By Ken Esten Cooke
Leslie Bray vividly remembers when his new flight squadron was shipped to Calcutta, India to do missions into Bangkok, Thailand during World War II.
Bray was a squadron commander, leading 60 aviators and 25 new airplanes. Missions into Burma were three times daily.
“All of my pilots were very junior,” he said. “Most were not married and most had just come out of flying school.
“We found out when we got there that we were no longer under the Army, and they assigned us to the British 14th Army that was fighting to recapture in Burma,” he said. “For two years, we were stationed in India, flying across the Chiyun Mountains.
“The British had no supply system at all, and we took them every round of ammunition, every bite of food, everything came to them from flying usually three round trips per day, India to Burma,” he said.