Billy Fiske Blog

On 12 July 2017, I took command of the 501st Combat Support Wing at RAF Alconbury then immediately drove to RAF Fairford so I could oversee the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT).  While attending the RIAT Gala Dinner, extremely jetlagged but happily enjoying cold beverages, I saw this RAF Group Captain who looked a lot like one of our old USAF Assistant Secretaries for Installations, Environment and Logistics – Kevin Billings. 

Johnny Wheeler and the 601 Squadron flying sword

I’ve read speculation before that Billy Fiske was nothing more than another bored wealthy American adventurer, searching for thrill in whatever means could be found.  This has been an accusation put forward to all of the nine Americans that would leave the USA to fight in what became known as the Battle of Britain.  I certainly can’t speak for the motives of each man, but the facts present the opposite for Billy.

Billy Fiske Foundation Board Member Paul Beaver interviews British Military Historian Peter Caddick-Adams on the life of Billy Fiske and his role in World War II.

Tizard's Cavity Magnetron - Billy Fiske Foundation

To be truthful, I did not know anything about Billy before December 2016 when, at a Christmas celebration dinner sponsored by the 601 (County of London) Squadron held in Washington, DC, I met the Honorable Kevin Billings, who in short order introduced me to the fascinating, compelling and incredibly impactful life of Billy Fiske.