Peter Pompetti was born on December 27, 1920, in Woodbine, New Jersey. He enlisted in the U.S. Army on January 15, 1940, and served as a Control Tower Operator until entering the Aviation Cadet Program of the U.S. Army Air Forces on March 2, 1942. Pompetti was appointed a Flight Officer and was awarded his pilot wings at Spence Field, Georgia, on November 10, 1942, and then completed P-47 Thunderbolt training before deploying to England and joining the 84th Fighter Squadron of the 78th Fighter Group in January 1943. He was commissioned a 2d Lt in the Army Air Forces on September 7, 1943. Lt Pompetti was credited with the destruction of 5.5 enemy aircraft in aerial combat plus 3.5 damaged, and another 2 destroyed on the ground while strafing enemy airfields, before being shot down and taken as a Prisoner of War on March 17, 1944. He was held at Stalag Luft I in Barth, Germany, until being liberated on May 13, 1945. After the war, he served as a Separation Liaison Officer at Louisville, Kentucky, from November 1945 to March 1946, followed by service as an P-80 Shooting Star (later redesignated F-80) transition instructor pilot at Williams Field (later renamed Williams AFB), Arizona, from March 1946 to October 1949. His next assignment was as an instructor pilot at Tyndall AFB, Florida, from October 1949 to January 1953. Maj Pompetti then deployed to Korea, where he flew combat missions with the 49th Fighter-Bomber Group from January to March 1953, and then on temporary duty with the 474th Fighter-Bomber Group on Formosa from March 1953 to January 1954. His next assignment was on the staff of Headquarters 35th Air Division at Dobbins AFB, Georgia, from January 1954 to January 1958, and then as executive officer of the 76th Fighter Interceptor Squadron at Pinecastle AFB (later renamed McCoy AFB), Florida, from January 1958 until his retirement from the Air Force on August 1, 1960. Peter Pompetti died on April 25, 1985, and was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
His 4th Distinguished Flying Cross Citation reads
For extraordinary achievement as fighter pilot in aerial combat over Germany and German occupied Continental Europe. The courage and skill with which Lieutenant Pompetti flew his aircraft and engaged attacking enemy fighters have on many occasions assisted heavy bomber formations to reach their targets and return to their bases with a minimum of loss. The devotion to duty displayed by Lieutenant Pompetti on these escort flights and his disregard for personal safety in exposing himself to the hazards of low-level flying on strafing missions reflect the highest credit upon himself and the Army Air Forces.