Died July 21,1993
Lieutenant General Richard Leland Bohannon is the surgeon general, U.S. Air Force. He is responsible for providing the medical support necessary to maintain the highest degree of combat readiness and effectiveness of the Air Force.
The general was born in Dallas, Texas, in 1907. He graduated from Forest Avenue High School in 1923 and then entered Metropolitan Business College; attended Southern Methodist University for pre-medical education; attended Baylor University College of Medicine and received his doctor of medicine degree in 1932.
He completed his ROTC training at Baylor University and was commissioned a first lieutenant (Reserve - inactive status) in the Medical Corps, U.S. Army. In July 1932, he began intern service at Dallas City-County (Parkland) Hospital, remaining there until June 1933.
On Sept. 21, 1933, he was called to active duty as a Reserve medical officer in the Civilian Conservation Corps in Ithaca, N.Y. From there, he was assigned to Fort Ontario, N.Y. in 1934. Two years later, he left for Fort Jay, N.Y. While there, he received his commission as a first lieutenant in the Regular Army.
Following his tour at Fort Jay, N.Y., General Bohannon attended specialized courses at the Army Medical School, Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C., and the Medical Field Service School, Carlisle Barracks, Pa.
In July 1940, General Bohannon was assigned to the Air Corps. He attended the School of Aviation Medicine, Randolph Field, Texas, and was assigned to Langley Field, Va., on the Surgical Service. In July 1941, he left Langley Field to assume the duties of the base surgeon at Dow Field, Maine, during which time he received his flight surgeon's rating.
In 1943, he returned to Langley Field to become the hospital commander. He held this position for two years.
General Bohannon left in February 1945 for foreign service in France as surgeon, Central Air Depot Area and four months later he was assigned to Ninth Air Force Headquarters. In November 1945 he was assigned as surgeon of the 12th Tactical Command in Germany. He returned from Germany in October 1947 and was assigned to Castle Air Force Base, Ca., where he was base surgeon for two years.
In November 1949, he was assigned as Second Air Force surgeon and hospital commander at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., until August 1953, at which time he was transferred to March Air Force Base, Ca., to become surgeon, Fifteenth Air Force, where he served for five years. Then in May 1958, he left for overseas duty at Fuchu Air Station, Japan, to become surgeon, Fifth Air Force.
In March 1959, he assumed the duties of the command surgeon, Pacific Air Forces, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii, and in June 1961, he was appointed the deputy surgeon general, U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
On Dec. 1, 1963, he became the surgeon general, his present position.
His decorations include the Legion of Merit, Air Force Commendation Medal and the Army Commendation Medal.
(Current as of July 15, 1966)