The Flying Tigers
The First American Volunteer Group, with pilots from the US Army Air Corp, US Navy and Marine Corps recruited under President Franklin Roosevelt’s authority before Pearl Harbor and commanded by Claire Lee Chennault. Their P-408 aircraft, marked with Chinese colors, flew under American control with their mission to bomb Japan and defend China, and they flew in combat after the US and Japan declared war. Here is the Flying Tigers 50th Anniversary original December 20 1991 First Day Issue Cache, released in honor of the First Combat by Flying Tigers, December 20, 1941. This was issued one day only from one post office, stamped “Republic of the Marshall Islands, Majuro” with logo of the famous plane. It has the official Flying Tigers stamp issued that day from the Marshall Islands for 50c and is signed by Flying Tigers Major General Charles Bond, 1915-2009: Brigadier General “Tex” Hill, 1915-2007; Squadron Leader Lt. Colonel Chuck Older, 1917 - 2006, third highest scoring Ace Fighter Pilot, later the judge who presided over the Charles Manson murder trial; Captain Dick Rossi, 1915 - 2008, who proudly worked to preserve the history of this world famous fighter pilot squad; Lieutenant Erik Shilling, 1916-2002, flew the very first combat mission; Dive Bomber Pilot and Commander Bob Neale, 1914-1994, flew the first combat mission nicknamed “The Adam and Eves”; Ken Jernstedt, 1917-2013, flying Tiger and member of the House of Representatives, with the entrance gate to the Portland Air National Guard Base named after him; Charlie Mott, 1914 - dive bomber and Officer of the Second Squadron of the Flying Tigers called the Panda Bears; Rode Rodewald, 1918 - 2002, Presidential Citation Award Winner; Colonel Ed Rector, 1916 - 2001, Ace fighter pilot and one of the first of the Fighting Tigers; Captain Joe Rosbert, 1918 - 2007, sometimes called “the world’s most interesting man” for his extraordinary adventures including being a Hump Pilot for The Flying Tigers; P.J.Greene, 1917 - 2005 flight leader in the first combat of the 3rd Squadron defending Rangoon, Burma, dodging bullets and Japanese planes as he parachuted down from his burning plane.