US-132 Navy Modified Mark III Gas Mask 1942

I knew when I saw this gas mask at a local antique mall that I was looking at something special, and HAD to have it. It was labeled as a Korean War Fighter Pilot Oxygen Mask, and I got it for a steal at $80!

It took me a while to determine what exactly I was looking at. The attached tag was a big head start referencing the Diaphragm Mark III and IV, along with the giant USN stamped on the forehead.

The shape of the eyes told me it was a Mark III. However, it wasn't the typical Mark III gas mask. The normal gas mask has shorter hoses, which terminate into the canister. Mine was clearly modified. I finally found it on (which is no longer in service). That site declared this particular mask Rare, and theorized it was modified in order to become a diving mask. The US Navy has a full website detailing adapting these gas masks into shallow water diving masks:

I also found a great photo set of another modified Mark III belonging to Rod Munoz:

So those are my sources for info, here are a couple more photos. Currently I have the gas mask hanging on my wall. I am very tempted to use it in some Cosplay as one of Ashley Wood's de Plume's as well.

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