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Mon, Jan 17, 2022

Tuskegee Hero, BGen Charles McGee, Goes West

Daughter Reports He Passed Away With His Hand Over His Heart... And With A Smile

One of the last true legends of WWII, Brigadier General Charles McGee, passed away this weekend at the age of 102.

A warm, talented, affable man; his historic life spans decades of American strife and war, and ended with his never-ending efforts to engage and educate the next generation of American flyers.

BGen Charles E. McGee,  USAF, Ret., was a WW-II P-51C Mustang combat pilot of the European Theater; a 100-mission 18th Fighter-Bomber Wing (67th Fighter-Bomber Squadron), a P-51D pilot in Korea, and flew 173 Tactical-Reconnaissance missions in F-4s over Vietnam; he was Commanding Officer of the 44th Fighter Squadron, is a Life-member of 18th Fighter Wing Association, and a past President of the renowned Tuskegee Airmen, Inc.

In all; he was a career officer in the United States Air Force for more than 30 years and flew a three-war total of 409 combat missions in World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War, one of the highest combat totals and longest active-duty careers by any Air Force fighter pilot in history.

For his service, McGee received the Distinguished Flying Cross with two oak leaf clusters and the Bronze Star Medal, along with many other military honors. In 2007, as a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, McGee received the Congressional Gold Medal. In 2011, he was inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame and in February 2020, was promoted from colonel to Brigadier General.

At 102, many in the industry were amazed and heartened to see him stay so active in forging a better future for aviation and were greatly enamored of his willingness to appear and get involved in projects and programs that promoted aviation, STEM, and building a better future for all of aviation.

Sadly, his daughter Yvonne reports that he passed away quite peacefully Sunday morning... "“He had his right hand over his heart and was smiling serenely...”

ANN E-I-C Note: Those of us who knew him and were his friends, are among the truly fortunate... and we extend our prayers and best wishes to his family and all those who knew and cared for this great aviator. We're truly going to miss him... Godspeed, sir.

FMI: http://tuskegeeairmen.org/

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