Retired Nov. 1, 1972.
Brigadier General Richard Nat Ellis is the commander of Civil Air Patrol-U.S. Air Force and also is national commander of Civil Air Patrol, the auxiliary of the Air Force.
General Ellis was born in 1916, in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he graduated from high school in 1932. He attended the University of Utah, in the same city, and later the San Francisco Law School, San Francisco, Calif. He received his pilot wings and commission as second lieutenant in 1940 and became a flying instructor and training squadron commander at Maxwell and Gunter fields, Ala.
During World War II, he served in the European Theater of Operations as assistant chief of staff for operations and chief of staff, Eighth Air Force Composite Command; chief of staff, Eighth Air Force Fighter Command; and deputy commander, 356th Fighter Group. During his three-year tour with Eighth Air Force, he flew combat in B-17, Spitfire and P-51 aircraft.
After the war, General Ellis was assigned to Maxwell Field, Ala., in 1946; to the Air Command and Staff School, 1947-1948; Central Intelligence Agency, Washington, D.C., 1948-1950; and Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, 1950-1951.
During the Korean War, he served as commander of the 49th Fighter-Bomber Group and then the 474th Fighter-Bomber Group. He flew 101 combat missions in the record-breaking period of 120 days. After completing his combat tour, he served as chief of combat operations, Fifth Air Force, Seoul, Korea.
Upon his return to the United States in 1953, he was assigned to the Strategic Air Command as deputy commander of the 306th Bombardment Wing, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., one of that command's first B-47-equipped wings. With the exception of attendance at the National War College, Washington, D.C., in 1957-1958, he was assigned to Strategic Air Command for 13 years. His assignments in SAC included command of a B-47 wing, the 27th Strategic Fighter Wing; the 4123rd Strategic Bombardment Wing; the 21st Strategic Aerospace Division; and the 17th Strategic Aerospace Division at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. During 1966-1967, he was assigned to Headquarters Air Force Logistics Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, as director of personnel and support operations. He assumed command of the 86th Air Division, U.S. Air Forces in Europe, in July 1967. In September 1968 he became Vice Commander, Seventeenth Air Force (U.S. Air Forces in Europe).
General Ellis retired effective July 1, 1969, and was recalled to active duty effective Nov. 1, 1969, to be commander, Civil Air Patrol-U.S. Air Force, and national commander of Civil Air Patrol, with headquarters at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
His military decorations include the Silver Star, Legion of Merit with two oak leaf clusters, Distinguished Flying Cross with three oak leaf clusters, Bronze Star Medal with oak leaf cluster, Air Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster, Army Commendation Medal, Presidential Unit Citation Emblem, Air Force Outstanding Unit Award Ribbon, and Croix de Guerre with star.
General Ellis' hometown is San Francisco, Calif.
He was promoted to the temporary grade of brigadier general effective May 1, 1964, with date of rank April 29, 1964.