ST. CROIX SUR MER
by Robert Taylor
Johnnie Johnson’s 144th Canadian Wing Spitfires taking off from a hastily prepared temporary airstrip near St. Croix-Sur-Mer, Normandy 1944.
The distinction of being the first R.A.F. unit to operate from French mainland soil since the Fall of France in 1940 went to Johnnie Johnson's 144 Canadian wing on June 10th, 1944. It was a milestone in the hard-fought air war against the Luftwaffe which had commenced with the air battles over France a long four years before.
Constructed in three days by R.A.F. servicing Commandos, the first temporary airstrip in Normandy received its Mark IX Spitfires on D-Day-plus-four marking the beginning of R.A.F. Fighter Command's aggressive thrust through France and across the Rhine to final victory.
Robert Taylor's specially commissioned painting captures the historic take-off from St. Croix, as Johnnie Johnson leads his Canadians off the hastily constructed strip for the first combat sweep emanating from French soil since the R.A.F.'s abrupt departure from France almost exactly four years earlier.
* Air Vice-Marshal JOHNNIE JOHNSON
CB CBE DSO DFC DL,
Overall print size: 34 inches x 24inches
size - 1250 signed and numbered prints
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