WWII vet returns to Tyndall

  • Published
  • By 2nd Lt. Kayla Fitzgerald
  • 325 Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Six years before the establishment of the United States Air Force, Tyndall Field was opened as a gunnery range in 1941.

Thousands of students went through the Flexible Gunnery School No. 9 at what is now Tyndall Air Force Base, one of whom was John Pierce Scott.

“I was training as a gunner with the Army Air Corps, and I was (at Tyndall) for five weeks,” said Scott. “They had a track with this cart running around it pulling a target, and we would shoot at that.”

Scott, a World War II veteran, recently toured the base with his granddaughter and saw how much it has changed since he was stationed here in 1942.

“It’s amazing how big (the base) is now,” said Scott. “There wasn’t a lot to it when I was here, just a runway and a row of buildings.”

After completing training at Tyndall and other stateside bases, Scott was sent overseas where he flew on 24 combat missions.

Scott was grateful for the chance to see the base again, and was impressed at how far the installation has come.

“It’s incredible, I couldn’t even imagine (back then) anything like it is now,” said Scott.