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Brigadier General Wiltz Segura (deceased)
|After combat training with the Army Air Corps in 1943, Wiltz Segura joined the Flying Tigers in China, serving with the 75th Fighter Squadron/ 23rd Fighter Group. Glying over 102 combat missions he was twice shot down by ground fire but managed to parachute from his disabled P-40 and evade capture by the Japanese. He finished the war with 6 air victories. General Segura was born in 1921 in New Iberia, La., where he graduated from New Iberia High School in January 1940 and attended Louisiana State University and the University of Southwestern Louisiana prior to entering the Army Air Corps in 1942 as an aviation cadet. He received his flying training in the Southeastern Training Command and graduated at Craig Field, Ala., with a commission as a second lieutenant in the Army Air Corps and his pilot wings in April 1943. He then attended a three month fighter transition training at Sarasota, Fla. Sadly, he died on 9th April 1999.|
Colonel Charles Older (deceased)
|Charles Herman Older, born on 29 September 1917 in Hanford, California, graduated from the University of California in 1939 with a degree in political science. No the 1st April 1940 Charles Herman Older joined the Marine Corps for flight training, he received his wings and commission at Pensacola. Resigning from the Marine Corps in 1941 to join the A.V.G., Chuck Older took part in the great 'Christmas' air battles over Rangoon shooting down 5 Japanese aircraft. With 10.25 victories to his credit he joined the 23rd F G when the A.V.G. was disbanded, flying P-51s. He led the first strike against Shanghai resulting in the destruction of 77 Japanese aircraft. He completed the war with 18.25 air victories. After leaving the Air Force Colonel Chuck Older obtained a law degree from the University of Southern California and subsequently became a superior court judge in Los Angeles, California. He gained prominence as the presiding judge in the Charles Manson mass murder trial in 1970-71. Charles Older died on the 17th June 2006.|
Colonel Ed Rector (deceased)
|Born 28th September 1916, Ed Rector originally flew dive bombers off carriers before being recruited into the A.V.G. flying with the 2nd Squadron. Ed Rector was one of the five pilots who volunteered for continuous service in China after 4th July, 1942 and joined the 23rd Fighter Group. He returned to China later for a 2nd tour of duty. He had a total of 10.5 air victories. He died on 26th April 2001.|
Colonel Tex Hill (deceased)
|Tex Hill was born in Korea on 13th July 1915. Tex Hill graduated as a Naval Aviator in 1939, and after serving as a Navy Pilot, Tex Hill volunteered for the A.V.G., becoming Squadron Leader in the 2nd Sqn (Panda Bears) until disbandment in 1942, by which time he had 12.25 air victories, making him the second highest ranking Ace in the American Volunteer Group. He remained in China, as the first squadron commander of the 75th F S /23rd F G before returning to the U.S. He went back to China to command the 23rd F G, increasing his total to 18.25 victories. In late 1943 he led a group of 30 aircraft on the first strike against Formosa. During this mission, 42 enemy aircraft were confirmed destroyed, with a possible 12 more, while all 30 aircraft under Tex Hill's command returned safely. Returning to the US, he commanded the 412th Fighter Group, the first jet aircraft group. Here, he flew P-80 Shooting Stars and YP-59 Airacomets. His decorations include a Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, Legion of Merit, 4 Distinguished Flying Crosses, 2 Air Medals, 2 Presidential Unit Citations, 6 decorations awarded by China, and a Distinguished Flying Cross from the UK. Sadly, Tex Hill died on 11th October 2007.|
Lt Colonel Don Lopez (deceased)
|In October 1943, Don was assigned to the 75th Fighter Squadron/ 23 F G Flying Tigers, in Hengyang, China, and was soon in the thick of the fighting, scoring a victory in his very first air combat. he completed his tour in 1945 as Squadron Operations Officer, having scored 5 air victories. He later became Deputy Director of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington.|
Major General John Alison (deceased)
|John Alison served as Assistant Military Attache in England and later Russia. His first combat tour was with the Flying Tigers in China, serving with the 23rd F G where he became an Ace. He returned to China for a 2nd tour as Commander of the 1st Air Commando Force and led the glider assault carrying General Orde Wingate's forces behind enemy lines in Burma. He finished the war with 8 victories. Sadly, John Alison passed away on 6th June 2011.|
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