Robert Lee Scott Jr
WW2 Ace and author of God is my Co-Pilot
By Stephen Sherman, Dec. 2002. Updated January 27, 2012.
Born 12 April 1908 in Waynesboro Georgia. The oldest of three children born to Ola and Robert Scott, Sr. Young Scott was educated in Macon and graduated from West Point.
He was an Eagle Scout. Upon his graduation from West Point in 1932 he began his flight training as a second Lt. at Randolph Field, Texas.
His first assignment was Mitchell Field, New York where he was involved in flying the mail . His Next assignment took him to Panama for three years. He was next assigned to flight training at Ontario , California as an instructor. After Pearl Harbor he immediately began trying to get into combat. A Major with a wife and child he was deemed too old for combat!
In March of 1942 , he volunteered for and was excepted for a secret bombing mission on Japan. Operation Aquila as it was known came to an abrupt end in Karachi, India leaving the entire group to be absorbed by the Assam-Burma-China Ferry Command.
Having been promoted to Colonel and assigned as Deputy Of Operations, Scott flew many supply missions to China.
It was during these missions that he became friends with General Chennault. Scott managed to get Gen. Chennault to loan him a P-40 supposedly to protect the Ferry route from attack. With this P-40 he began roving the air from India to China seeking the enemy and making numerous ground attacks with a bomb slung beneath the P-40.
As he gained experience flying missions with the Flying Tigers, he started to leave a trail of destroyed enemy planes in his wake. A reward was placed on his head and he became known as the "One Man Air Force".
In July 1942, the A.V.G. was disbanded and absorbed into the 23rd Air Force. Colonel Scott was chosen to command this unit under Gen. Chennault.
By Thanksgiving of 1942 , Scott was a double ace. In February 1943 he returned to the U.S.A. as its highest leading ace. Assigned to war bond tours , he met Charles Scribner who coaxed him into putting his adventures to print and the book God is my Co-Pilot was the result. Warner brothers obtained the movie rights and the rest is history.
Scott was able to return to China for a short time under Gen. Chennault.
He was assigned to Florida in 1947 and then William's Field Arizona in 1950. He was then assigned to Furstenfeldbruck, Germany as commander of the 36th Fighter wing. In 1953, he was assigned to Washington D.C. He graduated the National War College and was promoted to Brigadier General and assigned as Director of Information for the Air Force.
General Scott's "Political Incorrectness" and needless inner service conflicts caused him to retire from the service he loved so much on 31 October 1957.
He was still active at age 97, and worked for the Museum of Aviation in Warner Robins, Ga. He authored 13 books since God is My Co-pilot.
He had 22 official victories credited by the Chinese while flying with the A-B-C Ferry Command and while serving in China with General Chennault.
General Scott passed away on 27 February 2006.