Tuesday, November 11, 2008
My father passed away in a state veterans home in Florida last year.
At 19 he went to war, serving as a radio operator and waist gunner on a B-24 heavy bomber. On a bombing run over Vienna, Austria on 29 May 1944, his aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire. With much of the flight controls shot away, they tried to make it to the Adriatic Sea but had to bail out over Yugoslavia. The entire crew survived but were captured and spent the remainder of the war as POWs. My father was in Stalag Luft VIIa when it was liberated on 29 April 1945.
He never had much to say about that time but looking back I can see what a profound affect it had on him.
You can see more photographs from WWII here.
And more photographs from his life here.
The pilot of Dad's aircraft, Roy Daniels, is the last survivor of that mission. He wrote a book which I discussed here.