Marine Fighter Pilot Dies at 86

Colonel Ed McMahon (USMC, retired) died today.

McMahon passed away peacefully shortly after midnight at the Ronald Reagan/UCLA Medical Center, his publicist, Howard Bragman, said today. He was hospitalized in February with pneumonia and other medical problems.

When World War Two broke out Ed wanted to be a pilot. He enlisted in 1943 and earned his pilot’s license while being evaluated for the Navy’s cadet evaluation program at Boston College. After being checked out in the Piper Cub he was assigned to the Marine Corps.

McMahon earned his wings and was commissioned early in 1945.

He flew the F4U Corsair and was immediately assigned to instructor duty at Lee Field in Florida. On 6 August he was given orders to join the Marine carrier program in California. With the dropping of the atomic bomb, his orders were canceled and he was discharged.

In 1952 he was recalled to active duty for the Korean War. He flew artillery spotting missions in the O-1E Bird Dog. Completing 85 missions, he was awarded six Air Medals. After the war he retired from the Marine Reserves as a Colonel and was promoted to Brigadier General of the California Air National Guard.

NO DONG Missile on Launch Pad

April 2 — Amid reports that it is fueling a missile for launch as soon as this weekend, North Korea escalated threats on Thursday against a worried neighbor, warning that it would attack “major targets” in Japan if Tokyo shot the missile down.

North Korea has shifted MiG-23 fighter jets to its east coast, near the missile launch site, according to South Korean media reports.

President Obama, in London for the Group of 20 summit, criticized the launch Wednesday as a “provocative act” that would violate a United Nations resolution and trigger a response from the U.N. Security Council. The leaders of Japan and South Korea agreed in London that the launch, if it occurred, should be addressed by the Security Council.

The three countries have dispatched ships with antimissile systems to monitor the launch, which they describe as a test of a long-range ballistic missile that could fly as far as the western United States. North Korea is trying to miniaturize nuclear warheads to fit atop its growing arsenal of missiles, U.S. intelligence officials have said.

North Korea says the missile is part of a peaceful research effort to put a communications satellite into orbit.