Died June 25,1978
Murray C. Woodbury was born in 1899 in Burlington, Vt. He graduated from the Florida Military Academy in 1917, and attended Norwich University, Vt. He served as a private and private first class, Aviation Section, Signal Reserve, from Jan. 31, 1918, to Dec. 14, 1918. He was appointed a first lieutenant, Cavalry Reserve, on June 15, 1923, and was transferred to the Air Reserve Nov. 6, 1923. He was promoted to captain, Air Reserve, on July 8, 1926, and was called on extended active duty as a first lieutenant, Air Reserve, on July 1, 1928. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Air Corps, Regular Army, on Feb. 2, 1929.
Upon being called to extended active duty in July 1928, he was assigned to Maxwell Field, Ala., where he joined the 22nd Observation Squadron. He served at Maxwell Field after he was commissioned in the Regular Army until September 1929, when he went to Brooks Field, Texas, where he graduated from Air Corps Primary Flying School in March 1930. He then graduated from Air Corps Advanced Flying School, Kelly Field, Texas, in June 1930, and returned to Maxwell Field, Ala., to rejoin the 22nd Observation Squadron.
His next assignment was to Luke Field, Hawaii, where he became Assistant Squadron Operations Officer, 4th Observation Squadron, in January 1932. He moved to Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, in February 1932, and the following month became Assistant Engineering Officer, 19th Pursuit Squadron. From July 1932 until October 1934 he served as Assistant Engineering and Operations Officer, 75th Service Squadron at Schofield Barracks, and then joined the 6th Pursuit Squadron at the same post. In March 1935 he transferred to the 50th Observation Squadron as Flight Commander, Luke Field, until November 1935, when he returned to the United States.
He proceeded to Selfridge Field, Mich., and served as Recreation Officer and Station Supply Officer until July 1937, when he became Flight Commander, 27th Pursuit Squadron, General Headquarters Air Force, at Selfridge Field.
In July 1939 he proceeded to Wright Field, Ohio, for duty in the Field Service Section, and served additionally as Commanding Officer, Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron, 10th Transport Group. He was assigned to the Air Corps Tactical School, Maxwell Field, Ala., in January 1940, and graduated the following April.
He then returned to Wright Field, Ohio, where he became Executive Officer, 10th Transport Group, and in addition assumed command of Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron, 10th Transport Group. He moved to Patterson Field, Ohio, as Commanding Officer of the 10th Transport Group in July 1940, and the following December assumed command of the 1st Transport Squadron at the same post. He again assumed command of the 10th Transport Group at Patterson Field in July 1941, and served in this capacity until the following September, when he became Station Inspector at Barksdale Field, La. While serving as Station Inspector he was in command of the 6th Air Base Group and also was Post Operations Officer from November 1941 until January 1942.
He then became Post Executive Officer and Commanding Officer of the 52nd Air Base Group at Kaye Field, Miss., serving until 1942 when he was designated to command the 50th Fighter Group in Orlando, Fla. In September 1942 he moved to Norfolk, Va., in command of the Norfolk Air Defense Wing, and in March 1943 was named Commander of the 5th Air Defense Wing in Norfolk, Va., and Camp Kilner, N.J. In June 1943 he became a Fighter Wing Commander in the European Theater of Operations.
He is rated a Command Pilot, Combat Observer, and Aircraft Observer.
His decorations include Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star and Air Medal with oak leaf cluster.