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Marine Corps pilot, decorated for heroic efforts in 3 wars, dies in Oregon at 89
Stars and Stripes ^ | Wednesday, July 1, 2009 | Pacific edition

Posted on 06/30/2009 8:12:44 AM PDT by xzins

, Marine Corps Capt. Kenneth Reusser and his wingman were flying a mission in the Pacific region during World War II when they came upon a Japanese surveillance plane.

The cold air had frozen the fighters’ guns, so Reusser tipped his F4U-4 Corsair toward the aircraft, allowing his wingman to rake his propeller across the plane’s tail. The move downed the enemy plane and would have been a heroic highlight of any military career. But it was just a start for Reusser.

Known as one of the most decorated Marine Corps aviators ever, he died June 20 of natural causes at age 89 in Oregon.

Reusser was awarded 59 medals during his career, including two Navy Crosses, four Purple Hearts and two Legions of Merit. He retired from the service a colonel, The Associated Press and Oregon media reported.

He was shot down five times during 259 combat missions in World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam — at least once in each conflict.

In 1950, Reusser led an attack on a North Korean factory. Despite heavy anti-aircraft fire, he dipped down to window level of the facility and saw that it was being used to repair enemy tanks, according to the citation for his second Navy Cross.

He flew to his aircraft carrier to re-arm with rockets and napalm and then returned to destroy the facility, again braving the anti-aircraft fire.

Reusser’s plane had been damaged and his heavy ordnance was gone, but before returning from the mission, he flew low and pumped his machine guns into a North Korean oil tanker, the citation said.

The tanker exploded, knocking his plane momentarily out of control, but he managed to right it and return to the carrier.

In Vietnam, Reusser flew helicopters and was leading a rescue mission when his Huey was shot down. He was badly wounded and needed skin grafts over 35 percent of his burned body, the AP reported.

Reusser lived in the Portland suburb of Milwaukie. He was born Jan. 27, 1920, the son of a minister, and raced motorcycles to help pay for college and earn a pilot’s license before WWII.

After retiring from the Marine Corps, he worked for Lockheed Aircraft and the Piasecki Helicopter Corp. and was active in veterans groups.


TOPICS: Front Page News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: hero; marine; warrior

1 posted on 06/30/2009 8:12:44 AM PDT by xzins
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To: Lancey Howard; RedRover; P-Marlowe; pissant; Girlene; brityank; lilycicero
Reusser was awarded 59 medals during his career, including two Navy Crosses, four Purple Hearts and two Legions of Merit.

Wherever these men come from, Lord, send us more of them. In this hour of great national need we need them more than ever.

2 posted on 06/30/2009 8:14:27 AM PDT by xzins (Chaplain Says: Jesus befriends those who seek His help.)
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To: xzins

RIP


3 posted on 06/30/2009 8:15:12 AM PDT by Dubya-M-DeesWent2SyriaStupid!
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To: xzins

God bless this man and men like him, I really hope the US has more like him where he came from.


4 posted on 06/30/2009 8:16:20 AM PDT by Bulwyf
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To: xzins
Barukh Dayyan Ha'Emet (Blessed be the True Judge).

May his soul be bound in the bonds of eternity.

5 posted on 06/30/2009 8:17:49 AM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Vayiftach HaShem 'et-pi ha'aton vato'mer leVil`am meh-`asiti lekha ki hikkitani zeh shalosh regalim)
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To: Bulwyf; NoObamaFightForConservatives

And the media’s still discussing some soprano male singer who bleached his face white, trimmed his nose, slept with little boys and abused drugs.

I doubt they’ll even mention Reusser, but he’s the one who kept them safe while they slept.


6 posted on 06/30/2009 8:20:03 AM PDT by xzins (Chaplain Says: Jesus befriends those who seek His help.)
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To: xzins

Semper fi, you sure could “fly,” RIP!


7 posted on 06/30/2009 8:21:23 AM PDT by meandog (Doh!)
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To: xzins

Semper Fi, Shipmate.


8 posted on 06/30/2009 8:21:36 AM PDT by pabianice
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To: xzins

RIP Col Reusser.

We sure need more men like you these days - who understand what selfless service means.


9 posted on 06/30/2009 8:22:02 AM PDT by roaddog727 (Built Ford tough not Obama weak.)
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To: xzins
Wherever these men come from, Lord, send us more of them. In this hour of great national need we need them more than ever.

They're out there right now. Major Brian Olier, from my Sunday School class, is right now on his second tour of Iraq. Don't lose heart.

10 posted on 06/30/2009 8:27:07 AM PDT by MuttTheHoople
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To: xzins

WOW! what a story God Bless and rest in peace.


11 posted on 06/30/2009 8:27:31 AM PDT by Cheetahcat (Zero the Wright kind of Racist! We are in a state of War with Democrats)
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To: MuttTheHoople

My son, too, just arrived in Iraq on his 2nd tour.

You add Josh to your prayer list and I’ll add Brian to ours.

Deal?


12 posted on 06/30/2009 8:28:23 AM PDT by xzins (Chaplain Says: Jesus befriends those who seek His help.)
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To: xzins

Another warrior star shines brightly in the night skies.......


13 posted on 06/30/2009 8:28:31 AM PDT by Boonie
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To: Cheetahcat

Ever wonder why the media won’t tell the stories of men (and women) like these?

I’ve often thought it was an agenda that didn’t want to elevate the military.

As I get older, I’ve changed my mind. I think it’s jealousy. The jealousy of someone doing nothing directed at those who made a real difference.


14 posted on 06/30/2009 8:31:00 AM PDT by xzins (Chaplain Says: Jesus befriends those who seek His help.)
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To: xzins

Thanks for the ping,
It’s getting to seem like America doesn’t deserve great men like this anymore.


15 posted on 06/30/2009 9:04:51 AM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: xzins
God bless the men that fly and fight.

/johnny

16 posted on 06/30/2009 9:19:49 AM PDT by JRandomFreeper (God Bless us all, each, and every one.)
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To: xzins
Here are some more (Iraq, 2008)
17 posted on 06/30/2009 9:26:26 AM PDT by 12Gauge687 (Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice)
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To: xzins
And some women, too (1st Radio analyst crew)
18 posted on 06/30/2009 9:29:48 AM PDT by 12Gauge687 (Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice)
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To: xzins

they probably convinced MJ to take one for the team so folks would be distracted from the real issues. I for one am glad that’s one less child diddler I have to worry about.


19 posted on 06/30/2009 9:36:44 AM PDT by Bulwyf
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To: xzins

Semper Fi to a brother airwinger, RIP!


20 posted on 06/30/2009 9:37:33 AM PDT by Airwinger (Semper Fi, Time to use that motto for our Constitution.)
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To: xzins
"Ever wonder why the media won’t tell the stories of men (and women) like these?"

This brave Marine's story and death isn't even being told here in OR. City rat libs are too busy pushing their agendas to take notice and honor a true hero.

21 posted on 06/30/2009 10:24:51 AM PDT by SiVisPacemParaBellum (Peace through superior firepower!)
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To: xzins

“Ever wonder why the media won’t tell the stories of men (and women) like these?”

Too busy covering the drug-induced death of the freakish “hero” Michael Jackson...


22 posted on 06/30/2009 10:27:34 AM PDT by astounded (The democrat party is a clear and present danger to America.)
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To: xzins; magslinger

Dang, slinger; anyone who gets a kill sawing off the bad guy’s tail with his prop deserves a NAVAIR ping, even if he is a Marine! (I always thought that was a sea-story)

Never mind TWO Navy Crosses...

Just damn!


23 posted on 06/30/2009 10:44:09 AM PDT by Right Winged American (No matter how Cynical I get, I just can't keep up!)
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To: xzins; MuttTheHoople

I’ll pray for them both, and if you want to freepmail me addresses, care packages can be arranged. :-)


24 posted on 06/30/2009 10:46:27 AM PDT by Mr. Silverback (We're definitely in the Rise of the Empire era, but is Obama Valorum or Palpatine?)
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To: xzins; All

A hero proved in liberating strife. May he rest in peace.


25 posted on 06/30/2009 10:48:45 AM PDT by Mr. Silverback (We're definitely in the Rise of the Empire era, but is Obama Valorum or Palpatine?)
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To: xzins
“Ever wonder why the media won’t tell the stories of men (and women) like these?

I’ve often thought it was an agenda that didn’t want to elevate the military.

As I get older, I’ve changed my mind. I think it’s jealousy. The jealousy of someone doing nothing directed at those who made a real difference.”

Back When I was growing up this would have made the front page,Now with the Marxist MSM never ever will happen. Thank God we have a little of the real news coming through via the Internet.

26 posted on 06/30/2009 10:49:59 AM PDT by Cheetahcat (Zero the Wright kind of Racist! We are in a state of War with Democrats)
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To: xzins
"Wherever these men come from, Lord, send us more of them."

I'm convinced He has done so.


27 posted on 06/30/2009 10:56:24 AM PDT by Redbob (W.W.J.B.D.: "What Would Jack Bauer Do?")
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To: xzins
He was born Jan. 27, 1920, the son of a minister, and raced motorcycles to help pay for college and earn a pilot’s license before WWII.

He was in his 20's during WWII, his 30's during Korea and his late 40's - 50's during Vietnam. That adds even more to his greatness, IMO.

28 posted on 06/30/2009 10:57:49 AM PDT by Mind-numbed Robot (Not all that needs to be done needs to be done by the government)
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To: xzins
Wherever these men come from, Lord, send us more of them.

They come from American families.

The "left" is carrying out a decades-long cultural war against the family.

Coincidence?

I think not!

29 posted on 06/30/2009 11:00:31 AM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: ArrogantBustard

The “left” is carrying out a decades-long cultural war against the family.....

Indeed!....thus you can see the treason of the left!


30 posted on 06/30/2009 11:07:49 AM PDT by AngelesCrestHighway
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To: xzins

Fair winds & following seas, Col. You were a giant among men.


31 posted on 06/30/2009 11:08:19 AM PDT by quikdrw (Life is tough....it's even tougher if you are stupid.)
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To: Right Winged American
I agree. That is why I pinged this thread.

In order to keep ping volume down, I don't usually ping to reposts. Thanks, though. I do depend on pings to help me catch every Navair story, and I would have hated to miss that one.

32 posted on 06/30/2009 11:37:00 AM PDT by magslinger (Inside every father is a Bryan Mills waiting to get out.)
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bookmarked


33 posted on 06/30/2009 4:49:26 PM PDT by Freedom2specul8 (Please pray for our troops.... http://www.americasupportsyou.mil/)
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To: pabianice

Chesty Puller is shaking his hand and hoisting a few tonight.
RIP
Semper Fi.


34 posted on 06/30/2009 4:54:41 PM PDT by Texas resident ( Cut n Shoot Texas: Mayberry for rednecks)
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To: xzins

RIP.


35 posted on 06/30/2009 7:32:38 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (~"This is what happens when you find a stranger in the Alps !"~~)
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To: magslinger

I stand corrected.

We’ve lost another hell of a man.

And God knows, there pretty thin on the ground these days...


36 posted on 06/30/2009 11:19:36 PM PDT by Right Winged American (No matter how Cynical I get, I just can't keep up!)
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