Coat, Service, United States Air Force, Henry "Hap" Arnold

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    Coat, Service, United States Air Force, Henry "Hap" Arnold

    United States Air Force summer class "A" service uniform coat worn by Gen. Henry "Hap" Arnold; USAF khaki shade no. 193 gaberdine; single breasted with drop fall collar; four silver buttons down front with embossed USAF crest insginia; epaulets; two upper box pleat pockets with silver buttoned flap closure; two lower flap pockets with silver buttoned flap closure; officer stripe on each cuff; silver "U.S." insignia on each collar; service stripe on each cuff.

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This is an example of a United States Air Force Class "A" summer service uniform coat. USAF khaki shade No. 193 also know as the "silver-tans" was officially adopted by the air force on November 15, 1950 and phased out in 1978.

This uniform was worn after World War II, by Gen. Henry "Hap" Arnold commander of the Army Air Forces after the war.

Born and raised near Philadelphia, a 1907 graduate of the Military Academy at West Point, and trained as a pilot at the Wright brothers flight school in Dayton, Arnold rose to the rank of five-star general during World War II in command of the largest air force in America’s history. In 1949, President Harry S. Truman transferred his commission to the fledgling U.S. Air Force where even today is the only five-star general the USAF has ever had.

Arnold’s life paralleled the development of military aviation in America. He flew early Wright Flyer “aeroplanes” that were made of fabric, wood and wire. He commanded a flight of ten Martin B-10 bombers, America’s first all-metal long range bomber, on a round-trip mission from Washington DC to Alaska in 1934. He held direct command over an armada of B-29 Superfortresses that flew combat in the Pacific Theater in 1944 and 45; the most technically advanced military aircraft of its day. He lived to see the P-80 fly, America’s first turbojet powered fighter.

Arnold’s dynamic personality and innate ability to select gifted people to handle difficult problems influenced the long-term development of aerial refueling; precision guided weapons, and unmanned aerial vehicle technology. His leadership directly contributed to Allied victory in WW II and also secured the permanent relationship between the U.S. Air Force and advanced aeronautical science and technology.