Retired Sep. 30, 1957. Died Dec. 1, 1974.
Roger James Browne was born in Norfolk, Neb., in 1907. After living for several years in San Diego, Calif., his family moved to Iowa City, Iowa, where he graduated from high school in 1923 and attended the State University of Iowa for two years. Appointed to the U.S. Military Academy in July 1925, he graduated in June 1929 and was commissioned a second lieutenant of Cavalry.
Entering flying training, General Browne graduated in October 1930 and was assigned as a pursuit pilot in the 24th Pursuit Squadron at France Field, Canal Zone, also serving with the 78th Pursuit Squadron. In October 1933 he was assigned to Kelly Field, Texas as an instructor at the Advanced Flying School, serving in that capacity for the next six years.
In September 1939 General Browne was appointed commander of the 24th Pursuit Squadron at Albrook Field, Canal Zone. Named commanding officer of the 16th Pursuit Group at Albrook in January 1941, the following July he assumed command of the 32nd Fighter Group at France Field.
Assigned to the War Department General Staff as a member of the African -Middle Eastern Section of the Operations Division in August 1942, that January the general became a member of the European Theater Group of the Operations Division. During this assignment he was given extended duty with the headquarters of the U.S. Army in the European Theater as director of the Operations Branch. In May 1944 General Browne was permanently assigned to the European Theater where he served first as assistant chief of staff for operations and later as chief of staff of the 19th Tactical Air Command of the Ninth Air Force, in support of General George Patton's Third U.S. Army.
Entering the Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., in October 1945, upon graduation in February 1946, General Browne remained there as chief of the Air Section. In September 1947 he entered the National War College, graduated in July l948 and was assigned to the Plans Division in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations at Air Force headquarters, becoming chief of the Resources Division in that office in January 1949.
Going overseas, in August 1949 the general was named chief of the U.S. Air Force Group of the American Mission for Aid to Greece, with station at Athens. Three months later he was assigned to the Joint U.S. Military Advisory Group in London, England, as the U.S. Planner of NATO.
Returning to the United States, in August 1951 General Browne joined Air Force headquarters, Washington, D.C. as deputy director of manpower and organization in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations. Two months later he became director of manpower and organization, and in July 1953 was appointed special assistant to the deputy chief of staff for operations.
Named vice commander of Continental Air Command, Mitchel Air Force Base, N.Y., in September 1953, the following May General Browne assumed command of First Air Force, also at Mitchel Air Force Base.
His decorations include the Legion of Merit with three oak leaf clusters, Bronze Star Medal, Air Medal, French Croix de Guerre with Palm and Legion of Honor, Luxembourg Croix de Guerre and Greek Order of Phoenix, Degree of Commander. He is rated a command pilot and technical observer.