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Notes for Willie Kermit Johnson

Graduated from Marshall County High School Class of 1935.

Kermit was awarded his wings and a lieutenant's commission at graduation exercises at Moore Field, Texas.
During WWII Lt. Kermit Johnson was in the famed 354th "Pioneer" P-51 Mustang fighter-bomber group of the Nineteenth Tactical Air Command. When an article was written about his P-51 plane's aerial battle near Mannheim, Germany, in the Advertiser Gleam, Guntersville, Alabama, April 27, 1945, his unit had a record toll of over 765 enemy aircraft destroyed. He flew the last official mission of the war in Europe, escorting Gen. George Patton into Germany. Johnson received the Distinguished Flying Cross. The 24 year old pilot flew over 60 sorties against the enemy with about 200 hours of combat missions in WWII.

First Chairman of the Marshall County Commission, elected in 1966, served from 1967 to 1971. Up until then the probate judge had served as chairman in addition to his duties as judge.

He dropped out of his race for a second term before the run-off And joined the Wallace Campaign organization. After being elected Gov. George Wallace appointed Kermit administrator of the Alabama Office of Economic Opportunity. He worked with the 23 local Community Action Committee (CAC) organizations throughout Alabama.

Ar various times in his career he had a car lot, a life insurance agency, built homes, was in the wholesale grocery business with his brother, drove a long distance truck, and had a trucking business.

Cause of Death: Complications from knee surgery, he had diabetes and lung trouble. He had heart surgery 6 yrs earlier and made a good recovery.

Funeral at Carr Funeral Home, Rev Alton Parris and Jim Danner conducted.


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