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Olds attended Hampton High School where he was elected president of his class three successive years, and played varsity high school football on a team that won the state championship of Virginia in 1937.
Olds was aggressive, even mean, as a player, and received offers to attend Virginia Military Institute and Dartmouth College on football scholarships.
In the Army–Navy Game of 1942, which was played at Annapolis instead of Philadelphia, Olds had both upper front teeth knocked out when he received a forearm blow to the mouth while making a tackle.
Olds returned to the game and reportedly was cheered by the Navy Third and Fourth Classes, which were assigned as the Army cheering section when wartime travel restrictions prevented the Corps of Cadets from attending.
When Germany invaded Poland, Olds attempted to join the Royal Canadian Air Force but was thwarted by his father's refusal to approve his enlistment papers.
Olds completed Millard Prep and applied for admission to the United States Military Academy at West Point.
His initial twin-engine training at Williams Field, Arizona, was in the Curtiss AT-9, followed by transition fighter training In early 1944 he became part of the cadre assigned to build up the newly activated 434th Fighter Squadron and its parent 479th Fighter Group, based at Lomita, California.
He entered the academy a month later but after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Olds was sent to the Spartan School of Aeronautics in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for flight training.His father was Captain (later Major General) Robert Oldys (later Olds), Olds virtually made daily contact with the small group of officers who would lead the US Army Air Forces in World War II (one neighbor was Major Carl Spaatz, destined to become the first Chief of Staff of the USAF), On November 10, 1925, his father appeared as a witness on behalf of Billy Mitchell during Mitchell's court-martial in Washington, D. He brought three-year-old Robin with him to court, dressed in an Air Service uniform, and posed with him for newspaper photographers before testifying.His father was made commander of the pioneer B-17 Flying Fortress 2nd Bombardment Group at Langley Field on March 1, 1937, and promoted to lieutenant colonel on March 7.The remainder of his career was spent in non-operational positions, as Commandant of Cadets at the United States Air Force Academy and as an official in the Air Force Inspector General's Office.His inability to rise higher as a general officer is attributed to both his maverick views and his penchant for drinking.
Air Force Cross Air Force Distinguished Service Medal (2) Silver Star (4) Legion of Merit Distinguished Flying Cross (6) Air Medal (40) Distinguished Flying Cross (United Kingdom) Croix de guerre (France) (July 14, 1922 – June 14, 2007) was an American fighter pilot and general officer in the U. He remained in the service as it became the United States Air Force, despite often being at odds with its leadership, and was one of its pioneer jet pilots.