General James Harold Doolittle 1896-1993
Jimmy Doolittle led raiders in WWII attack on Tokyo Associated Press San Jose, Calif. Four months after Pearl Harbor, Jimmy Doolittle put Japan on notice that Its cities were within reach of U.S. air power. The attack by Doolittle's Raiders Raiders on Tokyo and five other cities mulcted no major damage, and the Naval War College later found "no serious strategical strategical reason" for it. But the first World War II raid on Japan rekindled rekindled U.S. morale morale in the dark days after Jimmy Doolittle Pearl Harbor, secured a place In military history and made Doolittle Doolittle a national hero. Retired Gen. James H. Doolittle "the master of the calculated risk," In the words of fellow World War II aviator George Bush died Monday at his son's home in Pebble Beach. He was 96 and suffered suffered a stroke two weeks earlier. "His philosophy was a very good one, that we were put on this Earth for a purpose: to, within our capabilities, make the Earth a better better place to live," son John Doolittle Doolittle said Tuesday. "He was a very modest man. He was not one to blow his own whistle at all." "His death is a terrible loss to the nation and the world," said Brig. Gen. Richard A. Knobloch of San Antonio, a co-pilot co-pilot co-pilot in the Doolittle Doolittle Raiders. "All the contributions contributions he made to aviation." Doolittle established an unparalleled unparalleled string of aviation records In the 1920s and '30s. first as an Army pilot and then as an employee employee of Shell Oil Co. But he was remembered most for the April 18, 1942, raid on Japan. The bombers flew B-25s B-25s B-25s from the aircraft carrier Hornet. They attacked targets in Tokyo, in the nearby naval ports of Yokohama and Yokosuka and In three cities in the Japanese heartland. After the raid, almost all crew members had to abandon their planes and bail out over mainland China or the Soviet Far East. Three men drowned or were killed. Eight landed in Japanese-held Japanese-held Japanese-held China and were imprisoned, three later to be executed and a fourth to die In prison. But Doolittle Doolittle and 68 others eventually made their way back to U.S. forces. Of them, 38 remain alive. President Bush gave Doolittle the Presidential Medal of Freedom In 1989. Doolittle also won the Medal of Honor and many other awards. Spencer Tracy played him In the 1944 film Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo. He will be buried Friday alongside alongside his wife of 71 years, Josephine, Josephine, at Arlington National Cemetery. Cemetery. She died In 1988. He is survived by John Doolittle: Doolittle: six grandchildren; 14 greatgrandchildren. greatgrandchildren.