Eugene Oakes Godfrey
Years of Service: 1941-1969
Highest Rank: Colonel
Eugene was part of the Army Air Corps and a United State Air Force Pilot.
World War II:
Born in Lovell, WY in 1919, Eugene entered the U.S. Army Corps in 1941, as a Primary Aviation Cadet. He went to training at Lowry Air Force Base, CO, King City, CA, Moffet Field, CA, and Luke Field, CA. In Long Beach, CA, Eugene became a Second Lieutenant and learned to fly aircraft, and later transport planes to the East Coast, such as the B-25, A-20, C-60, B-24 and the B-17. In 1943, he was transferred to Africa.
In Africa he would fly cargo to China and troops to north Africa, with the North African Division Air Transport Command as chief pilot. He would contract malaria. While in Africa he was assigned 5 aircraft and crews in order to establish the 1261st Base Unit in Cappodichino, Italy in order to support the Fifteenth Air Force.
Eugene would return to the U.S. in 1945. He would apply to be part of the regular Army Air Force, as well as return to the University of Denver to complete his degree in mathematics.
From 1953-1956, Eugene was the commander of the 37th 62nd Troop Carrier Squadron in Ashiya, Japan. While the Korean War took place Eugene had many responsibilities as the Group Operations Officer of the 314/316 TC troops and the 62nd TC squadron, as well as Squadron Commander of the 187th and 508th, by providing support and replacement aircraft.
During the Vietnam War, Eugene was the Missile Test Project Officer in FL, and oversaw 38 missile launches. From 1960-1964, under the John F. Kennedy administration he would work in the Pentagon. During 1964-1967, Eugene was part of a team that would establish the Western Test Range, at Vandenberg Air Force Base in CA.
- 1941 Primary Flight School King City, CA
- 1941 Basic Flight School Moffet Field, CA
- 1942 Advanced Flight School Luke Field, CA
- April 1943-Oct. 1943 Ferry Pilot: Long Beach, CA
- Oct. 1943-Jan. 1944 Pilot: Africa/Middle East Wing Air Transport Command
- Jan. 1944-Jan. 1945 North African Division Air Transport Command Chief Pilot, Naples Italy
- 1945-1947 Chief Flight Supervisor Long Beach, CA Fairfield/Travis, CA AFB
- 1948 Westover AFB, MA
- 1948-1950 University of Denver, Mathematics degree
- 1950-1952 Wright Field, Armament Labs
- 1953-1956 Ashiya, Japan Commander 37th 62nd Troop Carrier Squadron, Korean War
- 1956-1960 Test Director SM-62 SNARK Missile, Cape Canaveral, FL
- 1960-1964 Pentagon
- 1964-1967 Director Range Engineering, Vandenberg AFB, CA
- 1967-1969 Assistant Director of Operations, AF System Command Andrews AFB, MD
- Sept. 14, 1969 Retired, United States Air Force; Rank: Colonel