peoplepill id: gary-l-herod
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Gary L. Herod

Gary L. Herod

US Air Force officer
Gary L. Herod
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro US Air Force officer
Was Military officer Soldier Officer
From United States of America
Type Military
Gender male
Birth 10 December 1929
Death 15 March 1961 (aged 31 years)
Star sign Sagittarius
Distinguished Flying Cross  
Peoplepill ID gary-l-herod
Gary L. Herod
The details (from wikipedia)


Capt. Gary L. Herod

Captain Gary L. Herod (December 10, 1929 – March 15, 1961) was a Texas Air National Guard pilot who was killed when his T-33 jet trainer crashed on the afternoon of March 15, 1961.

Shortly after takeoff from Ellington Field southeast of Houston, Texas, Herod experienced engine failure. Although it is likely that he could have ejected safely, he remained with the plane to ensure that it did not crash into the suburban homes of Houston TX neighborhoods. Herod initially turned his plane around in an effort to return to Ellington Field or another airport. He radioed air traffic control that he was going to bail out. When controllers asked for confirmation he replied “not yet”. These were his last words. Herod stayed with his plane until it crashed into what was then a vacant field surrounded by homes. The crash site was opposite the end of Atwell Drive on the north bank of Braes Bayou.

Capt. Herod was a member of the 182nd Fighter Squadron, of the 149th Fighter Wing, of the Texas Air National Guard, based at Kelly Air Force Base, in San Antonio, Texas.

Honors and Memorials

Original Hero Tree Near Meyerland Plaza in 2011
  • The Air Force awarded Herod a posthumous Distinguished Flying Cross.
  • The original "Hero Tree" was dedicated in Herod's honor on Memorial Day 1961. The tree, stone marker, and plaque were located near the Meyerland Plaza shopping center a few miles east of the crash site. The tree was cut down on July 17, 2018. The stone marker and plaque were relocated to the grounds of Herod Elementary School.
  • The Gary L. Herod Elementary School is located near the crash site and is named in Herod's honor. His photo and memorial flag are on display in the school library. Outside the school entrance is a plaque that tells the story of his heroism.
The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article on 22 May 2020. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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