Sunday, November 30, 2014

Sentimental Sunday: Commissioned

The same day he graduated from navigator training at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas - April 11, 1952 - Dad was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Air Force.  The picture below is from the day of the graduation and commissioning:

Apparently his class celebrated with a party - he saved a napkin embossed with "5205 A" as well.

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

Friday, November 28, 2014

Friday's Faces From the Past: Graduation From Navigator School

Dad graduated from Navigator School on April 11, 1952.  Below is his class picture.  Note that he wrote on it (near the bottom) "52-05 Last of the Navigators."  The name of the position was changed from Navigator to Observer right about the time Dad graduated, and he wasn't too happy about that.

Back row:  William V. Ryden, Pierre P. Demart*, Norbert G. Langrand*, Donald V. Ridenour, James R. O'Mahoney, Paul F. Woodberry, Frederick H. Pape, Forrest L. Hicks, Willie J, Rivers, Gene W. Ellinghouse

Middle row:  Claude J. Gueguen*, Claude G. Bieth*, Jacques P. Frezouls*, Phillipe Millischer*, Sam A. Austin, Delfino V. D'Ambrosio, Daniel E. Draper, James F. Bayes, Joseph G. Halpin, Arthur S. Nanos.

Front row, kneeling:  G. Paul Sims, Frederick R. Allen, Douglas G. McComas, Richard R. Parks, Garfield G. Thomas, Earl B. Roehm, Joseph H. Daniels, Pierre V. LeCointe*, Jean J. Vigne*, Walter Simon.

Missing:  Harold Lund of Norway.
*French students

Above is the cover from the program for the graduation ceremony.  Note that Dad crossed out Observer and wrote in Navigator instead.  Below is Dad's diploma - I wiped out his service number for privacy.

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

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thankful Thursday: Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving turkey nut-holder decoration made by Eric in kindergarten, November 1991.

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

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

(Not-So-) Wordless Wednesday: Honorary Texas Citizen

A few weeks before Dad graduated from navigator school at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas, he received this Texas honorary citizenship certificate:

Little did he know then that he would ultimately become a "real" citizen of Texas within the decade!

The certificate proclaims: “In the name and by the authority of The State of Texas to all to whom these presents shall come — greeting: Know ye, that each member of Navigation Class 52-05N Ellington Air Force Base is hereby commissioned an Honorary Citizen of Texas under the laws of the State of Texas with all rights, privileges and emoluments appertaining to said office. In testimony whereof, I have hereunto signed my name and caused the Seal of State to be affixed at the City of Austin, this the 25th day of March, A. D. 1952.”   It is signed by then-Governor Allan Shivers and then-Texas Secretary of State John Ben Shepperd.

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

Monday, November 24, 2014

Military Monday: Jim Bayes, "Best Damn Roommate"

James Franklin "Jim" "Morris" Bayes from Swamp Branch, Johnson County, Kentucky, was Dad's roommate during navigator training at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas, August 12, 1951 to April 11, 1952.  Dad first met Jim at pre-flight training at Randolph Air Force Base, and they were also at flight school at Columbus Air Force Base.

Jim was one of the shortest guys in their navigator class, and Dad was one of the tallest, so they acquired the nicknames Morris and Balsam.  These were from an eight-minute 1950 Disney animated short film called "Morris the Midget Moose."  Morris was a midget moose with huge antlers, while Balsam was a huge moose with midget antlers.  The two work together to defeat the dominant moose, Thunderclap.

Dad says Jim was quite the orator. He gave a speech in "Tight" Sweeney's officer class called "The Masturbation Habits of the Codling Moth."  The speech was actually about specialization, and concluded with a line about "we're knowing more and more about less and less, so someday we'll know everything about nothing."

There were a surprising number of men named James and Jim Bayes from Kentucky in and, but I think this James Franklin Bayes was born April 11, 1928, in Johnson County, Kentucky, one of nine children of coal miner James Peter "Pete" Bayes (1895-1991) and Lula May (1911-2001).  First in his family to go to college, he graduated from Berea College in Kentucky in 1948. and was a member of the Ag Union there.   He enlisted in the Air Force on March 1, 1951, and was released November 30, 1956.  He married Jacqueline Gail Henson in Kanawha County, West Virginia, in 1960, and worked in the securities, commodity brokerage, and investments industry. He died April 4, 1995, in Portsmouth, Ohio.

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

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sentimental Sunday: More Ellington Classmates

Here are some more of Dad's classmates in the 52-05 navigator class at Ellington Air Force Base, Houston, Texas, August 12, 1951 to April 11, 1952:

Douglas Graham "Doug" McComas was born January 20, 1927, in South Charleston, West Virginia, the only child of Max McComas (born July 6, 1987, in Jonesville, Kentucky), and Martha Jule McComas (born December 28, 1907, in Brooklyn, New York).  Max was in the Navy (retired as a lieutenant colonel) and the family moved around quite a bit, including some time in Panama.  They eventually would up in Oceanside, California, Doug's home of record, where Max ran the McComas Terrace Motel at 416 South Strand, and served on the city's Council from 1950 to 1968, including one term as appointed mayor from 1953 to 1954.   Doug was in the Navy from January 22, 1945, to July 27, 1946, and was also in Dad's squadron in Korea.  After his tour of duty in Korea was over, he was sent to the 1600th Air Transport Wing at  Westover Air Force Base near Springfield, Massachusetts.  Doug married Delores A. Orozco Dambach on March 18, 1977, in San Diego County (where Oceanside is located).  He died March 20, 1995, in Oceanside.

Because of his rather common first name and last name, I wasn't able to find out anything more about Daniel Edward "Dan" Draper, except that his home of record was  Zieglerville, Pennsylvania.

Paul Francis Woodberry, the son of Mr. & Mrs. Ronald S. Woodberry of Waban, Massachusetts, attended the Boston Latin School and Dartmouth, where he was a member of Gamma Delta fraternity.  He graduated in 1949 and then attending its Tuck School of Business Administration, from which he earned his master's degree in 1950.  He married Margery Ann "Sandy" Brennan (1931-2012), a Harvard graduate, in Arlington, Massachusetts, on May 7, 1955.  They had three daughters, two sons, and 15 grandchildren.  They lived in New York City (where Paul worked for W. R. Grace & Co.); Greenwich, Connecticut; Atherton and Lompoc, California; Hanover, New Hampshire; Sea Island, Georgia; and Dallas, Texas, where Paul was vice president of the Centex Corporation, a construction company, in 1981, and where they moved back to in 2010.

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

Friday, November 21, 2014

Friday's Faces From the Past: More Ellington Buddies

Here are some more of Dad's classmates in the 52-05 navigator class at Ellington Air Force Base, Houston, Texas, August 12, 1951 to April 11, 1952:

I was not able to find much information about Joseph Howard "Joe" Daniel, whose home of record was Evanston, Illinois.  However, I did find a couple of articles that may explain the "Pretty Boy" nickname.  In late March, 1952, Daniel was a runner-up in a lottery to choose the escort for the Washington, DC, Cherry Blossom Festival queen that April.  He was one of eight cadets nominated by their commanding officers for the honor from the nation's eight cadet training bases.

Garfield George Thomas, Jr. was born January 12, 1928, in Carbondale, Pennsylvania, the only child of Garfield George Thomas, Sr. and Dorothea Rebecca Colwell Thomas.  After graduation from Carbondale High School, he attended Lehigh University and graduated with a B.S. degree in Business Administration in 1949.  He was a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity.  On April 26, 1952, he married Helen Brasso, and they had a son, a daughter, and five grandchildren.

While in Korea, Garfield served with the 67th Tactical Reconnaissance Wing.  Members of the “Blackbird” night photo squadron covered most of North Korea, taking night photos by using powerful flash bombs.  He also served in the Pennsylvania National Guard and the Air Force Reserves.

He had a 36-year career as an executive with the Ford Motor Company, 27 with the Ford Marketing Institute, in New York, Detroit and Atlanta. Upon retirement, he and Helen lived in Tucson, Arizona, until 2011.

Garfield was an active member and volunteer with many organizations, such as the Boy Scouts of America, the Arizona chapter of the Federation for North American Wild Sheep, his church, the Masons, and the Catalina Mountain Elks Lodge.  He was an avid outdoorsman, fly fisherman, and hunter.

Garfield died June 26, 2012, and is buried at the Canaan Corners Cemetery in Waymat, Pennsylvania.

Gene Wayne Ellinghouse was born September 14, 1930, in Missouri, the second son of Frank and Golden Ellinghouse.  The family can be found on the 1940 Census in Greenville, Missouri, which was Gene's home of record.  He attended Southeast Missouri State College in 1949.  His Air Force career had him stationed in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1955.  He also studied at the University of Missouri, and worked for Household Finance. He lived in St. Louis, Missouri, from at least 1993 to about 2000, and has lived in Titusville, Florida since then.

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

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

(Not-So-) Wordless Wednesday: "Tac" Officer Lt. J. Edward Lorenz

Dad's military scrapbook has this photograph of one of his instructors at navigator school at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas (class 52-05, August 12, 1951 through April 11, 1952):

It took a little digging, but I believe this is J. Edward Lorenz, born about 1924-1925 in Illinois to Edward and Helen Lorenz.  I found the family in Belleville, Illinois, on the 1930 and 1940 Censuses - J. Edward is the oldest child.  He enlisted in the Army Air Corps during World War II.  He married Carla June Schoenstein (1927-1982) of East St. Louis, Illinois, in Belleville on August 20, 1949.  A graduate of St. Louis University, he was commissioned in 1950, and was then stationed at Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio for pilot training.  He then went to Ellington Air Force Base, where his oldest son, Stephen Randolph Lorenz (who recently retired from the Air Force at the rank of general), was born in October 1951.  He and Carla also had a daughter, Julie, and another son, retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Jeffrey Scott Lorenz.

J. Edward Lorenz later flew in combat during the Korean and Vietnam wars.  In 1971, he wrote an Air War College research report entitled, "The Air Force Navigator."  About 1984, he married widow Bettie Jean Collins Wroe (1925-2013).  As of July 21, 2010, J. Edward Lorenz was retired from the Air Force with the rank of colonel and now lives (I believe) in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

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

Monday, November 17, 2014

Military Monday: Walt Simon, the Frogs, and the Norwegian Damn Good Boys

Dad's 52-05 navigator training class at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas (from August 12, 1951, to April 11, 1952) was an international one:

His graduating class had eight French air cadets in it.  While searching for information on one of them, Pierre V. LeCointe (pictured below), I found the passenger list for this 20-year-old's arrival in New York on April 2, 1951, on board the DeGrasse out of Le Havre, France.  The other seven cadets at Ellington were also on the list, as well as 92 other young Frenchmen, all originally headed to Perrin Air Force Base near Sherman, Texas, for pilot training as part of a NATO/Allied initiative.

Dad also had one Norwegian classmate, Harald Lund.  I'm not sure which man he is in the photo below, which was from a joint class party with 52-06, which I am guessing also had a Norwegian member.  The 3530th Pilot Training Wing at nearby Bryan Air Force Base had students in its Class 52-B (graduating March 22, 1952) from Norway, the Netherlands, and Belgium.

I found 19-year-old Harald on a passenger list for a Scandinavian Airline Systems flight from Gothenburg, Sweden, to New York City, arriving on February 27, 1951.  He, along with 30 other young Norwegian men (and one woman, probably a wife), were headed to Connally Air Force Base near Waco, Texas.

What about Walter "Walt" Simon, in the first picture?  He was born May 25, 1929, in Frankfurt, Germany, the son of Ernest Simon and Badette Siegel.  His home of record was Brookline, Massachusetts, and he entered the Air Force from that state.  After his service in Korea, where he earned the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, he was assigned to the 3612th Aircraft Observer Training Squadron, probably as an instructor, at Harlingen Air Force Base in Texas.  It is likely that he met his wife, Margarita Berta de Salinas, a native of  nearby Abram, Texas, while he was stationed there.  They had at least one daughter.

After his enlistment ended in February 1956, he joined the Air Force Reserves, where he rose to the rank of captain.  He also joined the Convair division of General Dynamics Corporation, then based in Fort Worth, Texas.  On April 22, 1960, Simon was serving as navigator on an acceptance check flight of a 10-million-dollar B-58 Hustler before turning it over to Hill Air Force Base in Ogden, Utah.  The supersonic jet bomber crashed into the Great Salt Lake in Utah, and Simon and pilot Ray E. Tenhoff died when they were unable to eject.  Kenneth G. Timpson, the third crew member, bailed out to safety, landing in the lake and using the raft in the survival kit tethered to him to paddle to shore.  Timpson said they were flying at about 17,000 feet and had made one run on the radar bombsight station at Salt Lake City, and were preparing to make a second run, when Tenhoff gave the verbal order to eject about 6 PM.  The cause of the crash was later determined to be "loss of flight control during normal flight due to mach/airspeed/air data system failure."  Walter Simon is buried at Laurel Land Memorial Park in Fort Worth, Texas.

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

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sentimental Sunday: "Joint Class Party with 52-06"

The picture below, from Dad's military scrapbook, is from a "Joint Class Party with 52-06" (the next group of navigators to go through training at Ellington Air Force base in Houston, Texas):

George Paul Sims was born in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, on March 15, 1928, the third child of George M. and Mary C. Sims.  The family lived in Waupun, Wisconsin, on the 1930 and 1940 Censuses, and that was Paul's home of record. He married his wife Peggy about 1954, and they had a son, three daughters, and four grandchildren. After the Korean War (where he earned the Air Medal with three clusters and the Distinguished Flying Cross), he graduated from the University of Wisconsin (Madison city directories show that he was a student there in 1955 and 1957) and later earned an  MBA from the University of Auburn.

In September 1968, he was a major and a communications electronics staff officer with the 115th Fighter Group, Air National Guard (which he had joined in February 1956). He and his family moved to Montgomery, Alabama, then, so he could begin a course at the Command and Staff College of the Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base there, which lasted until June of the following year. While a member of the Air National Guard, he also took the special military Radar Interceptor Officer and Squadron Officer courses.  He retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel on August 15, 1974.  He moved to Nokomis, Florida, from Madison, Wisconsin, in 1975, and was a member of  Epiphany Cathedral and American Legion Post 159, both in Venice, Florida, as well as the Military Officers Association of America and the University of Wisconsin Alumni Association.  He passed away in Nokomis on November 23, 2006.

James R. "Jim" O'Mahoney was born February 16, 1928, in Indiana, the fifth child of Joseph Francis O'Mahoney Sr. and Evelyn Miriam O'Connor O'Mahoney.  The family can be found on the 1930 and 1940 Censuses in Indianapolis, which was Jim's home of record.  He graduated from Cathedral High School in that city in 1946, where he was on the yearbook and school newspaper staff as well as a member of the drama club, and then graduated from Purdue University.  He married Purdue classmate Marjorie Jean Kester of Mount Prospect, Illinois, on April 12, 1952, and they had at least five children (three girls and two boys).  He was in the Air Force and living in Houston (possibly stationed at Ellington Air Force Base) from at least May 1953 to at least March 1954.  From at least February 1961 to at least March 1963, the family lived in Mansfield, Ohio, and they were in Maple Glen, Pennsylvania, in November and December, 1966.  He was living in Lake Bluff, Illinois, from at least 1993 through at least 2002, and was living in nearby Lake Forest, Illinois, when his sister died in December 2004.  He was still alive in January 2010.

I could not find any additional information about Richard Robert "Dick" Parks, whose home of record was Columbus, Ohio.  Dick was assigned to the same squadron as Dad in Korea, so he will be appearing in more pictures from the scrapbook.

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

Friday, November 14, 2014

Friday's Faces From the Past: "Busy Upperclass Days"

Here's another photo from my dad's military scrapbook, from his days in navigator training at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas (August 12, 1951 to April 11, 1952):

"Nanos" is Art Nanos, who I wrote about in a previous post.  Here's what I could find out about the other men pictured:

Joseph Gaylor "Joe" Halpin Jr. was born January 26,1929, in Missouri, the second child of  Joseph Sr. and Rosetta Halpin.  His family lived in Kansas City during the 1930 Census, and that was his home of record.  He graduated from Rockhurst University (a Catholic university) in that city in 1950 with a Bachelor of Science degree.  He was a member of the Sodality of Our Lady and Alpha Gamma Delta.  Joe married Rosina Baumgartner and they had at least two daughters, Zina Marie in late 1955 and Mary Eileen in early 1957.  Later that year or early in 1958, the family moved from Dallas, to Arlington, Texas  Joe was a mechanical engineer in the Airflyte division of the Chance-Vaught corporation of Dallas.  The family lived at the same address in 1992, and Joe was still living there as of May 6 of this year (based on voting records).

Frederick Randolph "Fred" Allen's home of record was Larchmont, New York.  He attended the University of Tennessee College of Law, where he was a member of Delta Sigma Phi.  He married Dorothy Lee Marsh on May 3, 1952, in Yonkers, New York, shortly after graduating from navigator school.  Art Nanos was an usher at their wedding.  The couple went to Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina where Fred reported for B-26 training on May 14, 1952.  Because of his fairly common last name, I don't have any information about Fred after this point.

William "Bill" Val Ryden was born January 9, 1929, in Illinois, the second child and oldest son of Valdner C. and Edith Ryden.  His family can be found on the 1930 and 1940 Censuses in Peoria, Illinois, his home of record.  He graduated from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in 1949, majoring in business management.  He enlisted in the Air Force on December 20, 1950, and was released from service the same day as my dad, April 10, 1955.  Dad says they worked together in the same building at Continental Casualty Company (now CNA Financial) in Chicago in the late 1950s.  From at least 1983 on, he lived in Sarasota and Bradenton, Florida, where he died May 3, 2004.

ETA February 2015:  I was recently contacted by George Reardon, a former co-worker of Bill Ryden, who read this post.  He told me that after working for the Continental Casualty Company, Bill later worked for New York Life and lived in Red Bank, New Jersey.  Bill and George both joined Charles Stedman & Co., Inc. in 1968.  "It later changed its name to The Charles Stedman Group.  It was an insurance agency/brokerage that specialized solely in medical clinics nationwide -- clinics like Cleveland, Ochsner, Lovelace, Mayo, and others.  We sold and administered life, disability, medical, accident, retirement, and malpractice insurance to the doctors and their staffs," according to George.

"The Stedman company was originally headquartered in South Bend, Indiana.  In August of 1968, Bill and I drove a truck containing the entire business from Indiana to Sarasota, [Florida]," said George.  Bill retired from The Charles Stedman Group in the late 1970s, "but ended up making a lot more money in the real estate business, which his wife had gone into."

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

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

(Not-So-) Wordless Wednesday: Interesting (?) Lecture

Here's another picture from Dad's military scrapbook, from his time in navigator training at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, Texas (August 12, 1951 to April 11, 1952):

I decided to see what I could find out about some of Dad's classmates, pictured:

Arthur Samuel "Art" Nanos was born September 8, 1929, in New Jersey, the fifth child of Russian immigrants Abraham and Mary Nanos, and grew up in West New York in that state.  He graduated from the State University of New Jersey in Newark in 1950 with a Bachelor of Science degree, and was a member of the Accounting Club and Beta Sigma Rho.  In 1954 and 1956, he was stationed (with his wife Dorothy) at the Harlingen (Texas) Air Force Base.  While stationed there, a son was born July 31, 1954, at the Naval Hospital in nearby Corpus Christi, Texas. By March 1962, he was a captain in the 715th Bomb Squadron at Pease Air Force Base near Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and he was promoted to the rank of major in late 1964 while there.  He is now retired and, since 1993, has been living in the San Antonio and Boerne, Texas, area.  On May 4, 2014, the Military Officers Association of America Alamo Chapter (San Antonio, Texas) reported that he was a new member in their newsletter.

Willie James Rivers was born in 1929 in South Carolina, the oldest of at least four children of South Carolina natives Harry Martin Rivers and Minnie Inez Chesser.  His home of record was Hampton, South Carolina.  Delfino Vincent "Del" D'Ambrosio was born about 1924 in Ohio to Italian immigrant parents Benny and Mary A. D'Ambrosio, the second of at least four children.  His home of record was Bellaire, Ohio.  I was not able to find out anything more about these two men, but here is another picture of Willie Rivers (who Dad said ate fatback instead of potato chips):

Scotty was a nickname for Earl Bernard Roehm.  He was born May 6, 1929, in Cincinnati, Ohio, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1950, where he was a member of Theta Chi and majored in liberal arts.  Cincinnati was his home of record while he was at Ellington; he was married and his wife lived there.  In 1958, he was part of the 1737th Ferry Squadron based at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware.  On October 31, 1962, he was granted a divorce in Cincinnati from his wife Shirley; they had two minor children.  He eventually settled in Georgia (by 1986) and was married to Nancy Holland by 1996.

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

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Happy Veterans' Day, Dad!

Happy Veterans' Day to my dad, Frederick Henry Pape, who served in the Air Force from 1951 through 1955, including five months with the 17th Bomb Group (aka 17th Bomb Wing), 37th Bomb Squadron, during the Korean War.

I've been posting photos from Dad's military scrapbook / photo album.  Here is one of him during his 30 weeks of navigator training at Ellington Air Force Base near Houston, Texas:

On the back of the photo, Dad wrote, "Just wakening after a little extra sack time last Saturday."

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

Monday, November 10, 2014

Military Monday: Navigator Training at Ellington Air Force Base, Houston, 1951-2

Dad had 15 days of leave (which he spent at home with his family at 2093 Lunt Avenue in Chicago) in late July, 1951, before he had to report to Ellington Air Force Base near Houston, Texas, for 30 weeks of navigator training in Class 52-05N, beginning on August 12, 1951.  This is the first photo on his scrapbook page for that part of his military service, which gives some idea of how the base looked in those days:

He also had a picture of the firing range, with an amusing caption:

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

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sentimental Sunday: Fun Times at Columbus Air Force Base, 1951

The cadets at Columbus Air Force Base had some free time, and often went out with girls from Mississippi State College for Women (now Mississippi University for Women, and co-ed) in nearby Columbus.

Above is a photo of Dad and another cadet with their dates at what looks like some kind of beach.  Dad says, "Right now I can’t remember which of my cadet buddies was in the picture. The girl in front of me in the first picture was my date (she’s the one on the left in the second picture)," below.

Both photos are stamped "June 26, 1951" on the backs, meaning they were taken sometime before that film processing and photo printing date.

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

Friday, November 7, 2014

Friday's Faces From the Past: Nana & Grandpa Visit Dad at Columbus AFB, 1951

Dad said, "Mom & Dad [Paul Robert and Elizabeth Florence Massmann Pape] came by train to Columbus (They liked train travel). I believe our hotel owner friend had them met at the train. They had the best rooms in the hotel at regular prices."

Dad also said the hotel owner friend was J.O. Slaughter, president & general manager of the Gilmer Hotel, one of the nicer ones in Columbus at the time Dad was stationed at Columbus AFB, which was between April 1 and July 11, 1951.  "He and Hans Estin’s father were on the board of directors of a couple of companies. Hans and Dwight ["Deet" Brooks; two of Dad's roommates at Randolph AFB] were roommates at Columbus AFB."

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

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

(Not-So-) Wordless Wednesday: T-6 Trainer

This is Dad standing in front of a T-6 Trainer at Flight School at Columbus Air Force Base in Mississippi, sometime between April 1 and July 11, 1951.  Dad said these planes were used for observation in World War II.  He also said the Navy used the same plane but called it an SNJ.

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

Monday, November 3, 2014

Military Monday: Dad at Randolph Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas, February-March, 1951

A few months ago, I wrote a post shortly after my father gave me his photo album scrapbook from his military service. I posted a couple pictures from that album of Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, where Dad did his pre-flight (air cadet) training from February 27 to about March 30, 1951.  Here are a couple more photos from the scrapbook from that time:
In the photo above, Dad (#4) and his roommates are standing near their barracks (pictured in the background).  On the back of the photograph, Dad wrote that it was taken March 24, 1951, and called his group "The Motley Crew."

I was able to find out a little bit of information about some of Dad's roommates.

Hans Howard Estin was just a little older than Dad.  Born in Prague, his family immigrated in 1938, and ended up in Boston, where Hans graduated from Harvard with a BA in economics.  He went on from this training to be a pilot in the Korean War, and then worked in the investment business with his father.  Later he joined the North American Management Corporation in Boston, where he spent the rest of his career.

An avid skier, Estin helped found the Sugarloaf Ski Resort in Vermont with his brother Pete, and later the Sundance Ski Resort in Utah.  He served on the Board of Trustees for Boston University as well as many other corporate and charitable boards.  He was married with two daughters and three granddaughters when he died in May, 2012.

Bob Curley was later with Dad at flight school at Columbus Air Force Base in Columbus, Mississippi, which began right after this pre-flight training, on March 31, 1951.  Although a note on the back of the photo says he is from New York, unfortunately there are too many Bob Curleys out there of the right age to be able to pinpoint the one who served with my father.

Dwight Frederick "Deet" Brooks was a few months younger than Dad.  He was born and grew up in Saint Paul, Minnesota.  He was a lifelong aviation fan, built model airplanes, and learned to fly.  After three years in the Marine Corps, he transferred to the Air Force, flew 33 combat missions in F-84 jets in the Korean War, and later flew with the Strategic Air Command.  Brooks and his wife had two children and five grandchildren.  He died in March 1996 in Los Angeles.

Dad said, "Dwight (we didn’t call him Deet most of the time) and I met on the train from Chicago to San Antonio. We checked into Randolph AFB together. He was a big help since he already had some Marine training. He showed us how to put a “spit” shine on our shoes which kept them very shiny. He also showed us how to prepare our beds and clothes for inspection. He later became our cadet squadron commander at Columbus AFB.  I could swear that some years after the Air Force I saw his picture as a Delta Airlines pilot in one of Delta’s ads."

Below is a photo of Dad outside the Pre-Flight Training Headquarters at Randolph AFB:

On the back of this photo (stamped with the date of April 16, 1951, as was the other photo; likely the date the film was processed and printed), Dad wrote, "Note the fine shrubbery and the dirty fatigues.  What a raunchy looking cadet."

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