World War II veteran longtime member of Newport Harbor Post 291

Newport Beach, CA

Lt. Col. Don A. Oldis (USAF Ret.)
Lt. Col. Don A. Oldis flew with the military in three wars: WWII, Korea and Vietnam. He has flown many aircraft, including the P-38, P-39 and P-51 in WWII; the P-51, F-80, F-84 and F-86 in Korea; and the C-119, C-121 and C-124 in Vietnam (as an Air Guard pilot). Don has many fascinating and thrilling stories from wartime flying.
He served in the 11th Air Force, 20th Air Force and Air National Guard in Iowa, Oklahoma and California. He was a well-regarded pilot, and became a designated Wing Flying Safety Officer.
Oldis’ active duty dates ran from November 1942 to September 1946, and April 1951 to December 1952. He was part of the Reserves from 1946 to 1951 and 1952 to 1972.
Oldis served in the Aleutian Islands during WWII, and with special operations in Korea and Vietnam. His decorations and awards encompass the Pacific Theater, Korean Theater and Vietnam ribbons. His fighter planes carried atomic bombs with Russian targets, Europe, Pacific Islands and trips to Vietnam.
Oldis was one of these exceptional warfighters, knowing every day that he might be called upon to fly what amounted to a suicide mission. He and his commands stood ready, held that vital front line and in retrospect provided the deterrence that finally proved to be both effective and victorious.

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