Michael Zubon was born March 21, 1918 to William and
Mary Zubon, and was the youngest of six children.
A local Congressman recognized his academic ability and his desire to
serve his country and recommended that he be able to attend West Point
US Military academy in 1940, after high school graduation.
After 4 years of study he proudly graduated in June of 1943 with his
family and his soon-to-be wife in attendance. According to the 1943 West Point year book - "Mike (Congressional, 36th, N.Y.) came to West point without any special interest in military life but with inherent qualities of leadership that have made him outstanding. His wide grin and ready wit have endeared him to everyone.
Always a conscentious worker, Mike's departure will be a great gain for
his two loves-a little Irish girl and the driver's seat of a Flying
Michael married Kathleen Angela shortly after graduation.
His next assignment was to the 337 BFTS for pilot training as First Lieutenant in United States Army Air Forces, (Air Corps). When he got his wings, he was assigned to the 416 Bomb Group, 671 Bomb Squadron as Pilot of an A-20 Bomber.
A little over a year after his West Point graduation, Kathleen gave
birth on Aug 13, 1944 to her first child Michael John Zubon. Four days later, after his sons birth, on August 17, Lt Zubon was behind
the throttle of an A-20, 43-10165 for Mission #128, bombing the Montfort
Sur Risle Bridge. He was short on missions and would not get to see his
son for six months.
Lt Zubon served his country well and was awarded the Distinguished
Flying Cross for extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial
flight while serving with the 671st Bombardment Squadron. "The skillful
and zealous manner in which he sought out the enemy and destroyed him,
his devotion to duty and courage under all conditions serve as an
inspiration to his fellow flyers. His actions on all these occasions
reflect the highest credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of the
March 7, 1944, Lt. Zubon, piloting an A-20, 43-9207, of the 670 Bomb
Squadron had engine trouble on the way back and landed at Hawkinge on
the English coast where necessary repairs were made. The rest of the
ships returned to the base without casualties.
He flew a total of 67 missions in the 416th Bomb Group. His regular crew,
SSgt William C. Russell and Jean R.L. Tanner flew with him for his first
54 or so missions in various A-20s. When the A-26s were introduced to
the base, he piloted for 9 more missions with different single gunners
in various ships. He received The Distinguished Flying Cross award in
Lt. Zubon took extra mission in different 416th Bomb Squadrons to get
back home to Kathleen Angela. He finished his 65th mission tour on Christmas morning in what he termed was "quite a mission". Lt. Zubon escaped the flak, but saw enough of it to keep him satisfied for a long while.
Having completed his tour of duty, Lt. Zubon got to return to the Zone of the
Interior during February to hold his son for the first time.
After a 30 day leave in the States, he returned to the group and was
placed on temporary duty with the Headquarters of the United States
Strategic Air Forces in Europe. Working with the Director of Intelligence, he dealt with the securing and study of the latest types of German equipment and German documents, which might be useful in our war against Japan.
In 1948 Michael "Mike" Zubon received a Master's Degree from MIT.
When the Korean conflict broke out he again answered the call to service.
Major Zubon began his years of service on the board of Air
Force Scientific Advisory in 1953. Lt. General James H. Doolittle, who chaired
the board from 1956 to 1959, said about Col. Michael Zubon, "His loyal
and intelligent work greatly increased the effectiveness of the Air
Force Scientific Advisory Board."
Lt Zubon answered the call to serve in Vietnam, his third war. He served
valiantly bringing much pride to his family.
Always putting his country first, the pilot retired as a Colonel. On April
17, 1976 he let go of the throttle for the last time. He is buried in
Arlington National Cemetery. The free children of the world, able to
live their lives to the fullest can not repay him for all he did for
them. Our thank-yous are not enough. Please know that you are