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June 10, 2005


Jeff Hess

Shalom Sandy,

It took me about a minute to pull this up from a Google search:

Retired Col. Rufus G. Martin, then personnel officer in charge of the 147th Fighter Group, said the unit was short of its authorized strength, but still had a long waiting list, because of the difficulty getting slots in basic training for recruits at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. Martin said four openings for pilots were available in the 147th in 1968, and that Bush got the last one.

From the site you linked to:

Colonel Earl Lively, retired Operations officer for the Texas Air National Guard, said there was no waiting list to get into the Texas Air National Guard as a pilot. There was a waiting list to get into the Air National Guard as an Airman, but not as a pilot.

Ah, there is the rub. Officers, before they are commissioned, are first enlisted personnel. President Bush would have enlisted as an airman before beginning his training. He was commissioned, became an officer, at the end of that training.

So while Col. Lively spoke correctly, the devil is always in the details, as the quote from Col. Martin demonstrates.


Jeff Hess


Actually, he's my husband. We got married on the 30th of April.


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