Corning, D ma.jpg
Induction Category & YearGeneral 1982
Home TownMadison, SD
Madison, SD

   Duane Corning
Champion of Excellence

 Duane Corning “Duke” began his military career in the Field Artillery of the South Dakota Army National Guard of Sioux Falls in 1934.

During WWII, Corning flew 104 combat missions. Throughout his association with the South Dakota National Guard, he has developed a wide spread reputation as a top-notch military pilot. He was a primary force in the initial organization of the South Dakota Air National Guard. <p>In 1957, when Corning served as Commander of the 114th Fighter Group, his command won not only the National Guard Bureau “Spaatz Trophy” and the Air Force Association Outstanding Unit Trophy, and also the coveted Winston P. Wilson Trophy as the outstanding Air Force National Guard fighter-interceptor all-weather squadron. The unit was the first in the nation to receive all three awards. <p>General Corning’s critical role in the response to the tragic Rapid City flood disaster was recognized by the Secretary of the Army when, in September of 1972, he presented Corning with the Legion of Merit medal. <p>General Corning was the guiding force, which secured Civil Service status for National Guard technicians and was the key individual in the development of a Facilities board for the National Guard Bureau. For many years, he was the leader of the renowned “Red Devils,” the South Dakota Air Guard’s acrobatic team. <p>General Duane Corning has accumulated over 12,000 hours of flying time, including 104 combat missions, and nearly 50 years of service to this state and his country. <p>Military Service:
1938-1939 Battery D, 147th Field Artillery, S.D. Army National Guard – Caonnoneer, Sergeant
1941-1946 United States Navy, WWII – Pilot, Submarine Patrol, Night Fighter Bomber, 104 combat missions
1946-1963 S.D. Air National Guard – Operations Officer, Squadron Commander, Base Commander
1963-1983 US Air Force, State of South Dakota – Adjutant General for State of South Dakota, Major General of the states 4,000 Army and 830 Air National Guardsmen <p>Awards, Honors:
Distinguished Flying Cross – 1944 & 1947
Air Medal – 1944
Air Medal with Gold Star – 1947
Navy commendation Medal
WWII Victory Medal – 1945
Air Force Longevity Service Award - 1945

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