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Greenville in Greenville County, South Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Major Rudolf Anderson Jr.

 
 
MAJOR RUDOLF ANDERSON Jr. Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Stanley and Terrie Howard, August 30, 2008
1. MAJOR RUDOLF ANDERSON Jr. Marker
Inscription.  
Dedicated to
Major Rudolf Anderson Jr.
U.S.A.F.
Sept. 15, 1927 - Oct. 27, 1962
By the
Citizens of Greenville
State of South Carolina
The United States of America

In a period of great international stress he performed this duty of great responsibility with honor. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, and gave his life that America could proceed on a course toward peace without the threat of tyrants.

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
                        John 15:13
 
Erected by The Citizens of Greenville.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Air & SpaceHeroesLandmarksMilitaryWar, Vietnam. In addition, it is included in the Distinguished Service Medal series list. A significant historical month for this entry is September 1772.
 
Location. 34° 50.481′ N, 82° 23.654′ W. Marker is in Greenville, South Carolina, in Greenville County. Marker can be reached from Ridgeland Drive. This marker is located in Cleveland Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Greenville SC 29601, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 10 other markers
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are within walking distance of this marker. Second Baptist Church World War II Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away); River Lodge (approx. 0.4 miles away); Greenville Gas and Electric Light Company (approx. 0.4 miles away); Furman University (approx. 0.4 miles away); Mill Village (approx. 0.4 miles away); Old Mill Ruins (approx. 0.4 miles away); Vardry Mill (approx. 0.4 miles away); Reedy River Falls (approx. 0.4 miles away); John Wesley Methodist Episcopal Church (approx. 0.4 miles away); The Cherokees (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Greenville.
 
More about this marker. Major Anderson was the sole casualty of the Cuban Missile Crisis.
 
Also see . . .
1. Wikipedia entry for Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. (Submitted on September 8, 2008, by M. L. 'Mitch' Gambrell of Taylors, South Carolina.)
2. Rudolf Anderson, Jr. US Air Force Major, he was shot down and killed while flying over Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis. (Submitted on February 10, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.) 

3. Wreckage of Major Rudolf Anderson Jr.'s U2 at the Museo del Aire, Havana, Cuba. (Submitted on February 10, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.)
 
Additional commentary.
1. United States Air Force Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial
While on a thirteen mile high reconnaissance
United States Airforce <br>Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brian Scott, February 8, 2009
2. United States Airforce
Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial
Marker text shown below in Commentary 1.
mission over Cuba during the Cuban Missile Crisis, on October 27, 1962; Major Rudolf Anderson, Jr., a U-2 pilot, was shot down by a Soviet, SA-2, surface-to-air missile. He was the only man of any nationality to lose his life in the conflict and that was the key event that avoided war with U.S.S.R.

Born: September 15,1927 in Spartanburg,S.C.
Graduated: Greenville High School in 1944
Clemson Agricultural College - B.S. in Textile Engineering in 1948
Married: Frances Jane Corbett and they had three children
Enlisted, USAF: November 6, 1951
Buried: November 6, 1962 at Woodlawn Memorial Park

Major Anderson was senior pilot with over 3,000 hours flying time, of which over 1,000 hours were as a U-2 pilot.

He served in the Korean War as a reconnaissance pilot and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with two Clusters.

President John F. Kennedy posthumously awarded Major Anderson the Distinguished Service Medal and the first Air Force Cross. At that time, the Bronze Star Medal was the highest combat decoration that could be awarded for Cold War action.

Major Anderson's shoot down and supreme sacrifice over Cuba was particularly significant. Had this not happened, experts of the Cuban Missile Crisis agree that the United States would have stumbled into a cold war.

On May 19, 1963 this F-86 Saber Jet, similar to the ones which he flew in Korea, was dedicated in his honor and was re-dedicated on its 35th anniversary,
F-86 Sabre Jet Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brian Scott, February 8, 2009
3. F-86 Sabre Jet Marker
Test is shown in Commentary 2.
May 19, 1998. The Saber Jet was Major Anderson's favorite plane to fly.
    — Submitted February 10, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.

2. F-86 Sabre Jet
The F-86 Sabre Jet was manufactured by North American Aviation, Inc. Over 6,000 F-86 jets were manufactured in seven models.

The F-86 General data is:
- A wingspan of 39'
- Length of 38'
- A height of 15'
- Weight fully loaded of 21,000+ lbs
- Maximum speed of 715 miles per hour
- A cruising speed of 600+ miles per hour
- A range of 1,000+ miles
- A ceiling height of 49,000-50,000 feet.

The F-86 could be equipped with a variety of armament:
- .50 caliber machine guns
- 20-mm cannons
- 5" diameter HVAR rockets
- 2.75" Mighty Mouse rockets
- A maximum of 2,000 lbs. of bombs.

The F-86 was very versatile serving as a combat fighter jet and also as a reconnaissance jet.

The F-86 entered service in 1949 with primary use in the Korean War where it had a kill ratio of 14 to 1 against the slightly superior Soviet MIG-15 due to superior US aviator training.

Commonly nicknamed "Dog Saber", "Dog" and the "Honey Bucket" by its aviators, it was one of the last military jets to be flown manually by a single pilot.
    — Submitted September 8, 2008, by Stanley and
Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By M. L., October 27, 1998
4. Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial and Marker
Terrie Howard of Greer, South Carolina.
 
F-86 Sabre Jet image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Stanley and Terrie Howard, August 30, 2008
5. F-86 Sabre Jet
F-86 Sabre Jet image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Stanley and Terrie Howard, August 30, 2008
6. F-86 Sabre Jet
Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By M. L., October 27, 1998
7. Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial and Marker
Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By M. L., October 27, 1998
8. Major Rudolf Anderson Jr. Memorial and Marker
F-86 Sabre Jet image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brian Scott, February 8, 2009
9. F-86 Sabre Jet
F-86 Sabre Jet image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brian Scott, February 8, 2009
10. F-86 Sabre Jet
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 16, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 4, 2008, by Stanley and Terrie Howard of Greer, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 5,445 times since then and 74 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on September 4, 2008, by Stanley and Terrie Howard of Greer, South Carolina.   2, 3. submitted on February 10, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.   4. submitted on September 4, 2008, by M. L. 'Mitch' Gambrell of Taylors, South Carolina.   5, 6. submitted on September 4, 2008, by Stanley and Terrie Howard of Greer, South Carolina.   7, 8. submitted on September 4, 2008, by M. L. 'Mitch' Gambrell of Taylors, South Carolina.   9, 10. submitted on February 10, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 14, 2024