Two members of the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders, retired U.S. Air Power Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Cole, seated entrance, and retired Employees Sgt. David Thatcher, seated left, pose for pictures after the presentation of a Congressional Gold Medal. Cole, the unit’s final surviving member, has died. (AP Picture/Gary Landers, File)
(AP Picture/Gary Landers, File)
Retired Air Power Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Cole, the final surviving member of World Warfare II’s Doolittle Raiders, died Tuesday in Texas on the age of 103.
The president of the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders Affiliation instructed The Air Power Occasions that Cole died in San Antonio on Tuesday morning along with his son and daughter by his aspect.
Cole, initially from Dayton, Ohio, was mission commander Jimmy Doolittle’s co-pilot within the 1942 bombing assault lower than 5 months after the Japanese assault on Pearl Harbor. The daring raid on Japan is credited with offering america with a morale enhance and serving to flip the tide of the struggle within the Pacific.
“I believe the primary factor was that you just needed to go in with a optimistic perspective,” Cole mentioned in September of the against-the-odds mission. “I actually did not fear about it. It was our job, and we knew what to anticipate.”
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In 2015, the Raiders, together with Cole, have been honored with the Congressional Gold Medal for his or her “excellent heroism, valor, talent and repair to america.”
Cole parachuted to security, and he and different Raiders have been helped by Chinese language partisans. However seven crewmembers died – three have been killed through the mission; three others have been captured and executed, and one died in captivity.
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In 2015, Cole’s e book about his service referred to as “Dick Cole’s Warfare: Doolittle Raider, Hump Pilot, Air Commando (American Army Expertise)” was printed. Proceeds from the e book go to a scholarship fund in Doolittle’s title for college kids within the aviation area, in response to Fox 13.
Performing Secretary of Protection Patrick Shanahan tweeted Tuesday: “Our Nation has misplaced a legend. Our ideas are with the household of Lt. Col. Dick Cole, the final of the Doolittle Raiders, who handed away at age 103. He was a real trailblazer, and his selfless legacy of service lives on in our Airmen of in the present day and tomorrow.”
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A memorial service is being scheduled at Joint Base San Antonio. Cole shall be buried at Arlington Nationwide Cemetery.
The Related Press contributed to this report.