Gen. Donalson was the 2nd person inducted into the Alabama Aviation Hall of Fame.
WW2 was 438th Troop Carrier Group Commander. Command Pilot of C-47 Skytrain 42-92847 'That's All Brother' of 87th Troop Carrier Squadron, 438th Troop Carrier Group, 9th AF. Lead ship of Mission Albany the air dropping of 6600 US paratroops into Normandy, France on the eve of D-Day. Also flew the "Bell of Birmingham" C-47. Georgia Institute of Technology graduate. Engineer with Tennessee Coal and Iron in Birmingham, AL. Joined National Guard in Alabama as Observation Pilot Trainee. Graduated Flight School in Texas with Charles Lindberg in 1925. Became Commander of National Guard unit in 1939. Was activated for regular service and became a Base Commander of several USAAF bases before going to England. Flew the lead plane on the Normandy D-Day invasion as well as many other paratroop drops, glider drops and supply drops. After WW2 he became Chief of Staff for the Alabama State Governor and when the Air Force became a separate branch of service as USAF in 1948 he became founding Commander of the Alabama Air National Guard. Upon retirement from Service he founded Tennessee Forging Steel Corp. in Chattanooga with son-in-law Alabama Air National Guard pilot Major Donald Lewis using a patent he had as an Engineer for a new Continuous Casting Process. After another successful career in the Steel Industry and in business he finally retired. Later, in old age and poor health he died in Birmingham, Alabama where he is buried. He was a successful engineer, military man, aviator, inventor, and business founder and executive. He was truly one of the greatest of the Greatest Generation."
Lead aircraft of Mission Albany the US airborne drop on the eve of D-Day. Led 432 aircraft dropping 6,600 paratroopers behind enemy lines on the Cotentin Peninsula of Normandy. ...
Military site : airfield
Built for the RAF in 1942 as an Operational Training Unit, it was handed over to the Eighth Air Force in 1942, and was the 51st Troop Carrier Wing's HQ in 1942. Greenham Common became a Ninth Air Force base in 1943, and was then home to a series of...
|12 June 2016 19:09:12||bobthomas||Changes to middlename, nickname, highest rank, biography and awards|
Major General John Munnerlyn Donalson - USAF
|22 June 2015 22:22:31||Al_Skiff||Created entry with surname, middlename, firstname, nationality, highest rank, role, biography, unit associations, place associations, aircraft associations and media associations|