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First Name: William

Last Name: McKittrick

Birthplace: Pelzer, SC, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Marines (present)

Middle Name: Luke

Date of Birth: 30 June 1897

Date of Death: 27 March 1984

Rank: Major General

Years Served:
William Luke McKittrick

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


William Luke McKittrick
Major General, U.S. Marine Corps

William Luke McKittrick was born on 30 June 1897 and grew up Pelzer, SC. He graduated from The Citadel with the Class of 1918 and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in March of that year. He received his commission as a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps in December 1918.

During his first forty-two months of service, McKittrick was a line officer posted to Quantico, VA, and the Dominican Republic. Deciding that he wanted to be a pilot, in 1922 he applied for, and was transferred to, Marine Aviation. He received his flight training at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, FL, and was designated a Naval Aviator in 1923.

McKittrick's first flying assignment was at Quantico; later he was sent to Haiti. For the remainder of the 1920s, his duty assignments varied between stations in the U.S. and Nicaragua. Prior to the U.S. entry into World War II, he was detailed to Cairo, Egypt, to observe British air operations against the Axis Powers in the desert.

In February 1942, two months after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, McKittrick, now a Lieutenant Colonel, took command of Marine Aircraft Group (MAG) 24 and moved it to Ewa Field, HI, to join the 4th Marine Air Base Defense Aircraft Wing. Ewa Field had been heavily damaged, and most of its aircraft destroyed, in the 7 December 1941 attack.

In March 1943, MAG 24 joined the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing at Bougainville Island, Papua New Guinea, where McKittrick assumed additional duties as Commander, Air Operations, Northern Solomons. He later became Chief of Staff of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. In the late months of the war, McKittrick was Air Defense Commander at Saipan, in the Northern Mariana Islands. He later returned to the U.S. to serve as Assistant Director of Aviation at Headquarters, Marine Corps, in Washington, DC.

He was promoted to Brigadier General in January 1945. In 1947, he was sent to Guam to command the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. Two years later, in July 1949, he became Chief of Staff and Inspector General of the Department of Pacific in San Francisco, CA. In 1950, McKittrick was assigned as Commander of the Marine Corps Air Station, at Cherry Point, NC.

McKittrick s final assignment before his retirement from active duty in October 1951 was as Commanding General of the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing.

Death and Burial

Major General William Luke McKittrick died on 27 March 1984 in Pensacola, FL, at the age of 87. He is buried at Barrancas National Cemetery in Pensacola, FL.

He was survived by his wife, Edith I. McKittrick, who had served in the U.S. Navy. She died on 12 October 1996 and was buried next to her husband.

Honoree ID: 3290   Created by: MHOH




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