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Monday, April 13, 2009

Norred receives Distinguished Flying Cross

Sixty-six years after leading a dangerous, but successful, B-26 bombing mission over the skies of Sicily in 1943, the Air Force posthumously awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor to World War II Veteran Capt. William S. Norred of Pineapple.

Lt. Gen. Allen G. Peck, Commander of Air University, at Maxwell Air Force Base presented the award to Norred’s wife, Doris Norred, at a ceremony today in Greenville.

Norred was awarded the DFC with Valor for heroism while participating in aerial flight during WWII.

On June 15, 1943, while serving as both a flight leader and formation commander of a B-26 squadron, he was leading a mission over Rizzo Airdrome in Sicily when his plane was damaged by intense anti-aircraft fire.

Masterfully keeping his B-26 under control, Norred led his formation through evasive action and completed a devastating bombardment of his target. Shortly thereafter, 12 enemy fighters attached the unescorted bombers, but Norred skillfully outmaneuvered them and five of the hostile aircraft were destroyed.

Before Norred’s death at the age of 91 last year, the Butler County Veterans Service Office in Greenville contacted the Air Force with a request to review his service records to determine his eligibility for the DFC.

On Dec. 10, 2008, the Air Force honored Norred for his heroism in WWII by approving the award.

Photo courtesy of the Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs.


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I grew up in the military. Mom was an Air Force nurse for a few years, dad was a navigator on B-52s, among other things. One grandfather served in World War II, uncle is retired Navy, other grandfather and great-uncle served in Korea and a cousin is currently serving in the Marine Corps. Currently, I'm the military reporter for the Great Falls Tribune in Montana. Previously, 

As a military kids, we moved all over. As an adult, I've traveled all over and moved for work. But now, I'm putting down roots in Montana with my boyfriend. We just bought a house and are slowly but surely making it our home. We have more land that we know what to do with at the moment. Now we're getting a garden started, tearing down walls and having loads of fun at what we call the Homestead.

In a part life, I did PR for the guy who built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, social media for the National Museum of Health and Medicine, before that, edited two military technology magazines for a publishing group in the DC area and before that, I was the military reporter (among other things) at the Montgomery Advertiser, covering Maxwell Air Force Base, the Alabama National Guard, veterans and anything else military related in the area. And in between all of that, I leave town, preferably the country, whenever possible. It all started when I spent a semester in New Zealand.

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