Robert F. Travis not forgotten at base named in his honor

There are two places where the name “Travis” is synonymous in Solano County: Travis Air Force Base and Travis Credit Union. The names sound inclusive, but the credit union that takes its name after one of the largest military installations in Northern California is actually open to anyone in its 12-county service area.

But the question remains for people unfamiliar with both places, who is Travis? Where did the name originate? Here’s the story behind Brigadier General Robert F. Travis, the man after which the base is named:

Travis, the man

According to the U.S. Air Force website, Travis was born in Savannah, GA and initially went to the University of Georgia before being appointed to the U.S. Military Academy. He served in the European Theater during World War II, flying 35 missions into enemy-occupied territory and recognized multiple times for his service. Travis was promoted to the Commanding General of the 5th Strategic Reconnaissance and the 9th Bombardment Wings in 1949 at what was then Fairfield-Suisun Air Force Base.

Mission goes awry

Travis was one of the captains on a supply plane bound for Asia in the midst of the Korean War. He was the commander of the flight when the flight lost one of its engines shortly after takeoff and crashed near a trailer park on the base. Travis was one of several service members killed in the crash. Shortly after, the push began to rename the Air Force base in his honor.

Travis Federal Credit Union

The charter to create Travis Federal Credit Union was signed on Oct. 5, 1951 by founding members who worked at TAFB. Since then, the credit union expanded from a base branch to locations in cities in Solano, Contra Costa, Merced, Napa and other counties.

Today

Both the credit union and the air base continue to honor the memory of the man who died as a respected commander. Travis Credit Union continues to have a prominent branch on base.

If you’d like to find out more about General Travis, click here:

Biography of General Travis