Pete
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(12 Jul 1921 -
27 Jan 1942)

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(28 Jan 1942 -
1 Aug 1943)

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(2 Aug 1943 -
31 Jul 2006)

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2nd Lt. Lloyd Herbert "Pete" Hughes, Jr.
(12 Jul 1921 - 1 Aug 1943)


Errata Page

Errors in Print

"Pete's name was Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." This is false. His family and friends called him Pete, but his full name was Lloyd Herbert Hughes, Jr. (Sources: family genealogy, Statement of Military Service, Pete's Medal of Honor, and Pete's grave marker)

  • The Congressional Record - This error has made it into the Congressional Record [Volume 155, Number 101 (Wednesday, July 8, 2009)]. I contacted the office of the Honorable Ted Poe, but they said that it could not be changed. (Then I would like a retraction, please, and someone needs to own up to doing bad research.) The previous link was to a temporary page, but the errors got into the official version. Search for "hughes" in the Congressional Record - Extensions of Remarks.

  • The book, Ploesti: The Great Ground-Air Battle of 1 August 1943 by James Dugan and Carroll Stewart (Random House, New York, N.Y., 1962) pages 174 and 234, both have Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]" as does the Index. I have been told that "Any future editions will be corrected." The corrected version of the Ploesti Roster is available online. (Email received 18 Nov 2007.)

  • The book, Winged Shield, Winged Sword 1907-1950 - A History of the United States Air Force edited by Bernard C. Nalty (University Press of the Pacific, 1997) page 294, has Uncle Pete's name as as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." I emailed the publisher on 17 Aug 2010.)

  • The book, Texas A & M University: A Pictorial History, 1876-1996 by Henry C. Dethloff (Texas A&M University Press, 1996) page 135, has Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." I contacted the publisher and received an email from the author apologizing for the error. I have been told that "Any future editions will be corrected." (Email received 23 Jan 2008.)

  • The book, Down to Two Feet Altitude by James A. Wells (self published, 2008,) page 92, has Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." I sent an email to the author about the error and he apologized saying, "I will most definitely correct Pete's full name for any subsequent printings." (Email received 1 Jun 2008.)

  • The book, Into the Fire - Ploesti, The Most Fateful Mission of World War II by Duane Schultz (Westholme Publishing, 2007) page 171, Uncle Pete's name was listed as Lloyd D. "Pete" Hughes [sic]. I sent an email to the publisher and he apologized saying that the next edition will be corrected. (Email received 8 Sep 2008.)

  • The book, Commander in Chief - Franklin Delano Roosevelt, His Lieutenants and Their War by Eric Larrabee (Naval Institute Press, 2004) page 248, has "The plane piloted by Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]...." I sent an email to the publisher. She thanked me for the information which will be corrected in future printings. No apology offered. (Email received 1 Jun 2009.)

  • The book, With Courage - The U.S. Army Air Forces in World War II by Bernard C. Nalty, John F. Shiner, and George M. Watson (Air Force History & Museum Program, Washington, DC, 1994) pages 215 and the index has has Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." I sent an email to the web site and while they could not change the book as published online, they added an "Errata Sheet" on page 3. (Email correspondence in Feb 2011.)


The book Ploesti Raid Through the Lens by Roger A. Freeman, has "... Medal of Honor was given to 1st [sic] Lieutenant Lloyd Hughes...." This is false. Uncle Pete was a Second Lieutenant. I emailed the publisher and on 14 Apr 2008 they replied saying, "We will be sure to correct the entry on page 148 when we reprint." (Email received 14 Apr 2008.)


The book, Ploesti: The Great Ground-Air Battle of 1 August 1943 by James Dugan and Carroll Stewart (Random House, New York, N.Y., 1962) page 335 has this statement:

"HUGHES, LLOYD D. [sic] ... Gold Star Mothers Club and veterans organizations at Corpus Christi, Alexandria newspaper and Louisiana Dept. of Veterans Affairs were unaware of Hughes and Nation's highest honor awarded posthumously."

General George Marshall’s Victory Report (1943-1945) lists Uncle Pete as a war casualty, but does not specifically list him as a Medal of Honor recipient. Uncle Pete's mother (my grandmother, Mildred Mae RAINEY Hughes Jordan) was listed as a member of the Corpus Christi (Nueces County, Texas) Chapter of American Gold Star Mothers. For the Gold Star Mothers to report to Dugan and Stewart that they knew nothing of Uncle Pete's Medal of Honor is odd. There are a couple of facts that may have contributed to this error.

  • Uncle Pete's mother, my grandmother, Mildred Mae RAINEY Hughes Jordan, died in 1952. She was no longer a current member of the Gold Star Mothers long before Dugan and Stewart published their book.

  • Uncle Pete's mother had a different last name than his. (I can imagine that any Gold Star Mother who had known Mildred Jordan, knew of her son as Pete, and not necessarily as Lloyd Hughes.)

  • Dugan and Stewart were erroneously researching for a Lloyd D. Hughes, however this seems like a pretty minor difference.

As for the Corpus Christi veterans organizations, who knows? As for Alexandria and Louisiana records, Uncle Pete and his mother had moved from Louisiana back to Texas before he was even 2 1/2 years old. He never considered Louisiana his "home state."


A Case of Bad Judgment - The book, Thinning the Herd: Tales of the Weirdly Departed by Cynthia Ceilan (Lyons Press, 2007) (Hmmm. Even Lyons Press' link has gone bad. Oh, well.) (This book does not deserve a link to it. You can find it manually, if you can.) This book is about "weird" deaths. On page 86 is this paragraph about Uncle Pete:

"Medal of Honor winner Lloyd Hughes, a B-24 bomber pilot during World War II, managed to destroy enemy oil refineries in  Romania even though his plane was severely damaged in the battle. He returned to the base [sic] a hero, but his plane exploded on landing."

First off, Medal of Honor recipients are not "winners" and second, Uncle Pete did not return to base. Third, the B-24 did not "explode," it was described as "consumed." Finally, what is "weird" about giving your life for your country? Heroic, yes; worthy of the Medal of Honor, yes; weird, no; disrespectful, yes. I contacted the publishers and editor of this book and told them of the errors. At first they dismissed me, but I am nothing if not persistent. After my second email, I received an apology from the author and this from the editor: "I am sorry that this story was included in the book. You have our assurances that it will be removed from all future printings of the book." Personally, I hope there are not any future printings of this book. (Email received 21 Jan 2008.)


Errors on the Internet

"Pete's name was Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." This is false. His family and friends called him Pete, but his full name was Lloyd Herbert Hughes, Jr. (Sources: family genealogy, Statement of Military Service, Uncle Pete's Medal of Honor, and his grave markers)

  • Web forum, TexAgs - Has two messages where the users erroneously have Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]." This is a forum where the entries were added in Feb 2005. In Feb 2008 I emailed the author who had an email address, but have gotten no response. The other message has no contact information. These pages will probably never be corrected. (Still in error as of 23 Jun 2009.)

  • Web forum, ArmyAirForces - Has two messages where the users erroneously have Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]."  I emailed the Webmaster for the site, but have not been able to make contact. (Still in error as of 23 Jun 2009.)

  • Web forum, AgTimes - Has one message where the user erroneously have Uncle Pete's name as "Lloyd D. Hughes [sic]."  I emailed the Webmaster for the site, but have not been able to make contact. (Still in error as of 23 Jun 2009.)

This error continues to perpetuate itself. I recently caught a newsletter that was published online with the wrong middle initial. I emailed the editor and got a nice apology and a quick fix of the pdf in question. The editor had gotten the information off of the GeoCities web page with the wrong information.


"There were no survivors [sic]." or "All were killed [sic]." This is false. Of the ten-man crew aboard the plane, four men survived the crash: two died of their wounds soon after, and two survived to become prisoners of war. (Sources: Sidney Allen Pear, John A. McLoughlin, Edmond Howard Smith, Thomas Albert Hoff, and Missing Air Crew Report, page 4)

  • Web site, The Unofficial Dispatch Archive - Has "All in the plane were killed [sic]." I emailed the webmaster in Nov 2007, but have gotten no response. This page will probably never be corrected. (Still in error as of 7 Jun 2008.)

  • Web site, Air Force Link - Their article says that six men died in the crash and two survived. From this, one would assume that there were a total of  eight men in the crew, but it was a ten-man crew. Plus, their article states that, "Even though some reports showed that no parachutes were seen," there were survivors of the plane crash. Operation Tidal was an extremely low level bombing run. They were flying too low to use parachutes.

  • Web site, The Air Force Magazine, Online Journal of the Air Force Association - (December 2007, Vol. 90, No. 12) - Has, "Hughes and six of his crew were killed, but (2nd Lt. John) McLoughlin and two gunners, SSgt. Thomas Hoff and SSgt. Edmund Smith, survived." This article correctly got the number of men aboard the B-24, but it was a total of six men who died in the crash, not seven. The article missed 2nd Lt. Sidney Allen Pear as a survivor of the crash.

"The award ceremony was March 5, 1944." [sic]" Or "April 19, 1944" [sic]. "This is false. The ceremony was on Tuesday, 18 Apr 1944. (Sources: Date Set for Awarding Hughes’ Medal of Honor and Nation’s Highest Decoration Given)

The Web site, Texas State Cemetery - Various bits of information are still wrong on Uncle Pete's web page. I personally visited the Texas State Cemetery offices in Jan 2008 and have since provided them with photos, links and my sources. They made some corrections, but they still have "April 19, 1944" as the date of the award ceremony which is the date of newspaper article, not the date of the ceremony. It is still in error as of 12 Jan 2009. See the article from the Corpus Christi newspaper, the San Antonio newspaper and the Brownsville newspaper.

"Heroes of War" recording by the Air Force Association - Starts off with "Welcome to 'Heroes of the Air.' True stories of those who flew for America and earned the nation's supreme military award, the Congressional Medal of Honor. 'Heroes of the Air' is brought to you by the Air Force Association …."

  • The recording refers to “Army Air Corps [sic] 2nd Lt. Lloyd Hughes.”  This is false. The U.S. Army Air Corps changed its name to the U.S. Army Air Forces on 20 Jun 1941. Uncle Pete was in the U.S. Army Air Forces from 28 Jan 1942 when he enlisted, to his death on 1 Aug 1943. The U.S. Army Air Forces changed its name again on 17 Sep 1947 to the U.S. Air Force.

  • The recording states that Uncle Pete "was piloting a B-17 Flying Fortress. [sic]" This is false. He piloted a B-24 Liberator not a B-17.


Miscellaneous Errors:

The plane was named "Eager Eagle" [sic]. There has long been some discussion about what the name and nose art was of Uncle Pete’s plane. (Apparently, an Army Air Forces Pilot who received the Medal of Honor should have had a cool name for his plane.) By now everyone agrees that there was no nose art. Of all my research on my Uncle Pete, I found one (1) reference to the name of Uncle Pete’s plane as being the "Eager Eagle." It was handwritten in pencil up the edge of one of the typewritten U.S. Army Air Forces Missing Air Crew Reports. The full note looked like, “42-40753 EAqER EAGLE." It did not appear anywhere on the other 16 pages of reports. I repeat, nowhere else is this found.

There is only one reasonably good written source for the name of Uncle Pete’s plane. On 13 Feb 2004, the text of a letter was posted to the Tidal Wave forum. Posted by a Helder family member, it was written by the co-pilot of Uncle Pete’s plane, Second Lieutenant Ronald Lee Helder, to his parents on 31 Jul 1943, the day before he died. In it he wrote, "We finally named our plane 'Ole Kickapoo' . . . ."

The sole surviving member of Uncle Pete's crew (as of 8 Sep 2008) says that the name "Ole Kickapoo" was being kicked around as a name, and maybe the officers had all agreed, but as a Staff Sergeant, he did not know or remember that they had actually made the decision. He does not remember the name "Eager Eagle" even being discussed.

The general consensus on the Tidal Wave forum is that it is that the plane had been named "Ole Kickapoo" the night before its last flight.


"Wall of Honor" memorial in the Harvin Student Center at Del Mar College refers to Uncle Pete as a "Student, Athlete, Graduate [sic]." This is false. Uncle Pete did not graduate from either Del Mar College or Texas A&M University. (Sources: personal papers)


Created: 8 Sep 2008

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