Of Polish origin -he spoke that “evil” lingo-, Gabby somehow convinced his superiors of the convenience of his posting to one of the glorious Polish squadron that served so gallantly in the RAF. He was posted in Jan. 1943 to the 315th (Deblin) Squadron where he flew a score of missions (with no victories) before becoming later America’s leading ace in the ETO with Hub Zemke’s famous 56th FG.
His RAF background still showed in this lavish portrait. Gabreski wears a RAF first pattern type “C” helmet, 1941 Pattern “Mae West” life saving vest and type “G” oxygen mask. He was stylish enough to prefer those US AN-6530 goggles and B-10 jacket though. Not sure about the gloves; US B-3, maybe. An ace indeed.