Biographical Notes
Relating to
The Earl E. Myers Story

Chapter 15 — Instructing Reservists

When I returned to Santa Ana, I was reassigned to Fairfax Army Air Corps Reserve Unit, Kansas City, Kansas. Soon thereafter, I reported in to the Commander who was Col. Bingham T. Kline, a European Combat Veteran who had flown B-17s on his first tour and P-51s on his second. He was a great commander, laid back, but still demanded discipline. He was great to work for. It was almost like working for Gen. Rosie O'Donnell on Saipan. If you did what you were assigned to do there would be no problem.

I started out instructing in T-6s and was flying full-time with the reserve officers who were discharged, but stayed in the reserve. Soon I was instructing in AT-11s, C-45s and a C-47. The outfit had two P-51s at that time and, eventually, Col. Kline said if I could fly the AT-6 from the back seat I could fly the P-51. He personally checked me out and signed me off. I had a ball with the P-51 during my off-duty days, which were far and few between.

Earl Myers with the P-51
Photo Ctsy. Earl Myers

The ranking reserve officer was a full Col. who chose to form an aerobatic team to perform at Military holiday functions. I was one of his selectees. Ist. Lt. Ben Fithian was also selected. Later on, during the Korean War, Ben did some shoot-downs, but not enough to qualify for Ace status. He made quite a name for himself flying the F-51s. The summer of 1946 was soon upon us and we were transferred to Topeka Army Air Base for the summer.

Our task was to give flight training to reservists who would change every 2 weeks. In reviewing my Form 5 (military log book) I was flying like there was no end, all from the back seat, except for an occasional hooded flight for the student. I was flying so much that after a full night of rest I would hop in the back seat of an AT-6, just rearing to go.

While this assignment gave me a great opportunity to build up my flying time and develop my skills in flying a variety of aircraft, it was an additional “perk” to be able to fly over and drop in on my mother, at Palestine, Texas.

Photo Ctsy. Earl Myers

All was fine until the start engine was accomplished, then I felt like a rag and wanted to go sleep. I had flight fatigue. 126 hours in the back seat of an AT-6 in one month was a bit much, but I wanted to do it. They let up on me and I started operating the C-47 on cross countries with students. I was also flying the P-51 at slow times between classes.

In between classes, I had applied for a Regular Commission and took all the tests at Ft. Riley in Manhattan, Kansas. About Aug, 1946. I had almost given up on the Regular Commission, but one day, in April 1947, I was notified that I must appear before a selection board in May at Ft. Riley. I was scared out of my wits again because of the high rank I would be faced with, but did make my appearance.

End of Chapter 15 — Go to Chapter 16

Go to

EEM Introduction —Chapter 1 2345678


Return to Biographical Stories Index Page

Go to Home Page