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Claire Chennault
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Military Personnel
    (September 6, 1893-July 27, 1958)
    Born in Commerce, Texas
    US Army Air Corps pilot (1917-19,1920-37)
    Aviation advisor to the Chinese government (1937-41)
    Commanded the American Volunteer Group, aka 'Flying Tigers' (1941-42)
    Rejoined the US Army as commander of the 14th Air Force (1942-45)
    Received two Distinguished Service Medals and two Distinguished Flying Crosses
    He was a two pack a day smoker.
    He used the title 'Colonel' when he was introduced to Chiang Kai-Shek, even though he yet to serve at a rank higher than major.
    During WWII, he repeatedly clashed with his commanding officer, General Joseph Stilwell.
    His second wife was 32 years his junior.
    He gave the name Claire to one of his sons and one of his daughters.
    He lost much of his hearing from flying in open cockpit planes.
    He was an early advocate of using flight-interceptor aircraft to take on bombers.
    During the seven months from Pearl Harbor to his rejoining the Army, his Flying Tigers shot down 115 Japanese planes with the loss of 300 airmen at a cost of 16 Americans killed or captured in battle.
    Although a firm anti-Communist, he was against sending US ground troops to Indochina.

Credit: C. Fishel

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