HomeAbout UsBiographiesDisplay

LIEUTENANT GENERAL GLEN ROBBINS BIRCHARD

PRINT | E-MAIL

Lt. Gen. Glen Robbins Birchard is commander in chief of the Alaskan Command. The Alaskan Command has the responsibility for welding Army, Navy and Air Force components in Alaska into a smoothly functioning team defending the polar gateway to the heartland of the United States.

Born in Grand Rapids, Mich., in 1914, he graduated from Bay City High School, Bay City, Mich. He majored in business administration at Bay City College, graduating in 1934. He is also a graduate of the Air War College, 1953.

General Birchard's career is filled with "firsts." During World War II he piloted a B-24 bomber in the first air strike against Wake Island. He flew in the first night-fire raids on Tokyo and, during the Korean War, he flew the first aircraft into Kimpo after the Inchon Bay landings in 1950. He also participated in the first airdrop behind enemy lines there.

He became a flying cadet in the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1938 and was commissioned a second lieutenant upon graduation in February 1939. His first overseas assignment came in 1942 at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii, where he was based while flying air strikes against Japanese-held island strongholds in the Pacific. During that combat tour he led a flight of three Liberators from Funafuti Island on a photographic mission over Tarawa. Films acquired during the mission were used in planning the successful amphibious landing our forces completed against that enemy stronghold. In January 1943 he transferred to Guadalcanal. He departed the Solomons for Biggs Field, E1 Paso, Texas, where he was in command from May to August 1944.

General Birchard then was appointed liaison officer to the Air Corps Board, Orlando, Fla. From there he was sent on temporary duty to the Pacific Theater where he conducted formal evaluations of fighter-escorted B-29 raids made in daylight hours.

At the end of World War II he left the Air Force and took a position with Trans-World Airlines. After one year he was recalled to active duty. Accepting a regular Air Force commission, he was assigned to Germany with the Air Transport Command, the forerunner of Military Air Transport Service.

With the advent of the Berlin Airlift, General Birchard formed and commanded the first C-54 wing to take part in that operation. Also, he developed airlift procedures that enabled the Air Force to maintain a high intensity flow of aircraft into Berlin. Later, he became the director of operations for the Combined Airlift Task Force, Germany.

In September 1949 he returned to the United States as commander of the 1703d Air Transport Wing, Brookley Air Force Base, Ala. In August of 1950, General Birchard was assigned the task of establishing the Northern Pacific Transport Wing at McChord Air Force Base, Wash. This wing was formed for the specific task of transporting troops to Korea at the outset of the Korean War. In October, he joined the Combat Cargo Command in Ashiya as chief of staff and vice commander where he remained until January 1951 and then returned to his command at the 1703d Air Transport Wing, Brookley Air Force Base, Ala. In September 1951, he was assigned to the task of reopening the air base at West Palm Beach, Fla., and establishing the Military Air Transport Service Transition Training Unit.

General Birchard entered the Air War College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., in August 1952. Upon graduation, he was transferred to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C., where he served for three years as chief of personnel requirements and analysis Division. He then returned to MATS and until April 1958 was deputy commander of MATS' Continental Division at Kelly Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas.

In April 1958 he was appointed deputy chief of staff for operations, Headquarters MATS, Scott Air Force Base, Ill. In addition, in 1959 he was appointed a member of the Research Advisory Committee of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

He departed from his post as deputy chief of staff for operations, MATS, in July 1961 to assume command of Western Transport Air Force (MATS), Travis Air Force Base, Calif. In July 1963 he was assigned as vice commander, Military Airlift Command, and on Aug. 1, 1966 he assumed his present position.

General Birchard's decorations include the Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star Medal and the Air Medal with nine oak leaf clusters.


(Current as of Aug. 1, 1966)


General Birchard was drowned June 3, 1967, while a passenger aboard a float plane that overturned on take off near Anchorage, Alaska.

Engage

Twitter
A Virtual Teen Camp will offer an introduction to aviation, and career and leadership opportunities within the… https://t.co/Hn0XBDu5uH
Twitter
The Three Dimensional Expeditionary Long-Range Radar program office at @Hanscom_AFB, Massachusetts, is currently ut… https://t.co/kppBPFby6h
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: The review we conducted last year, & the follow up efforts we’ve taken since, have really opened the door to meaningful,…
Twitter
Take a look at the most recent Week in Photos! Which one is your favorite? More at: https://t.co/HYMo58J8u6 https://t.co/VCR3yRicIl
Twitter
RT @USAFCENT: F-16s get topped off with fuel by a KC-135 while supporting CJTF-OIR, where the main mission is to Defeat Da'esh. #FightToWin
Twitter
.@146AirliftWing Airmen administer #COVID19 vaccines to military dependents at the Channel Islands Air National Gua… https://t.co/1Zq9vmf9w2
Twitter
RT @AFSpecOpsCmd: Global coordination with its finest 💥 During HIMARS and HIRAIN training, Air Commandos and @USMC successfully proved the…
Twitter
Today is National #FormerPOWRecognitionDay. This day honors the captured wartime service members who eventually cam… https://t.co/pIRIXAS6f7
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: #TeamWhiteman welcomed Acting Secretary Roth today, where the base’s leadership & #Airmen showcased the unique capabilit…
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: .@TXMilitary Airmen with the @149FW Med Group operate a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland. T…
Twitter
Demonstrating the United States' commitment to providing #AirPower, stability and support around the globe at a mom… https://t.co/x8OLgaJmqO
Twitter
The Air Force released its new mission statement: To fly, fight, and win … airpower anytime, anywhere. Read more: https://t.co/HalC2dX2kh
Twitter
The #AirForce's new mission statement is: To fly, fight, and win … Airpower anytime, anywhere. This change emphasiz… https://t.co/akmi7PLwyd
Twitter
The @AF_Academy's Scott McMurray performs a floor routine during the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championshi… https://t.co/BQJHzxq25g
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Looking forward to the discussions at today’s Army/Air Force Warfighter Talks. When it comes to national defense, collabo…
Twitter
The Department of the #AirForce is working to further improve living conditions in privatized housing for its… https://t.co/Kyafyb5pXo
Twitter
“As we continue to accelerate change, we have to think outside the box on how we train." - Capt. Dmytro Pichkur, 61… https://t.co/sLkVA5ctCP
Twitter
“In order to accelerate the change we need in the #AirForce, Team Edwards understands that no one can do this alone… https://t.co/OH0xBzS3YY
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,341,248
Follow Us