Ruiz, Eugene Louis (P2, C4, L3)
First Lieutenant Eugene Louis Ruiz, 28, of Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky, died when his aircraft was shot down in Korea on 2 July 1951 while on federal active duty. Ruiz was the first combat casualty of the Kentucky Air National Guard. Ruiz was the pilot of an F-51D “Mustang” fighter (#44-73842) with the 45th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing. While on a combat mission, his aircraft caught fire and crashed 15 miles west of Chorwon, Korea. His remains were not recovered. His name is inscribed on the Courts of the Missing at the Honolulu Memorial. Ruiz’s award and decorations include the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal, the Purple Heart, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Presidential Unit Citation and the Republic of Korea War Service Medal.