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When Hollywood Ruled The Skies - Volumes 1 through 4 by Bruce Oriss


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 Post subject: Remember the Fallen ...
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 9:52 pm 
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Boeing B-17G-20-BO Flying Fortress 42-31590 ''Miss Donna Mae II'' of the 331st BS, 94th BG, 8th AF.
Plane drifted out of position and under B-17G-30-VE 42-97791 "Trudy" on a bomb run over Berlin, Germany on the 19th of May 1944.
A 1,000 lb bomb tore the left horizontal stabilizer off and sent the plane into an uncontrollable spin, trapping the crew inside.
The stress from the spin tore the wings off at about 13,000 feet; all 11 KIA. Berlin, Germany, 19 May 1944.

"In a discussion of this famous a/c loss with a ball turret gunner (Sgt Wilbur Richardson) who witnessed this mishap while on this mission to Berlin. "Miss Donna Mae II" was a Boeing B-17G-20-BO Flying Fortress (s/n 42-31590) flown by Lt Marion Reid's crew in the 331st BS 94th BG. Over the target during bomb release, the aircraft was hit by a bomb from a higher group and was lost with her 11-man crew over Berlin on 19 May 44. Although B-17's were often able to fly with only one horizontal stabilizer left, this time was different... Post-mission analysis of the automatic (6 sec. interval) pictures that were taken from "Trudy" showed that the hard impact on the left stabilizer somehow caused the flight control gust lock to engage in flight (it was usually set by the pilot to lock the control surfaces after flight), freezing the remaining right stabilizer in the full "down" position. No amount of "up" trim could compensate for this, and the doomed aircraft immediately pushed over into a steeper and steeper negative G terminal velocity dive. After entering the clouds, the aircraft likely broke up in flight before hitting the ground in Berlin -- no one survived."

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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 10:03 pm 
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Louisville native 1st Lieutenant Carl G. Tafel, Jr. of the 487th Fighter Squadron (pictured here with his P-51 Mustang) flew his P-51 Mustang to the aid of P-47 Thunderbolts under enemy attack near Bonn, Germany on Dec. 26, 1944. He was shot down and killed during an ensuing dogfight.

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Wreckage of 1st Lieutenant Carl G. Tafel, Jr.'s P-51D 44-13953 of the 487th FS, 352nd FG.

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Father Tafel at his brothers grave.

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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 10:04 pm 
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US Marine Colonel Francis Fenton conducting the funeral of his son Private First Class Mike Fenton, near Shuri, Okinawa, May 1945.

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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 10:10 pm 
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Iwo Jima

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Iwo Jima

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Omaha Beach

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Omaha Beach

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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 10:18 pm 
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P-61 flyover Soldiers Monument, Military Cemetary near Verdun, France. March, 1945

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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 10:37 pm 
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Memorial weekend to me means not only to remember out fallen in the States, but all the allied fallen as well.

An Airman's Letter to His Mother ...

An Airman's Letter to His Mother (1941) is a documentary-style British propaganda short film based on an actual letter from a British bomber pilot to his mother published in The Times in June 1940. Subsequently, the letter was published as a pamphlet and received wide distribution in the UK. "The letter in question had touched a nation's heart and made a popular film subject." In 1941, Michael Powell directed An Airman's Letter to His Mother, based on a dramatization of the letter, and narrated by John Gielgud.

Link below.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/An_Airman ... His_Mother

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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 12:53 am 
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I always recall my visit to the American cemetery at Madingley near Cambridge, testing place for many American airmen.
I had the honor of attending Remembrance/Veterans Day services there in an official capacity when I was stationed in the UK.

The neat rows of crosses, the wall listing those who have no known grave, and the chapel with the altar with stained glass state flags and ghostly mosaics of WWII aircraft create memories that can't be forgotten.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambrid ... d_Memorial

In addition, there is another place that reminds me of sacrifice.
A dozen miles NE of my house, and clearly seen from my living room and deck, is a mountain where a B-29 and two KC-135s crashed.
As a Air Force kid in the 50-60s, and an officer in the 80s-2000, I know that peacetime service was not without risks. Every time I look at the mountain, I remember those who perished there.

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Remember the vets, the wonderful planes they flew and their sacrifices for a future many of them did not live to see.


Last edited by JohnB on Sat May 25, 2019 3:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 11:50 am 
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JohnB wrote:
I always recall my visit to the American cemetery at Madingley near Cambridge, testing place for many American airmen.
I had the honor of attending Remembrance/Veterans Day services there in an official capacity when I was stationed in the UK.

The neat rows of crosses, the wall listing those who have no known grave, and the chapel with the altar with stained glass state flags and ghostly mosaics of WWII aircraft create memories that can't be forgotten.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambrid ... d_Memorial

In addition, there is another place that removed a me of sacrifice.
A dozen miles NE of my house, and clearly seen from my living room and deck, is a mountain where a B-29 and two KC-135s crashed.
As a Air Force kid in the 50-60s, and an officer in the 80s-2000, I know that peacetime service was not without risks. Every time I look at the mountain, I remember those who perished there.


As an Air Force brat my dad would be take me to the War Cemeteries in Europe. I remember shocking my dad with a remark (Bear in mind I was a 17 year old long haired metal head at the time). As we were leaving one of cemeteries, i remarked "How can something so beautiful be born of something so ugly?". My dad about wrecked the car coming to a stop, asked me to repeat what I said, then asked who are you........

Was one of my dads favorites stories to tell. I was an AF Brat, a title I wear proudly, from Dec 66 to Jan 86, and an AF member from Jan 86 to Sept 2008.

I'm a member of several gun forums and posted the following........

Memorial Day 2019

As we all set about getting to where we are going this Memorial Day weekend, with the freedom to celebrate as we wish, let’s take a minute to remember the cost of that freedom. Since 19 April 1775 when the “Colonists” entered into war with Britain, approximately 1,354,664 “Americans” have given their lives for this nation, with an additional 40,031 still unaccounted for, so in reality that number is approximately 1,394,695. That number does not include the number of innocent civilians killed by terrorist attacks, or as collateral damage.

These Americans have come in all colors, races, religions, and sexes, some hadn’t even become US citizens yet, but died for us, so I considered them to be Americans just the same. Some of us know someone who was killed fighting for and defending this freedom. Whether it was a long ago or recent relative, neighbor, coworker, parent, child, etc, we are not immune to the price paid.

Think about it, over 1.3 Million Americans have shed their blood, dying on domestic and foreign battlefields. As in the past, today we have families that have an empty seat at the table and for them family gatherings will never be the same. For a lot of them Memorial Day is spent gathering around a gravesite sharing stories of their “Hero” while shedding tears. In reality they are not just their heroes, they should be and are ours also.

So regardless of where or how you spend your “Hard Earned” 3 day weekend, remember the price paid, how many lives lost before they really started. Remember FREEDOM is not FREE, and has been paid for by those who loved us, loved this country, and loved life, the same life they gave for us.

The battle for freedom is never truly over, let their sacrifices not be forgotten, let the price of freedom not be forgotten, let them not be forgotten.

May God bless our nation and those who have protected it to their deaths. Everyone have a great and safe Memorial Day weekend, and remember to take a moment of silence to reflect upon the price paid for freedom and to remember and thank those whom paid for this holiday with their lives, America’s war dead!

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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 1:34 pm 
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Any thoughts?

Memorial Day Doesn’t Need To Be Treated As A National Military Funeral

Memorial Day. In America, it marks the first weekend of summer, and is frequently accompanied by such patriotic traditions as cookouts, trips to the beach, and sales on linens and housewares.

Lately, it’s also accompanied by social media scolding about remembering why there’s a Memorial Day. Numerous posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the like show pictures of Arlington National Cemetery or something similar, along with pithy sayings like, “In case you thought it was national barbecue day.”

As a whole, many veterans want the people to take Memorial Day more seriously. Many, if not most, veterans know friends and fellow service members who paid the ultimate price. It’s natural that many get a little annoyed when most of the civilian population seems to just take the holiday as a chance to go to the beach.

It’s something of an unfair criticism when you think about it. We can’t look inside anyone else’s head. Perhaps that person took a moment to reflect on military sacrifice before going out. Who knows? In any case, do we expect people to spend Memorial Day quietly sobbing to themselves?

The best way to think of Memorial Day is not as a national military funeral, but as a national wake. We’ve already shed our tears for fallen comrades. There’s nothing wrong with shedding a few more, especially for the recently departed, but a better way to cherish their memories is to spend a moment reflecting on all the good things their sacrifices enabled the rest of us to enjoy.

Going out and enjoying your freedoms as an American on Memorial Day is the right thing to do. Just take the time to honor the sacrifices that made it possible. Whether you do this by raising bottles of brew with your guests this weekend in a toast to the fallen, or by taking a moment during your family’s prayer of “grace” before dinner, it doesn’t matter. If one new person at your gathering takes that sentiment onboard, it’s a far greater tribute to the fallen than a thousand guilt-inducing Facebook posts.

Mourning has its place. I know a lot of comrades who I wish were still here with us. When I think about the fact that they’re gone, and even more, when I think about their families left behind, sometimes I can’t help but tear up a bit. More important than that though, is thinking about what their sacrifices have bought for us, being thankful for that, and celebrating it.

We can hold onto some sadness for those who made the ultimate sacrifice. But, just as importantly, we need to celebrate the fact that as Americans we have something worthy of that level of sacrifice, and that we’ve had thousands of service members who’ve been willing to make it. Don’t be ashamed to have a good time this Memorial Day — that’s part of the gift that’s been bestowed to you. To reject the gift is to belittle the sacrifice that was made. Just take the time to say “thanks” aloud with your family and friends. That’s a pretty good memorial right there, and hopefully, the fallen can hear it.

https://taskandpurpose.com/memorial-day ... ry-funeral

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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 1:56 pm 
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Mark Allen M wrote:
Any thoughts?

Memorial Day Doesn’t Need To Be Treated As A National Military Funeral

Memorial Day. In America, it marks the first weekend of summer, and is frequently accompanied by such patriotic traditions as cookouts, trips to the beach, and sales on linens and housewares.

Lately, it’s also accompanied by social media scolding about remembering why there’s a Memorial Day. Numerous posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the like show pictures of Arlington National Cemetery or something similar, along with pithy sayings like, “In case you thought it was national barbecue day.”

As a whole, many veterans want the people to take Memorial Day more seriously. Many, if not most, veterans know friends and fellow service members who paid the ultimate price. It’s natural that many get a little annoyed when most of the civilian population seems to just take the holiday as a chance to go to the beach.

It’s something of an unfair criticism when you think about it. We can’t look inside anyone else’s head. Perhaps that person took a moment to reflect on military sacrifice before going out. Who knows? In any case, do we expect people to spend Memorial Day quietly sobbing to themselves?

The best way to think of Memorial Day is not as a national military funeral, but as a national wake. We’ve already shed our tears for fallen comrades. There’s nothing wrong with shedding a few more, especially for the recently departed, but a better way to cherish their memories is to spend a moment reflecting on all the good things their sacrifices enabled the rest of us to enjoy.

Going out and enjoying your freedoms as an American on Memorial Day is the right thing to do. Just take the time to honor the sacrifices that made it possible. Whether you do this by raising bottles of brew with your guests this weekend in a toast to the fallen, or by taking a moment during your family’s prayer of “grace” before dinner, it doesn’t matter. If one new person at your gathering takes that sentiment onboard, it’s a far greater tribute to the fallen than a thousand guilt-inducing Facebook posts.

Mourning has its place. I know a lot of comrades who I wish were still here with us. When I think about the fact that they’re gone, and even more, when I think about their families left behind, sometimes I can’t help but tear up a bit. More important than that though, is thinking about what their sacrifices have bought for us, being thankful for that, and celebrating it.

We can hold onto some sadness for those who made the ultimate sacrifice. But, just as importantly, we need to celebrate the fact that as Americans we have something worthy of that level of sacrifice, and that we’ve had thousands of service members who’ve been willing to make it. Don’t be ashamed to have a good time this Memorial Day — that’s part of the gift that’s been bestowed to you. To reject the gift is to belittle the sacrifice that was made. Just take the time to say “thanks” aloud with your family and friends. That’s a pretty good memorial right there, and hopefully, the fallen can hear it.

https://taskandpurpose.com/memorial-day ... ry-funeral


Well said, I don't expect it to be a national day of mourning, and I agree people are free to enjoy and celebrate the day as they wish. We all served protecting peoples rights, beliefs etc. My wish is that people take a minute to reflect upon the sacrifices made on their behalf, enjoy themselves and to be safe.

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TSgt USAF Retired
Jan 86 - Sept 08
Aircrew Life Support
"Your Life Is Our Business"
(122X0, 1T1X1, 1P0X1)
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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 2:31 pm 
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ffuries wrote:
Mark Allen M wrote:
Any thoughts?

Memorial Day Doesn’t Need To Be Treated As A National Military Funeral

Memorial Day. In America, it marks the first weekend of summer, and is frequently accompanied by such patriotic traditions as cookouts, trips to the beach, and sales on linens and housewares.

Lately, it’s also accompanied by social media scolding about remembering why there’s a Memorial Day. Numerous posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the like show pictures of Arlington National Cemetery or something similar, along with pithy sayings like, “In case you thought it was national barbecue day.”

As a whole, many veterans want the people to take Memorial Day more seriously. Many, if not most, veterans know friends and fellow service members who paid the ultimate price. It’s natural that many get a little annoyed when most of the civilian population seems to just take the holiday as a chance to go to the beach.

It’s something of an unfair criticism when you think about it. We can’t look inside anyone else’s head. Perhaps that person took a moment to reflect on military sacrifice before going out. Who knows? In any case, do we expect people to spend Memorial Day quietly sobbing to themselves?

The best way to think of Memorial Day is not as a national military funeral, but as a national wake. We’ve already shed our tears for fallen comrades. There’s nothing wrong with shedding a few more, especially for the recently departed, but a better way to cherish their memories is to spend a moment reflecting on all the good things their sacrifices enabled the rest of us to enjoy.

Going out and enjoying your freedoms as an American on Memorial Day is the right thing to do. Just take the time to honor the sacrifices that made it possible. Whether you do this by raising bottles of brew with your guests this weekend in a toast to the fallen, or by taking a moment during your family’s prayer of “grace” before dinner, it doesn’t matter. If one new person at your gathering takes that sentiment onboard, it’s a far greater tribute to the fallen than a thousand guilt-inducing Facebook posts.

Mourning has its place. I know a lot of comrades who I wish were still here with us. When I think about the fact that they’re gone, and even more, when I think about their families left behind, sometimes I can’t help but tear up a bit. More important than that though, is thinking about what their sacrifices have bought for us, being thankful for that, and celebrating it.

We can hold onto some sadness for those who made the ultimate sacrifice. But, just as importantly, we need to celebrate the fact that as Americans we have something worthy of that level of sacrifice, and that we’ve had thousands of service members who’ve been willing to make it. Don’t be ashamed to have a good time this Memorial Day — that’s part of the gift that’s been bestowed to you. To reject the gift is to belittle the sacrifice that was made. Just take the time to say “thanks” aloud with your family and friends. That’s a pretty good memorial right there, and hopefully, the fallen can hear it.

https://taskandpurpose.com/memorial-day ... ry-funeral


Well said, I don't expect it to be a national day of mourning, and I agree people are free to enjoy and celebrate the day as they wish. We all served protecting peoples rights, beliefs etc. My wish is that people take a minute to reflect upon the sacrifices made on their behalf, enjoy themselves and to be safe.



Agreed, I don't think anyone cares too much about HOW people celebrate Memorial Day as long as we as a nation continue to remember and to educate each new generation about WHY there is a Memorial Day. It seems that more often than not these days our youth, if they are taught anything at all, are taught that this country has been a force for evil more than it has been a force for good. NOTHING could be more disrespectful to our fallen heroes and that is the lie that should be "railed against" in my opinion.


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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 2:56 pm 
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The Oryoku Maru was attacked and sunk in Subic Bay with the loss of approximately 300 POW's. One of the Japanese "Hell Ships"

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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 3:08 pm 
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First Bubbletop that the 57th FG received. Lt. Thomas Davis was killed in this airplane on 2 September 1944.

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Republic P-47, which the people of Scarsdale, NY paid for. It is the 'Scarsdale Scrapper' 2nd Lt. Robert A. Coughenour 359thFS 356th FG killed on June 8, 1944.

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PostPosted: Sun May 26, 2019 9:02 am 
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The tranquil field near Fromelles, France where my wife's great-grandfather L/Cpl Frederick J Gray was killed during the battle of Aubers Ridge on 9 May 1915. His regiment went over the top in the early morning and were cut down by machine gun fire from the German lines which ran left to right in the background. Reforming, the men prepared to go forward in the afternoon but were annihiliated by the creeping barrage of their own guns. Fred Gray's body was never recovered and he doubtless still lies in the ploughed field, which my wife and I visited two weeks ago. In 1918, three years after Fred was killed, the opposing forces were still fighting over the same piece of land and Fred was still there in no-man's land.

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Lance Corporal Frederick John Gray of B Company, 2nd Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment is commemorated, along with many of his comrades who have no known grave, on the Ploegsteert Memorial. His medals and dead man's penny are mounted in a frame on our dining room wall: he will never be forgotten.

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PostPosted: Sun May 26, 2019 2:49 pm 
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Let them in Peter
For they are very tired
Give them couches where the angels sleep
And light those fires
Let them wake whole again
To brand new dawns
Fired by the sun
Not war-times bloody guns
May their peace be deep
Remember where the broken bodies lie
God knows how young they were
To have to die
Give them things they like
Let them make some noise
Give dance hall bands not golden harps
To these our boys
Let them love Peter
For they've had no time
They should have bird songs and trees
And hills to climb
The taste of summer
And a ripened pear
And girls sweet as meadow wind
And flowing hair
And tell them how they are missed
But say not to fear
It's gonna be all right
With us down here



Don't tell us how to mourn
no one is
Don't tell us how we should remember
no one did
Who are you to tell us how we should honor the fallen
no I'm not
Some remember privately
nothing wrong with that
some remember publicly
and nothing wrong with that

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