Submitted stories and first hand oral accounts as told by American veterans

 

D-Day Remembered My teenage grandson has never evidenced the slightest interest in my military career, my war experiences, nor, in fact, anything about my past. So it was quite a surprise when he asked me to write him a letter “about the most exciting day you can remember in WWII.” He explained that it was for his Grade 10 history class; an essay he was required to write. Oh. I…

 
 

We landed in Marseille, France on October 20, 1944. As we slowly sailed into the harbor of that war-torn city, I saw, for the first time, the terrible sight of the utter destruction of war. All wharves, docks and piers were in a frightful state of destruction from bombing and German demolition units. The sight was awesome; the devastation was beyond imagination. (more…)

 
 

Letter to children May 8, 1995 – 50th anniversary of V-E Day: Dear Jeff and Suci: This is yet another milestone in my life and I want to share some of my thoughts and feelings with you while they are still fresh. The compelling images of the celebrations and memorial services her and in Western Europe that I have seen today on television have aroused different emotions in me. On one…

 
 

Following is an account of several events that occurred in the Philippines during World War II. Since I was personally involved with these adventures 1944-45, and since it is now the year 2007, actual dates and places in which the described actions took place are subject to natural memory distortions. Hopefully, most dates and names of places will be given with a modicum of accuracy. However, the chronological…

 
 

ANZIO I was assigned as a replacement to the 5th Army, 45th Division, 179th Regiment, on January 20, 1944. After a few days, the 179th was detached from the 45th and attached to the 1st armored division, and on January 22nd, made an amphibious landing on Anzio. The landing caught the Germans completely off guard, and we went inland about five miles, made our foxholes, and awaited orders. Some rangers joined…

 
 

Coincidences? I Can’t Believe It! or God Was On Our Side May 23rd 1945: We, a bomber crew flying “Uncle Sam’s Milk Wagon,” took off from Tinian Island in the Marianas, sixty miles north of Guam. Destination: Tokyo. All went well on our 7-hour flight to Tokyo; everything was routine. When we started our bombing run, for some unknown and unexplained reason, I did not put the Automatic pilot on “standby”…

 
 

To crash-land in the Bay of Bengal was dangerous at night (we were apprehensive) but of more concern to me was the wounded on board. The Bay of Bengal was full of man-eating barracudas and they were attracted to blood, which we had a lot of. Before I left the cockpit to make the radio call, I instructed the co-pilot to contact each crewmember and inform them that…

 
 

UNCLE SAM WANTS YOU After graduating in June 1941 from the College of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash. with a bachelor’s degree in political science, I didn’t need to worry about how I was going to put all that knowledge to work for me. While my long interest in world geography and history made the foreign service look to…

 
 

All the Way Story by Christian Knutson of Swan Valley High School It was the early morning hours of June the 6th, 1944 – D-Day! The noisy C-47 was filled with paratroopers waiting to begin the assault on Fortress Europe during World War II. As the airplane flew over the French coast, anti-aircraft weapons opened fire. Through the noise of the aircraft and the burst of anti-aircraft shells, the jumpmaster’s commands…

 
 

World War II Experiences Seabees, Pearl Harbor George W. Larson of Altoona, Iowa, during World War II (WWII), was assigned to the 135th United States Naval Construction Battalion (Seabees). On March 17, 1944, Larson entered WWII, giving up his job at an arms plant in Ankeny, Iowa, departing Des Moines, Iowa by train. He was assigned to Company 351-444, Camp Waldron, United States Naval Training Station, Farragut, Idaho, near Lake Pend…