January 11, 1944

1944: In a bombing mission to Oschersleben, Germany, Lt Col James H. Howard was leading a P-51 fighter escort group, when numerous German fighters attacked. Not waiting for his group to reassemble, Howard attacked 30 enemy planes, destroying three and damaging several others. Even when three guns stopped working and his fuel tanks neared empty, Howard continued to protect the bombers. For more than a half-hour, Howard defended the heavy bombers of the 401st Bomb Group against the swarm of Luftwaffe fighters, repeatedly attacking the enemy and shooting down as many as six. Even after three of his four guns were out of action, he continued to dive on enemy airplanes. For his actions that day, he received the Medal of Honor.
Howard was an ace in two operational theaters during World War II, with six kills over Asia with the Flying Tigers of the American Volunteer Group (AVG) in the Pacific, and six kills over Europe with the United States Army Air Forces.