Whatever the great U.S. ace race might be doing to fighter pilots' teamwork against the enemy, it was making news and new heroes. Out in front last week was a blond, crinkle-eyed, corn-fed youngster from Poplar, Wis. Over Hollandia, New Guinea, the Army Air Forces' stocky, 23-year-old Captain Richard Ira Bong had smashed Captain Eddie Rickenbacker's 26-year-old record* by knocking down his 26th and 27th Jap aircraft.

Day after he put down his Lockheed Lightning on his home base, Dick Bong became a major. He had also a clear claim to the title "U.S. ace of aces," which had been...

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