James Rogers McConnell was one of the founders and first heroes of the Lafayette Escadrille. Born in Chicago in 1887, McConnell attended the University of Virginia and moved to Carthage shortly after graduating. In 1916, he was one of the first four Americans to fly for the Lafayette Escadrille in France. McConnell wrote several books detailing his time spent in the war. His plane was shot down and he was killed in action on March 17, 1917.