Norman M. Iverson
NORMAN M.IVERSON, born October 19, 1921, St. Paul, Minnesota; graduated White Bear High School, St. Paul suburb. Shortly thereafter entered Air Corps
Cadet Training; sent to Texas where he literally had a career as a "second born" Texan, being stationed at San Antonio, classification
and preflight, Uvalde, Texas, primary, Waco
Army Field basic, and Moore Field Mission,
Texas, graduating and commissioned a single
Following graduation P40 training and
then the P47 , next to Harding Field, Louisiana, then to Strother Field, Winfield, Kansas, for P47 tactical training with the Second
Air Force; while at Strother Field sent for a
short training jaunt to Jug gunnery training
at Galveston, Texas, and then back to Strother Field and from there transferred to the 508th Fighter Group which was being
formed as an overseas replacement unit at
The Group next sent to
Hawaii, being stationed at Kahuku Army Air
Field on the base of Kahuka. After training in
Hawaii he was sent with others as a replacement to the 318th Fighter Group stationed at Saipan in the Mariana's; the 318th Fighter
Group P47N were transferred to Ie Shima
where they flew escort for the big boys who
were in B29's, B24's and on occasions the
smaller bomber fleets and were also used for
skip bombing, dive bombing, strafing and
napalm, ground work along the China Coast,
Korea, Kyusha and Honshu.
He was awarded the distinguished flying
cross, air medal with three oak leaf clusters
and others returning to the States. He
remained on active duty and in 1946 was
sent to Randolph Field as an instructor teaching Chinese Cadets flight training and from there to Tyndil Field, Panama City, Florida,
where he went into the Mustang P51H
flying. His highest rank was Major of
Then with the birth of his first
son, he decided to retire from the service and
returned to civilian life December 20, 1946,
went back to school, receiving a Bachelor of
Arts Degree at Southwestern College, then to
Washburn University where he received his
Doctor of Jurisprudence Degree and has
practiced law since 1950 to the present time
and has two sons, lawyers, with him in his
professional association, known as Iverson &
Upon returning to inactive status he had
accumulated approximately 850 flying
hours, 20 combat missions and many sorties
and, of course, leaving behind him the usual
"hairy" experiences of strafing, skip bombing, dive bombing, Japanese air fields, river boats, railroad yards, bridges and oil fields.
He remained active with the Air Force
Reserves for several years and retired as a
Major in the Air Force Reserves.
He had been a life member of the P47
Thunderbolt Association since the early
1960's and is a member of the 318th Fighter
Group Association which was formed in
1977. He is married to the former Joline
Selan and they have five children, N.M. Jr.,
Randy, Rodney, Jody and Carol.
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.
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.