Friday, May 30, 2014

Friday's Faces From the Past: Military Memories - Dad in the Service, 1951-1955


Well, this picture isn't especially flattering (maybe it was taken just after he completed advanced survival training in the Nevada desert), but it was on Dad's WD AGO Form 66 (Officer's, Warrant Officer's, and Flight Officer's Qualification Record) from the Air Force. He gave me the original form to copy as well as some of his orders and leave papers.  Some were hard to read, because of all the abbreviations and acronyms, but here is a rough timeline of his key dates in the Air Force:

February 27, 1951 - preflight (air cadet) training at Randolph Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas
March 31, 1951 - flight school at Columbus Air Force Base, Columbus, Mississippi
July 12-27, 1951 - 15 days of leave, home to 2093 Lunt Avenue in Chicago
August 12, 1951 - navigator training in Class 52-05N at Ellington Air Force Base, Houston, Texas (30 weeks worth)
December 1951 - granted Christmas leave, flies into O'Hare Reserve Station when all other Chicago airports are closed by snow
April 11, 1952 - commissioned as a Second Lieutenant at completion of navigator training and begins three years of active duty.
late April & early May, 1952 - visits home in Chicago en route to next assignment
May 14, 1952 - B-26 bombardment training, Langley Air Force Base, Virginia
July 11, 1952 - assigned to Night Intruder Crew #12 as navigator-bombardier with pilot Milton C. Royles and gunner William R. Peppers.
August 4, 1952 - crew sent to Stead Air Force Base near Reno, Nevada, for advanced survival training course (completed August 14), followed by Camp Stoneman near Pittsburg, California
early September, 1952 - meets with his brother Navy Lieutenant Commander Paul Robert "Bob" Pape, who is en route from Korea to the Pentagon, in San Francisco at the home of their mother's first cousin, Henrietta Gauer Strible and her husband Jack.
September 18, 1952 - sent to McClellan Air Force Base near Sacramento, California, to ferry a B-26 to Japan with Royles (via Hawaii and Guam).
October 9, 1952 - arrival at Tachikawa Airfield near Tokyo and assigned (along with Milt Royles) to the 17th Bomb Group (aka 17th Bomb Wing), 37th Bomb Squadron, and sent to K-1, the Pusan West Air Base, in Korea
sometime in late 1952 and/or early 1953 - flies 50th mission and receives Air Medal
February 26, 1953 - R&R leave, flown to Itazuke Air Base in Fukuoka, Japan
March 7, 1953 - reassigned to Travis Air Force Base, near Fairfield, California
April 14, 1953 - assigned to 3605th Observer (navigator) Training Wing at Ellington Air Force Base near Houston, Texas (thanks to Uncle Bob), as an instructor
September 12, 1953 - promoted to First Lieutenant
December 21, 1953 - 10 days of leave granted, flies home to Chicago with his fiancee, my mom
September 10, 1954 - 15 days of leave granted (for wedding and honeymoon!)
April 10, 1955 - released from active duty

© Amanda Pape - 2014 - click here to e-mail me.

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