THE WILLIAM H. PITSENBARGER COLLECTION
The William H. Pitsenbarger Collection was accessioned into the Flesh Public Library Archives and Special Collections in September of 1999. The collection was initially donated on June 9, 1995 by William F. “Frank” Pitsenbarger, but as additional materials accumulate, they are added to the collection.
The collection covers the years of 1964 to the present. There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.
SCOPE AND CONTENTS
The William H. Pitsenbarger Collection is divided into four series: official citations, dedications, supporting materials, and photographs.
Series I: Official citations include awards of merit and achievement issued to William Pitsenbarger as well as posthumous awards.
Series II: Dedications include materials regarding various dedications at Air Force bases honoring William Pitsenbarger.
Series III: Supporting materials include articles, firsthand accounts, and official Air Force correspondence.
Series IV: Photographs include official photographs of William Pitsenbarger, his personal snapshots, and photos of various dedications.
William H. Pitsenbarger was born on July 8, 1944 to William Franklin and Irene Emma (Hart) Pitsenbarger at Piqua Memorial Hospital. He graduated from Piqua Central High School in 1962 and soon after volunteered in the United States Air Force. He trained as a para-rescue specialist.
Pitsenbarger flew in some 300 missions in Vietnam, and was killed on April 11, 1966 after volunteering for another rescue mission. His posthumous awards include being the first airman to receive the Air Force Cross, the air medal, and numerous building and monument dedications on various Air Force bases.
SERIES I: OFFICIAL CITATIONS
1 Purple Heart - Issued 8-11-66
2 Airman’s Medal - Issued 6-2-66
3 Air Medal - Issued 6-2-66
4 Air Force Cross - Issued 7-15-66
5 Kaman Aircraft Corp.
6 Citations, loose 1965 missions
SERIES II: DEDICATIONS
7 Dedication of Pitsenbarger Sports Complex - May, 1993, Piqua, Ohio
1 Dedication, Chapter 461 - Vietnam Veterans of America, May 1989
2 Garbry Gymnasium - February 1981, Piqua, Ohio
3 Award –Air Force Sergeants Association –February 1980
4 Wright Patterson Air Force Base –Dining Hall, June 1979
5 Scott Air Force Base dedication –street naming, May 1979
6 Lockland Air Force Base -1976-1979
7 Randolph Air Force Base –February 1972
8 Randolph Air Force Base –official binder, February 1972 –
Program and photo album recording the “Dedication of Pitsenbarger Hall, 5510th Flying Training Wing, Randolph A.F.B., Texas, 2 February 1972”
9 Noncommissioned Officers Association - Chapter dedication –October 1969
10 Plaque, unknown - May 1968
11 Korat Royal Air Force Base - Dining facility –December 1966
12 Miscellaneous dedications
13 Dedication –Kirtland Air Force Base - New Mexico, September 1999
SERIES III: SUPPORTING MATERIALS
1 Certificates of training and achievement
2 First-hand account: April 11, 1966, by Harry O’Beirne
3 Notification of death
4 Stag magazine - November 1967 –article, page 16
5 Gung Ho magazine - Para-rescue issue
6 Washington Post magazine –May 1989 - Article –page 16
7 Anybody here from Arizona? –article, page 116
8 The Airman magazine –January 1969 - Article –page 38
9 Newspaper articles
10 General articles, letters
11 Wright Patterson Air Force Base Museum - Donation correspondence
12 Vietnam Veterans memorial rubbings
13 Miscellaneous materials
14 Airman Magazine – article on page 12, “They Called Him Pits” by MSgt. Pat McKenna (2 copies)
15 The Story of William H. Pitsenbarger by Robert L. LaPointe, excerpted from the book, PJ’s in Vietnam.
16 Beale AFB Airman Leadership School Dedication – Beale AFB, California – April 2000
17 Congressional Medal of Honor Certificate, folder and description of reason for the medal.
18 VHS tape – Run time 28 min 30 sec – Medal of Honor Ceremony honoring A1C William H. Pitsenbarger, United States Air Force Museum, Wright-Patterson AFB, OH, 8 December 2000
19 VHS tape – Pitsenbarger Memorial Dedication, Veteran’s Park, Piqua, OH, 7 April 2001
SERIES IV: PHOTOGRAPHS
1 Photos, Air Force official – early 1960’s
2 Photos from numbered album – early 1960’s
3 Photos, snapshots of William Pitsenbarger - 1964-1965
4 Photos, Hamilton Air Force Base - California - 1964
5 Photos, Long Bien, Saigon – early 1960’s
6 Photos, presentation of Air Force Cross, September 1966
7 Photos, dedication of Pitsenbarger Hall, Thailand - December 1966
8 Photos, Randolph Air Force Base dedication, others - February 1972
9 Photos, Wright Patterson Air Force base dedication - June 1979
10 Photos, dedication of Pitsenbarger PME Center - Germany –January 1988
11 Photos, graveside
12 Photos, miscellaneous