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Old 01-08-2019, 09:28 AM
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Unhappy Tuskegee Airman John ‘Jack’ Lyle dead at 98 - AKA Red Tails

Tuskegee Airman John ‘Jack’ Lyle dead at 98 - AKA Red Tails
By: The Associated Press / 1-8-19
RE: https://www.airforcetimes.com/news/y...le-dead-at-98/

Photo link: https://www.armytimes.com/resizer/yg...B7GJCPM55I.jpg
World War II fighter pilot John Lyle, a member of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen, has died. Lyle and other Red Tails received the Congressional Gold Medal from President George H.W. Bush in 2007.

CHICAGO — World War II fighter pilot John Lyle, a Tuskegee Airman, has died at the age of 98.

Lyle died Saturday at his home on Chicago's South Side, his wife, Eunice, said Monday. She added that Lyle had been battling prostate cancer.

The members of the nation’s first black fighter squadron won acclaim for their aerial prowess and bravery, despite a military that imposed segregation on its African-American recruits while respecting the rights of German prisoners.

Lyle, who named his plane "Natalie" after his first wife, was credited with shooting down a German Messerschmitt.

"We flew 500 feet above the bombers to keep enemy fighters from hitting our guys," he recalled in a 2012 interview with Jet magazine. "I loved flying, being up in the clouds, the scenery. I flew 26 combat missions, from southern Italy to Austria and southern Germany, over the Austrian Alps."

Lyle told Jet he was fired upon several times

“I watched bombers being torn apart, but they were performing the mission they signed up to do,” Lyle said. “And when I had to shoot the guy who was shooting at the planes I was protecting, I did not feel bad because that was my assignment.”

"He had no fear," Eunice Lyle told the Chicago Sun-Times . "None at all."

In 2007, President George W. Bush and Congress bestowed the Congressional Gold Medal on Lyle and other members of the squadron.

After the war, Lyle served as a police officer with the Chicago Park District and founded a tree-trimming company. He later took up sailing.

"He was an amazing sailor," said Janet Hansen of the Jackson Park Yacht Club. "He could sail his boat in any weather."
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O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

"IN GOD WE TRUST"
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