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Jesús Antonio Villamor
General Douglas MacArthur (left) is shown pinning a Distinguished Service Cross on Captain Jesus A. Villamor of the Philippine Army Air Corps, for heroism in the air.
Place of birth Philippines
Allegiance Republic of the Philippines
Service/branch Philippine Army Air Corps
Rank Captain
Commands held 6th Pursuit Squadron
Awards Distinguished Service Cross
Oak Leaf Cluster
Medal of Valor

Jesús Antonio Villamor was a Filipino pilot who fought the Japanese in World War II.


Early life and career

Villamor was one of seven children. He studied commerce at De La Salle College (now DLSU-Manila) in Manila, hoping to pursue a business career. He joined the Philippine Army Air Corps (PAAC) Flying School in 1936 and was sent to the United States for training, and after three years, began flying B-17's as part of the US Air Force's Strategic Bombing Squadron.

Philippine Army Air Corps service

Upon his return to the Philippines, Villamor was assigned to lead the 6th Pursuit Squadron (now 6th Tactical Fighter Squadron) shortly before the Japanese invasion of the Philippines in December 1941. In the skies above Zablan and Batangas Fields, against Japanese Zeros, his squadron of P-26 fighters engaged the enemy. He was twice cited by the United States Army for bravery, receiving the Distinguished Service Cross for actions on December 10, 1941 and an Oak Leaf Cluster in lieu of a second award of the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) for actions on December 12, 1941, (see Cesar Basa for more details) making him the only Filipino to receive the DSC twice.

Intelligence service

After his squadron was destroyed, Villamor continued his war against the Japanese as an intelligence officer. On December 27, 1942 Villamor was part of a team inserted by the submarine USS Gudgeon (SS-211) into the Philippines. Establishing a chain of direct communication from the Philippines with General Douglas MacArthur in Australia, he coordinated the activities of various guerrilla movements in Luzon, Mindanao and the Visayas. Villamor acted as the "clearing house" for information, which helped the United States Army Forces in the Far East (USAFFE) to map out a strategy to liberate the Philippines.


For his bravery as a pilot and ingenuity as an intelligence officer, President Ramón Magsaysay awarded Lieutenant Col. Villamor the Medal of Valor, the highest Philippine military bravery decoration, on January 21, 1954. The Philippine Air Force's principal facility in Metro Manila which was first known as Nichols Field then later Nichols Air Base was renamed Col. Jesús Villamor Air Base in his honor.

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