air combat.
The wire cage fit around the gun and users hand to catch ejected cases so they wouldn't foul the aircraft controls.
I've never heard of this device actually being used in battle, by the time the US got to France aircraft were armed with machine guns.
However, it's very possible an observer might have been issued with one of these and used it.
 

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It is a amazing story- truth stranger than fiction. The kind of thing that would make a great movie 30-40 years ago and that Hollywood would never touch today.

 

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There was a story some years back in American Rifleman called Casting The Golden BB about a gunner on a bomber over Europe somewhere who was out of ammo and a German fighter came in close. He drew his Victory Model and cut loose. The fighter went down, confirmed by observers in another bomber and I think the gunner got credit for the kill.
 
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