Why was the Army Air Forces rank of flight officer in World War II created ...

Why was the Army Air Forces rank of flight officer in World War II created and who created it -- by Congress to limit the number of commissioned officers graduating form the cadet program or by the the Army Air Forces for the same reason?

Marra M avatar
3 years ago #2
Marra M
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The title “Flight Officer” was a military rank used by the US Army Air Forces during World War 2 specifically from 1942 to 1945. This rank was created in September 10, 1042 to be exact.

The rank is equivalent to officer junior grade which by today refers to the position Warrant Officer (NATO grade W-1). Those who successfully passed the air qualification training were appointed as flight officers. They served as pilots, navigators, flight engineers, glider pilots and bombardiers.

After World War 2, the Army Air Forces discontinued the use of this rank. The reason for this was that the service flight officers were either promoted to commissioned officer ranks during the course of the war or they were discharged. Even if at the beginning of 1950s, the US Army required more helicopter pilots but US Congress prevent pilot expansion.

The Army’s proposal to establish Flight Officer/Warrant Officer program was rejected because the Army already has three groups of personnel: those who are enlisted, warrant officer and commissioned officer. The Department of the Army decided that the grade of flight officer was actually a Warrant Officer grade with a restriction to the Warrant Officer Junior Grade rank.

9 months ago #3
Viet Vet

I think you're full of baloney.

9 months ago #4
Viet Vet

The Flight Officer rank was created so as to satisfy the increased need for officers, but to guard against having a large surplus of officers at the end of the war. It was like a brevetted rank....where as at the end of the war they reverted back to enlisted rank. In practice it was not unlike that of a 2nd Lt. How they determined who would get the F/O bars and who would get the 2nd Lt bars is arguable, however it most likely came down to college years. The ones with more college prior to entering the service would get the 2nd Lt bars.

1 month ago #5

That sound right as a fellow I knew was a Bombadier during World War II in Europe. He told me that while he was in Flight School "Uncle Sam" decided to make him a Bombadier so thats why he wasn't an officer after war was over.

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