Bankey, Ernest Edward, Jr., Col

 Service Photo   Service Details
54 kb
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Last Rank
Primary Unit
1966-1968, 3902nd Support Squadron
Service Years
1941 - 1968
Officer Collar Insignia

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

93 kb

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by SSgt Robert Bruce McClelland, Jr. to remember Bankey, Ernest Edward, Jr., Col USAF(Ret).

If you knew or served with this Airman and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Contact Info
Home Town
Wilberforce, Ohio
Last Address
Newbury Park, California

Date of Passing
Jun 15, 2009
Location of Interment
Conejo Mountain Memorial Park - Camarillo, California
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

Air Training Command Instructor (pre-1966) WW II Honorable Discharge Pin Air Force Retired AAFTTC Instructor

 Unofficial Badges 

Cold War Medal Air Ace American Fighter Aces Congressional Gold Medal

 Military Associations and Other Affiliations
American Fighter Aces AssociationAir Force Memorial (AFM)
  2016, American Fighter Aces Association
  2017, Air Force Memorial (AFM) - Assoc. Page

 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
He was credited with a total of 9.5 enemy aircraft destroyed in the air, 2 probables, and 8 destroyed on the ground during WWII. On Dec 27, 1944 he became an ace-in-a-day and also sent his famous (oft-quoted but usually paraphrased) transmission, "This is Sunkist Two. I've got 50 Jerries cornered over Bonn. Will share same with any P-51s in the vicinity. See me at smokestack level. Over and out."
Synopsis of his DSC citation:

Awarded for actions during World War II
(Citation Needed) - SYNOPSIS: Captain (Air Corps) Ernest E. Bankey, Jr. (ASN: 0-752095), United States Army Air Forces, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy while serving as Pilot of a P-51 Fighter Airplane assigned to Headquarters, 364th Fighter Group, EIGHTH Air Force, in aerial combat against enemy forces on 27 December 1944, in support of beleaguered Allied ground forces during the Battle of the Bulge. On this date Captain Bankey became an ACE in a single day, shooting down FIVE enemy aircraft and assisting in the destruction of another. Captain Bankey's unquestionable valor in aerial combat is in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, the 8th Air Force, and the United States Army Air Forces.

General Orders: Headquarters, U.S. Strategic Forces in Europe, General Orders No. 4 (1945)

Action Date: 27-Dec-44

Service: Army Air Forces

Rank: Captain

Company: Headquarters

Regiment: 364th Fighter Group

Division: 8th Air Force

Other Comments:
P-51 info & photos:
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 Ribbon Bar

Aviator (Senior)

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
USAAF Training CommandAviation Cadet Flight School383rd Fighter SquadronUS Air Force
385th Fighter SquadronAir Force Bases/ InstallationsAir Force Reserve Command Air Training Command
US Air Force576th Strategic Missile Squadron1st Strategic Aerospace DivisionStrategic Air Command (SAC)
Support Units
  1941-1942, USAAF Training Command
  1942-1943, AAF MOS 770, Aviation Cadet Flight School
  1943-1944, 383rd Fighter Squadron
  1943-1945, AAF MOS 1055, 364th Fighter Group
  1944-1944, AAF MOS 1056, 383rd Fighter Squadron
  1944-1944, AAF MOS 1055, 385th Fighter Squadron
  1945-1946, Air Force Bases/ Installations
  1946-1953, Air Force Reserve Command
  1953-1957, 1021A, Air Training Command
  1957-1958, USAFE Weapons Center
  1958-1960, 576th Strategic Missile Squadron
  1960-1963, 1st Strategic Aerospace Division
  1963-1966, Strategic Air Command (SAC)
  1966-1968, 3902nd Support Squadron
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1941-1945 World War II
  1944-1944 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Air Offensive, Europe Campaign (1942-44)
  1944-1944 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Normandy Campaign (1944)
  1944-1944 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Northern France Campaign (1944)
  1944-1945 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Rhineland Campaign (1944-45)
  1944-1945 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Ardennes Alsace Campaign (1944-45)
  1945-1945 World War II/European-African-Middle Eastern Theater/Central Europe Campaign (1945)
 My Aircraft/Missiles
PT-13 Stearman  BT-13 Valiant  AT-6 Texan  P-38 Lightning (Forked Tail Devil)  
P-51/F-51 Mustang  SM-65 Atlas Missile  SM-68/HGM-25  Titan I  Missile  LGM-30A/B  Minuteman I Missile  
LGM-25C/SM-68C Titan II Missile  
  1941-1941, PT-13 Stearman
  1941-1942, BT-13 Valiant
  1942-1942, AT-6 Texan
  1943-1944, P-38 Lightning (Forked Tail Devil)
  1944-1946, P-51/F-51 Mustang4
  1959-1962, SM-65 Atlas Missile
  1960-1963, SM-68/HGM-25 Titan I Missile
  1961-1963, LGM-30A/B Minuteman I Missile
  1962-1963, LGM-25C/SM-68C Titan II Missile
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