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Russell Dougherty Dies: Retired Gen. Russell E. Dougherty died Friday morning at the age of 87. Over his 34 years in the Air Force, Dougherty was considered one the Air Force’s best thinkers and planners. He started military life as a 15-year-old bugler in the Kentucky National Guard, ending his USAF career as commander in chief of Strategic Air Command. At age 12, Dougherty decided he wanted to be a lawyer and nothing else, but that changed when he flew a B-29 in World War II. After earning his law degree in 1948, he held several judge advocate general positions, but he left the JAG corps in 1952, taking a refresher B-29 course and joining SAC. He held various staff and command positions in SAC and at Air Force, joint, and international levels. In 1974, he became CINCSAC. As our 2005 article "The Strategic World of Russell E. Dougherty" relates, throughout his career Dougherty was considered an exemplary leader, one "who was held in exceptionally high regard by those he led."