EPISODE 5: What Does Author Robert Matzen Think of “Masters of the Air”?

Robert Matzen is author of Mission: Jimmy Stewart and the Fight for Europe, a full account of the Hollywood star’s experiences and an 8th Air Force pilot and commander.

In March 1941, a few months before the attack on Pearl Harbor, Stewart enlisted as a private in the United States Army Air Corps. His decision to serve was not merely symbolic; Stewart was genuinely committed to contributing to the war effort.

His background as a pilot, even before his acting career took off, made him a natural fit for the Air Corps. Stewart’s commitment to serving his country was clear, as he turned down offers to avoid combat and even attempted to resign his commission to enter the battle sooner.

In 1943, he was assigned to the 445th Bombardment Group, part of the Eighth Air Force, and flew numerous combat missions over Nazi-occupied Europe.

Stewart piloted B-24 Liberator bombers, facing the dangers and challenges of aerial warfare with courage.

Thank you to Tobacco Free Adagio Health and UPMC for Life for sponsoring this event!