(1906-1976) Enshrined November 1, 2014
Albert Boyd was born in Rankin, Tenn., in 1906. He graduated from high school at Asheville, N.C., in 1924 and attended Biltmore Junior college.
Appointed as aviation cadet in October 1927, Albert Boyd completed his flying training and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Air Reserve on Feb. 28, 1929. He received his regular commission as a second lieutenant of Air Corps on M ay 2, 1929. He was transferred to Chanute Field, IL, in August 1934 as engineering and operations officer and secretary of the Air Corps Technical School and served in Hawaii from 1939-1941.
Joining the Air Service Command in February 1943, General Boyd was assistant control officer at Patterson Field and the following April became chief of the Maintenance Division of the Middletown Air Service Command, Middletown, Pa. Reassigned to Patterson Field in January 1944, he was named special assistant to the commanding general of the Air Service Command.
In 1944, General Boyd was named chief of the Maintenance Division at Wright Field, Ohio. The following July he was appointed deputy commander of the Eighth Air Force Service Command. Named acting chief of the Flight Test Division there in October 1945, the general became chief of the division the following January, assuming additional duty as an experimental test pilot, retaining that position when the Air Technical Service Command was re-designated the Air Materiel Command.
General Boyd assumed command of Edwards Air Force Base, Air Research and Development Command at Muroc, Calif. in August 1949. He was chiefly responsible for establishing the flight test center and made the selection of Chuck Yeager as the primary X-1 pilot. He became vice commander of the Wright Air Development Center, at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in February 1952, and assumed command that June.
His decorations include the Legion of Merit and Distinguished Flying Cross. He is rated a command pilot, set a speed record of 625 mph in a Shooting Star, a combat observer and aircraft observer with over twenty five thousand hours of flying time.
For his extraordinary and enduring service and his contributions to aviation for Tennessee, our nation and the world, and for his service to our country, General Albert Boyd is honored by and inducted into the Tennessee Aviation Hall of Fame this first day of November 2014.