James W. Wood

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For other people named James Wood, see James Wood (disambiguation).
James W. Wood
USAF Astronaut
Nationality American
Status Deceased
Born (1924-08-09)August 9, 1924
Paragould, Arkansas, U.S.
Died January 1, 1990(1990-01-01) (aged 65)
Melbourne, Florida, U.S.
Other names
James Wayne Wood
Other occupation
Test pilot
Air Force Institute of Technology, B.S. 1954
Rank Colonel, USAF
Selection 1960 Dyna-Soar Group 1
Missions None

James Wayne Wood (August 9, 1924 – January 1, 1990), (Col, USAF), was an American aeronautical engineer, U.S. Air Force officer, test pilot, and astronaut in the X-20 Dyna-Soar program.

Early life and education[edit]

He was born in Paragould, Arkansas on August 9, 1924. Wood earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the U.S. Air Force Institute of Technology in 1954. He was married and had three children.

Test pilot[edit]

Wood served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II, and flew 10 combat missions. In the Korean War, he flew 100 combat missions.

As a USAF Test Pilot School graduate, he was serving as an experimental test pilot at the Air Force Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB, California when selected for the X-20 Dyna-Soar program. However, before his selection, he had an unsuccessful application for NASA astronaut group 1. Wood was the senior test pilot on the Dyna-Soar project and was slated to be the pilot on its first sub-orbital mission. If the program had not been cancelled, the first drop test would have been in July 1964. After the Dyna-Soar program was cancelled on December 10th, 1963, he remained with the U.S. Air Force and served as Commander of Test Operations at Edwards Air Force Base. He retired from the U.S. Air Force with the rank of Colonel.

Death[edit]

He died in Melbourne, Florida on January 1, 1990 of natural causes, aged 65.

External links[edit]