General Kenneth Bonner Wolfe's Private Plane

Several years ago (2008) I came across the picture below and remembered my brother telling me the story of his being flown home after passing a test for the Army Military Academy at West Point. His story went something like this.
"Being an old country boy from East Tennessee was sometimes embarrassing as all the guys wanted to call you a hick or hillbilly. After all my basic training I was assigned to a Chemical Warfare Unit on my way to Korea. One of my superior Officers suggested that before we left Germany that I take the entrance exam for West Point. I agreed and went to meet with all the other's taking the exam. Well, when they found out where I was frum, the began to snigger and laugh at the "hillbilly" who was standing waiting in line in a pouring rain without a sign of an umbrella or raincoat. Well, we all went in to take the test and when we finished we all gathered to wait for our scores because if any of us passed we would be returning home in a special flight arranged by one of the Army Generals, whose plane had made a stop near by. After all the "ribbing" I had received I was almost ashamed to stand with these other "educated northerners" who were sure they had passed the test and would be returning home. When they announced the results of the test, it seems I was the only one out of the bunch who had received a passing score and would therefore have the option of returning to the States to enter as a Cadet at West Point. Yeah, that "hillbilly" got the last laugh, and the rest is history."

Now, that may not be exactly how the story went but that is how I remember it.

To continue, I have made an error in the plane that was assigned to Kenneth Bonner Wolfe. I am happy that someone took the time to explain to me that I had made this error, but the story still remains somewhat true regarding my brother's flight back the U.S. following his assignment after Basic Training. Below comes from David Tarrant whose reason's he explains:

The reason is that I research the history of all B-17 aircraft used after W.W. II and maintain a database of some 1100 individual planes. One aspect of this research is to catalog and decode the official record cards of these aircraft contained in USAF archives. Today I found that the record card of -411 clearly states that it was prepared originally for General Wolfe.cataloging the B-17 Bomber and more regarding this particular plane whose tail numbers are VB-17G 44-83411

You can see more pictures of the plane with emails I exchanged with Mr. Tarrant at the bottom of this page

generalwolfe.jpg

The first B-29 bomber commander was Brig. Gen. Kenneth B. Wolfe, who took the XX Bomber Command to India and China and initiated operations against Japan with Operation Matterhorn. The XX Bomber Command was formed at Marietta, Georgia, where the B-29s were being built. General Wolfe was designated to head that command in November 1943.


generalwolfe_a.jpg

 

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