Bob DeHaven was born on January 13, 1922, in San Diego, California. He enlisted in the Aviation Cadet Program of the U.S. Army Air Forces on April 14, 1942, and was commissioned a 2d Lt and awarded his pilot wings at Luke Field, Arizona, on January 4, 1943. After completing P-40 Warhawk training, he was assigned to the 7th Fighter Squadron of the 49th Fighter Group in the South Pacific in May 1943. Capt DeHaven was credited with destroying 14 enemy aircraft in aerial combat plus 1 damaged between July 1943 and November 1944, while flying P-40's and P-38 Lightnings. He left active duty on December 28, 1945, and served in the reserves until joining the California Air National Guard on September 16, 1946. Col DeHaven transferred to the U.S. Air Force Reserve on October 5, 1951, and retired from the reserves on October 1, 1965. After World War II, Bob tried acting for a short time and then worked for Hughes Aircraft Company as a test pilot and personal pilot for Howard Hughes for over 30 years. Bob DeHaven died on July 10, 2008.
His 2nd (of 3) Distinguished Flying Cross Citation reads:
For extraordinary achievement while participating in an aerial flight over Madang, New Guinea, on 10 December 1943. When eight P-40s encountered twice as many Japanese fighters, Lieutenant DeHaven intercepted an enemy aircraft which was firing on his flight leader. After scoring with a short burst, he saw the pilot abandon his plane and parachute to earth about for miles Southwest of Alexishafen. This was the fifth enemy airplane destroyed by Lieutenant DeHaven in aerial combat.