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First Name: Joseph

Last Name: Nazzaro

Birthplace: New York, NY, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Air Force (1947 - present)

Middle Name: James

Date of Birth: 21 March 1913

Date of Death: 05 February 1990

Rank: General

Years Served: 1936-1971
Joseph James Nazzaro

Graduate, U.S. Military Academy, Class of 1936

•  World War II (1941 - 1945)


Joseph James Nazzaro

General, U.S. Air Force

Joseph James Nazzaro was born in New York, NY, on 21 March 1913. He attended high school in New York, Millard Preparatory School in Washington, DC, and the U.S. Military Academy. He graduated from the Academy in 1936 with a commission as a Second Lieutenant of Infantry. After graduation from Advanced Flying School at Kelly Field, TX, in October 1937, he was transferred to the U.S. Army Air Corps.

He then served in the Philippine Islands and, from 1940-42, Nazzaro held assignments with the 7th Bombardment Group, Salt Lake City, UT; 39th Bombardment Group, Geiger Field, WA, and commanded the 302nd Bombardment Group, Tucson, AZ.

Early in 1943, Nazzaro was named Commander of the 381st Bombardment Group, Pyote, TX, and led the unit to England in May where it joined the Eighth Air Force. In January 1944, he became Deputy Director of Operations, U.S. Strategic Air Forces in Europe. In August 1944, Nazzaro returned to the U.S. and was assigned as Deputy Commander, 316th Bombardment Wing, Colorado Springs, CO. The wing was moved to Okinawa in December 1945, at which time he assumed Command.

In May 1946, he became Chief of the Operations Division, Headquarters Strategic Air Command, Bolling Field, Washington, DC. Following graduation from the Air Command and Staff School at Maxwell Field, AL, Nazzaro became an instructor at the school, a position he held until December 1948. He then returned to Washington for duty in the War Plans Division, Directorate of Plans, Headquarters U.S. Air Force.

In August 1952, Nazzaro moved to Lake Charles Air Force Base, LA, to Command the 68th Bombardment Wing. A year later he was named Commander of the 38th Air Division, Hunter Air Force Base, GA.

In June 1955, Nazzaro was appointed Commander of Strategic Air Command's 15th Air Division in Morocco. He returned to the U.S. in July 1957 and was assigned to U.S. Air Force HQ as Director of Personnel Planning.

In July 1959, Nazzaro was named Deputy Commander, Fifteenth Air Force at March Air Force Base, CA, and in October 1962, he became Commander of the Eighth Air Force at Westover Air Force Base, MA.

In December 1964, Nazzaro became Vice Commander-in-Chief of Strategic Air Command. On 1 February 1967, he was promoted to the four-star rank of General and named as Commander-in-Chief of SAC. He assumed duties as Commander-in-Chief of Pacific Air Forces with Headquarters at Hickam Air Force Base, HI, in August 1968.

General Nazzaro retired from the Air Force on 1 August 1971.

Medals and Awards

Air Force Distinguished Service Medal (2 Awards)

Silver Star Medal

Legion of Merit (4 Awards)

Distinguished Flying Cross

Air Medal (2 Awards)

He was rated a Command Pilot, Combat Observer and Aircraft Observer.

Death and Burial

General Joseph James Nazzaro died on 5 February 1990 at age 76. He is buried at the United States Air Force Academy Cemetery in Colorado Springs, El Paso County, CO.

Honoree ID: 800   Created by: MHOH




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