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 Post subject: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 5:59 pm 
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This one happened about 6 months ago, and I think Gus is the only one that has heard this story. I run a monthly ad for militaria, not much comes up it for Imperial (one spiked helmet about 15 years ago) but often good stuff I can then sell to fund my spike habit.

Anyway, this lady calls and says I have my fathers Navy uniform from WWII, and his twin brothers Air Corp uniform and documents from WWII and he was KIA. So I set up a time and drive 2 plus hours. laying on a table is her fathers navy uniform, top, pants, hat, tie and his ID, all with his name on it Wendell Smith, Electronics technicians Mate Third Class. He had just passed away a few months before and she was cleaning out his stuff. Next to it was his Twin brothers Air Corp dress uniform, with jacket, shirt pants tie and cap, all named to him, LT. Wayne Smith, as well as some framed documents and a few pics. Included in the papers where a Air Medal citation for attacking a Airdrome in Italy with his P47 for destroying many buildings and one fighter plane on the ground. Then a second Air Medal citation for destroying a Fuel dump also in Italy with much damage to his P47. Lastly a Large Purple Heart citation for losing his life in action on April 3rd, 1945. I did a internet search when I got home on him, and found the daily records of his fighter unit. It stated that based on witnesses in the air, his plane was hit by flack, and as he was trying to bail out, he jumped and hit the tail of his own plane resulting in his death.

So as I am going through all this stuff with the lady, she says your not interested in WWI stuff are you... I said yes that is my main passion, she says I have my Grandpas WWI uniform from my Mothers side of the family and a few things, let me go get it.

She comes out with a WWI 310 aero wing enlisted uniform, with jkt and pant, hat, tool roll, a picture of him, ID Tag, watch and a patch she said was in the pocket of the tunic. All named to her grandfather A.T Erickson. The patch is for an aviation mechanic, the tool roll which is really cool has his name on it as well.

We agreed on a price and it is now in the collection, not my main focus but the history is so cool.

Pictures below

James

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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2014 6:24 pm 
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How sad it is to see a young pilot die in April of '45.


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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:31 pm 
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Very nice find!
|<

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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:11 pm 
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:thumb up: :thumb up: GREAT finds!

Too many young people die in every war and we tend not to realize how dangerous it was to bail out of aircraft. I'd heard of B-17 crewmen dying as they hit parts of the plane, the saddest of which was a co-pilot who hung from his window getting his harness just right, to ensure survival, then after letting go, he hit the horizontal stabilizer. It happened in the bombers, so I guess it could happen with any of them. I guess we don't realize how young they really were until we're much older than they were. I'm at the age where I look at WWI or WWII photos and see youngsters, rather than people older than I. It's an odd feeling.
I picked up a book in Guetersloh Germany about WWII Kreigs Kinder for a Euro. After opening it, I realized it was about LOCAL kids, Guetersloh, Bielefeld, etc. There was a photo of young men on their Ausmarsch from Bielefeld, they were young, good looking kids, big smiles on their faces. It struck me as significant, because I'd just been at their (and WWI vets) memorial the day before. I wondered how many came back.

:D Ron

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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 3:02 pm 
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Excellent story and items James! Worth a 2 hour drive I think.

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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2014 5:08 pm 
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Very nice story James. Certainly a nice addition to your collection.


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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Thu Nov 20, 2014 4:26 am 
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What a great find!

Adler


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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Thu Nov 20, 2014 11:32 am 
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Do not let James snow you with this story, I know the facts, mushrooms grow in Minnesota too!

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 Post subject: Re: Brothers and Grandpa
PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:18 am 
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Top story James ,and interesting topic. :thumb up:

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