National Museum of the USAF   Right Corner Banner
Join the Air Force

Home > Fact Sheets > From Ace to Space: Iven C. Kincheloe Jr.

FROM ACE TO SPACE: IVEN C. KINCHELOE JR.

Posted 6/8/2010 Printable Fact Sheet
 
Photos
Previous ImageNext Image
Capt. Iven C. Kincheloe Jr.
Capt. Iven C. Kincheloe Jr. in the cockpit of "Ivan," the F-86E he flew in combat in Korea. (U.S. Air Force photo)
Download HiRes

Iven C. Kincheloe Jr. was typical of those young Americans who fought the communist threat in the skies over Korea. Born on July 2, 1928, in Detroit, Mich., he entered the Air Force under the cadet program at Purdue University. While a member of the Air Force ROTC, he was sent to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in July 1948 for summer training. The next year he graduated from Purdue with a degree in aeronautical engineering, and in August 1950, he was awarded USAF pilot wings at Williams Air Force Base, Ariz.

In September 1951, he arrived in Korea where he flew F-80s on 30 missions and F-86s on 101 missions. Before returning to the U.S. in May 1952, he downed five MiG-15s, becoming our nation's 10th jet ace.

In 1955 Kincheloe became a test pilot and went to Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. On Sept. 7, 1956, he piloted the Bell X-2 rocket-powered research airplane, reaching more than 2,000 mph and 126,200 feet -- the highest altitude to which anyone had ever flown. For this spectacular flight, he was awarded the Mackay Trophy and nicknamed "America's No. 1 Spaceman."

With his skill and experience, Kincheloe was selected to fly the famous X-15 rocket plane then under construction. However, his stellar career was cut short when he was killed while taking off in an F-104 jet from Edwards on July 26, 1958.

Click here to return to the Air Superiority Overview.







 Inside the Museum

ima cornerSearch

ima cornerHistoric

 


tabCategories
tabRelated Links
tabConnect

Museum Virtual TourMuseum PodcastsMuseum E-newsletter Sign-upMuseum RSS Feeds
Museum Facebook PageMuseum Twitter PageMuseum Pinterest PageMuseum Flickr PageMuseum YouTube Channel



Site Map      Contact Us     Questions     USA.gov     Security and Privacy notice     E-publishing  
Suicide Prevention    SAPR   IG   EEO   Accessibility/Section 508   No FEAR Act