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.
Units served with
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...
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...
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...
||Puyallup, WA, USA
||24 April 1921
Barney was the son of Polish immigrants who owned and worked a raspberry farm in Puyallup.
||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.
||15 September 1945
||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.