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Name: James William Pearson
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
Croix de Guerre [France] with Palm
James Pearson
Country: United States
Rank: Captain
Services: Royal Flying Corps
Royal Air Force
Units: 23
Victories: 12
Born: 02 April 1895
Place of Birth: Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA
Died: 26 January 1993
Place of Death: Montclair, New Jersey, USA
Cemetery: Glendale Cemetery, Bloomfield, New Jersey, USA
 
 
A Sopwith Dolphin pilot, James William Pearson joined the Royal Flying Corps in 1917 and was promoted to temporary 2nd Lieutenant (on probation) on 29 October 1917. On 6 April 1918 he was posted to 23 Squadron at Bertangles. He claimed 33 enemy aircraft, receiving credit for downing only 12 of them. After the war, he founded the J.W. Pearson Textile Company in Nutley, New Jersey. Pearson retired in 1960. Before his death in 1993, he was believed to be the last surviving ace of World War I.
 
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
Lieut. (A./Capt.) James William Pearson. (FRANCE)
   On 26th October, while leading a patrol, this officer observed a formation of enemy scouts. Diving to the attack, he engaged one and drove it down out of control. He then attacked a second, which he drove down to crash. In all he has accounted for seven enemy aircraft, setting at all times a fine example of skill and courageous determination.
 
Victories
Date Time Unit Aircraft Opponent Location
1 30 May 1918 1045 23 Sopwith Dolphin (C3824) Albatros C (OOC) 1 S of Albert
2 03 Jun 1918 1740 23 Sopwith Dolphin (C3824) Pfalz D.III (DESF) Montdidier
3 01 Jul 1918 1135 23 Sopwith Dolphin (C3824) Albatros D.V (DES) Hangest
4 01 Jul 1918 1140 23 Sopwith Dolphin (C3824) Albatros D.V (OOC) Hangest
5 01 Aug 1918 0720 23 Sopwith Dolphin (D3749) Halberstadt C (DESF) Caix-Harbonnières
6 01 Aug 1918 0740 23 Sopwith Dolphin (D3749) Pfalz D.III (OOC) Warfusée
7 18 Sep 1918 1215 23 Sopwith Dolphin (E4492) Fokker D.VII (DESF) Lihaucourt
8 18 Sep 1918 1215 23 Sopwith Dolphin (E4492) Fokker D.VII (OOC) Lihaucourt
9 28 Oct 1918 1130 23 Sopwith Dolphin (F5961) Fokker D.VII (OOC) Bois de Nouvion
10 28 Oct 1918 1130 23 Sopwith Dolphin (F5961) Fokker D.VII (DES) Bois de Nouvion
11 29 Oct 1918 1300 23 Sopwith Dolphin (E4588) Halberstadt C (OOC) NE of Landrecis
12 01 Nov 1918 1210 23 Sopwith Dolphin (F5961) DFW C (DES) 2 Petit Bart

1 Shared with Lt H E Faulkner
2 Shared with Lt Harry Compton, Lt E J Taylor
 
Books
American Aces of World War 1
by Norman Franks, Harry Dempsey (Illustrator) / Paperback / Osprey Publishing (September 25, 2001)
Dolphin and Snipe Aces of World War 1
by Norman Franks, Harry Dempsey (Illustrator) / Paperback / Osprey Publishing (May 12, 2002)
Over the Front
by Norman L. R. Franks, Frank W. Bailey / Hardcover / Grub Street the Basement (May 1992)
In Clouds of Glory: American Airmen Who Flew With The British During The Great War
by James J. Hudson / Paperback / University of Arkansas Press (October 1, 1990)
 
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