Farragut Twining, (October 11, 1897 March 29, 1982)
was a United States Air Force General, born in Monroe,
Wisconsin. He was Chief of Staff of the United States
Air Force from 1953 until 1957. As Chairman of the Joint
Chiefs of Staff from 1957 to 1960 he was the first member
of the Air Force to serve in that role.
Twining came from a military background; his forebears
had served in the United States Army and Navy since the
French and Indian War. His mother was Frances Staver Twining,
author of Bird-Watching in the West.
1913, Twining moved with his family to Oswego, Oregon,
serving in the Oregon National Guard from 1915 to 1917.
In 1917, he received an appointment to West Point. Because
the program was shortened so as to produce more officers
for combat, he spent only two years at the academy and
graduated just a few days too late for service in World
graduating in 1918 and serving in the infantry for three
years arriving in Europe in July 1919, he transferred
to the Air Service. Over the next 15 years he flew fighter
aircraft in Texas, Louisiana, and Hawaii, while also attending
the Air Corps Tactical School and the Command and General
Staff College. When World War II broke out in Europe he
was assigned to the operations division on the Air Staff;
then in 1942 he was sent to the South Pacific where he
became chief of staff of the Allied air forces in that
January 1943, he was promoted to Major General and assumed
command of the Thirteenth Air Force, and that same November
he traveled across the world to take over the Fifteenth
Air Force from Jimmy Doolittle. On 1 February 1943, the
U.S. Navy rescued Brig. Gen. Twining, the 13th Air Force
Commander, and 14 others near New Hebrides Islands. They
ditched their plane on the way from Guadalcanal to Espiritu
Santo and spent six days in life rafts. When Germany surrendered,
Arnold sent Twining back to the Pacific to command the
B-29s of the Twentieth Air Force in the last push against
Japan, but he was there only a short time when the atomic
strikes ended the war. On 20 October 1945, Twining led
three B-29s in developing a new route from Guam to Washington
via India and Germany. They completed the 13,167-mile-trip
in 59 hours, 30 minutes. He returned to the States where
he was named commander of the Air Materiel Command, and
in 1947 he took over Alaskan Air Command.
three years there, he was set to retire as a Lieutenant
General, but when Muir Fairchild, the vice chief of staff,
died unexpectedly of a heart attack, Twining was elevated
to full General and named his successor.
Nathan F. Twining, USAF
1947, Twining was asked to study UFO reports; he recommended
that a formal study of the phenomenon take place; Project
Sign was the result.
Hoyt Vandenberg retired in mid-1953, Twining was selected
as chief; during his tenure, massive retaliation based
on airpower became the national strategy.
1957, President Eisenhower appointed Twining Chairman
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Twining died on March 29, 1982 at Lackland Air Force Base
in Texas and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery.