Men's United States Army Air Force uniform . a) Coat - Olive drab linen with "U.S." and wing insignia on lapels. Silver thread oak leaf and metal insignia of white globe and red and blue plane on shoulder tabs. Two bars of decorations above pocket on left side. Air Force insignia on left sleeve. b) Trousers - Olive drab linen. d) Shirt - Tan linen. Initials "L M" embroidered in brown below collar.
Jacket: length, 30 in, 16 in underarm; Belt: length 49 in; Shirt: length 33 in, neck seam to hem 54 in, chest, 23 in, sleeve; Pants: 39 in waist, 28 in, inside seam; Necktie: length, 46 in, width, 4 in
Colonel Leon Mandel II, wore this uniform while serving in the China-Burma-India Theater. The upper three bars above the left pocket signify, from left: Army Commendation, Asiatic-Pacific Theater, and American Theater.
A grandson of an original Mandel brother, Leon Mandel II started running the family's department store while in his twenties. He proved an able businessman and also assumed a much larger civic role. In 1933, to protest Hitler's anti-Semitic policies, he announced that Mandel Brothers would boycott German-made goods. He conducted a less public effort with a secret spy mission for the government in 1941 and served as a colonel in the US Army Air Forces from 1942 to 1944. After his honorable discharge, Mandel continued to support the American war effort. True to his word, he rehired returning veterans and encouraged fellow merchants to do the same. Mandel retired in 1960 and moved to Palm Beach, Florida, where he died at age seventy-two.