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Col George Branch, USAF (Ret)

Col George Branch, USAF (Ret)

Born in south Texas in 1930, Branch enlisted in the USAF in 1951 and completed pilot training in 1952.  He flew combat with the 18th TFW in Korea in 1953 in the F-86, returning to New Mexico and joining the 388th FBW the following year.  The wing deployed to Europe island hopping their F-86’s in 1954.  He later flew the F-84F and F-100 before joining the 354th TFW at Myrtle Beach AFB in 1958.  During the period of the Cold War, he participated in Operation Double Trouble, the Berlin Crisis and the Cuban Missile Crisis.  He served as Flight Commander and Operations Officer for the 355th FTS.

During his military career, Branch served in Headquarters 12AF, Headquarter Tactical Air Command and USAF Headquarters at the Military Personnel Center.  He completed Air Command and Staff College and flew over 200 combat missions in the F-100 in Southeast Asia, returning some 5 years later to fly 30-odd more in the F-4 while serving as Deputy Commander for Operations for the 49th TFW.

Colonel Branch retired in 1978 and returned to Myrtle Beach.  His wife was from this area and his children, who were reaching high school age, were born all over the United States.