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The 13th Tigers
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People need to see an expectation that they can survive the action, and the combat tour was set at 75 missions. With the arrival of help in regard to the 452nd Group, some of the pressure was relieved.

The 452nd Bomb Group was an active Reserve unit and it arrived for duty about four months after the war started - remarkable speed in regard to flying their first combat mission 77 days after their official recall to active duty date.

John Johnson
"John Johnson"
Robert Lucadello and Austin Ayotte
"Robert Lucadello
and Austin Ayotte"
Vince Alessi
"Vince Alessi"

However, The 452nd Group, being Reserves, faced prolonged combat without replacements, leading to the motto, "Fly Till You Die". A general with the 452nd Group wielded some political clout, which led to the creation of the Combat Crew Training facility at Langley AFB.

Don Soefker and Joe Johnson
"Don Soefker
and Joe Johnson"
David Allerdice
"David Allerdice"
Joseph Belser
"Joseph Belser"

In late 1951 the standard tour was 55 missions and in May of 1952 the tour was reduced to 50. Combat makes rank and careers. The military services want Commanders who have survived and understand combat. To lead you need to have been there.

Among a field of equals, a good combat record, which implies a list of suitable decorations, will put you at the top of the list.

The world needs all kinds of people. Some people enjoyed combat and volunteered for extra tours. Reece Black finished his tour and volunteered to move to another base to fly super-secret missions.

Gunner Lucien Thomas practically needed a direct order to "Get the hell off this base."

Reece Black Ray Anastos
"Reece Black"
"Ray Anastos"

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