World War II American General Officers' Project



A project dedicated to the study of the American General Officer and the preservation of their original uniforms, flags and medals.

General William Kepner


D-Day in Europe, the cross channel attack on the German occupied Normandy coast was the largest amphibious landing that had ever taken place, with over 5000 ships, 150,000 men and enough material to sustain the battle. Focus has always been on the brave men storming the beeches, but too often we forget about the enemy strength that had to be eliminated before the invasion.  A successful invasion would depend on having complete air superiority; the German Air Force had to be neutralized!   This task in large part fell to the 8th Fighter Command under the Command of General William Kepner. 

In the early days of World War II the 8th Fighter Command was tasked with providing protective fighter planes to escort the bombers. While General Kepner did this with great efficiency, he always felt the fighter plane could be used more effectively in pursuing and destroying the enemy whether in the air, or on the ground!  Finally his request was granted when General Doolittle gave him what he wanted authorization to ATTACK!  And attack he did destroying in the air and on ground over 9300 enemy aircraft! When D-Day arrived on June 6th 1945, the 8th fighter command was able to provide a 50 mile air protective screen for the attacking Allied Forces, air superiority had been secured. 

By wars end General Kepner had flown 24 combat missions 10 in a fighter and 14 in a bomber and was placed in charge of the 2nd Bomb Division, then the 8th Air Force.