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Thunderbirds, Aerobatic Team,
Have Good Combat Records, Too
MAJOR J. A. ROBINSON
Leader and Commanding Offi
cer 'Of the THUNDERBIRDS is
Major J. A. “Robby” Robinson of
Indianapolis, Ind. He is the con-
troling factor as the team per
forms its intricate maneuvers and
is immediately responsible for the
, complete support and administra
tion of the organization.
Born February 10, 1922, in In
dianapolis, Major Robinson gradu
ated from Shortridge High School
there in 1939, and attended Morn-
ingside College, Sioux City, Iowa,
for one year.
In 1943, Major Robinson entered
• the Aviation Cadet Program,
graduating as a bombardier at Big
Springs, Texas^ iri March, 1945. He
then attended radar school at Boca
Raton, Fla., returning to civilian
live at the end of World War 11.
He was accepted in the Regular
Air,Force 18'months later, return-
ing'as a radar - bombardier in the
Strategic Air Command. He im
mediately applied for pilot train
ing, and way- graduated from the
jet fighter school at Williams AFB,
Arizona, in 1949.
With the 4th Fighter Group from
Langley AFB, Virginia, he took the
first F-86 Sabre Jets into combat
in Korea, where he flew 74 mis
sions. Credited with downing one
MIG-15 and damaging two' others,
he was awarded the Distinguish
ed Flying Cross and the Air Medal
with one Oak Leaf Cluster. He has
served with the 48th Fighter Group
in France and the 36th Fighter
Group in Germany.
In Sept., 1955, he returned to Nel
lis AFB, where he was a squadron
commander when chosen to lead
the THUNDERBIRDS in March
Major and Mrs. Robinson, the
former Thelma White of Indian
apolis, live in Las Vegas, Nevada,
with their three daughters, Linda,
Pamela, and Krysti.
CAPTAIN J. M. BARTLEY
Left Wing .
Flying Left Wing with the
THUNDERBIRDS is Capt. J. M.
“Bart” Bartley of Apple Valley,
He was bom in Corapolls, Pa.,- on
August 7, 1924, the son of Mr. and
Mrs. Wm. M. Bartley, and was
graduated from West High School,
Cleveland, in 1943.
Shorley after graduaticm, Capt.
Bartley'enlisted in the U. S. Ma
rine corps, seeing combat with the
4th Marine Division on Saipan, Iwo
Jima and Okinawa. Receiving an
honorable discharge from the Ma
rines in October. 1945, Capt. Bart
ley attended the University of Den
ver prior to his appointment as an
Aviation Cadet. He received his
commission and pilot’s wings in
May, 1950, at Williams AFB. Ariz.
Capt, Bartley flew a combat tour
in Korea with the 51st Fighter In
terceptor Group, flying the North
American F-86 Sabre Jet. He is
credited with four MIG-15’s dam
aged, and was awarded the Air
Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster,
the Presidential Unit Citation,
Navy Citation and the Asiatic-Pa
cific Medal with three battle'stars.
Upon returning to the United
States, he was assigned to the
USAF Fighter Weapons school at
Nellis AFB, Nev., where he in
structed gunnery and combat fight
er tactics for three years. He then
flew special missions with the Re
search and Development Section
until June. 1956, when he was se
lected to fly solo'with the THUN
DERBIRDS. moving to left wing
in March. 1957.
Capt. Bartley resides In Las
Vegas with his wife, the former
Patty Snyder of Apple Valley, and
their three daughters, Linda Ma
rie, Rochelle and Bonnie T.,ynn.
W. R. POGUE
Lieuteant Pogue was graduated
from Oklahoma Baptist University
with a Bachelor of Science degree
Immediately after completing col
lege he enlisted in the USAF and
entered pilot training in October,
1951. Following Primary 'I’raining
at Bartow, Florida, and Basic
Training at Bryan AFB, Texas,
Lt. Pogue received his commis
sion and pilot’s wings with Class
52-G in October, 1952.
Lt. Pogue flew a combat 'tour in
Korea and has been awarded the
Air Medal with one Oak Leaf Clus
He instructed in gunnery and
combat fighter tactics at Luke
AFB, Arizona, until selected to fly
solo position with the THUNDER
BIRDS in November, 1955.
He moved up into the slot posi
tion September 8, 1956 and flew his
first show in the diamond on Sep
tember 16, before 150,000 specta
tors at the Oakland Air Fair in
California. He has flown more
shows than any other member of
the current team. ^
Lieutenant Rogue is marAli and
resides in Las Vegas, Nevada, with
his wife, the former Nita Dittmar^
of Oklahoma City, and fheir two
children, Billy and Layna Sue.
CAPTAIN DOUGLAS BRENNER
Flying the Right Wing of the in
ternationally famous USAF Pre
cision Demonstration Team, the
THUNDERBIIRDS, is Capt. D. D..
“Doug” Brenner. Capt. Brenner
was bom in Falls City, Nebraska,
.July 1, 1930, the son of Mr. and
Mrs. George Brenner.
He nvas graduated fnom Falls
City High school in 1948 and at
tended Midland College at Fre
mont, Nebraska in 1948 and Peru
State Teachers College at Peru,
Nebraska in 1950.
Entering Aviation Cadet Training
in the US Air Force in May of
1951, he graduated, as a jet fighter
pilot from Big Spring, Texas in
After completing gunnel^ train
ing in F-86 Sabres at Nellis AFB,
Captain Brenner joined the 51st
Fighter Interceptor Wing in Korea
and completed 89 combat missions
in the North American F-86 Sabre
Jet against the Communist MIG
As a'result ol his achievements
in combat action Captain Brenner
was awarded the Distinguished
Flying Cross, the Air Medal with
on^ Oak Leaf Cluster and the Ko-
Expertly filling the “slot” or
i. number four position on the THUN-
^ DERBIRDS, the ijnited States Air
t Force Demonstration Team, is 1st
; Lt. W. R. “Bill” Pogue of Sand
, Springs, Oklahoma.
» Lieutenant Pogue was bom in
J Okemah, Oklahoma, January 23,
^ 1930, the son of Mr. and Mrs. A.
* W. Pogue. lie was giradnated
\ from Sand Sorings, Oklahoma High
' School in 1947. In January 1931,
THUNDERBIRDS is Captain Sam
uel R. “Sam” Johnson of Dallas
Texas. He was bom in San An
tonio, Texas, in October, 1039?^ •-
the.son of Mr. and Mrs. Sani R.
Johnson, who currently reside in
Tampa, Florida, and was gradu
ated from Woodrow WilSon High
After graduating from Southern
Methodist University, Dallas, he
applied for pilot training in the
USAF, He was graduated from tho
jet fighter school at Bryan A^,
Texas, and received his combat
crew training at Nellis AFB, Ne
In December, 1952, Capt. John
son went to Korea, where he flew
62 missions with the 51st Fighter
Group, Capt. Johnson shot down
one MIG-15 and was credited with
one probable and one damaged.
While in Korea he was accepted
as a regular officer in the USAF.
Capt. Johnson holds -the Disting
uished Flying Cross, the Air Medal
with one Oak Leaf Cluster, and
the Korean Campaign Ribbon with
two battle stars
In December, 1953, he returned
to Nellis AFB as an instructor in
the Combat Crew Training Pro
gram. He was selected to fly with
the THUNDERBIRDS in February,
As Solo Pilot he pgfforms lo\v
level precision manj^^'s w’hiol-
are Inte^'oersed w5|]U||y|^^
m ,of“thG four'^a'ne dTah-.Bhd.’.
Capt. Johnson and his wife, the
former Shirley Melton of Dallas,
reside In Las Vegas, Nevada; with
(See TEAM on page 11)
WELCOME AIR FORCE
Congratulations to the Air Force Personnel and their family
Let us Launder, Dry Clean your clothes for you
SEND YOUR CLOTHES
TO A PROFESSIONAL
LAUNDRY. & DRY CLEANERS
IS YOUR CLOTHES
& DRY CLEANERS
Corner Ash and John Streets
One of three dormitories under construction
Officer quarters under construction
Here’s more Kuildings “going up” to Help Keep our Air Force
“going up” for our Nations preparedness. If is our privilege
to He a part of your Re-Dedication tHrougH tHe construction
of many of tHe buildings now underway.
GREETINGS TO SEYMOUR JOHNSON ON
THE OCCASION OF YOUR RE - DEDICATION.
Spartanburg, S. C.