Colorized by Jordan J. Lloyd, based on an original photographic print by the US Army Signal Corps
Taken June 5th, 1944, Exeter Airfield, England (US National Archives and Records Administration)
The two men depicted, Pvt. Clarence C. Ware and Pvt. Charles R. Plaudo, were part of the 'Filthy Thirteen' – the direct inspiration for the Dirty Dozen, the Filthy Thirteen was a demolitions unit in the 506th Parachute Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, 'The Screaming Eagles'.
Known for ‘going the extra mile’ in combat missions, the unit's exploits were made famous when this iconic image of Ware and Plaudo was printed in The Stars & Stripes, the official American Armed Forces newspaper. The origins of the name referred to the unit's aversion of cleaning themselves, with the mohawks inspired by Acting Sergeant Jake McNeice’s Native American heritage.
Original caption reads,
"Pvt. Clarence C. Ware, 438 W. 15th St., San Pedro, Calif., gives a last second touch to Pvt. Charles R. Plaudo, 210 N. James, Minneapolis, Minn., make-up patterned after the American Indians. Somewhere in England."