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February 6, 2013     Hays Free Press
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Page 4C NEIGHBORS Hays Free Press February 6, 2013 Major George Andrew Davis, Jr. climbed into the cockpit of his jet tighter on Feb. 10, 1952 for his sixtieth and last mission in the skies over Korea. Two small Texas towns can rightfully claim the combat ace of two wars as their own. Dub- lin, southwest of Fort Worth, is where the sixth son of a farmer was born in 1920, and Morton, between Lubbock and the New Mexico line, is where he did most of his growing up and graduated from high school. On that infamous Sunday the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Davis was an undergraduate at a college in Arkansas. Like nearly all Texans his age, he put his life on hold and returned home to do his patriotic duty. Davis had always wanted to fly, so it was no surprise he enlisted in the Army Air Corps in March 1942. After ayear of intense training, he was given his wings and a second lieuten- ant commission and shipped .offto the Pacific. Flying the new P-47, Lt. Davis averaged more than five sorties a week from December 1943 to the following December for a total of 266. And he put the powerfulThunderbolt's eight 50-caliber machineguns to good use downing seven enemy aircraft in single combat, a feat that qualified him as an "ace." Two of those confirmed kills came on Christmas Eve 1944. As part of a three-fighter escort for a bombing run in the Philippines, he permanently grounded one Japanese Zero and moments later another making it possible for the B-24's to hit their target. For that extraordinary exploit, Davis, who had moved up in rank to captain during his yearlong tour, was awarded the Silver Star. The Texan added the coveted decoration to a collection that already included the Distinguished Flying Cross with one oak cluster and the Air Medal with seven clusters. While the typicalWWII vet could not wait to get out of uniform, Davis chose to make IIS WEEK IN the Air Force his career. Peace suited him just fine, as he made the rounds of stateside bases and performed with the Sabre Dancers, forerunners of the Thunderbirds. When war unexpectedly broke out in Korea, experi- enced fighter pilots like Davis suddenly found themselves in demand for something far more serious than air shows. By the fall of 1951, the 30-year- old aviator was in South Korea with a promotion to major and an appointment as command- ing officer of the 334th Fighter Squadron. The battle in the sky had evolved into high-speed ac- robatics with the F-86 Sabre, the same craft Davis had put through its paces for civilian crowds, replacing the propeller- driven P-47 and the Russian- made MiG-15 instead of the antiquated Zero. At first glance, Major Davis looked more like a mild- mannered schoolteacher than an airborne warrior with a killer instinct second to none. "When he straps on a fighter, he's all tiger," an admiring junior officer wrote in a letter home. '~ sharp pilot and gun- ner, and he must have the eyes of an eagle." The same subordinate added that his wolf-in-sheep's-cloth- ing superior "has gone hog wild and is shooting down MiGs like mad." That was no exaggeration. By February 1952, Davis had a dozen verified victories making him not only the leading ace of the Korean"police action," as President Harry Truman ini- tially called the conflict, but the first two-war ace in U.S. history. The pace was breath-taking. In two different actions sepa- rated by only 13 days, Davis added a pair of Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters to his Silver Star. In a massive melee with a large formation of enemy bombers and their fighter guardians on Nov. 30, 1951, Davis got separated from his squadron. Rather than retreat, he pressed the attack and by himself knocked three bombers out of the sky. Running dangerously low on fuel and ammunition, Anderson turned for home only to hear a distress call from a crippled F-86. He arrived just in time to destroy one MiG- 15, causing the rest to scatter, and accompa- uied his brother pilot to safety. Two weeks later, Davis led a squadron of eight F-86s in an epic dogfight with ten MiG-15's. In what the Air Force officially described as "the greatest defeat inflicted upon the enemy in a single jet-to-jet engagement," the Americans destroyed five MiG's and a probable sixth without suffering a loss. Davis' last mission in Febru- ary 1952 took him and three other F-86 pilots to within spitting distance of the Man- churian border. After an oxygen problem forced two F-86s to drop out, the remaining two en- countered an enemy formation 12 MiG- 15's strong. The prudent thing to do was to withdraw, but Davis noticed the MiG's had their eye on a group of low-flying bombers. Feeling he had no choice but to go to their defense, he tore into the MiG formation sending two to earth in the familiar death spiral. But on this fateful day, George Andrew Davis, Jr. could not beat the odds. Quoting from the citation on his Medal of Honor, presented posthumously in a ceremony at Lubbock, "his air- craft sustained a direct hit, went out of control, and then crashed into a mountain 30 miles south of the Yalu River." Interested in collec~ons of Bartee Halle's columns? V'~sit the "General Store"at twith.com or request a list from P.O. Box 152, Friendswood, TX 77549 MCLAUGHLIN Robert McLaughlin, a longfime Manchaca resident passed away i peace- ' fully from his life on ~' ~-~ !'~ earth on Febru- aryl, 2013. In 1959 at age 17 Robert came to live at , Marbridge, a facility for adults with mental disabilities in Manchaca and resided there happily for 54 years. Robert was born February 7, 1941 to Henry Burman McLaughlin and Fay Doris Boyd McLaugh- lin in Brownwood. His father was killed and buried in the Philippine Islands just a few days before returning home from service inWWII. Robert and his mother contin- ued to live in Brown County until her death in 1951. He then lived in San Saba with his aunt and uncle, Inez and Earl McKee, who adopted him as Robert Perry McKee and raised him lovingly as their own child. At Robert's request, they permitted him to use his biological father's family name, McLaughlin, through- out his life. He attended San Saba schools prior to mov- ing to Marbridge Ranch for vocational training. Robert is survived byuncle and aunt, Noel and Margaret Mckaugh- lln of Brownwood, and many cousins. He considered the family of Ralph Pfluger, a for- mer president of Marbridge and Robert Fullbright, also a former president of Mar- bridge as well as Ann Smith, a Marbridge resident, as part of his own family, Funeral service was held Wednesday morn- ing, February 6 at Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church. The family requests dona- tions be made to Marbridge Foundation, Inc. Robert and his family wish to extend appreciation to the founders of Marbridge, Ed and Marge Bridges, as well as the many former and current staff members of Marbridge Foun- dation, Inc. who afforded him the opportunity to lead a com- plete, happy and productive life. Memorials and guestbook online atwww.wcfish.com. See the next page to read a previously printed story about Robert McLaughlin, the "Marbridge Man." R0gK Gloria Rocha, 69, of Buda passed away on Sunday, Feb- ruary 3, 2013, at Seton Hays Medical Center in Kyle. Gloria was born on Au- gust 26, 1943, in Austin to Maryann Zamora Macias and Frank Macias. She was a wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother who loved her family dearly. Glo- ria was a devoted Catholic and a member of Santa Cruz Catholic Church in Buda. She was also devoted to family, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren who she spoiled and loved dearly. Survivors include her hus- band, Alejandro Rocha, Sr.; daughter, Dolores Martinez and husband, Oscar; daugh- ter, Rosie Martinez; son, Alex Rocha lr. and wife, Veronica; daughter, MaryannVela and husband, Joe; daughter, Melissa Payne and husband, Jason; 14 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; sisters, Frances Ramirez, Victoria Cruz, and Mary Lou Nor- wood; brother, Ernest Macias Sr.; and also survived by other family members and friends. Preceded in death by her parents; two grandchildren, Krystal ElizabethVela and Pete Tones; siblings, Jessie, Johnny, and Tony Macias. Rosary was recited 2hesday, February 5 at Harrell Funeral Home in Kyle and Mass of Cln-istian Burial was celebrated Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at Santa Cruz Catholic Church in Buda. Burial followed at As- sumption Cemetery in Austin. Guest book may be signed at www.harrellfuneralhomes. com. We offer affordable powder coated wrought iron for all of your fencing needs - prefab panels, posts, gates, drive gates and hardware. F E N C E S U P P LY 10% off for all military and government employees. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE! 512-312-4699 www.AustinFenceSupply.Com Gene@AustinFenceSupply.Com Texas Crossword Solution S-1101 Texas Crossword, from page 3C Sudoku S0luti0 ........................... i ..................................................... 4 59 2 3 6 2 18 7 9 5 6 3 7 8 4 1 216 8 7 19 3 5 3 6 4 9 2 8 8 9 1 6 5 7 7 2 5 4 1 !3 Sudoku Puzzle, from page 3C Lots of times, changes in life also affect your investments. That's why there's never been a better time to schedule your free portfolio review. We'll talk about the changes in your life, and help you decide whether it makes sense to revise your investments because of them. A portfolio review will help ensure your investments are keeping pace with your goals. Call your local financial advisor today. Janet Ross Financial Advisor 251N FM 1626 Bldg 2 Ste B Buda, TX 78610 512-312-2840 Shirley C Malone Financial Advisor EdwardJones MA1NG SENSE OF INVESTING 203 Railroad Street Suite 1 B Buda, TX 78610 512-312-2332 www.edwardjones.com Member SIPC Name ...................................................................... Address ..................................................... Zip Phone ............................. MobiLe (OptionaL) Email. [] Check Enclosed [] Charge credit card Credit Card # ............................ Exp. Date ____ / .... 3# Security Cede ......... Amt. $ ................... Signature ........................................... HAYS & TRAViS OUTOF 0UTOF COUNTIES COUNTY ffrATE r-13Years($74) []3Years(S99} []3Years(S150) []2Years($5O} [] 2 Years ($66) F'12Years($106} [] i Year ($28) [] i Year ($42) [] i Year ($54) MaiLyour check and form to the address below or just give us a call! rg ss Serving Hays County since 1903 P.0. Box 2530, KyLe, TX 78640 P.0. 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