30 November 1957 – Capt Benny Lacombe is killed when he unsuccessfully attempts to bail out of Lockheed U-2A, 56-6704, Article 371, 13 miles SE of Laughlin AFB. Ejection seats had not yet been fitted to U-2s at this point. The history of the U-2 program is fraught with fatalities and crashes. “CIA pilots Wilburn S.
John M. Davey
At the time of his retirement on September 1, 1993, Major General John M. Davey was the director, plans and policy, at Headquarters U.S. European Command, in Stuttgart, Germany.
General Davey was born in San Diego in 1937 and graduated from La Salle Academy High School, Providence, R.I. He received a bachelor’s degree in military science from the first graduating class of the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1959 and a master of science degree in business through the Air Force Institute of Technology program from the University of Rochester in 1970. The general was a distinguished graduate of the Naval War College in 1979.
Upon graduation from the academy in June 1959, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant and was first assigned to Bartow Air Force Base, FL, and then to Vance Air Force Base, OK., for pilot training. He received wings in September 1960 and attended combat crew training in the F-100 at Luke Air Force Base, AZ, and Nellis Air Force Base, NV.
In August 1961 he was assigned to George Air Force Base, CA, as an F-100 pilot with the 307th Tactical Fighter Squadron and moved with his squadron in June 1962 to Homestead Air Force Base, Fla. During this same period, he served as a jump-qualified forward air controller attached to the 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, NC.
After a tour of duty as aide-de-camp to the commander of 9th Air Force, Shaw Air Force Base, SC, General Davey then entered F-4 pilot training at Key West Naval Air Station, FL, under the Air Force-Navy pilot exchange program. He then was assigned to naval fighter squadron VF-41 aboard the USS Independence and logged more than 300 carrier landings and 93 combat missions over North Vietnam.
The general was assigned to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, AZ, in January 1967 and served as an instructor pilot with the 4454th Combat Crew Training Squadron. In October 1967 he transferred to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH, as a Test manager at the F-111 System Program Office.
In 1970 General Davey was assigned as a program analyst in the Directorate of Programs and Resources, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, DC. He attended F-4E operational training at Homestead Air Force Base,FL in September 1974 and, in January 1975, was assigned to Kunsan Air Base, South Korea, flying the F-4 as chief of operations and training with the 8th Tactical Fighter Wing.
The general also flew the F-4 as an operations officer with the 92nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, Royal Air Force Station Bentwaters, England, in March of 1976. From November 1976 to May 1978 he was the commander of the newly reactivated 512th Tactical Fighter Squadron, Ramstein Air Base, West Germany. He then became assistant deputy commander for operations, 86th Tactical Fighter Wing, also at Ramstein.
Returning to the United States in August 1978, General Davey attended the Naval War College and, after graduating in July 1979, returned to Air Force headquarters. While there he served as assistant deputy director for joint and congressional matters, Directorate of Plans, then as deputy director for tactical and mobility forces, and, later, as deputy director for resources, Directorate of Programs. In August 1981 he transferred to Hahn Air Base, West Germany, where he served as vice commander and inspector general, 50th Tactical Fighter Wing. In October 1982 he became wing commander.
The general was then assigned as commander of the 832nd Air Division, Luke Air Force Base, AZ, in January 1985. In August 1986 he became commander of the 26th Air Division, March Air Force Base, CA., and in July of 1987, commander of the 25th Air Division, McChord Air Force Base, WA. In August 1989 he was assigned as chief of staff, Headquarters Allied Air Forces Southern Europe, Naples, Italy. He assumed his position as the director, plans and policy, at Headquarters U.S. European Command, in Stuttgart, Germany, in December 1990.
General Davey is a command pilot with more than 4,500 flying hours in aircraft including the F-4, F-15, F-16 and F-100. He most recently flew the F-15 Eagle.
His military awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Air Medal with eight oak leaf clusters, and Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster. He also wears the Parachutist Badge.