Mr. Joseph F. Thompson

 Facts

  • Branch of service or Wartime Activity : US Air Force – WWII Glider Pilot
  • Service dates: 1941 to 1945.
  • Highest Rank: Flight Officer
  • Unit, Division, Battalion,group, ship : 435th group troup carrier &  77th squadron
  • War, operation, or conflict served in: WWII Europe.
  • Battles/ Campaigns: D-Day/ Southern France Invasion/ Battle of Bulge/ Market Garden
  • Special duties/ highlights/achievements: Pilot/ Glider program
  • He enlisted after Pearl Harbor( Jefferson Barracks)
  • Stationed in England
  • Glider Program was shot down in 1943 when Mayor of St. Louis and other dignitaries were killed in a demonstration at Lambert Air Field, St. Louis.
  • Volunteer in for mission to supply U.S. Forces at Battle of Bulge
  • Gliders Carried Troops and Equipment crash landing behind enemy lines

Background

Joseph Francis Thompson volunteered for the U.S. Air Force  following the bombing of Pearl Harbor.  He enlisted at Jefferson Barracks in Missouri. He served in the 435th Group Troop Carrier & 77th Squadron during World War II.  During his four years of service, from 1941-1945, he fought in D-Day, the Invasion of Southern France, Battle of the Bulge, and Market Garden.  He worked as a pilot in the glider program.  This job entailed carrying troops and equipment behind enemy lines.  Mr. Thompson trained in North Carolina, and was stationed for the first time in Nottingham, England.  He volunteered  for a mission to supply U.S. forces during the Battle of the Bulge, but the mission was called off.    Mr. Thompson was awarded the Air Medal with with two oak leaf clusters, the French Presidential Unit Citation, and  the Orange Larienet from Holland.

 

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