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Cecil Parker Lessig


Lessig first served with the US Navy as an airplane mechanic before transferring to the USAAF in 1935. He served as a pilot with the 20th Pursuit Squadron.

When the Eighth Air Force was established in the UK in 1942, Lessig was assigned to 8th Air Force Bomber Command as an operations and training officer, he later served as a liaison to the British Air Ministry and was appointed to the Combined Operations Planning committee as a representative of the 8th Air Force.

On 25 March 1942, after training at the RAF Staff college, Lessig became the first 8th Air Force pilot to fly a combat mission, when he accompanied the RAF on a fighter sweep over France. He then went on to fly one mission with the Royal Air Force bomber command and six combat missions with the Eighth Air Force accumulating 38 total combat hours in a Spitfire, a Lancaster, B-17s and B-26s in the European Theatre.

Lessig returned to the US in 1944, where he assumed duties as deputy chief, Theaters, Commitments and Implementation Branch, Army Air Force Headquarters, Washington, D.C. His later career saw him act as a commander in Japan, Korea and with NORAD (North American Air Defense).

Awards: LOM, BSM, AM, WWII Victory, EAME.


Units served with

  • VIII Bomber Command

    VIII Bomber Command

    VIII Bomber Command was constituted and activated in 1942. It oversaw heavy bombardment operations until February 1944, when it was redesginated as the 8th Air Force.



Event Location Date
Born Ellsworth, Kansas 4 April 1908

Son of Gertrude Lessig.

Based 1942 – 1944

Assigned to 8th Air Force Bomber Command.

Retired 1 June 1962
Died Fort Worth, TX 21 May 1984
Buried Greenwood Memorial Park and Mausoleum Fort Worth, Tarrant County, TX 24 May 1984

Greenwood Memorial Park and Mausoleum
Fort Worth, Tarrant County, Texas


Date Contributor Update
25 March 2022 14:07:49 Al_Skiff Changes to service number, biography, awards and events

Date Contributor Update
14 August 2019 07:52:46 Emily Created entry with surname, middlename, firstname, nickname, nationality, highest rank, role, biography, events, unit associations and mission associations

USAF Biography

USAAF Combat Chronology