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Biographies

Sgt. George F. Littlejohn

I just recently learned that George Littlejohn is my 2nd cousin. I was looking for WWII vets in my family on an ancestry page and found his. He was with the 449th, 719th Squadron. He was a radio operator and his plane/crew were shot down and he was taken as a POW. I would like to know the name of the mission/operation he was on during that time. It’s a real honor to have this WWII in my family as well as many others I have found. I’m keeping a genealogy book of records of my family and would love to add that mission to his page. Thank you in advance.

Trina Hayes
Weatherford, Texas

Sgt Frank L. “Buck” Johnson

Part of Crew 605 (Skolfield crew), Buck was wounded during a bombing run over Germany when flak hit him in his nose gunner station resulting in the award of a purple heart. Once he returned to the US and was stationed in Sioux Falls, SD, he traveled to Sioux City, IA and met Norma Peck, whom he married in 1946. They were married for 70 years and raised 5 children.  He moved to New Brighton, PA, for 3 years, and also made a brief move to his boyhood home in Blacksburg, VA.  However, most of his post-service life was spent in Sioux City, IA.  Buck was a carpenter and eventually owned and operated his own residential construction business in Sioux City, for about 25 years. Some of that period found him in partnership with his life-long buddy (and brother-in-law as they married sisters) Robert L. Young from the same Crew 605. Buck eventually moved to the Kansas City area in 1985 and continued his construction activities in several capacities including renovating old textile buildings in Kansas City to condos. He eventually moved to co-managing an apartment complex in Belton, MO with his wife with Buck doing the handy man work around the apartment complex. Buck’s passion was his faith in God and service to his church wherever he lived.  He was the song leader, choir member, deacon, Sunday school teacher, and always held Christ first in his life.  He also enjoyed and supported his childrens’ activities and his grandchildrens’ activities.  He retired at age 82. He passed to heaven in October, 2016, following the celebration of his 90th birthday and 70th wedding anniversary earlier that year.  Buck was a devout patriot and honored his country throughout his adult life.

Terry Johnson
Stilwell, KS

90th Birthday, March 28, 2016

2Lt Ewing Miller

Ewing was a little too short to get into flight school.
The night before he took the physical he hung on a closet door to stretch himself that extra 1/4 inch

( he shared this story with me at the Columbia Cub in Indianapolis)

Archie Williamson
Indianapolis, IN

Lt. Richard (Dick) F. Downey

My grandfather was a career military man who was part of the 449th bomb group The Flying Horsemen his efforts and legacy have made it possible today that many of these great men and their families are still in contact with each other to this day

David Christopher King
Cecero, Indiana

Cpl. Albert Gerhart Schwartz

Albert is from Huntingburg Indiana. He was one of the first 19 year old boys to be drafted. He volunteered to be a cook and was assigned to the 717th 449th Bomb Group. He was a corporal and his uniform, cookbook and other memorabilia has been donated to the 449th Historical museum. he returned to Huntingburg after discharge and died April 23, 2012.

Barbara Ann (Schwartz) Edmonds
Lizton, Indiana

Sgt. Robert F. Widenhofer

Bobby was my Dad’s brother. We grew up hearing stories about him and how he was the only one of my Dad’s brothers to be taken during their time of service for our country. As a family, this event devastated many and went on to effect the decisions and choices of several of his siblings for years to come.

Many of us do not know Bobby’s story, how he lived during his time of enlistment and most of us are just finding out how he passed. I would love to know if anyone has any stories or photos of the men who served with Bobby. He was adored by my father.

Deanna Lynn Widenhofer-Osche
Butler County, Pennsylvania

S/Sgt Peter J. Barber, SR

716th Bomb Squadron, 449th Bomb Group (Heavy)
15th U.S. Army Air Force
“Silver Babe” B-24 Liberator-Raymond Nicholson’s crew
left waist gunner- 50 missions flown from Grottaglie, Italy air base over Europe

Gail Barber Popowich
Rochester, NY USA

Lt. H. Frank Stubbs

H. Frank Stubbs joined the WWII effort immediately after his high school graduation with Honors , in Yakima Washington.

He trained and served as Pilot in the 449th BG . After WWII ended, Frank returned to Washington state , attended the University of Washington in Seattle, then attended and graduated from University of Washington School of Law . Frank became a top notch Attorney , and was included in more than one edition of “Best Trial Lawyers in America” . He was married to Joy Nichols Stubbs before joining the Army Air Corp., and Frank and Joy had 6 children . H. Frank Stubbs always admired his fellow 449th members and attended each reunion he could .

His family , wife , and much of his community admire him for his talents , patriotism , kindness, and loyalty .

 

Wendy Stubbs
USA

1Lt. Richard W. Lent

My father, Richard Lent, (1921-2015) was a navigator in the 449th, and was in combat from June 1944 – October 13, 1944. His aircraft went down over occupied Yugoslavia following a mission (his 50th) to Vienna and alternate targets. Among the crew aboard was flight surgeon Captain Leslie Caplan, author of “Death March Medic.”

My father bailed out, but landed badly, breaking bones in both legs. He was found by Yugoslav partisans under Tito’s, who managed over five days to bring him down from the area where he landed to the coast, thence to an island controlled by the Allies, and back to Italy. There his injuries were treated (broken bones repaired with metal sleeves, two in one leg, three in the other) and returned to the US in late 1944. There’s much more to the story.

Accompanying photo is of his aircrew in Idaho before heading east and the journey to Italy. Lt. Richard Lent is second from left in the back row.

Ryck Lent
Waltham, MA

S/Sgt Harold Fox, Jr.

My Uncle Harold was a ball turret gunner on “TWO TON TESSIE” 42-52117. The rest is history. I’m in the midst of making a model of his B-24H-10-FO. Archives only have three photos. Does anyone have Info. about tail and fuselage (both sides) numbers. See enclosed picture I used 42-52150 for reference.

Robert D Carley
Livingston, NJ

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