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.
Units served with
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...
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,...
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...
||New Jersey, USA
||Mercer County, NJ, USA
||Trenton, NJ, USA
||10 April 1941
|Prisoner of War (POW)
||3 October 1944 – 1945