Tonight was or exemplar dinner.
Each class chooses a historical figure that they look up to.
Previous class exemplars have included Gen Patton, Gen Carl Spaatz, and General Billy Mitchell.
The Class of 2009 choose Col Hubert “Hub” Zemke.
Zemke was really cool.
He led a fighter squadron during WWII.
They escorted bombers to their target.
Zemke used a different strategy to escorting.
Instead of chasing after injured enemy fighters that were fleeing the battle to score more kills,
They stayed with the bombers.
Because of this,
None of the squadron became Aces while in that squadron,
But they never lost a bomber to enemy fighters.
On the way back from a mission,
The weather got really bad.
The wings were ripped off his plane and he crash landed in German territory.
Needless to say he got captured.
When he got to the POW camp,
He found himself the senior officer among 9,000 POWs.
The camp was in miserable condition.
By the time the war was over,
He had taken over the camp,
Convinced the Germans to surrender,
And had more weapons than the guards did.
This guy was awesome.
And another cool little piece of trivia,
He flew P-51s,
And we’re the 51st class.
How sweet is that.