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The remainder of his career was spent in non-operational positions, as Commandant of Cadets at the United States Air Force Academy and as an official in the Air Force Inspector General's Office.
His inability to rise higher as a general officer is attributed to both his maverick views and his penchant for drinking.
Olds had a highly publicized career and life, including marriage to Hollywood actress Ella Raines.
As a young man he was also recognized for his athletic prowess in both high school and college, being named an All-American as a lineman in college football.
Olds expressed his philosophy regarding fighter pilots in the quote: "There are pilots and there are pilots; with the good ones, it is inborn. If you are a fighter pilot, you have to be willing to take risks." Olds was born Robert Oldys, Jr.
Olds was aggressive, even mean, as a player, and received offers to attend Virginia Military Institute and Dartmouth College on football scholarships.
Rising to the command of two fighter wings, Olds is regarded among aviation historians, and his peers, as the best wing commander of the Vietnam War, for both his air-fighting skills, and his reputation as a combat leader.
Olds was promoted to brigadier general after returning from Vietnam but did not hold another major command.
Olds' class was given an abridged second class course of study until January 19, 1943, when it began an abridged first class course.
Lieutenant Olds completed fighter pilot training with the 329th Fighter Group, an operational training unit based at Grand Central Air Terminal in Glendale, California.
In the Army–Navy Game of 1942, which was played at Annapolis instead of Philadelphia, Olds had both upper front teeth knocked out when he received a forearm blow to the mouth while making a tackle.