|Death: ||Feb. 24, 2007|
William H. Brandon
March 7, 2007
Retired Maj. Gen. William H. Brandon passed away peacefully Saturday, Feb. 24, 2007, at the age of 89.
A decorated World War II aviator, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the nation's second-highest military honor for piloting the group lead aircraft in the famous low-level attack against the AXIS oil refineries around Ploesti, Romania, on Aug. 1, 1943. This daring attack altered the course of the war. Gen. Brandon subsequently served around the world in key leadership positions, from Europe to Japan to the Azores, and the United States.
Born and raised in Nashville Tenn., he graduated from Duncan Preparatory School in 1936 and attended Vanderbilt University before entering the U.S. Army Air Corps as a flying cadet. He was commissioned a second lieutenant on Feb. 7, 1941, and married his late wife of 57 years, Virginia Hope Black, at Randolph Field upon his graduation.
He served as a basic flying instructor until May 1942, attended the first U.S. four-engine school at Sebring, Fla. He then joined the 66th Squadron, 44th Bomb Group (H) at Barksdale Field, La., accompanying the group to England in September 1942, serving in key leadership positions. As the group operations officer, Brandon flew the daring and dangerous mission against the AXIS oil refineries for which he was later decorated.
Lt. Col. Brandon joined Headquarters, 2nd Air Division, 8th Air Force as Assistant A-3 in September 1944. At the time of his death, Gen. Brandon was the oldest surviving member of the 44th Bomb Group.
Following World War II, he attended the University Of Texas at Austin, graduating with a bachelor's degree in business administration in 1948. He completed senior military education including the Air Force Command and Staff School and the Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
Gen. Brandon's successful career progressed through key positions including Deputy Chief of Staff, Personnel, HQ, 15 AF, Strategic Air Command (SAC); Group Commander 1503 Air Transport Wing, Tokyo, Japan; among others until his voluntary retirement on Feb. 2, 1970.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Babette; his son, Dr. William H. Brandon Jr. of Hollister Calif.; daughter-in-law Melissa; and grandchildren Chad, Kyle, (Kyle's son Evan), Beau, Drew, and Lindsey; son Jack D. Brandon of San Antonio and daughter-in-law Stephanie; stepgrandson Stefan; stepdaughters Nanette Cousyn and Col. Jack Cousyn of Bremerton, Wash. and stepdaughter Sherry Stimpson and husband Rip of San Antonio; and stepson retired Maj. Gen. Chuck Simpson and wife Katie of Southlake.
A memorial service was held Wednesday, Feb. 28, at 11 a.m. in the Windcrest United Methodist Church in San Antonio, followed by a reception in the church fellowship hall.
A graveside service took place at 2 p.m. in the Floresville City Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to a charity of the donor's choice.
Floresville City Cemetery
Created by: West Texas Angel "Lisa"
Record added: Oct 03, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 30285175