Lyles, John Thomas, Jr., Capt

 Service Photo   Service Details
45 kb
View Time Line
Last Rank
Last Primary AFSC/MOS
M 1055-Pilot, Single-Engine Fighter
Last AFSC Group
Primary Unit
1945-1945, M 1055, 507th Fighter Group
Service Years
1940 - 1945

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

47 kb

Home State
South Carolina
South Carolina
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by CMSgt Don Skinner to remember Lyles, John Thomas, Jr., Capt.

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.
Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address
Ie Shima Island

Casualty Date
May 20, 1945
Non Hostile- Died while Missing
Air Loss, Crash - Sea
Marshall Islands
World War II
Location of Interment
Courts of the Missing at the Honolulu Memorial - Honolulu, Hawaii
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Walls of the Missing

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
World War II Fallen
  1945, World War II Fallen

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

Pilot Badge

 Unit Assignments
US Army (USA)507th Fighter Group
  1940-1942, M 0659, US Army (USA)
  1945-1945, M 1055, 507th Fighter Group
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1945-1945 Asian-Pacific Theater/Western Pacific Campaign (1944-45)
 Colleges Attended 
Clemson University
  1935-1939, Clemson University
 My Aircraft/Missiles
P-47 Thunderbolt (Jug)  P-51/F-51 Mustang  
  1943-1945, P-47 Thunderbolt (Jug)
  1945-1945, P-51/F-51 Mustang
 Additional Information

Last Known Activity
John Thomas Lyles, Jr. was born in Newberry, South Carolina on September 12, 1918. He was the son of John T. and Maggie A, Lyles, Sr. He graduated from Newberry High School in 1935. He then enrolled at Clemson University, graduating in 1939 with a Bachelor of Science degree.

He enlisted in the U.S. Army on July 25, 1940. After basic training, he was sent to Fort Benning, Georgia as an instructor. In January 1942, he transferred to the Army Air Forces and underwent pilot training. He received his commission and wings at Moultrie Field, Georgia on August 5, 1942. He then spent the next two years with operational units, becoming an experienced P-47 pilot. Sometime during this period, he married Kathryn Crawford.

In March 1945, he was sent to the South Pacific Area and assigned to the 463rd Fighter Squadron of the 507th Fighter Group. on May 20, 1945, while performing a scheduled altitude test over Eniwetok Atoll in the Marshall Islands, his wing man lost sight of Captain Lyles' aircraft. It was never seen again.

He is memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing at Honolulu Memorial and Cemetery in Hawaii. His name is also on the Roll of Honor on the Old Tillman Hall Bell Marker at Clemson University.
The State (Columbia, SC) newspaper issue of 6/13/1946 p2



Captain Lyles, while an experienced P-47 pilot, was flying P-51D # 44-63982, unnamed, at the time of his death. According to records, the 507th Fighter Group was converting from P-47 aircraft to the P-51 at this time.

Missing Air Crew Report 16554 was issued to cover this loss. As this incident occured before the cessation of hostilities with Japan, Captain Lyles should, as a MIA and never recovered, have been awarded the Purple Heart Medal. However, his record does not indicate this award.

Service photo source:

Copyright Inc 2003-2011