Flying Tiger Line Pilots Association
May 13, 1924- March 2, 1979
From the moment he saw his first plane fly over the Oklahoma farm where he was raised, George Edge was in love with planes and flying. He was born in Roosevelt, Oklahoma on May 13, 1924, a town well named for such a staunch Democrat. George was one of eight children born to Claude and Joanna Edge. He attended the one-roomed schoolhouse where his mother was often the substitute teacher.
In addition to tending the family farm, athletics were a daily part of Edge family life. All of the Edge children were outstanding athletes, and George excelled at wrestling and was captain of the Hobart High School football team.
After graduating from high school at age 16, George enrolled in Junior College on a wrestling scholarship and was working toward a degree in Aeronautical Engineering. He left school in 1942 to enlist in the Army Air Corps, and because he was only 17 at the time he needed his parents signed permission to join. He first joined the Glider Program, but when that program was eliminated he transferred into aviation cadets.
Upon graduating in January of 1944 he joined the Training Command and began flying the B17s, B24s and B29s that were used to train bombardiers. After the war ended in 1945, George elected to stay in the military and went oversees for 3 years in the Troop Carrier Squadron where he spent time in the Philippines, Okinawa and Japan. In 1948 he transferred to the MATS – Military Air Transport Service – and was sent to Westover Air Force Base in Chicopee, Massachusetts.
Shortly after his arrival at Westover, the Russians began their blockade of Berlin and George immediately left for Europe to participate in the Berlin Air Lift. Upon his return to Westover, he met and married Jean Graham in 1950.
Later in 1950, George left the Air Force and on June 13 was hired by the Flying Tiger Line just 10 days before the start of the Korean War. He was told at the time of hire that the job would last only about 3 months, but somehow that 3 months stretched to 29 years. This was the only civilian job George ever held. George died doing the job he loved in Narita on March 2, 1979.
George’s wife Jean and son George Edge, Jr live in Mountain View, California.
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