One More Thing
What they wore
issued to U.S. Army Air Forces personnel upon completion of basic flight training wasn’t nearly enough protection from the cold in an unpressurized bomber at 20,000 feet, but it was still a treasured symbol of accomplishment and professionalism. It also just looked good.
Adopted in 1931, the horsehide jackets were so coveted that many servicemen, including airmen who were issued nylon jackets after 1943, bought leather A-2s of their own.
This one belonged to Technical Sergeant Mcdonald Darnell Jr., a radioman aboard the B-26 Marauder Flak-bait who flew 65 missions between D-day and April 1945. A-2s were often individualized with insignia, patches, and even painted artwork.