de Havilland D.H.89M Dragon
Lithuanian Air Force
This Rapide had me mystified until
the following details were kindly provided by my "D.H. expert",
Stuart McKay: " This aircraft was one of two built as a D.H.89M
light bomber for the Lithuanian
Force in 1937. The two machines were c/ns 6348 and 6349.
They were serialed 701 and 702
they arrived in that Baltic state. The above photograph was
taken at Hatfield before delivery,
it is unclear which one of the two it is. Both aircraft were at
Shaulaj when the Russians invaded
aircraft were taken over by the Luftwaffe in June1941 and allocated to
2. Their subsequent fate is unknown".
I suspect that the bomb load was external which would account for the
need for the dorsal fairing to
the fin. Even in 1937 I doubt that my leaning would have
been toward the Rapide as my choice for
a light bomber!