|Limited Edition prints
Edition size 332
print size 13" X 24"
|Click on image
“Gruesome Twosome” is a depiction of the 332ND Fighter Group’s most successful lead pilot -
wingmen combination, 1Lt Lee A. Archer, “INA the Macon Belle”, and Capt Wendell O. Pruitt,
“ALICE - JO”. 1Lt Archer and Capt Pruitt each accounted for 11 air and ground enemy kills with
five and three air victories respectively.
1Lt Archer is the only documented “Ace” of the Tuskegee Airmen. He was originally listed with
five kills although official Air Force records indicate four air-to-air kills. His victory credits were
re-accessed and one claim was disallowed and listed as a probable. This process removed him
from the list of American Aces. Many aerial victory lists credit him with 4, 4.5, or 5 victories.
1Lt Archer and Capt Pruitt were flamboyant and headstrong men who worked well together.
Both being from big cities, were considered “Hip Cats”. 1Lt Archer was from New York City and
Capt Pruitt was from St Louis. They liked the term and had a Zoot Suit clad “Hip Cat” painted on
their “Red Tailed” P-51C Mustangs.
1Lt Lee A. Archer continued his military career and retired as a Lt Colonel but Capt Pruitt was not
as fortunate. Capt Wendell O. Pruitt was killed in a flying accident at Tuskegee Army Air Field
after returning from combat tours in Italy. He was a training a new cadet when the accident
occurred. It was speculated that the young cadet froze during a maneuver and went out of
control before Capt Pruitt could regain control.
Aviation Artist Willie Jones
Willie Jones Jr., a native of
Greenwood, MS, started drawing at a
young age. He expressed the desire
to draw after observing an older
cousin sketch picture in his
sketchpad. He took to drawing
naturally. Willie became a self-taught
artist. He read instructional books,
how to books, by renowned artist
Willie had a great love of military
aircraft. He joined the Air Force in
June 1981 just two months before
his 21st birthday. He wanted to
become a Graphic Illustrator but the
Air Force other plans for him. He
was trained to be a Vehicle Operator
and Vehicle Dispatcher. Willie loved
his new job but he still wanted to be
an artist for the Air Force. He tried
on many occasions to retain into
graphic arts but his retraining
application was rejected each time.
Willie eventually gave up the pursuit
While stationed in Germany, Willie
was assigned many duties to
including base taxi driver. It was
during this time he was given an
assignment to be the chauffer driver
for two artists who were members of
the Air Force Art Program. He met
the artists and introduced himself.
After driving the artists to several
locations, he began to ask
questions. He soon learned he
could still be an artist for the Air
Force but it would not be easy. The
artists told him that the artists in the
Art Program were professionals and
they only take the best work. Willie
wrote down all everything they said
and began his quest to be accepted
into the Air Art Program.
After being assigned back stateside
at Malmstrom Air Force Base, MT,
Willie contacted the Art Program
manager, Ms. Alice Price, at the
Pentagon and got the real scoop.
He would have to create and original
piece of artwork and submit three
35MM slides of it to be juried by a
panel of artists. Willie decides to
draw a picture of his favorite aircraft,
the P-51 Mustang. He had plenty of
information on the plane but it
needed to have some historic value.
He researched some World War II
fighter groups and a fighter ace,
Major George E. Preddy Jr., stood
out. After completing the research,
he was ready to get started.
It took several weeks to complete the
drawing and Willie was satisfied with
the results. He photographed it and
sent the slides and his personal
information in before the deadline in
March. Willie called Ms. Price in
April to get word on jury process.
Ms. Price told him he was one of 155
entries and they had not gotten to
me yet. She told to be patient and
call back next month. He did call
back in May and the results were the
same, nothing yet. Hope was fading
and his dream of getting into the
program was starting to look like a
shot in the dark. Willie called to
check once more in June and he
was in the last batch of entries being
juried. After hearing that, the candle
flickered and faded. He gave up
hope and turned his attention to
improving his artwork so maybe
next time he will make it.
During the month of July 1989, Willie
was called into his supervisor’s
office to take an important call from
the Pentagon. Ms. Price told him he
was accepted into the Air Force Art
Program and he was one of 11
artists chosen out of 155. His entry
Cripes A’ Mighty 3RD is one of his
favorite pieces of work.
Willie has completed works
honoring many Air Force leaders
and historical periods in time. He
has 14 pieces of art in the Air Force
Art Collection and that number is
growing. Each of his military
assignments has brought new
inspirations and new pieces of
artwork to follow.
Willie has over 24 years active duty
service and plans to retire
September 1, 2006. He has been
assigned to eight permanent duty
stations, four overseas and four
stateside. He also served in
Operations Desert Storm, Southern
Watch, and Iraqi Freedom and many
Call us at 1-314-416-1169
|Detail of "Gruesome Twosome"
Click on image to enlarge.
|Here at Ozark Airfield Artworks we offer a large selection art prints. These prints
mainly depict modern and historic aviation along with military, civil and space flight. We
also deal with naval subjects and military armor and infantry works. These prints are
from all the top national and international artists along with some local artists. Many of
our prints are signed by the artist and by famous pilots and veterans. If you are looking
for a specific plane, pilot, artist or subject please contact us.
Copyright © Ozark Airfield Artworks 2005 All Rights Reserved
|All images are copyrighted by the individual artist and may not be
reproduced without their consent.
Gruesome Twosome is a
drawing of the 332nd Fighter
Group's most successful
lead pilot and wingman
combination, 1Lt Lee A.
Archer, "INA the Macon
Belle", and Capt Wendell O.
Pruitt, "ALICE JO". 1Lt
Archer and Capt Pruitt were
flamboyant and headstrong
men who worked well
-Wiilie Jones Jr.