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Unleashed Thoughts from C.B. Perdue, Jr., Chief Master Sergeant, USAF (Retired)

He’s bailed out of a crashing airplane over Nazi Germany.  He served in the Armed Forces in some of the toughest times our country has faced. He took the hard line with generals and the media, and proudly served for decades with grit and determination. But who’s the commander-in-chief in WWII veteran C.B. Perdue’s house now? A fluffy, six-pound poodle named “Big Jack.”

Tell us about yourself, C.B. You are a veteran of WWII?

C.B.: Yes, I am. I flew 25 combat missions in B17 bombers from England bombing Germany. My job was to drop the bombs. On April 7, 1945, my plane was rammed by a German fighter, knocking the tail section off. We had to bail out, and when I landed, I was captured and put in a prisoner of war camp. Luckily, we were liberated, in May of 1945. After the war, I worked in public affairs for 30 years, and then in civil service as director of public affairs for 14 years.  I retired for good in 1988 and have been focused on my family -- which includes my dogs -- baseball and baking ever since.

Wow! Sounds like you have nine lives, sir. Tell us about your four-legged family.

C.B.: Well, I’ve got these two poodles. Lola is 13 and weighs 16 pounds. Jack (we call him “Big Jack”) is eight and is six pounds. Don’t let his size fool you; he’s a tough bird.

Have you always been a dog man?

C.B.: Yes.  I grew up on a farm in Arkansas, and we always had dogs and other animals around.  But my own first dog was Rusty, a beagle. Rusty would go pheasant hunting with me when I was stationed in Nebraska.  He learned the scent of pheasants and became a good bird dog. Some of my favorite memories are hunting and playing with him.

Here’s a tough question for you, sir.  If you could be any type of animal, what type of animal would you be? Answer carefully – this is serious stuff here.

C.B.: I can appreciate a good question.  But is this an interrogation?  If so, I’ll sic my little poodle on you! I imagine I’d be a dog.  They’re loyal, and they keep you good company.

Do you support any animal-related causes?

C.B.: Yes. I support the SPCA and Operation Kindness, which are each doing good work.  I was at an event last year and got to meet Patriot Paws, which provides service dogs to disabled vets.  I think they are doing a good thing.  People need dogs, especially when you’ve been through something like combat. Anything we can do to help our veterans is a good thing.  And I can’t imagine a much better thing than giving someone a loyal friend.

What’s next for you? Got any big plans?

C.B.: My next goal is to make it to 100 years old, so I try to stay healthy.  And take good care of my poodle friends.  I hope to make it to that mark with a dog by my side.