Wednesday, April 15, 2009

General Bruce K. Holloway '33, USAF

The Service Academy Program (SAP) at Marion Military Institute is named for the late General Bruce Keener Holloway ’33, USAF, former head of the Strategic Air Command (SAC), and commander of the U. S. Air Forces in Europe.

General Bruce Keener Holloway ’33, USAF. (Credit: Official U. S. Air Force photograph)

LTC Gerry Lewis, Director of the Service Academy Program (SAP), and Faculty Advisor, Air Force Academy Preparation Cadets, at Marion Military Institute. (Credit: Marion Military Institute)

A native of Knoxville, Tennessee, General Bruce K. Holloway completed two years in engineering at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. He attended MMI in 1932-33 as one of 190 members of the Corps of Cadets. Entering the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, Holloway graduated in the Class of 1937 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Army Air Corps. He received his pilot wings in 1938 at Kelly Field, San Antonio, Texas, and then spent two years with the Sixth Pursuit Squadron and the 18th Pursuit Group in Hawaii. Holloway then pursued postgraduate work in aeronautical engineering at the California Institute of Technology.

Once the United States entered World War II, Bruce Holloway was sent to Chungking, China, when he joined Claire Chennault’s American Volunteer Group – the famed “Flying Tigers.” Later activated as the Army Air Force’s 23rd Fighter Group, Holloway rose to command that unit after earning his status as a fighter ace, shooting down some 13 Japanese planes and becoming a national hero in China. Considered one of air power’s finest tacticians, he obtained a 10:1 victory ratio over the Japanese.

In 1946, Holloway commanded the Air Force’s first jet-equipped fighter group, pioneering jet air operational tactics. Following graduation from the National War College in 1951, Holloway quickly rose through key staff assignments in both the operations and development fields at Headquarters, U. S. Air Force, later directing operational requirements.

Bruce Holloway served as deputy commander of the 9th and 12th Air Forces (Tactical Air Command) for four years, and was named deputy commander of the U.S. Strike Command at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, in 1961. As part of that assignment, he later served as deputy commander in chief of the Middle East/Southern Asia and Africa South of the Sahara Command.

Emblem of the Strategic Air Command (SAC), 1946 – 1992. (Credit: U.S. Air Force)

General Holloway took command of the U.S. Air Forces in Europe in July, 1965, serving in that capacity until August 1, 1966, when he was appointed vice chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force.

General Bruce K. Holloway ‘33 retired from the Air Force in 1972, having served since 1937. He was an Associate Administrator for NASA in 1973-74, and served as president of the U.S. Strategic Institute in 1981. The General died at the age of 87 in Orlando, Florida, on September 30, 1999.

His military decorations included, among others, the Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Air Medal.

Another image of General Bruce K. Holloway ’33, USAF. (Credit: Official U.S. Air Force photograph)