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Charles E Cregar Jr

Military

Dad would never discuss the war, Mom said it brought up terrible memories. He regretted the death of his one crew member, and never discussed POW with anyone. When he returned home I was about 2 or 3. A friend related that he thought of becoming a commercial pilot but the first two small planes he chartered had engine problems and he made forced landings. Immediately decided to change careers. Never got in a plane again until a vacation to the Caribbean about 20 years later, white knuckles and all.

He was a traveling salesman for a time with Brown and Bigelow, eventually went into the Moving & Storage business with a friend and did well. Lived in Trenton, NJ, then Levittown, PA circa 1950-57, then Cinnaminson, NJ until he sold the moving business and retired at age 50 when he bought a houseboat and moved to Florida with Mom. He put both myself and my sister Donna through college and lived to see 2 grandchildren. Died in his sleep on his boat in Isle Verde, FL while my wife and I were visiting with the grandkids.

Dad had fun, enjoyed friends including Ernie Kovacs (TV comedian), who was a childhood friend and Ziggy (from the flight crew). Never would eat potato soup or cabbage, apparently a POW thing. Was an avid boater, always played piano well and would have everyone singing at a party.

Service

Units served with

  • 351st Bomb Group

    351st Bomb Group

    Group
    The 351st Bomb Group flew strategic bombing missions from their base at Polebrook, Northamptonshire from April 1943 to June 1945. The Group's most famous member was Hollywood actor Clark Gable, who flew four/ five missions with them as an observer...

  • 511th Bomb Squadron

Aircraft

  • 43-38518

    B-17 Flying Fortress
    Delivered Cheyenne 11/8/44; Hunter 22/8/44; Grenier 6/9/44; Assigned 511BS/351BG [DS-N] Polebrook 21/9/44; Missing in Action 4m Nurnberg 3/10/44 with Chas Cregar, Sanford Groendyke, Jim Timmie, Ed Huth, Elwood Zigenfus, Chas Weller, Cecil McWhorter,...

Associated Place

  • Polebrook

    Military site : airfield
    Polebrook was laid down for RAF Bomber Command use in 1940-1941. Built by George Wimpey and Co. Ltd, it had short runways which were lengthened for USAAF heavy bomber use. The RAF used the base for operational trials - including of B-17 Flying...

  • Stalag Luft I

    Other location

Events

Event Location Date
Born New Jersey, USA 1919
Lived in Mercer County, NJ, USA April 1941
Enlisted Trenton, NJ, USA 10 April 1941
Prisoner of War (POW) Germany 3 October 1944 – 1945

Revisions

Date Contributor Update
25 November 2016 09:34:20 Lucy May Changes to service number, highest rank, biography, events and place associations
Sources

Brought in information from a duplicate record. Sources:
Drawn from the records of the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force, Savannah, Georgia / MACR 9358 /

http://www.ww2pow.info/index.php?page=directory&rec=56102 /

NARA enlistment record: https://aad.archives.gov/aad/record-detail.jsp?dt=893&mtch=1&cat=all&tf=...

Date Contributor Update
12 November 2015 18:09:56 cregar Changes to biography
Sources

Bio information by myself, Douglas Cregar, proud son of Charles Cregar Jr

Date Contributor Update
27 September 2014 18:05:37 AAM AAM ingest
Sources

MACR 9358 / Paul Andrews, Project Bits and Pieces, 8th Air Force Roll of Honor database

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