Military Bios

Major General John B. Kidd:

Military Branch:United States Airforce
Retired Feb. 1, 1974.  
Major General John Burns Kidd is chief, Military Assistance Advisory Group, Italy.
General Kidd was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1919. His formative years were spent in Lakewood, Ohio; Winnetka, Ill.; and New Rochelle, N.Y., where he graduated from high school in 1937. He attended Oberlin College, Ohio, until accepted as an aviation cadet in February 1940. He completed flying school at Kelly Field, Texas, in October 1940 with a rating as pilot and commission as second lieutenant, U.S. Amy Air Corps.
During World War II, his first assignment was as a flying instructor at the Advanced Flying School, Kelly Field, Texas. After completing B-17 aircraft training in May 1942, he served as squadron operations officer of the 52d Squadron, 29th Bombardment Group, at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., and Gowen Field, Idaho. In October 1942, he was named commander of the newly formed 351st Squadron, 100th Bombardment Group. He took his squadron to England in June 1943 where it joined the 3d Air Division. Immediately upon arriving he was named group operations officer. In the air war against Germany he led group, wing and division formations against a wide variety of targets. He returned to the United States in August 1944. During 1945 he served as director of operations and training at the Army Air Forces Flexible Gunnery School, Las Vegas, Nev.
General Kidd went to Germany in March 1949 where he served as chief, Air Traffic Control, and chief, Flight Operations, in the combined airlift headquarters during the Berlin Airlift. From October 1949 to May 1952 he was commander of the 12th Troop Carrier Squadron, 60th Troop Carrier Group, and also served as group operations officer. While in Europe he attended a course on Air Defense at the United Kingdom Land-Air Warfare School, Old Sarum, England.
He returned to the United States in 1952 and was assigned to the Joint Plans Branch, War Plans Division, Directorate of Plans, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, working primarily on Pacific-Far East plans. During this period he participated in five- and eight-nation conferences on Pacific defense matters; represented the chief of staff, U.S. Air Force, at the first Southeast Asia Treaty Organization Military Staff Planners' Conference in Honolulu; and coordinated military planning matters between the Joint Chiefs of Staff, State Department and Central Intelligence Agency. He was chief of the Joint Plans Branch for one year prior to attending the Air War College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., from September 1956 to June 1957.
The following three years his duties centered on nuclear activities as director of operations at the Air Force Special Weapons Center in Albuquerque, N.M., then as operations officer, deputy commander, and briefly as commander of the 4950th Test Group - the Air Force nuclear test support unit - Eniwetok; Indian Springs, Nev.; and Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M.
General Kidd went to Hawaii in July 1960 as director of plans and programs for the Pacific Communications Area and a year later became assistant chief of staff, plans; at Headquarters Pacific Air Forces, Hickam Air Force Base.
In September 1963, he returned to the Pentagon as a member of the Pacific Division, J-3, Joint Staff, Organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Later, he became a division chief. In July 1966, General Kidd reported to the commander in chief, U.S. Pacific Command, as deputy assistant chief of staff for operations.
In September 1969, he returned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force and was assigned to the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel as deputy director, personnel planning; in July 1970 became director; and in July 1971 was appointed director, Personnel Programs. He became chief, Military Assistance Advisory Group, Italy, July 1, 1972.
His military decorations and awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster, Distinguished Flying Cross with oak leaf cluster, Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal, and Croix de Guerre with palm (France). He is a command pilot.
He was promoted to the grade of major general effective May 1, 1970 with date of rank Aug. 10, 1965.


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