Charles E. Rowe

Picture of Charles Rowe CHARLES E. ROWE, born March 10, 1917 in New Albany, Indiana. His father Otto Rowe and mother Sallie Sherman Rowe. Graduated from Corydon, Indiana High School 1934, University of Kentucky School of Pharmacy 1938 with B.S. Ph Degree.

Played sax and clarinet in dance band during college years and until entering service. Completed Civilian Pilot Training Course and received private pilots license in June 1941. (Flew PiperCub J-3).

Entered service as Aviation Cadet January 16, 1942 at Fort Knox, Ky. Reported to Maxwell Field, Montgomery, Ala. For pre-flight training January 17, 1942. Reported, to Bennetsville, S.C., on April 30, 1942 for primary flight training in PT-17's. Next,reported to Shaw Field, Sumter, S.C., for basic training in BT-13's (Vultee Vibrator).

Then reported to Spence Field, Moultrie, Ga., on September 6, 1942 for advanced flight training in AT-6's. Graduated and received wings and 2nd Lt. Commission on November 10, 1942. Reported to Dale-Mabry Field, Tallahassee, Fla., on November 10, 1942 for Fighter Pilot Training in P-47's. Assigned to 312th Fighter Squadron, 338thFighterGroup 3rd FighterCommand.

Completed R.T.U. Fighter Pilot Training March 23, 1943. Squadron alerted for overseas assignment April 1943. Orders cancelled due to intelligence leak concerning overseas assignments.

Promoted to 1st Lt. at Long Beach AAB on August 30, 1943. Transferred to Morrison Field, West Palm Beach, Fla., May 8, 1944 for overseas assignment. Reported to 9th Combat Cargo Squadron, 3rd Combat Cargo Group, 10th Air Force at Sylhet, India on June 15, 1944.

Transferred to 6th Ferry Group, 14th Ferry Squadron, Long Beach,California, May 1943. On first trip, delivered C-47 to Fairbanks, Alaska to Russians complete with Jeep, Trailer and other equipment as cargo.

Red Star was painted over White Star at Great Falls, Montana just prior to flying it out of the states.

Spent next year flying P-51's from Inglewood, California to Newark, N.J., and other destinations for overseas deliveries. Also delivered P-47's from Evansville, Indiana, C-47's from Douglas at Long Beach, CaJifornia etc. to various points throughout the states. From this date to April 19, 1945 flew 281 Combat Missions. Flew daily drop missions to Mars Task Force, British Troops and Chinese and Kachins. Flew Chinese troops over CBI-Hump to Kunming and Chanyi, China. Made seven trips home on one engine (adding to single engine time). Promoted to flight leader January 1945, and Captain March 1945 at Warazup, Burma.

Decorations include Distinguished Flying Cross with 2 oak leaf clusters, Air Medal with 4 oak leaf clusters, Asiatic Pacific Theater Ribbon with two campaign stars etc. Returned to states and spent two weeks at AAF RS#2 Miami Beach, Fla., for R&R then transferred to Atterbury Air Force Base, Columbus, Ind., for return to civilian status.

I married Margaret L. Aldridge of Moultrie, Ga., whom I met in Advanced Pilot Training on January 6, 1943. Still married to this lovely lady and proud of our two children, Charles Jr. and Charlotte.

List of all p51 Pilots:
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Pilot Name Biography Summary
Asa A. Adair He returned to the States in August of 1944 after participating in the invasion "D" Day. He flew P-63's, P-51's, F-80's, T-33's, F-84's, T-38's, P-47's in numerous assignments during the following twenty years in in, Japan, U.S.A. and Europe before retiring after twenty-six years of Active Duty.
John C. Anderson After P-47 transition he was assigned to the 406th Fighter Group, 512th Fighter Squadron. (E.T .0.) He flew 56 missions through January, 1945 destroying supply routes, bridges, and railroads; he also flew close support missions with the ground forces, with attacks on tanks, artillery and enemy positions.
W.B. 'Tex' Badger Eight and Ninth Air Force in WWII. B-l7's, P-51's and P-47's. Fifth Air Force in Korea, F80's and F86's. WWII and Korea, Flew 156 missions. Tactical units served in with the USAAF and USAF were: 305th BG , 368th Fighter Group, 4th Fighter Group, 49th Fighter Group, 12th Fighter Wing, 506th Fighter Wing.
Robert T. (Bob) Bagby He trained in P47's at Cross City and Dale Mabry Fields, Florida and then joined the 341st FS Black Jack Squadron), 348th FG of the 5th AF in Brisbane, Australia in June 1943. Bob flew 78 combat missions in New Guinea (Port Moresby, Finchafen, Sador, Wakde and Biak) primarily as wingman to squadron CO's John Campbell and John Moore. Also privileged to fly wing to Neil Kirby on several occasions.
Frank Baker After brief stops at Stone and Atcham, England he joined the 313th Fighter Squadron of the 50th Fighter Group in France. He flew 90 missions through V.E. Day. Most of the missions were close support attacks on various ground targets with a few B-26 escort missions thrown in. All of the missions took place in eastern France and southern Germany. He was awarded the Air Medal with 11 oak leaf clusters.
John M. Balason To relieve the boredom, Balason went down on the deck and blew up a locomotive he had observed at altitude. A few seconds after making his strafing pass he received a hit in his left wing tank and a fire started immediately in the cockpit. The paralyzing effect of the intense heat made climbing out of the cockpit impossible.
Albert W. Barlow, Jr. He flew 69 escort and ground support missions. Destroyed one E/A (ME-I09). Was shot down on Sept. 8, 1944, and evaded enemy ground forces for 8 days. Was picked up by an American Recon. Unit behind the German lines. Was hospitalized until Feb. 1948, when he was medically retired with the rank of Capt. Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters, and Purple Heart.
William T. Beckler In July, 1944 Beckler exchanged his P-40 for a P-47N Thunderbolt. Missions in the Jug covered Northern Italy and Southern France. These included escorting medium bombers. The Bombers, based in Southern Italy, would be escorted to France by Thunderbolts based on Corsica. Shortly before target the Jugs would pull ahead of the bombers and bomb the enemy gun positions. Beckler's activities while participation in three major campaigns earned him the DFC, two Air Medals and two Presidential citations.
Herbert R. Benson After training in P-47 Thunderbolts at bases in North Carolina, Virginia, and Delaware, he was assigned to the European Theatre of operations and joined the 48th Fighter Group 493rd Fighter Squadron at St. Trond, Belgium. After flying 44 combat missions, he was awarded the Air Medal with 4 Oak Leaf clusters.
Marvin C. Bigelow Training in the Southeast Training Command with the class of 44C, he graduated and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant single engine pilot at Marianna, Florida with the class of 44D. After checking out in the P-40 at Marianna, he transitioned in the P-47 in the Northeast Defense Command and after gunnery at Dover, Delaware was shipped on the Queen Mary to England.
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