He began flying combat missions and on Mar. 31, 1944 was appointed Operations Officer of the 453d Bomb Group and, subsequently, Chief of Staff of the 2d Combat wing, 2d Air Division of the 8th Air Force. Stewart ended the war with 20 combat missions. He remained in the USAF Reserve and was promoted to Brigadier General on Jul. 23, 1959. He retired on May 31, 1968. To see photos of Jimmy Stewart during war times go to : World War II Museum History.
When the world went to war, Stewart joined the Army and eventually became a pilot flying bombing missions over Germany. Rising from the rank of private to full colonel during World War II, he flew 20 combat missions and won the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal and the French Croix de Guerre. Always the reluctant hero, he refused all the publicity the military wanted to pour on him, insisting on being treated like any other serviceman.
Upon his retirement in 1968 he was a Brigadier General in the Air Force Reserve, the highest-ranking entertainer in the military.
Jimmy Stewart, actor, airman, citizen, was honored July 7 during a memorial for family and friends held in Los Angeles. Stewart, 89, died July 2 from a blood clot in his lung.
Learn more about Jimmy Stewart:
Jimmy Stewart "Hometown Boy" -- Visit the Jimmy Stewart Museum in PA
Reel Classics - Jimmy Stewart
James Stewart - A Tribute
Jimmy Stewart WebRing
Jimmy Stewart - A Life in Pictures
So Long Jimmy Stewart - You Professional Nice Guy
REMEMBERING JAMES STEWART,