United Kingdom / Ireland

Nov. 11, 1968 - R.A.F. Squadron Adopts Elephant As Mascot: No. 27 Squadron of R.A.F. Strike Command, held a parade today at R.A.F. Station Scampton, near Lincoln, to mark the adoption of ''Gosta'' an eight-months old elephant from Sherwood Zoo, Hucknall, Nottingham. It is also the 53rd. anniversary of the Squadron's formation. The elephant is commemorated in No 27 Squadron's badge: it derives from the first aircraft with which the squadron was equipped in 1915 the Martinsyde Scout, later to be called the Martinsyde Elephant because of its cumbersome appearance. Today No 27 Squadron - sometimes known as ''The Flying Elephants'' - forms part of Strike Command's force of long-range Vulcan bombers. ''Gosta'', who was born in a lumber camp in India, is claimed to be the smallest elephant in the British Isles. She stands 38 inches high, weighs 350 lbs. Photo shows The Commanding Officer of the Squadron, Wing Commander P.J. Goodall, nearly loses his hat to the elephant ''Gosta'' when he knelt down to pat it, after today's adoption ceremony at R.A.F. Scampton. (Credit Image: © Keystone Pictures USA/ZUMAPRESS.com)