Phillip LaFrance Willis

BRANCH OF SERVICE
U.S. Army Air Forces

HOMETOWN
Kaufman County, TX

HONORED BY
John Peterson

ACTIVITY DURING WWII

ON DECEMBER 7, 1941, HE WAS STATIONED AT BELLOWS FIELD ON OAHU, HAWAII AS A SECOND LIEUTENANT ASSIGNED TO THE 86TH OBSERVATION SQUADRON OF THE UNITED STATES ARMY AIR CORPS. HE WAS PRESENT AT THE JAPANESE ATTACK ON PEARL HARBOR AND HAS BEEN CREDITED WITH LEADING THE PATROL THAT CAPTURED THE UNITED STATES' FIRST JAPANESE PRISONER OF WAR IN WWII. HE FLEW OBSERVATION AND FIGHTER AIRCRAFT, AS WELL AS COMBAT MISSIONS IN THE B-17 BOMBER, PRIOR TO RETIRING IN 1946 DUE TO A BACK INJURY HE SUSTAINED AFTER BEING SHOT DOWN OVER THE PACIFIC OCEAN. HE RECEIVED VARIOUS AWARDS AND DECORATIONS FOR HIS MILITARY SERVICE INCLUDING TWO SILVER STARS AND A DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS.