28 February 1941 – The Republic F-84 Thunderjet was an American turbojet fighter-bomber aircraft. Originating as a 1944 United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) proposal for a “day fighter”, the F-84 first flew in 1946. Although it entered service in 1947, the Thunderjet was plagued by so many structural and engine problems that a 1948
Douglas B. Peterson
After the Vietnam War, Peterson remained in the U.S. Air Force and retired in 1981 as a colonel with 26 years of service. After retirement, he established a general contracting firm in Tampa, Florida and later a small computer company in Marianna, Florida. He served for 5 years on the faculty of Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida.
In 1990, Peterson ran as a Democrat for a seat in the United States House of Representatives in Florida’s 2nd congressional district. He defeated James W. Grant, a politician who grew unpopular after switching from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party in the middle of his second term. His first wife, Carlotta, passed away in 1995 and he declined to run for a fourth term.
In 1997 Pete was asked by President Bill Clinton to become the United States’ first post-war ambassador to Vietnam. One of his goals was securing an account of those still listed as missing in action from the war and so helping to resolve the Vietnam War POW/MIA issue.On November 17, 2000, he was presented with the Presidential Citizens Medal by President Clinton.
Since retiring as ambassador, Peterson founded The Alliance for Safe Children, TASC, which aims to lower preventable injuries to children worldwide, and focuses specifically on such issues as drowning in Asia. With his second wife, Vi Le, Australia’s senior trade commissioner whom he met after becoming the ambassador and moving to Hanoi, he started a company whose aim it is to promote American business in Southeast Asia.
Peterson is a Senior Advisor for Albright Stonebridge Group, an international strategic consulting firm.