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Standing in the grassy sod bordering row upon row of white crosses in an American cemetery, two dungaree-clad Coast Guardsmen pay silent homage to the memory of a fellow Coast Guardsman who lost his life in action in the Ryukyu Islands.
Former Marine and Hendersonville, NC resident Bob Cheadle enters the National WWII Memorial under the Pacific Pavilion.  Sep 24th, 2006.
Sporting a miniature Combat Infantryman's Badge and a Bronze Star ribbon on his hat, North Carolina native Ned Wells (my dad), visits the National WWII Memorial for the first time.  Ned was a heavy machine gunner in the 26th "Yankee" Infantry Division in Patton's Third Army.  (Sep 24th, 2006)
One of the 200 Henderson County (NC) WWII vets, who were flown by "HonorAir" to the National WWII Memorial in Washington, DC, courtesy of the folks and businesses back home, on Sep 23 & 24, 2006.  The "Field of Stars" is visible behind this vet.  Each star on the wall represents over 100 American servicemen and women killed during WWII.  There are 4,000 stars on the wall.
There's no mystery as to what this WWII vet did during the war.  He's from Hendersonville, NC, and was part of a group of 200 WWII vets that were given free flights to the National WWII Memorial in Sep, 2006, as a "thank you" from the local residents and businesses back home.  http://www.honorair.com
Wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery.  The Henderson County (NC) "HonorAir" vets who got to visit their National WWII Memorial on Sep 23 & 24, 2006, were given the opportunity to lay an HonorAir wreath at the Tomb before they left Washington.  North Carolina Congressman Charles Taylor (center, bent over at wreath) assists the vets at the ceremony.  (See www.honorair.com)
"Welcome home; we're proud of you!"  A Henderson County (NC) WWII vet, arriving back home from his first visit to the National WWII Memorial via "HonorAir", returns a salute from local Cub Scouts who were on hand as part of the reception committee at Asheville Regional Airport.  Sep 24th, 2006.
Here's my dad, Ned Wells, on a friend's Harley in Parkville, MD, on March 30, 1943.  He was up there from Clemmons, NC, working in the Glenn L. Martin Aircraft Company (Middle River Plant) in nearby Baltimore, building B-26 Marauder bomber engines in the early days of the war.  Ned was inducted into the Army from Baltimore in the summer of 1944 and eventually became a heavy machine gunner in Patton's Third Army in the 26th "Yankee" Infantry Division.  Outstanding riding apparel.
Nose art of the B-25 Mitchell "Tondelayo".  No wonder the crews got so attached to their ships.
U. S. Air Force Lt Col (Ret) Edward "Red" Weir" points to his old squadron designation - the 409th Bombardment Squadron of the 93rd Bombardment Group - just behind the starboard side bomb bay doors of the B-24 where the sponsor groups are stenciled on.  Ed was a B-24 navigator based in England and North Africa and had 25 combat missions, the last one over the oil refineries at Ploesti, Romania.  My second book is about Lt Col Weir's wartime experiences, based on his 1942-43 war journal; it's entitled "Down To Two Feet Altitude."  Link to article about the book:  http://www.dentonrc.com/sharedcontent/dws/drc/localnews/stories/DRC_WWII_book_0502.bceaf557.html
"I forgot how thin it was."  Lt Col (Ret) Edward "Red" Weir taps on the inside of the fuselage of the B-24 while moving forward before entering the aft end of the bomb bay.
A former 29th Infantry Division vet, visiting his WWII Memorial from Hendersonville, NC, via one of the "HonorAir" flights.
Entrance to the National World War II Memorial.  Sep 24th, 2006.
Two "HonorAir" WWII vets from Hendersonville, NC, strolling inside their National Memorial and discussing memories from the war.  http://www.honorair.com
Bill Francis, Henderson County (NC) resident and Army Air Corps veteran of the 8th Air Force, stands proudly inside of the National WWII Memorial in front of General Eisenhower's famous pre-D-Day "great crusade" message to the troops etched in the marble behind.
Standing in the grassy sod bordering row upon row of white crosses in an American cemetery, two dungaree-clad Coast Guardsmen pay silent homage to the memory of a fellow Coast Guardsman who lost his life in action in the Ryukyu Islands.

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Standing in the grassy sod bordering row upon row of white crosses in an American cemetery, two dungaree-clad Coast Guardsmen pay silent homage to the memory of a fellow Coast Guardsman who lost his life in action in the Ryukyu Islands.
Standing in the grassy sod bordering row upon row of white crosses in an American cemetery, two dungaree-clad Coast Guardsmen pay silent homage to the memory of a fellow Coast Guardsman who lost his life in action in the Ryukyu Islands.

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