A World War II fighter pilot who gained fame for dramatically flying beneath the Eiffel Tower’s arches to take down a German Messerschmitt 109, has died aged 92. William Overstreet Jr. died on Sunday at a hospital in Roanoke, Virginia. Pilot Officer W. Overstreet Jr famously flew his P-51C ‘Berlin Express’ beneath the Eiffel Tower in Nazi-occupied Paris in 1944, which has been credited with lifting the spirits of Free French Resistance troops on the ground.
For his valiant service, the French ambassador to the United States presented Overstreet with France’s Legion of Honor at the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford in 2009. WWII fighter pilot who flew THROUGH the Eiffel Tower dies in Virginia aged 92 In the spring of 1944, he was following a German Messerschmitt 109 over Paris, when the two planes entered into a duelling dog-fight.
High up over Paris ‘Overstreet’ eventually hit the Messerschmitt’s engine. As the German pilot desperately sought to out-maneuver ‘Overstreet’, he flew beneath the Eiffel Tower – but the brave American Pilot flew directly beneath it and continued to press home his attack with withering fire. The Messerschmitt crashed, and Overstreet was able to escape back to the skies over the city, from where he made his way back to base.
As each day passes we lose true heroes from WWII. We should never forget any of them. Yours Aye.