Maj GREGORY “Pappy” BOYINGTON
Commander VMF – 214
“The Black Sheep Squadron”
Marine Squadron 214
Central Solomon Islands area
12 September 1943 to 3 January 1944.
Maj Greg Boyington was personally thrown out of the US Military by Gen Claire Chennault, Boyington was given a dishonorable discharge in April 1942. He is one of only 2 service members )(both Marines) to have been given a Dishonorable discharge then get back into the military and be awarded the Medal of Honor for subsequent heroics..
Somehow Boyington ended up in the Marines and as Commander of VMF – 214.
Originally called “Lancers”, under Pappy Boyington’s command they would become the famed “Black Sheep Squadron” of WW2 fame.
As commander of the 214th, Major Boyington operated against enemy Japanese forces in the Central Solomons area from 12 September 1943 to 3 January 1944.
His airmen were consistently outnumbered and outgunned, yet the sight of “Black Sheep” struck fear in the hearts of Japanese pilots and jubilation in American Sailors who saw the fighter groups as the cavalry coming to their rescue.
Maj. Boyington and his men were persistent in striking the enemy at every opportunity. He led his Black Sheep with devastating results to enemy shipping, shore installations, and aerial forces.
On 17 October, 1944 Maj. Boyington led a formation of 24 fighters over Kahili effectively enforcing a no fly zone that prevented over 60 enemy fighters from taking to the air. A total of twenty enemy aviators attempted to get their birds up… all 20 became confirmed kills for Black Sheep pilots.
Over the course of his command, in spite of the odds, Maj Boyington personally splashed TWENTY SIX (26) enemy fighters.
Boyington spent 18 months held as a POW by the Japanese and in addition to the Medal of Honor, Maj Boyington was also awarded, Navy Cross, POW medal, Purple heart.