Robert Lee Scott Jr.

Brigadier General in the United States Air Force (1908-2006)

Robert Lee Scott Jr. (12 April 190827 February 2006) was a brigadier general in the United States Air Force and a flying ace of World War II, credited with shooting down 13 Japanese aircraft. Scott is best known for his memoir, God is My Co-Pilot (1943), about his exploits in World War II with the Flying Tigers and the United States Army Air Forces in China and Burma. The book was adapted as a film of the same name, which was released in 1945.

Robert Lee Scott Jr.


Interview with World War II magazine (January 1996)Edit

"Interview with Retired Brig. General Robert L. Scott – American World War II Ace Pilot and Hero" (1996)

  • The greatest thrill was the first time I ever flew with the Flying Tigers before I joined them. You see, they didn’t think much of us regular fliers. I had come in and gone to sleep under the mosquito netting, when a bunch of the Flying Tigers burst into my room. Not knowing what was happening, I grabbed the revolver I kept under my pillow and pointed it at them. They had come to ask if I would go on a mission with them, never thinking that I would. I readily agreed. They were really testing me out.
  • Every time I flew a mission, I had the nose of my plane painted a different color so that the Japanese would think these were different planes. I got credit for that idea back in America, but really the idea was not mine. It was Chennault’s. When flying over a city, we would split up, two or three going to the right, several over the center, some to the left. The noise created the impression that there were more planes than we really had.
  • I tried to kill the plane, not people. We heard that the Japanese shot our parachuting pilots, but I never saw that. We never shot a pilot who had bailed out. Sometimes you would fly near them and they would salute you. As for the planes, it varied. For a fighter, you fired where the wing joined the fuselage. For the bombers, you went for the engines. You didn’t want to get too close because the wounded plane would spew engine oil all over your plane.
  • I was flying with 1,000-pound bombs attached to my P-51. We were escorting B-29s sent to bomb steel mills in Korea. On the return I flew over Peking and over the Great Wall. I was fascinated with it and followed it all the way to the Yangtze River. My plane made a shadow over the wall and I said out loud, ‘O God, let me one day walk were my shadow walks.’

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