Presentation Date: June 27, 2013
Lieutenant Colonel Edward Stahl, US Air Force, Retired
Ed Stahl was born in January 1921 in Baltimore, Maryland, the eldest of three brothers. Their father was a civil engineer; their mother was a homemaker. The family lived in Washington, D. C. through the Great Depression until Ed graduated from Roosevelt High School in June 1939.
On 1 July 1939, he enlisted in the US Army at Fort Monroe, Virginia and immediately began a two-year course at the Army’s Preparatory School for the US Military Academy. On 1 July 1941, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt appointed him to attend the Academy at West Point, New York.
After the US entered World War II in December 1941, the standard four-year curriculum was shortened to three years. On 6 June 1944, Ed graduated from the Academy with a Bachelor’s degree in Military Science and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the US Army Air Corps.
Ed completed Primary flight training in Fairchild PT-19s in northeast Texas, then Basic in BT-13s and Advanced in AT-6s at Stewart Field, New York.
On 1 July 1944, he began P-38 pilot training at Williams Field, Arizona.
On 29 August 1944, he married Dolores Mulvey in New York City. They have three sons.
In September 1944, he began P-38 Weapons Training School at Chico, California.
In June 1945, he was assigned to the 49th Fighter Group at Lingayen Army Airfield, Philippine Islands in P-38Ls and promoted to Captain.
During June through August 1945, he flew approximately 40 combat missions in the South Pacific.
After Japan’s surrender in September 1945, he was assigned to the Army of Occupation at Atsugi, Japan in P-51D fighters.
In October 1945, the 49th Fighter Group moved to Chitose Army Airfield on Japan’s northern island of Hokkaido.
In October 1947, Ed returned to the USA at Mitchell Field, New York flying P-61 night fighters.
After completing Navigator-Bombardier training (required for B-47 aircrew members) at Ellington Air Force Base, Texas, he flew B-47 six-engined nuclear-weapons-capable jet bombers from:
‒ 1952 to 1964 at March Air Force Base, California. While stationed there, he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and became a Squadron Commander in the 22nd Bomb Wing.
‒ 1964 to 1965 at Lincoln Air Force Base, Nebraska.
Both the above assignments included temporary duty stints at forward operating bases in North America, Europe, Africa, Guam, and Japan.
In January 1966, he was assigned to Travis Air Force Base, California flying C-141A four-engined jet transports. He commanded the 75th Military Airlift Squadron and also served on the staff of the 60th Military Airlift Wing.
After completing 33 years of active military duty during World War II (4 years), the Korean conflict and Cold Wars (12 years), the Vietnam War (6 years) and the Six Day War (one day), Ed retired In August 1972 as a Lieutenant Colonel.
He began work in real estate, lives in Vacaville, California, and is still working as a real estate appraiser.