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Barney Stemp

Military

RTD Damaged by flak and ditched in channel on 8/9/44 in B-24 #4278483, treated for a severe head injury by the French underground who eventually aided him in returning to his unit.

Barney was a good man who stepped up when needed by his country like so many of his generation.
His war was never discussed but his injuries resulting from ditching in the channel went deeper than just a severe head wound and eventually led to his death many years later.

He studied music and qualified as a teacher, settling with Blanche in the Bay Area of California to raise their 5 children. Blanche died too young and Barney continued to make a life for their kids though it certainly wasn't easy. Darkness was often dispelled by a drink or two and knowing what I do now, there is an acceptance of what was damned hard by anyone's measure. In the end he did his best which all anyone could expect - even him.

For me, I prefer to remember the positive things about my dad.
*the sound of the violin in the early morning when he was practising
*his cooking which was as delicious as it was adventurous
*his very dry sense of humour that I really got
*during tough times, he never, ever gave up

He was proud of our achievements though light on praise (at least within our hearing) and his words of wisdom often come to mind, like - If they give you lined paper, write the other way!
I am who I am because of him in so many, many ways and I thank him for his courage and tenacity.

Service

Units served with

  • 445th Bomb Group

    445th Bomb Group

    Group
    The 445th Bomb Group flew B-24 Liberators from Tibenham, Norfolk. The crews' first mission was bombing U-boat installations at Kiel on 13 December 1943. The Group continued to hit strategic targets in Germany, including the aircraft components factory...

  • 701st Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 42-78483

    B-24 Liberator
    On August 9, 1944, the aircraft was on a mission, presumably to bomb targets in Saarbrücken, Germany. Hit by flak, it crashed near St. Avold, Lorraine, France. Several crew members survived, others perished, but at least two survivors were subsequently...

Associated Place

  • Tibenham

    Military site : airfield
    Tibenham was built in 1941-1942 by W and C French Ltd with a standard 2,000 yard main runway, and two other runways both 1,400 feet in length. Accommodation was provided for a full USAAF heavy bomber group in dispersed sites. Personnel of the 320th...

Events

Event Location Date
Born Puyallup, WA, USA 24 April 1921

Barney was the son of Polish immigrants who owned and worked a raspberry farm in Puyallup.

Enlisted 29 September 1942

His younger brother followed his lead, enlisting in early 1944 only to lose his life like so many in France just over a year later.

Honorable Discharge 15 September 1945
Died San Leandro, CA, USA 4 March 1980

Barney was mugged going home from the supermarket. He was struck on the head at the site of his head injury in 1944. He died from an inoperable blood clot that formed beneath the plate in his head that saved his life during the war.

Ashes scattered over the North Sea 19 July 1980

Ashes scattered by Major Paul Dembrowsky over the North Sea in the area where the Piccadilly Hill went down in 1944.

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
03 December 2016 07:07:50 Stasia Stempczynski Kennedy Changes to events
Sources

Stasia Kenned [nee Stempczynski] eldest child
Military information provided by Jim Glawson, USAF/Ret

Date Contributor Update
03 December 2016 07:01:59 Stasia Stempczynski Kennedy Changes to service number
Sources

Stasia Kennedy [nee Stempczynski] eldest child
Military information provided by Jim Glawson, USAF/Ret

Date Contributor Update
03 December 2016 07:00:30 Stasia Stempczynski Kennedy Changes to biography
Sources

Stasia Kennedy [nee Stempczynski] eldest child
Military information provided by Jim Glawson, USAF/Ret

Date Contributor Update
03 December 2016 06:42:41 Stasia Stempczynski Kennedy Changes to biography
Sources

Stasia Kennedy [nee Stempczynski) eldest child
Military information provided by Jim Glawson, USAF, Ret

Date Contributor Update
03 December 2016 06:40:09 Stasia Stempczynski Kennedy Changes to biography, awards and events
Sources

Stasia Kennedy [nee Stempczynski]
Military detail was provided to me by Jim Glawson, USAF/Ret

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:04:19 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

Birsic MACR 7385 / Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 7385 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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