Chuck Yeager

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Charles Elwood Yeager
Lahir 13 Februari 1923 (91 tahun)
ChuckYeager.jpg
Nama gelaran Chuck
Tempat lahir Myra, West Virginia
Kesetiaan Amerika Syarikat Amerika Syarikat
Perkhidmatan USAAC Roundel 1919-1941.svg Pasukan Udara Tentera Darat Amerika Syarikat
Seal of the US Air Force.svg Tentera Udara Amerika Syarikat
Jumlah tahun berkhidmat 1941 - 1975
Pangkat Mejar Jeneral (senarai bersara)
Pertempuran Perang Dunia Kedua
Perang Vietnam
Anugerah Air Force Distinguished Service ribbon.svg Distinguished Service Medal (2)
Silver Star ribbon.svg Silver Star (2)
Distinguished Flying Cross ribbon.svg Distinguished Flying Cross (3)
Legion of Merit ribbon.svg Legion of Merit (2)
Bronze Star ribbon.svg Bronze Star
Purple Heart BAR.svg Purple Heart
PresFree.gif Presidential Medal of Freedom
Congressional Silver Medal
Tugas lain Guru terbang

Charles Elwood "Chuck" Yeager (lahir 13 Februari 1923) sebutan bahasa Inggeris: /ˈjeɪgər/ ialah seorang mejar jeneral bersara Tentera Udara Amerika Syarikat dan juruterbang ujian terkenal. Beliau adalah juruterbang pertama yang terbang lebih pantas daripada kelajuan bunyi (1947). Asalnya bersara sebagai brigadier jeneral, Yeager dinaik pangkat menjadi mejar jeneral pada senarai bersara Tentera Udara 20 tahun kemudian untuk pencapaian ketenteraannya.

Kerjayanya bermula pada Perang Dunia Kedua sebagai prebet dalam Pasukan Udara Tentera Darat Amerika Syarikat. Selepas berkhidmat sebagai mekanik kapal terbang, pada September 1942 beliau mengikuti latihan juruterbang dan apabila lulus dinaik pangkat ke pegawai penerbangan (pangkat Perang Dunia II USAAF setaraf pegawai waran) dan menjadi juruterbang pejuang P-51 Mustang. Selepas perang beliau menjadi juruterbang ujian banyak pesawat udara dan roket. Yeager adalah lelaki pertama mengatasi batasan bunyi pada 14 Oktober 1947, memandu pesawat ujiab Bell X-1 pada Mach 1 pada ketinggian 13,700 m (45,000 ka). Walaupun Scott Crossfield menjadi orang pertama terbang lebih pantas daripada Mach 2 pada 1953, Yeager mencatat rekod baru Mach 2.44 tidak lama kemudian.[1] He later commanded fighter squadrons and wings in Germany and in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War, and in recognition of the outstanding performance ratings of those units he then was promoted to brigadier general. Yeager's flying career spans more than sixty years and has taken him to every corner of the globe, including the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War.

Biografi[sunting | sunting sumber]

Yeager dilahirkan kepada ibu bapa petani Susie Mae dan Albert Hal Yeager di Myra, West Virginia, and graduated from high school in Hamlin, West Virginia. Yeager ada dua adik-beradik, Roy dan Hal, Jr., dan dua kakak, Doris Ann (dibunuh secara tidak sengaja oleh Roy dengan senapang semasa bayi)[2] dan Pansy Lee. Pengalaman pertamanya dengan tentera ialah Kem Latihan Tentera Rakyat di Fort Benjamin Harrison, Indianapolis, Indiana, semasa musim panas 1939 dan 1940. Pada 26 Februari 1945, Yeager berkahwin dengan Glennis Dickhouse, dan pasangan itu melahirkan empat orang anak. Glennis Yeager meninggal pada 1990.

Chuck Yeager is not related to Jeana Yeager, one of the two pilots of the Rutan Voyager aircraft, which circled the world without landing or refueling. The name "Yeager" (disebut /ˈjeɪɡər/) is an Anglicized form of the German, Dutch and Scandinavian name, Jäger (German: "hunter") , and so is common among immigrants of those communities. He is the uncle of former baseball catcher Steve Yeager.

Perang Dunia II[sunting | sunting sumber]

Yeager enlisted as a private in the U.S. Army Air Forces (USAAF) pada 12 September 1941, and became an jurumekanik kapal terbang at George Air Force Base, Victorville, California. At enlistment, Yeager was not eligible for flight training because of his age and educational background, but the entry of the U.S. into World War II less than two months later prompted the USAAF to alter its recruiting standards. Blessed with remarkable 20/10 vision, Yeager displayed natural talent as a pilot and was accepted for flight training. He received his wings and a promotion to Flight Officer at Luke Field, Arizona, where he graduated from class 43C on March 10, 1943. Assigned to the 357th Fighter Group at Tonopah, Nevada, he initially trained as a fighter pilot flying P-39 Airacobras (earning a seven day grounding order for pruning a tree belonging to a local farmer during a training flight),[3] and went overseas with the group on November 23, 1943.

P-51D-20NA Glamorous Glen III, is the aircraft in which Chuck Yeager pilot achieved most of his aerial victories.

Stationed in the United Kingdom at RAF Leiston, Yeager flew P-51 Mustangs in combat (he named his aircraft Glamorous Glennis[4] after his girlfriend, Glennis Faye Dickhouse, who became his wife in February 1945) with the 363rd Fighter Squadron. He had gained one victory before he was shot down over France on his eighth mission, on March 5, 1944.[5] He escaped to Spain on March 30 with the help of the Maquis (French Resistance) and returned to England on May 15, 1944. During his stay with the Maquis, Yeager assisted the guerrillas in duties that did not involve direct combat, though he did help to construct bombs for the group, a skill that he had learned from his father.[6] He was awarded the Bronze Star for helping another airman, who had lost part of his leg during the escape attempt, to cross the Pyrenees.

Despite a regulation that "evaders" (escaped pilots) could not fly over enemy territory again to avoid compromising Resistance allies, Yeager was reinstated to flying combat. Yeager had joined a bomber pilot evader, Capt. Fred Glover, in speaking directly to the Allied Supreme Commander, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, on June 12, 1944. With Glover pleading their case, arguing that because the Allies had invaded France, the Maquis resistance movement was by then openly fighting the Nazis alongside Allied troops, so there was little or nothing they could reveal if shot down again to expose those who had helped them evade capture. Eisenhower, after gaining permission from the War Department to decide the requests, concurred with Yeager and Glover. Yeager later credited his postwar success in the Air Force to this decision, saying that his test pilot career followed naturally from being a decorated combat ace with a good kill record, along with being an airplane maintenance man prior to attending pilot school. In part because of his maintenance background, Yeager also frequently served as a maintenance officer in his flying units.

Yeager possessed outstanding eyesight (rated as 20/10, once enabling him to shoot a deer at 600 yard (550 m)[7]), flying skills, and combat leadership; he distinguished himself by becoming the first pilot in his group to make "ace in a day": he shot down five enemy aircraft in one mission, finishing the war with 11.5 official victories, including one of the first air-to-air victories over a jet fighter (a German Messerschmitt Me 262). Two of his "ace in a day" kills were scored without firing a single shot; he flew into firing position against a Messerschmitt Bf 109 and the pilot of the aircraft panicked, breaking to starboard and colliding with his wingman; Yeager later reported both pilots bailed out. Another victory that was not officially counted for him came during the period before his combat status was reinstated: during a training flight in his P-51 over the North Sea, he happened on a German Junkers Ju 88 heavy fighter attacking a downed B-17 Flying Fortress crew. Yeager's quick thinking and reflexes saved the B-17 crew, but because he was not yet cleared for flying combat again, his gun camera film and credit for the kill were given to his wingman, Eddie Simpson. (Yeager later mistakenly recalled that the credit had given Simpson his fifth kill).

In his 1986 memoirs, he noted with disgust that "atrocities were committed by both sides" and went on to recount going on a mission with orders from the Eighth Air Force to "strafe anything that moved".[8][9] During the mission briefing he whispered to Major Donald H. Boschkay; "if we are going to do things like this, we sure as hell better make sure we are on the winning side".[8][9] He further noted "I’m certainly not proud of that particular strafing mission against civilians. But it is there, on the record and in my memory."[10][11]

Yeager was commissioned a second lieutenant while at Leiston and was promoted to captain before the end of his tour. He flew his sixty-first and final mission on January 15, 1945, and returned to the United States in early February. As an evader, he received his choice of assignments and, because his new wife was pregnant, chose Wright Field to be near his home in West Virginia. His high flight hours and maintenance experience qualified him to become a functional test pilot of repaired aircraft, which brought him under the command of Colonel Albert Boyd, head of the Aeronautical Systems Flight Test Division.[12]

Merits[sunting | sunting sumber]

COMMAND PILOT WINGS.png  Command pilot

Air Force Distinguished Service ribbon.svg Air Force Distinguished Service Medal
Templat:Ribbon devices Silver Star, for shooting down five Bf 109s in one day,[13] with one oak leaf cluster
Templat:Ribbon devices Legion of Merit with one oak leaf cluster
Templat:Ribbon devices Distinguished Flying Cross, for an Me 262 kill,[14] with two oak leaf clusters, including first to break the sound barrier
Templat:Ribbon devices Bronze Star, for helping rescue a fellow airman from Occupied France,[6] with “V” device
Purple Heart BAR.svg Purple Heart
Templat:Ribbon devices Air Medal with 10 oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation ribbon.svg Air Force Commendation Medal
Templat:Ribbon devices Distinguished Unit Citation Emblem with oak leaf cluster
Outstanding Unit ribbon.svg Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
American Defense Service ribbon.svg American Defense Service Medal
American Campaign Medal ribbon.svg American Campaign Medal
Templat:Ribbon devices European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal (8 battle stars)
World War II Victory Medal ribbon.svg World War II Victory Medal
PresFree.gif Presidential Medal of Freedom

Rujukan[sunting | sunting sumber]

  1. Yeager, Chuck dan Janos, Leo. Yeager: An Autobiography. m/s. 252 (kulit lembut). New York: Bantam Books, 1986. ISBN 0-553-25674-2.
  2. Yeager: An Autobiography. Page 6 (paperback).
  3. Take Off magazine issue 36, page 991
  4. 357th Fighter Group Profile
  5. Escape and Evasion Case File for Flight Officer Charles (Chuck) E. Yeager
  6. 6.0 6.1 Yeager: An Autobiography. Page 45 (paperback).
  7. Yeager: An Autobiography. Page 297 (paperback).
  8. 8.0 8.1 Wolfgang W. E. Samuel "American raiders: the race to capture the Luftwaffe's secrets" p454
  9. 9.0 9.1 C. A. J. Coady, "Morality and political violence" p.13
  10. The Christian & War p.15, further referenced to Chuck Yeager and Leo Janos, Yeager, 1985, p. 63.
  11. Chuck Yeager, Leo Janos "Yeager, an autobiography", p.80 (google)
  12. Yeager: An Autobiography. Page 60 (paperback).
  13. Yeager: An Autobiography. Page 73 (paperback).
  14. Yeager: An Autobiography. Page 76 (paperback).
  15. Yeager: An Autobiography. Pages 413-414 (paperback).
  16. "Presentation of a Special Congressional Silver Medal to Brigadier-General Charles E. Yeager, United States Air Force (Retired)", National Museum of the United States Air Force.

Bacaan lanjut[sunting | sunting sumber]

  • "Chuck Yeager". MedalofHonor.com. Diperoleh pada 2007-09-22. [pautan putus] "Page not found | Medal of Honor Coming October 12, 2010" [game website, accessed]
  • Hallion, Richard P. Designers and Test Pilots. New York: Time-Life Books, 1982. ISBN 0-8094-3316-8.
  • Pisano, Dominick A., van der Linden, R. Robert and Winter, Frank H. Chuck Yeager and the Bell X-1: Breaking the Sound Barrier. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum (in association with Abrams, New York): 2006. ISBN 0-8109-5535-0.
  • Yeager, Chuck, Cardenas, Bob, Hoover, Bob, Russell, Jack and Young, James. The Quest for Mach One: A First-Person Account of Breaking the Sound Barrier. New York: Penguin Studio, 1997. ISBN 0-670-87460-4.
  • Yeager, Chuck and Leerhsen, Charles. Press on! Further Adventures in the Good Life. New York: Bantam Books, 1988. ISBN 0-553-05333-7.
  • Yeager, Chuck, and Leo Janos. Yeager: An Autobiography. New York: Bantam, 1985. ISBN 978-0553256741.

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