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Curtiss P-40N 28 of A.S.Kovalenko, 78th IAP VVS SF
Updated on May 4, 2014
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Drawing by Tapani Tuomanen


The drawings show two reconstructions of the look of the P-40N 28 flown by A.S. Kovalenko of 78th IAP, Vayenga 2 air base, in two different times:

It is widely based on a drawing and description of Hannu Valtonen who saw these reamains in 70's: "No 28 was painted on yellow and on tail there was a small triangle with an anchor painted on it."

The book is "Lapin Lentokoneenhylyt.", but this is sold out long ago and is now printed as "Hylkyretkiä Pohjolassa". It is not exactly the same book: both text and photos are a slightly different. No Kovalenko's profile on the new print.

The third machine gun on each wing was deleted. The medium green blotches over olive drab are clearly visible on the photo of the wreck,

According to a description on a Norwegian site (via A. Ruchkovsky) "The original American camouflage was Neutral Grey undersurfaces and Olive Drab with Medium Green splotching on the uppersurfaces.The US national insignia had the red border. The Russians had repainted the plane with Azure Blue underneath and Green on topside.This paintjob was brush applied! The plane had tactical number 28 and it was painted with either white or yellow".

In photos, the number appears as a sort of apple green that could be interpreted as a fainted light color (unclear if yellw or white) over an olive background.

According to

Second Lieutenant Andrey S. Kovalenko, pilot in the 2nd Squadron of 78th IAP of VVS SF, died on May 26, 1944 , when his P-40 N numbered 28 was shot down in a dogfight . On May 25-26, the Aviation SF made a series of successive attacks on their way to Kirkenes convoy Rp.120 Ki. Most likely, Kovalenko was in the last wave of attack : 6.10-6.14 MSK in IL-2 under the cover of the P-40 hit the courts convoy near the Perth Fjord. Norwegians credited the victory to Rudolf Artner of 9-./JG5, who was the wingman of Major Heinrich Ehrler. Apparently , the air battle took place between the Syulte Fjord and the Perth Fjord. Kittyhawk crashed into a mountain side in the Sandfordelv valley; the engine and other debris flew down to the river bank. It seems that the remains of the pilot were buried in the 70s. In the late 90's the most part of the wreckage was removed from the crash site, where remained only the engine, the tail and few pieces of the Kittyhawk.

In the photos below we see: