From: Upstate New York USA
Oh! Oh! Let me have this one!
I'm assuming you are playing as the Allies. I'm not sure how far into your game you are, but if all, or even most, of your original pilots are dead already, you are clearly misusing your pilots. Bad Commander!
Seriously, as the Allies you have a lot of advantages throughout the war. Unfortunately, most of those advantages do not exist during the early days. One advantage you do have is the ability to "live to fight another day." What happened in real life, and what the game allows you to do (or not), is that the Allies did not commit large forces to decisive battles early on, because that would result in the destruction of their forces, including the few good pilots they had. A not uncommon mistake for new players (myself included) is to fight too hard early on rather than saving forces until they can win the fight they pick.
I don't have a pilot problem in my game vs. AI, but as an example, at February 28, 1942, my usable B-17 forces in the theater consist of one plane, and I have converted 3 aircraft carriers into submarines and stationed them underneath the Marshall Islands.
This is a game where you have to play smarter, not harder. It's a long learning curve, but most of what happens is determined by your decisions, including whether your pilots are dead or alive.
"It's all according to how your boogaloo situation stands, you understand."