The Cobra in the Clouds

Captain Robert L. Faurot with P-38F Lightning 42-12623 Nose 16 parked at 14 Mile Drome (Schwimmer) Credit: US Army Signal Corps, NARA SC-168885 Date: January 20, 1943

Captain Robert L. Faurot with his P-38F Lightning 42-12623 Nose 16 parked at 14 Mile Drome (Schwimmer) Credit: US Army Signal Corps, NARA SC-168885 Date: January 20, 1943. He was killed in action just 41 days after this picture was taken.

Robert L. (Bob) Faurot was born on the 19th August 1917 in Missouri and attended Mizzou, playing in the Orange Bowl in 1939. Joining the Army Air Corps and training at Randolph and Kelly Fields, Foults was picked to head to Great Britain in 1940 to fly as an observer during the Battle of Britain. He got some hours in single seat Spitfires and Hurricanes with the Nos. 303 and 306 Squadrons, RAF, which were manned by Polish exiles before returning to the states just before Pearl Harbor.

When the balloon went up he was flying P-39s with the 39th Pursuit Squadron at Selfridge Field, Michigan and the squadron, reclassified as the 39th Fighter Squadron, got orders to rush to Australia. Converting to the P-38 Lightning, Faurot led a bombing mission (yes, using P-38s) on the Japanese Air Base at Lae, New Guinea, destroying a Zero that was taking off in the process.

On March 3, 1943, during the Battle of the Bismarck sea, Capt. Robert L. Faurot was killed-in-action when the B-17s his squadron was jumped by about 30 Zeros.

More on Faurot below.

The 39th, the famed “Cobra in the Clouds” squadron is still around as the 39th Flying Training Squadron (39 FTS) at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas.


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About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as, Univesity of Guns, Outdoor Hub, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the US federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

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