HomeAbout UsBiographiesDisplay

GENERAL BENJAMIN OLIVER DAVIS JR.

PRINT | E-MAIL

Benjamin O. Davis Jr. was born in Washington, D.C., in 1912. He graduated from Central High School in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1929, attended Western Reserve University at Cleveland and later the University of Chicago. He entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., in July 1932 and graduated in June 1936 with a commission as a second lieutenant of infantry.

In June 1937 after a year as commander of an infantry company at Fort Benning, Ga., he entered the Infantry School there and a year later graduated and assumed duties as professor of military science at Tuskegee Institute, Tuskegee, Ala. In May 1941 he entered Advanced Flying School at nearby Tuskegee Army Air Base and received his pilot wings in March 1942.

General Davis transferred to the Army Air Corps in May 1942. As commander of the 99th Fighter Squadron at Tuskegee Army Air Base, he moved with his unit to North Africa in April 1943 and later to Sicily. He returned to the United States in October 1943, assumed command of the 332nd Fighter Group at Selfridge Field, Mich., and returned with the group to Italy two months later.

He returned to the United States in June 1945 to command the 477th Composite Group at Godman Field, Ky., and later assumed command of the Field. In March 1946 he went to Lockbourne Army Air Base, Ohio, as commander of the base and in July 1947 became commander of the 332nd Fighter Wing there.

In 1949 General Davis went to the Air War College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.; and after graduation, he was assigned to the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. He served in various capacities with the headquarters until July 1953, when he went to the advanced jet fighter gunnery school at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.

In November 1953 he assumed duties as commander of the 51st Fighter-Interceptor Wing, Far East Air Forces, Korea. He served as director of operations and training at Far East Air Forces Headquarters, Tokyo, from 1954 until 1955, when he assumed the position of vice commander, Thirteenth Air Force, with additional duty as commander, Air Task Force 13 (Provisional), Taipei, Formosa.
In April 1957 General Davis arrived at Ramstein, Germany, as chief of staff, Twelfth Air Force, U.S. Air Forces in Europe. When the Twelfth Air Force was transferred to Waco, Texas in December 1957, he assumed new duties as deputy chief of staff for operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe, Wiesbaden, Germany.

In July 1961 he returned to the United States and Headquarters U.S. Air Force where he served as the director of manpower and organization, Deputy Chief of Staff for Programs and Requirements; and in February 1965 was assigned as assistant deputy chief of staff, programs and requirements. He remained in that position until his assignment as chief of staff for the United Nations Command and U.S. Forces in Korea in April 1965. He assumed command of the Thirteenth Air Force at Clark Air Base in the Republic of the Philippines in August 1967.

General Davis was assigned as deputy commander in chief, U.S. Strike Command, with headquarters at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., in August 1968, with additional duty as commander in chief, Middle-East, Southern Asia and Africa.

His military decorations include the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, Army Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters, Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters and the Philippine Legion of Honor. He was a command pilot.

On Dec. 9, 1998, Benjamin O. Davis Jr. was advanced to general. President Clinton pinned on his four-star insignia.

Effective dates of promotion:
Second Lieutenant    June 12, 1936
First Lieutenant    June 19, 1939
Captain    Oct. 9, 1940 (temporary);  June 12, 1946 (permanent)
Major        May 13, 1942 (temporary);  
Lieutenant Colonel   May 29, 1942 (temporary);   July 2, 1948 (permanent)
Colonel   May 29, 1944 (temporary);  July 27, 1950 (permanent)
Brigadier General    Oct. 27, 1954 (temporary);  May 16, 1960 (permanent)
Major General   June 30, 1959 (temporary);  Jan. 30, 1962 (permanent)
Lieutenant General  April 30, 1965 
General   Dec. 9, 1998 (advanced)

Engage

Twitter
RT @366FW: Air Force Chief of Staff @GenCQBrownJr shares some words of wisdom with our Gunfighters! Our Airmen continue to #acceleratecha
Twitter
April is recognized as the Month of the Military Child. The ever-changing military lifestyle impacts every member o… https://t.co/hmvocXQaGL
Twitter
Airmanship 200 is the second of three development courses that new #Airmen receive to better understand #AirForce v… https://t.co/1rueS9ToLP
Twitter
#ICYMI -- The Department of the Air Force published a website where #Airmen and @SpaceForceDoD #Guardians can acces… https://t.co/0YJcST5XaT
Twitter
Combating #COVID19 one shot at a time. https://t.co/EVyenHCi5D
Twitter
The Department of the Air Force-Massachusetts Institute of Technology Artificial Intelligence Accelerator is helpin… https://t.co/cfsdOX43hY
Twitter
.@LRAFB, Arkansas, Airmen completed 106 sorties, 254 flying hours, and nearly 2,000 training events during a multi-… https://t.co/3YOSh8DvcT
Twitter
Today is Gold Star Spouses Day. It honors the surviving loved ones of military service members killed in the line o… https://t.co/JYCacpkds5
Twitter
Everyone is susceptible to invisible wounds. These wounds have an impact can develop at any time, in any place, in… https://t.co/XxPKyovJc9
Twitter
#AirForce Civil Engineer Center Operation Directorate teams are following safety protocols and working closely with… https://t.co/4IjMrV240S
Twitter
RT @grandslamwing: Beware of frostbite 🥶 Our #TeamAUAB cryogenics team brave the heat of the flightline to deliver aircrew the frigid, but…
Twitter
Being able to recognize an invisible wound could save a life. Learn more about available resources here:… https://t.co/M9JOy6XRWn
Twitter
“When you believe in something, you just have to put your heart and soul into it and don’t worry about what the res… https://t.co/K44qwDwFMG
Twitter
Second Lt. Max Atkinson, a student pilot in the 71st Student Squadron at Vance AFB saved the life of a local motorc… https://t.co/SHv1e8Te6M
Twitter
The 49th Test and Evaluation Squadron conducted four functional ground tests of the Air Launched Cruise Missile at… https://t.co/jerYunV1vQ
Twitter
RT @CENTCOM: #Airmen from the 379th Air Expeditionary Wing @grandslamwing participated in the recent @USAFCENT's Agile Combat Employment ca…
Twitter
The Department of the #AirForce held a Virtual Industry Day on the Advanced Battle Management System acquisition ef… https://t.co/h36eGxfMKJ
Twitter
Take a look at the most recent Week in Photos! Which one is your favorite? More at: https://t.co/thFY9KXqud https://t.co/KzHQlzTovo
Twitter
Give CSAF Gen. Brown a follow at @GenCQBrownJr to get the latest insight about his strategic vision to… https://t.co/AgAHxPjkQJ
Twitter
.@USAF_ACC's U-2 Federal Laboratory at Beale AFB, California, executed the first rapid, successful in-flight test o… https://t.co/xD8fFXpXtX
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
1,340,301
Follow Us