AUBURN, Ala. -- Auburn University journalism professor emeritus Paul Burnett died Friday at the age of 86.
Mr. Burnett joined the faculty in 1948 and over the next 31 years developed the journalism program from one instructor and a single classroom to a separate department.
Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, he joined the Army Air Corps in 1942 and became a decorated B-17 navigator.
Based in England, he filmed combat footage for Oscar-winning director William Wyler's 1942 documentary, "The Memphis Belle."
That same year over France, Mr. Burnett's plane, Chief Sly, took repeated hits from German aircraft. Though seriously wounded, he guided the crippled bomber without charts or radio over the English Channel to a safe landing in England.