Faughs down a Stuka?

Event
Friday, 11 April, 1941
Junkers JU-87 Malta
Junkers JU-87 'Stuka' Dive Bombers.

The 2nd Battalion The Royal Irish Fusiliers arrived in Malta before the outbreak of the Second World War and remained there throughout the island's siege until they left in June 1943. Malta was 60 miles from Sicily and not much further from enemy occupied Libya.

Air attacks against the island began the day after Italy joined the war; the 11 June 1940 brought the first Italian air attack against Malta. When the Germans began operations in the Mediterranean it meant the arrival over the island of fast attacking dive bombers - the Junkers 87 and 88. The Luftwaffe attacked the aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious in the Grand Harbour in January 1941 after she had limped in to the island for repairs following severe bomb damage from German air attacks at sea.

Air raids became 24-hour events and a Faugh wrote:

On the whole, life carried on much as usual during these night visits. It added to the zest of a game of tombola, when one was wondering which would be the first 'sweat' to turn up, all the 8's or 8 and 7.

However, 2nd Faughs managed to down a Stuka Ju-87* with small-arms fire on 11 April 1941. A piece of this aircraft is on display in the Museum of The Royal Irish Fusiliers, Armagh.

*
The Regimental History of The Royal Irish Fusiliers states that it was a Junkers 87 and 'all three occupants' were killed; however, all variants of the Stuka had a maximum crew of two whereas other aircraft such as the Ju-88 P1 had a crew of three.

THE BOMBING OF HMS ILLUSTRIOUS AT MALTA. 10 JANUARY 1941, ON BOARD THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER.
THE BOMBING OF HMS ILLUSTRIOUS AT MALTA, JANUARY 1941, ON BOARD THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER.© IWM (A 9793)