January 3, 2014

Stones - He Had Them

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) -- World War II fighter pilot William Overstreet Jr., who gained fame for flying beneath the Eiffel Tower's arches in pursuit of a German aircraft, has died. He was 92.

According to Oakley's Funeral Home, Overstreet died Sunday at a Roanoke hospital.

Overstreet's famous flight in Nazi-occupied Paris has been credited with lifting the spirits of French Resistance troops on the ground. In a 2009 ceremony at the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, the French ambassador to the United States presented Overstreet with France's Legion of Honor.

According to his obituary on the funeral home website, Overstreet worked as an accountant until retiring at the age of 65, then worked with numerous charities and veterans groups.

I'd love to see the gun camera footage from that dogfight!

Story here and here. Truly a member of the greatest generation.


Woodsterman (Odie) said...

One more of the "Greatest Generation" leaves us.

LL said...

We can't seem to replace men like that with the ranks of the current generation (sitting around in feety onsies into their thirties and sipping cocoa - bad mouthing their country).

Coffeypot said...

Looking at the painting it would seem the German pilot flew under the arches, too. But I guess he didn't make it. It is sad to see these men pass on, but it is something we all have to do at one time or another. I just wish he could have been more recognized when he was alive. This is the first I have heard of this feat. But I guess it would be difficult to do the same thing now with our jets.

c w swanson said...

Wow! What a great bit of history! RIP, Mr. Overstreet.

HermitJim said...

Thanks for the article links! What a man!

Kid said...

Great man for life. And what Odie said.

The military channel recently had a series on top Aces of WWII. Fascinating Unbelievable Men.

Well worth watching when it comes on again.