Died Feb. 28, 1990.
Eugene Porter Mussett was born in San Antonio, Texas, in 1907. H lived his early years in Memphis, Tenn.
After graduating from the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, N.Y., in 1932, Lieutenant Mussett went directly to Randolph Field, Texas, where he was awarded his pilot's wings in 1933. Today he is a command pilot; he has logged well over 4,000 hours of single engine, twin and multi-engine, and jet flying time.
In October 1933, after graduation from flying school, Lieutenant Mussett was ordered to Hawaii for his first assignment with an operational flying unit. This was the 23rd Bombardment Squadron of the 5th Composite Group at Luke Field, Hawaii. He was promoted to first lieutenant Aug. 1, 1933.
In November 1936 he returned to Langley Field, Va., as adjutant of the 2nd Bombardment Group.
In 1938 Lieutenant Mussett was given command of the 71st Bombardment Squadron (Medium). This was one of the three bomber squadrons of the 38th Bombardment Group at Langley. In this command assignment he was promoted to captain on Sept. 9, 1940.
In June 1941 the 38th Bombardment Group moved to Jackson, Miss. Captain Mussett took his squadron to Jackson and retained command until he was moved up to group staff level in March 1942. By this time he was a lieutenant colonel. He became operations officer and executive officer of the 44th Bombardment Group (Heavy) at Barksdale Field, La. A short time later he was given command of the 90th Bombardment Group at Barksdale and took his group to Greenville, S.C. He was promoted to colonel April 1, 1942. He also spent a tour with his unit at the Ford Company's Willow Run plant just prior to going overseas to the Pacific Theater. Here he worked on the design of an interim nose turret for the B-24, pending development of a definitive nose turret for this aircraft by the Materiel Command at Wright Field. The interim nose turret, which was a field adaptation of the rear turret to the nose, was actually used in the Southwest Pacific.
In September 1942 Colonel Mussett went to the Seventh Fighter Command in the Central Pacific, serving first in Hawaii as assistant executive and operations officer and moving forward to wind up World War II on Iwo Jima as deputy commander of the 7th Fighter Command, which had the mission of escorting B-29 bombers over Japan plus destroying Japanese airdromes and rail transportation.
Upon return to the United States after the war, Colonel Mussett entered the field of Air Intelligence, serving in the Pentagon first as chief of Plans and Policies and later as executive officer for the Directorate of Intelligence on the Air Staff, Headquarters U.S. Air Force. He spent from 1945 to 1949 in these assignments, assisting in the direction of the Air Force intelligence effort worldwide. During this period, he was General Norstad's (then deputy chief of staff/Operations, Headquarters U.S. Air Force) representative on the question of making the Air Force a separate service, in the implementation of the Unification Act of l947.
In August l949 Colonel Mussett was selected to be among the approximately 35 Air Force officers to attend the National War College, top level Joint Chiefs of Staff educational institution for commanders and planners, specifically aimed at future generals and high level people from the State Department and other governmental agencies. Here Colonel Mussett spent a year of intensive study of geopolitics, international relations and global strategy.
In July 1950 Colonel Mussett assumed the post of director of intelligence for the Continental Air Command at Mitchel Field, N.Y., and then moved in January 1951 to Ent Air Force Base; Colorado Springs, Colo., as chief of intelligence for the Air Defense Command.
In November 1951 Colonel Mussett was earmarked for promotion to general officer rank and was sent to Naples, Italy for an assignment for which an Air Force general officer was required. He became chief of intelligence for the commander of the NATO Command known as "Allied Forces, Southern Europe," comprising French, British, Italian, Greek and Turkish Forces. He was promoted to brigadier general Feb. 11, 1952.
In August 1953 a new director of intelligence was needed for the overall U.S. command headquarters having jurisdiction over all U.S. land, sea and air forces in Europe. General Mussett served in this capacity at Headquarters U.S. European Command, first at Frankfort, Germany and then, when the headquarters was moved, on the outskirts of Paris. On July 8, 1954 he was moved up to become deputy chief of staff of this joint headquarters, serving in this capacity until his return to the United States in 1956.
From 1956 to the present, as a major general, he has commanded the 34l5th Technical Training Center and Lowry Air Force Base, Denver, Colo. In this capacity he is responsible for the technical training of officers and airmen in the maintenance of fire control systems and bombing navigation systems of Air Force bomber and fighter aircraft, of the guidance and control systems of rockets and missiles, and of the atomic warheads of both bombs and missiles. As base commander, he directs all aspects of the installation and community of 12,000 to 18,000 military and civilian personnel.
DECORATIONS AND MEDALS
Legion of Merit
Bronze Star Medal
Asian Pacific Campaign Medal
American Defense Medal
American Campaign Medal
World War II Victory Medal
Occupation Medal, Germany
National Defense Service Medal
Armed Forces Longevity Award with six oak leaf clusters