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#4515029 - 04/06/20 09:29 PM Rear Admiral Edward L. “Whitey” Feightner was 100  
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Admiral Whitey Feightner, RIP


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One of America’s last World War II fighter aces died on April 1, at the age of 100. Rear Admiral Edward L. “Whitey” Feightner passed away after a lifetime of service to the nation. His naval career lasted 32 years, from 1942, when he enlisted after graduation from Findlay College in Ohio, to 1974, after commanding air squadrons, two ships, and serving in senior Pentagon staff positions.

Feightner (whose nickname supposedly came from the fact that he never suntanned, but only burned) shipped out to the Pacific after flight school for duty aboard the USS Yorktown, but did not reach the ship before she was sunk during the Battle of Midway. After being based in Hawaii, Feightner was sent to the South Pacific, where he began racking up kills. On March 30, 1944, he became an ace (5 confirmed kills) when he shot down a Japanese Zero while flying an F6F Hellcat off the USS Bunker Hill. His ace kill came over Peleilu, scene of some of the most brutal fighting in the Pacific War, immortalized by Eugene Sledge in With the Old Breed. Feightner went on to record a total of 9 kills, with 4 probables, making him just shy of a double ace.

After the war, Feightner stayed in the Navy, and graduated in the Navy’s second class of test pilots at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, in Maryland. He spent years testing jet aircraft, after being checked out in 1946 in the U.S. Army Air Force’s first operational jet fighter, the Lockheed P-80 Shooting Star. He was a member of the Blue Angels in the 1950s and later served as the head of fighter design for the Navy, becoming instrumental in choosing the F-14 Tomcat fighter, a mainstay of the fleet for decades. Married for 67 years, he outlived his wife Violet Volz by five years. Moreover, Feightner was born during the 1918–1920 Spanish Flu pandemic and died during the 2019–2020 Wuhan novel coronavirus pandemic.

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#4515061 - 04/07/20 02:58 AM Re: Rear Admiral Edward L. “Whitey” Feightner was 100 [Re: F4UDash4]  
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[Linked Image]

EAW Mainscreen for Midway
Ade Kelly "The Flying Tiger" dec 2004

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#4515090 - 04/07/20 10:28 AM Re: Rear Admiral Edward L. “Whitey” Feightner was 100 [Re: F4UDash4]  
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RIP


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#4515092 - 04/07/20 11:14 AM Re: Rear Admiral Edward L. “Whitey” Feightner was 100 [Re: F4UDash4]  
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"The Greatest Generation is leaving us daily, and within a few years, there will be no more World War II veterans among us. For those of us who grew up in the 1970s, surrounded by WWII vets in the prime of their lives, that is all but unimaginable."


“Together, let us take up the challenge to reawaken America's religious and moral heart, recognizing that a deep and abiding faith in God is the rock upon which this great Nation was founded.” - Ronald Reagan, May 4, 1982

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