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First Name: Hubert

Last Name: Harmon

Birthplace: Chester, PA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Air Force (1947 - present)

Home of Record: Chester, PA
Middle Name: Reilly

Date of Birth: 03 April 1892

Date of Death: 22 February 1957

Rank: Lieutenant General

Years Served: 1915-1956
Hubert Reilly Harmon

Graduate, U.S. Military Academy, Class of 1915

•  World War I (1914 - 1918)
•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Hubert Reilly Harmon
Lieutenant General, U.S. Air Force

Hubert Reilly Harmon was born on 3 April 1892 at Chester, PA.

He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1915, as a member of "The class the stars fell on" for the exceptionally high percentage of general officers that rose from that class (59 of 164 graduates); two of them attained five-star rank (Eisenhower and Bradley.)

Harmon's first assignment was at Fort Monroe, VA, until December 1915, when he was transferred to Fort Andrews, MA. In 1917, he was assigned to Kelly Field, TX, where he organized and served as Commandant of the Ground Officer's Training School, and later as Aeronautical Officer for the Southern Department and Engineer Officer for Kelly Field. In March 1918, he was appointed Executive Officer at Taliaferra Field, TX, and a month later was placed in charge of Barron Field, TX.

In 1918, Harmon completed Advanced Training in Pursuit Aviation at Issoudun, France, and became Chief of Staff of the Air Service Command of the Third Army at Coblenz, Germany. On 1 July 1920, he transferred to the Air Service.

In October 1920, Harmon was assigned as Assistant Executive in the Office of the Chief of the Air Service at Washington, DC, and served as an Aide at the White House. In July 1924, he was transferred to Bolling Field, and then to McCook Field, OH, where he entered the Air Service Engineering School, from which he graduated in August 1925.

He returned to the Office of the Chief of the Air Service in 1926 as Chief of the Information Division and again served as an Aide at the White House. From 1927-29, Harmon served as Military Attaché for Aviation in London. He then was assigned as an Instructor at the U.S. Military Academy. In 1933, he graduated from the Air Corps Tactical School at Maxwell Field, AL, and in 1935, he graduated from the Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, KS. In 1936, he was Commander of the 19th Bombardment Group. Harmon graduated from the Army War College in 1938, and was then assigned to the War Department General Staff as Chief of the Operations Branch, Personnel Division.

In 1940, Harmon commanded the Advanced Flying School at Kelly Field and, one year later, he was named Commanding General of the Gulf Coast Air Corps Training Center at Randolph Field, TX. In 1942, Harmon was Commanding General of the Sixth Air Force and a month later was promoted to Major General. He was promoted to Lieutenant General on 19 February 1943. In 1943, he was Deputy Commander for the air forces of the South Pacific Area and in January 1944 he commanded the 13th Air Force. In March-June, Harmon was commander of AirSols, all Allied air units in the Solomon Islands Campaign. In June 1944, he was Commander of the Sixth Air Force in the Caribbean.

In 1947, Harmon was appointed senior Air Force member of the Military and Naval Staff Committee of the United Nations in New York City. The next year, he was given the additional duty of U.S. delegate to the Inter-American Defense Board, and in 1949 was made Special Assistant for Air Academy Matters at Air Force Headquarters in Washington, DC.

For Lieutenant General Harmon, 1953 was a busy year. He retired from active duty on 27 February but was recalled to active duty the following day with the same duties. He reverted to retired status on 30 June, but was again called back to active duty as a Lieutenant General on 8 November at the request of the President of the U.S. to become Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff for Air Academy Matters. On 14 August 1954, Harmon became the first Superintendent of the U.S. Air Force Academy at its temporary home at Lowry Air Force Base, CO.

General Harmon reverted to retired status on 31 July 1956.

Medals and Awards

Distinguished Service Medal (3 Awards)
Legion of Merit
Distinguished Flying Cross
Air Medal
Commendation Ribbon
World War I Victory Medal
Army of Occupation of Germany Medal (World War I)
American Defense Service Medal
American Campaign Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with 3 Service Stars
World War II Victory Medal
National Defense Service Medal
Order of Balboa (Panama)
Military Order of Ayacacho, Grand Officer (Peru)
Aviation Cross, First Class (Peru)
Star of Adbon Calderon, First Class (Ecuador)
Commander Order of Leopold with Palm (Belgium)


The main administration building at the U.S. Air Force Academy, Harmon Hall, is named in his honor.

Death and Burial

Lieutenant General Hubert Reilly Harmon died on 22 February 1957 at Lackland AFB, TX. He is buried at the U.S. Air Force Academy Cemetery in Colorado Springs, CO.

Honoree ID: 2604   Created by: MHOH




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