WWII Doolittle Tokyo Raider Lt. Col. Robert Hite Dies At Age 95

Tokyo Raider Robert Hite

Lieutenant Colonel Robert Hite of the famed World War II “Doolittle Tokyo Raiders” has passed away at the age 95.

Hite passed away on Sunday morning at a nursing facility located in Nashville, Tennessee.

His son, Wallace Hite, was quoted by The Associated Press in a report on WAFF as having said that his father “decided to go home and be with his wife” and that he would have wanted to remembered for two things: his patriotism and the notion that “he was just doing his job” when he attacked Japan during World War II as part of the first U.S. air raid to strike the Japanese Home Islands.

Today he decided to go home and be with his wife […] I think he would want two things: that’s the attitude we ought to have about our country; and the second is, he was just doing his job

The Doolittle Raid, which is also known as the Tokyo Raid, was an American air raid on the Japanese capital of Tokyo and other places on Honshu island which took place on April 18, 1942. The attack, which served as retaliation for the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, demonstrated the ability of the United States to reach out and attack Japan itself.

In total, eight of the Raiders were captured by Japanese forces. Three of the captured Raiders were executed and another died while in captivity, however, Mr. Hite was liberated by American troops in 1945 and in 1951, he returned to active duty during the Korean War where he served overseas before he was relieved from active duty in 1955.

Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Cole and Staff Sgt. David Thatcher are the only two Dolittle Raiders alive today.

The World War II heroes are to receive the Congressional Gold Medal on April 15 in Washington. After, thy’re to present the medal to the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on the 73rd anniversary of the raid, April 18.

Cole was quoted in an MSN report as having said that the Congressional Gold Medal “is for 80 people,” as there were 80 men aboard 16 B-52 bombers whose mission it was to strike Japan in April of 1942.

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen recently discovered a sunken Japanese battleship from World War II, the Musashi.

What are your thoughts on the death of Doolittle Raider Lt. Col. Robert Hite?

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