NO. 17483 • 23 December 1926 – 15 January 1952
Died 15 January 1952 in Korea, aged 25 years.
GEORGE BAYLOR EICHELBERGER, JR. was born in Norfolk, Virginia on 23 December 1926, the first child of George and Mary Eichelberger. He grew up in a loving home which had a close affiliation with the Presbyterian Church. He attended public schools and always stood high in his class. At Granby High School Baylor played end on a championship football team.
He enlisted in the Army after high school graduation and served until his appointment to West Point. The United States Military Academy had been his goal for many years.
Upon entering West Point Baylor focused his efforts on becoming a good cadet in all aspects. He did well in academics and participated on the gymnastics team and lettered on the soccer team. Even though he regularly attended church and was a Christian, he found a closer relationship with his God. Baylor served as a Sunday School teacher for the post children all four years as a cadet, and additionally, served as superintendent of that Sunday School his senior year.
Always cheerful, always friendly, Baylor could be counted on to enliven any group. He loved to attack any challenge - whether it be academic, dialectic, athletic, or religious. He was a fine example of a good cadet.
Upon graduation, he approached pilot training as another challenge and finished near the top of his class. A short training period was followed by his assignment to the 67th Fighter Bomber Squadron in Korea. He became a popular and inspirational member of that unit.
On 15 January 1952, his flight was assigned a mission of eliminating a North Korean oil dump. Baylor's plane, number three in a flight of four, was observed to have crashed into one of the oil storage tanks. He was awarded the Air Medal and the Purple Heart posthumously.
His commanding officer commented in a letter to Baylor's parents that if ever a young man was prepared to meet his maker, that young man was Baylor. George Baylor Eichelberger, Junior, lived his religion, and he knew that he would have life everlasting.
Although time has dimmed the hurt, it cannot dim the loss.
- CRC, his roommate