U N I T E D   S T A T E S   A I R   F O R C E


Charles White Lawrence was born in Parkville, Missouri, in 1901.  He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Air Service of the Regular Army June 12, 1923.

After receiving flying training at the Air Service primary and advanced flying schools at Brooks Field, Texas, and at Kelly Field, Texas, he was rated an airplane pilot in September 1924.  He then returned to Brooks Field as a flying instructor at the Air Service Primary Flying School.  From March to October 1925, he was an instructor at the Air Service Advanced Flying School at Kelly Field and then returned to duty at Brooks Field.  In October 1927, he became a flying instructor at March Field, California.

In April 1929, General Lawrence went to France Field, Panama Canal Zone, for duty with the Seventh Observation Squadron.  Two years later he was made supply officer of the 44th Observation Squadron there.

In May 1931, he became a flight commander at the Air Corps Flying School at Randolph Field, Texas.  In February 1934, he was designated control officer of the Central Zone of the Army Air Corps Mail Operations, with station at Chicago, Illinois, and the following May returned to duty at Randolph Field.

General Lawrence entered the Air Corps Tactical School at Maxwell Field, Alabama, in August 1937, and graduated the following June.  He then entered the Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and upon graduation a year later was named the Regular Army instructor with the 11th Observation Squadron of the Texas National Guard at Houston, Texas.  In December 1940, he became materiel officer of the 29th Bombardment Group at MacDill Field, Florida, and later served as executive officer of the group.

In December 1941, General Lawrence became chief of staff of the Third Fighter Command at Drew Field, Florida, and later was appointed commanding officer.  In May 1942, he was named director of training at the Army Air Forces School of Applied Tactics at Orlando, Florida.

In December 1943, General Lawrence became commander of the 99th Bombardment Group, one of the six flying fortress groups of the Fifth Bombardment Wing of the Fifteenth Air Force in Italy, and in February 1944, assumed command of the Fifth Wing.  He served in this capacity until V-E Day, when he was transferred to the India-China Division of Air Transport Command of which he assumed command in October 1945.

In May 1946, General Lawrence was assigned to the Technical Division of Air Training command at Scott Field, Illinois, and a month later became its commanding general.  In September 1946, he became duty commander and chief of staff of the Technical Division.

General Lawrence assumed command of Keesler Air Force Base at Biloxi, Mississippi, in April 1948, and in May 1949, was appointed commanding general of the Indoctrination Division at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas.  In October 1949, the Indoctrination Division became the 3700th Air Force Indoctrination Wing of Air Training Command, with no change of station.

On July 16, 1951, General Lawrence became a patient at Fitzsimons Army Hospital, Denver, Colo.

General Lawrence has been awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross with oak leaf cluster, the Legion of Merit, the Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters and several foreign decorations.  He is rated a command pilot, combat observer and aircraft observer.