Journal Entry: July 21, 1916
St. Pol-sur-Mer

The rumors of us becoming a purely pursuit squadron were proven to be true on the evening of the 19th when I received a call from Wing informing me that our trusty Strutters were to be removed and replaced by the new untested Sopwith Scout. The Wing commander had gotten his hands on four of the new scouts and decided we were the perfect group of pilots to put them through their paces. I had not been privy to any information on this new scout and so I was a little hesitant to part with my Strutters, but as with everything in the military I was not allowed to get a vote in the matter. The Lorries began arrived around ten the next morning and in no time the ack emmas had the Strutters ready for transfer and were already working on our four new scouts. As soon as one of the scouts had been completed Sgt. Stiles, who has never had a problem with voicing his opinion, said to everyone present, this Pup looks like it was sired by a couple of those Strutters. Everyone laughed which probably was his intention, but the name had stuck and it wasnt long until everyone was calling them Pups. As soon as they had my machine completed I took her up to see how she handled and was I ever surprised by what I discovered. This aeroplane climbed remarkable well, was incredibly agile since it had ailerons in both wings and responded well to a light touch. I knew right then that I was head over heels in love with this machine and to be honest didnt want to land. Eventually, I had to land and even that was amazing. I have never landed an aeroplane with a shorter roll out than this Pup; if the wind were blowing harder you could almost land it standing still. After the other three had been rigged, I set the ack emmas to painting my machine for tomorrows sortie. Behold, the Grim Reaper has returned to the skies of Flanders.

This mornings sortie gave me a small taste of just what the Pup can do in combat and it will give us complete control of the sky. I led a flight of five on a patrol in the Ypres area and as we were arriving I spotted two Fokkers to our east. I signaled the attack and climbed above the fray so that I might be able to assist any of my flight. While we were engaged I spotted a flight of five Fokkers that were diving to help their brothers. I turned and began climbing to engage these newcomers. Two flashed on past and three stayed to engage me and much to my surprise, I was easily handling the situation. As a matter of fact, I downed all three of the Fokkers in short order. One, I sent spiraling out of control, the second; I damaged his engine causing him to crash land and the third I sent down in flames. It was the most amazing encounter I have had during my entire war flying career. At no time was I threatened by the Fokkers, I could easily out turn them and out climb them. This machine could very well have a significant impact on the war.

In case anyone was worried, I only filed a claim for one of my kills because that would be breaking the rules and "ain't nobody got time for breaking rules."

Member and provider of banjo music for the Illustrious BOC