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Fausto Vega Santander
Nickname Cacho, Cachito
Born (1923-11-19)November 19, 1923
Died June 1, 1945(1945-06-01) (aged 21)
Place of birth Tuxpan, Veracruz, Mexico
Place of death Luzon, Philippines
Allegiance  Mexico
Service/branch Mexican Air Force roundel.svg Mexican Air Force
Years of service 1940–1945
Rank Sub-lieutenant
Unit Escuadrón 201

World War II

Fausto Vega Santander (born November 19, 1923 - † June 1, 1945) was a Mexican aviator who was shot down during World War II.

Fausto Vega Santander was born in Tuxpan, Veracruz, his parents were Albino Vega and María Santander. Vega Santander did his primary education at primary school Enrique C. Rebsamen in his hometown.

Military career

In 1940, after graduating from high school, Vega Santander joined to the Mexican Air Force. Fausto Vega Santander graduated from Military Aviation School as Sub-lieutenant and then served as a special instructor in the aviation school in Guadalajara, Jalisco, in 1944.

Since May 1942 in Mexico was found in a State of War against the Axis powers (Germany, Italy and the Empire of Japan). Mexico sent to the South Pacific Theatre the Escuadrón 201[1] in March 1945 including Sub-lieutenant Fausto Vega Santander. The squadron was attached to the 58th Fighter Group of the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) during the liberation of the main Philippines island of Luzon in the spring of 1945.

On 1 June 1945, at the age of 21, the young airman was killed by the enemy Anti-aircraft warfare during a risky dive bombing mission against a Japanese site located in Subic Bay. Although the Mexican airstrike, commanded by Lieutenant Carlos Garduño Nuñez was successful, the Search and rescue team of the USAAF did not locate the P-47 Thunderbolt of Sub-lieutenant Vega Santander which sank into the Luzon Sea without a trace.


The news shocked Mexico and since then, the young hero has been honored by placing his name to the Tuxpan airport. Also, in significant measure, changed the name of Libertad Street to Fausto Vega Santander.

In Mexico City in Chapultepec Park the Escuadrón 201 had its Commemorative mausoleum near the Niños Héroes monument.

The Mexican poet Germán Muriel Azarria, wrote to the young aviator in limericks through the poem entitled "Eaglet fallen."


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