Lt. General Barton K. Yount, the man who made the Army Air Force the most formidable air power in the world

Lieutenant General Barton K. Yount was the man behind training the US Army Air Force into the most formidable Air Power in the world - and one of the biggest supporters and advocates of the WASP.

In 1943, General Yount was charged with reshaping the Army Air Forces Training commands, combining both the Flying Training and Technical Training commands to speed up the output of flying and ground personnel. The new training command under General Yount would create the ultimate team between pilot and mechanic - those who flew the planes, and those who kept the planes in the air. It was also designed to boost the numbers of pilots and plane mechanics, as this was critical to winning the War.

Barton K. Yount airplane watching

In August of 1943, when the WASP program was officially launched as another component of addressing pilot shortages, General Yount recommended training the WASP under the auspices of the AAFTC. He was greatly impressed and reported to the Army Air Force officials that the women pilots were "outstanding".

General Yount's training methods and emphasis on safety were credited with the successful training of the WASP and hundreds of thousands of pilots from all branches of the U.S. military, an important component to Allied success in World War II.

General Yount was awarded the French Legion of Honor (Chevalier), and Order of the Crown of Italy (Officer). Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Legion of Merit, Air Medal, Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire, Officer of Legion of Honor (France), Officer, Order of Crown of Italy, Grand Officer of Orange-Nassau (swords), Netherlands, Grand Officer, National Order of Southern Cross (Brazil), Order of Merit, 1st Class (Mexico), Cloud Banner Decoration (China).