Died March 1, 1971.
Alonzo M. Drake was born in Adrian, Ga., in 1894 and graduated from high school there in 1914. He enlisted in the Army in September 1915 and served with the Coast Artillery Corps and the Signal Corps.
In 1917, General Drake took pilot training with the Aviation Section of the Signal Corps at Issoudon, France and on Oct. 26, 1917 was commissioned a first lieutenant in the Aviation Section of the Signal Officers Reserve Corps. In November 1919, he was assigned to the Aviation General Supply Depot at Souther Field, Ga., and on July 1, 1920, received his regular commission as a first lieutenant in the Air Service.
General Drake assumed command of the 81st Service Squadron at Mitchel Field, N.Y., in 1921. Three years later he was transferred to the Operations Division, Office of the Chief of Staff of the Army. In 1926, he was assigned to the Supply Division of the Air Materiel Command at Wright Field, Ohio, and in 1934, went to Panama to command the 80th Headquarters Squadron.
In August 1936, General Drake entered the Army Industrial College, graduated in June 1937, and was assigned to the Industrial Planning Office at Detroit, Mich. He completed the three month course at the Air Corps Tactical School, Maxwell Field, Ala., in June, 1940 and was assigned to the Central Procurement at Detroit, as chief of all procurement contracts, in June 1943, he assumed that position at Chicago, Ill., and in January 1944 was named technical adviser to the air inspector at the Air Materiel Command at Wright Field, Ohio.
General Drake in June 1944 was assigned as air inspector of the Army Air Forces in the Mediterranean Theater. In September 1945 he became acting air inspector of the Continental Air Force at Bolling Field, D.C. in January 1946, he was named air inspector of Strategic Air Command, also at Bolling Field.
General Drake was appointed air inspector for the European Division of Air Transport Command in July 1946. A year later he was named chief of staff of the European Air Transport Service, with station at Wiesbaden, Germany. In January 1948 he became air inspector of the U.S Air Forces in Europe, also at Wiesbaden. The following May he was redesignated inspector general of that organization and served until June 1951.
In July 1951, General Drake was appointed assistant chief of staff of Tactical Air Command, with headquarters at Langley Air Force Base, Va. He was named chief of staff of Tactical Air Command in March 1952.
General Drake has been awarded the Legion of Merit and Bronze Star Medal. He is rated a pilot, combat observer and aircraft observer.