Flying Tigers AVG Board

Topic : Looking for info about Louis Wyatt

Posted By: MStratton on October 17, 2015, 11:17 am
My husband's family has direct ties to the AVG - my Mother in law's dad is Louis Wyatt Communications for the  Adam and Eve squadron. Very little is known about him; his identity was only revealed to her about 10 years ago at the time of her mother's passing.  This is what I know...

My MIL was born in Karachi Pakistan - her mother Ellen (I'll call her Nana), was a British nurse; her father, an AVG named Louis  Wyatt. He volunteered with the Tigers (communications).  She grew up knowing that her mother walked out of Burma and I have since discovered the she was one of the civilians led out by the One and Only Vinegar Joe!

My  MIL knew nothing of her dad bc Nana never, ever, spoke of him other than he was AVG.  Following Nana's passing, we found letters, photographs and a journal she kept during this time.  A truly fascinating discovery!   However,  very distressing for my MIL she had locked it away.  A lot of it still is a mystery bc not much was written about Louis. Imagine a very young, unwed woman who had a whirlwind war time love affair that she later discovered resulted in a pregnancy.  Everything was a secret.  In those dangerous times, and in separation of her beloved, she assumed his family name in order to protect herself and their unborn love child.

Having found this group,  and my interest renewed,  I asked permission to see her documents once again. She has finally given me access.  She has told me that she's afraid of what I might (or might not find).  Ive told her what I am learning and why I had hoped to see her keepsakes.   I have hopes of being able to find her some answers. I know this will happen in time.  Its also my way of connecting some pieces of puzzles from this seemingly forgotten time.

A few of my other contacts have helped me by painting a picture of what it was like for the service men and women during this time.  It was fascinating to discover I have so many early photos of the AVG that I am very excited.   I thought perhaps my story and photos might be of interest to those of you who seem so dedicated to keeping their memories alive.

I'm not a war buff or researcher; nor is it my intent to profit from my finds.  I'm just a girl trying to make sense of a period in time that does seem forgotten. How else can we remember if we dont share what we know?  I look forward to our future discussions and I hope that perhaps some of the information I have can also help some of you.

Monique Stratton on behalf of Marie Wyatt-Stratton and family

it turns out that I have a collection of photos the I believe are of Peter Atkinson.  I posted them on the AVG Facebook page and was contacted by one of Peter's nephews.  It felt wonderful to be able to share with him some never before seen pictures.

Posted By: CarolePetach on November 18, 2015, 2:18 pm | Post: 1
How wonderfully exciting!! Good luck!Carole Petach


Posted By: aaatripp on November 19, 2015, 8:08 am | Post: 2
Dear Monique,

Thanks so much for posting your important family story at our AVG Forum.  This is indeed interesting news for those who follow the Tigers.

Your MIL's father, Louis Wyatt, was a Communications specialist with the 1st Pursuit Squadron, the "Adam & Eves".  We have a photo of him in our reunion programme and Lydia Rossi, our Executive Secretary, monitors this Forum.  She may be able to post the photo file of Louis' AVG photo.

I've checked Charlie Bond's book "A Flying Tiger's Diary" for any mention of Louis Wyatt as Charlie was also a member of the 1st Sqdn and has written one of the most detailed AVG books with a detailed perspective of the 1st Sqdn.  There is no mention of Louis in Charlie's book.  However, there are also other books and I will check them as well.

FYI, the 1st & 2nd Sqdns were moved from their training base at Toungoo, Burma (where many had been training from mid-1941) to Kunming, China on Dec. 19, 1941....arriving just a short while after a devastating Japanese bombing raid on the helpless city of Kunming, causing extensive civilian casualties and destruction.  Later, the 1st Sqdn was moved to Mingaladon Airfield at Rangoon, Burma approx. Feb '42 to relieve the 2nd Sqdn as the Japanese air and land attacks were stepping up on the Port of Rangoon, China's lifeline to the free world.

We'll be back in touch with you!


Tripp Alyn, chair
Historical & Museums Committee
Flying Tigers Association


Tripp Alyn, Historian
AVG Flying Tigers Association

Posted By: MStratton on November 19, 2015, 3:52 pm | Post: 3
Nice to hear from you, Tripp.

I've been quiet from social media lately but have been spending lots of my free time working on what I call my WWII project.

I've been working with Orrin Hoopman -the Flying Tigers liason in China - and he's of the opinion that Louie was involved in something of great importance to FDR.  I've copied a mesage he recently sent me below.  The info you sent me about where squadrons were stationed, is new and will give me good direction.

"Monique, with all due respect....
From the collection of photos you have encountered, I surely suspect that you have amounts to a comprehensive "Correspondent's Report to President Roosevelt" on the progress and situation surrounding the development of the AVG."

I also have Ellen Wyatt's war diary Friday,January 2 1942 (first page was noted but torn out, I can tell by the jagged edge) to Sunday, July 26 1942.  The last note says "EXPECT LOUIE" ♥ One final note on Sunday August 8, 1942 'Last day of leave'.  Sigh...... :)

Her daily entries with lots of first names and events such as 'Tea 5pm Robin, cocktails and dinner on SS Java home 3am' but no locations that I saw. Plus most entries are detailed but written shorthand.  I do need to go back now to see what I recognize.  Ive learned SO MUCH!

Anything the membership can help with is appreciated. 

Sid Moore has also been monumental in his knowledge and insight into the aircraft, ammunition etc.of that era.

THE GREATEST of all? I have also been able to message with the nephew of Pete Atchison. I have lovely photos he believes are his uncle.  That filled my heart with hope.

Thank you,
Monique Stratton

P.S. I pulled an old book out of the bookcase 'The Burma Road' which I am going to read for the fun of it.

Posted By: MStratton on November 19, 2015, 5:55 pm | Post: 4
Forgive me and my spell check, *Pete Atkinson*

Posted By: TigerNiece on May 10, 2018, 6:54 pm | Post: 5
I am one of Louis Wyatt's nieces.  I believe my cousin Butch or his daughter Becky may have reached out to you already but I am thrilled to know I may have another cousin (your MIL) and her child or children!  Uncle Lou died when I was about 4 or 5 so I never got to meet him.  The family was from Washington Court House, Ohio but he lived in Jacksonville, FL.  But I remember a couple of my dad's siblings meeting at our house (in Lebanon, OH) and driving down for the funeral. 

My dad had a book on the Flying Tigers and would point out Uncle Lou's name and tell me a story about his big brother.  But they were far enough apart in age that he didn't get to spend a whole lot with him.  But he never mentioned him having a child so either Uncle Lou didn't know, or he just never told the family here. 

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