Tag Archives: World War II

WW II Soldier About Brothers: ‘We All Came Home Alive!’

On Veterans Day, I have the opportunity to share some of my father’s reflections about his personal experiences during World War II with my readers. This opportunity came about eight years ago as a result of a school project undertaken by Mykaela, a then-12-year-old school girl from Kentucky.

This image is one my dad, in uniform, sent home to my mom. Location? Unknown.

This image is one my dad, in uniform, sent home to my mom. Location? Unknown.

Mykaela contacted me after reading several posts — no longer online — about my father’s experiences as a soldier serving in the U.S. Army in Europe during World War II. She had an assignment to interview a World War II veteran, but didn’t know any, so contacted me. After exchanging e-mails, we arranged for my father, now living in Texas, to answer her questions about World War II. Those answers appear below:

Q1: Where were you when you first heard about Pearl Harbor?

A1: I was a senior in high school and was living with my parents. We did not subscribe to a newspaper but got our news from a tabletop radio. I remember (the news) came as a “news flash”. “Japan has attacked Pearl Harbor. We do not have the details yet but will give them to you as soon a they become available” Later, the president, Mr. Roosevelt, came on the radio with an address to the nation. In his address, he came forth with the words that everyone has heard over and over by now: “This day, the 7th day of December, 1941, will go down in history as a day of infamy etc…”

Q2: What were your feelings?

A2: I was a boy of 17 years of age. My feelings were of both fear and excitement. The fear of the unknown future. The excitement of the anticipation for whatever was going to happen. At age 17, one does not comprehend all of the future events that could come and many more that would come with a declaration of war. There was also the feeling of anger at what the Japanese did to our military men in Hawaii.

The Fighting Sullivans shared a lot in common with my dad and his brothers.

Click on image above to read about what “The Fighting Sullivans” shared in common with my dad and his brothers.

Q3: Did you see any signs of fear, anger or rage?

A3: There was the feeling in the community of being double-crossed, violated, tricked, and lastly, of anger at the enemy for their sneak attack on Pearl Harbor. Many Americans boys were killed by that attack while the Japanese diplomats were smiling in Washington, D.C., and pretending all was going well within the Japanese-American diplomatic relations. As the people took the time to digest what had happened, they did become more angry and wanted revenge.

Q4: What did people so during the next few days?

A4: During the days that followed the attack, I think the people began to realize that this was not just a news item. It was real. Parents of sailors killed at Pearl Harbor began to receive telegrams from the Defense Department saying, “We regret to inform you that your son, (John or Robert or Harold or ??) was killed in the attack on Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941. His remains will be shipped to you etc…”

Q5: How was life different during the war?

A5: Soon after the attack, material things in civilian life were much the same, but it was not long before many items were available only in small quantities. A few months later, gasoline, coffee, cigarettes, sugar and most anything else was rationed. People stayed home, launched paper drives, metal drives and did anything else to help make the tools of war. A young man who was not in uniform came under close scrutiny by his neighbors and the local draft board. This group of people decided who was going to be drafted next.

Q6: What items were the hardest to get for your family?

A6: Sugar and coffee for the table along with gasoline and tires for the car. These were items that I remember my parents said were very hard to come by.

Q7: What slogans and patriotic posters were being shown?

A7: On posters: “A slip of the lips may sink a ship.” “Uncle Sam wants you” which had a picture of Uncle Sam pointing directly at you. “Buy Bonds”.

Vmail Ltr

Click on image above to read about a VMAIL letter my dad sent home while serving in the Army during World War II.

Q8: Describe V-E (Victory in Europe) day and V-J (Victory in Japan) day. Where were you then?

A8: I was in a convalescent camp in Colorado Springs, Colo., on V-E day and at my parents’ home on V-J day. There was intense excitement, especially on V-J. day. After V-E day, people were worried that soldiers who had been in Europe would have to go to invade Japan. This worried the soldiers as much as, or more than, civilians. With V-J day, they were relieved of that worry. Now they were ready for their sons, daughters, husbands, sweethearts all to come back home so they could take vacations, go on picnics, etc.

Q9: How did the people feel about the atomic bomb?

A9: The American public was tired of their boys being killed fighting the Japanese who were fanatics. They would not surrender but would kill themselves first. This was a part of their religion. The bomb was dropped on Hiroshima first. The Japanese government would not surrender, so a second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki a week later. “If the bomb would stop the war, then drop it” was the feeling in the U. S. It was anticipated two million of their soldiers and civilians and one million of our soldiers would have perished in an invasion of Japan. After all, it was they who started the war, it was they who killed Chinese civilians as well as soldiers, it was they who marched captured American soldiers to prison camps but provided no food or water for them on that march, and it was they who killed the prisoners who could not keep up on that march.

Q10: What should an 8th grader remember about this war?

A10: I would say remember there are bad guys in this world who want to control the world and will do anything to do it. Sometimes we have to fight for freedom, but it is worth it!!

After providing Mykaela the answers above, my dad ended his response by noting what I suspect was a bittersweet feeling shared by many American members of what has come to be known as “The Greatest Generation”:

“I had three brothers in that war. We all came home alive!”

Having not been born yet, I’m very glad they did!

Show your support and help keep these articles coming by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same. To learn how to order signed copies, click here.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

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Bob McCarty Weekly Recap: Nov. 1-7, 2015

After reading several new articles and dozens of status updates, you know a little about what I’ve been doing this week. In order to provide you a more-thorough look at what I’ve bee up to, I offer this weekly recap for the first seven days of November 2015.

Is it just me or does Butters, my office assistant, have hair like Donald Trump?

Is it just me or does Butters, my office assistant, have hair like Donald Trump?

Sunday, Nov. 1

I began the week at BobMcCarty.com by resharing a four-year-old piece in which I describe how, on Day Two of the Army’s court-martial of Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart, a prosecution attorney cited Wikipedia as a source while questioning Sergeant Stewart about his training. As one of the Army’s finest Green Berets, he deserved better. Read about it under the headline, SHOCK: Army Prosecutor Cited Wikipedia as Source During Green Beret’s Court-Martial on Sexual Assault Charges.

I began the week on my Facebook page by sharing a link to a McClatchy News article, The Buzz with Buzz: Benghazi & Hillary’s emails are history repeating itself, and offering this comment: “Speaker Paul Ryan will make sure Hillary goes to jail! Oh yeah! No doubt about it! She’s going down!” < NOT >

In addition, I shook my head in wonder while watching the CBS Sunday Morning segment about a gay black painter said to be doing “revolutionary” work that commands as much as $400,000 per piece, and I shared a video to honor some fallen warriors few people ever hear about.

On a lighter note nestled among several football- and cat-related items, I asked readers to take a look at a photo (top of page above) and answer a question — “Is it just me or does Butters, my office assistant, have hair like Donald Trump?”

Monday, Nov. 2

On Monday, I was engaged in research and, as a result, posted no new articles. I did, however, share several items on my Facebook page. For instance, I recalled how, on that day three years earlier, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction had issued two new reports about the situation in that country and how, in 2012, I had reached one conclusion about the contents of those reports: “A quick review of the two reports seems to indicate things are not only going downhill in this war-torn country, but they’re going downhill fast.” I closed my Facebook update by writing, “I don’t do this often, but I’ll do it today: ‘I told you so!'”

Tuesday, Nov. 3

Under the Tuesday headline, Help Find World War II Hero by Veterans Day, I shared details about an effort to locate a World War II Soldier whose likeness was captured in a portrait drawn by one of his German prisoners of war. Click here or on the portrait to read the article, realizing we now have only four days remaining to find him by Veterans Day.

Do you know the name of the American World War II Soldier shown in this sketch drawn by one of the German prisoners of war for whom he was responsible? If so, contact me.

Do you know the name of the American World War II Soldier shown in this sketch drawn by one of the German prisoners of war for whom he was responsible? If so, contact me.

On my Facebook page Tuesday, I lamented the loss of daylight hours and how I had decided to tackle it by changing up my exercise routine by adding a pre-breakfast workout in case I didn’t make it to my favorite lake before darkness fell. I explained how the “change” began at 5:30 a.m. and involved walking one mile and running one mile while listening to Twenty-One Pilots. “Who?” you say. My youngest son went to their concert over the weekend, so I decided I should find out the answer to that question, too. While their music is better than their photo, their songs are probably not gonna be among my first jukebox choices.

Also on my Facebook page, I noted an ABC News report about Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. speculating that ISIS might have brought down the Russian passenger jet Saturday. In response, I wrote, “I’m sure they did not,” before explaining that my opinion was based on why I uncovered during the four years I spent investigating things with Clapper’s “fingerprints” all over them — things you can read about in my second nonfiction book, The Clapper Memo.

“Very interesting. Answers? I have none.” I used those words to describe the content of a NASA video (above) captured by astronauts on the International Space Station Oct. 29. What do you think about this item I shared on my Facebook page?

Of course, I could ask the same thing about this video.

Wednesday, Nov. 4

On Wednesday, I shared a Washington Free Beacon video on my Facebook page. Posted below, it requires no explanation.

i offered a sarcastic call for “KNIFE CONTROL NOW!” after coming across this CNN report about a stabbing incident at the University of California-Merced. FYI: The perpetrator involved in the stabbings was Faisal Mohammad, an 18-year-old who wrote a two-page manifesto, according to another CNN report. Sadly, Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke was reluctant to describe the incident as anything but “a teenage boy that got upset with fellow classmates and took it to the extreme.” Really?

Thursday, Nov. 5

On Thursday, I shared a message received from the wife of a military man who was wrongly accused and convicted of sexual assault by a woman, whom I later discovered had made similar allegations against two other ex-husbands. Read her chilling message under the headline, Wife Offers Details About Wrongly-Accused Husband’s Case.

Click on image above to read about military justice gone wrong.

Click on image above to read about military justice gone wrong.

I also noted how I was still waiting for two top Army officials to respond to the letters I had mailed nine days earlier regarding the subject of Fort Campbell officials failing to fulfill my recent Freedom of Information Act request.

On my Facebook page, I shared another political jab — this one aimed at Hillary Clinton. “I think Hillary Clinton should apply to become the first female former first lady to fly in space,” I wrote while introducing a link to the NASA webpage where she could apply. “She can run for president after she returns from Mars with an accomplishment on her resume.”

In another status update that day, I shared details about Haitians lambasting the American Red Cross for spending so little out of the half-billion dollars in donations it has received since earthquakes ravaged the island nation in 2010. Not surprised by the claim, I went to the ARC website for the “Haiti Assistance Program” and looked at the numbers ARC is touting:

$448,000,000 Donated minus $173,000,000 Used equals $275,000,000 Unused

In other words, many dirt-poor Haitians have waited 5 years for help while ARC sits on a “nest egg” of $275,000. That prompted me to ask, “Can anyone say special prosecutor?”

Friday, Nov. 6

The most important thing I did Friday involved mailing a letter to the National Archives at St. Louis. In it, I requested information about a former Army Soldier who, I’ve been told, lives an active life and works full time despite receiving benefits while categorized as “100 percent disabled.” His wife, a basic training washout, also reportedly collects benefits after being diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of something that happened during her three days in the military. What might have caused her issues? Stay tuned for updates.

FOIA Letter 11-5-15

Saturday, Nov. 7

Today, I will enjoy the sunshine and exercise a bit before settling in to watch my Oklahoma State Cowboys, #10 in the coaches poll, defeat Texas Christian University, #3 in the same poll. They play at 2:30 p.m. Central on Lewis Field, inside the confines of T. Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater, Okla. GO POKES!

Thanks in advance for reading and sharing the articles above and those to follow. You can show your support and help keep these articles coming by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  To learn how to order signed copies, click here.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

 

 

Help Find World War II Hero by Veterans Day

While doing some legal gun trading two years ago this week, I struck up a conversation with Greg Grimes, co-owner of Trail Creek Trade Co. Today, I want to share what happened during that visit and ask once again for your help as we try to complete a special mission by Veterans Day.

Do you know the name of the American World War II Soldier shown in this sketch drawn by one of the German prisoners of war for whom he was responsible? If so, contact me.

Do you know the name of the American World War II Soldier shown in this sketch drawn by one of the German prisoners of war for whom he was responsible? If so, contact me.

After negotiating the terms of a transaction involving two very old handguns, Grimes began to lament the declining interest many Americans have in guns as well as in history in general. A few anecdotes later, he directed my attention to a black-framed portrait of an American Soldier hanging on the wall and an associate of his lifted it off the wall and brought it over. That’s when the visit I had expected to last about 15 minutes turned into a 45-minute stay as I listened to Grimes tell me about a work of art adorning the wall of his antique firearms shop in the St. Louis suburb of St. Ann.

Grimes explained that he had acquired the framed artwork from a friend who had rescued it from a pile of things bound for a dumpster and then held on to it for a decade before transferring ownership to him.  Since then, it has hung on the wall behind the counter near the back of the gun shop.

In addition to the fact the pencil sketch features an American Soldier, several other aspects of the piece make it special:

• It appears to have been drawn and signed by one of the German POWs for whom the Soldier was responsible;

• It features an honorable message (i.e., “In memory of your prisoners of war”) between one-time adversaries in a horrific war;

• It bears a date, 2 June 1945, that came only 25 days after the date on which hostilities in Europe came to an official end (i.e., “V-E Day” or “Victory in Europe Day”); and

• Finally, the back side of the portrait bears what appears to be the signatures of a total of eight German POWs, one of which matches the signature of the artist on the front.

I asked Grimes if he had ever tried to locate any of the people whose names appear on the piece, front and back.  He said he had, but without success. That’s when I told him I would take photos of the piece and share details about it with my online readers, my contacts in the traditional and non-traditional news media worldwide and with my friends in patriotic and veterans organizations.

Off and on for two years, I’ve tried to stir up interest in locating the man in the portrait but have received not even a nibble. While the two-year-old video above mentions as a goal getting the portrait into the right hands by the 70th anniversary of the date shown — 2 June 1945 — next to the inscription, our goal remains: We want to see the portrait returned to the man portrayed in the sketch or to a member of his extended family.

To accomplish this goal, we need your help. If you recognize him, please send details to me via email at BobMcCartyWrites (at) gmail (dot) com or leave a comment below.  If you don’t recognize him but still want to help, share this article with everyone you know.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Show your support and help keep these articles coming by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same. To learn how to order signed copies, click here.

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Remember Pearl Harbor — 73rd Anniversary

On this day, the 73rd anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, I share a half-dozen photographs shot Dec. 7, 1941, the “day that will live in infamy.”

Credit for the photos above belongs to the U.S. Navy photographers who shot them as well as the Navy History and Heritage Center Collection and the National Archives collection where they are kept. To see more photos like these, click here.

FYI: I encourage you on this day and every day to thank a veteran for the freedom you enjoy.

If you like this article and my other efforts, please show your support by buying my books and encouraging your friends and loved ones to do the same.  Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.

Bob McCarty Offers Weekly Recap: Nov 15

This week was a productive one at Bob McCarty Headquarters. Below are snippets about what kept me busy:

Click image above to read post about a World War II V-MAIL message.

Click image above to read post about a World War II V-MAIL message.

SUNDAY, Nov. 9: In addition to announcing that my first crime-fiction novel had hit the marketplace in the post, The National Bet Now on Sale in Paperback, Ebook, I shared a piece about one method of communication used by Soldiers — including my dad — during World War II. Finally, I offered an update to an exclusive report I published two days earlier about the Oklahoma City Bombing trial taking place in Salt Lake City.

MONDAY, Nov. 10:  I shared news about something I have in common with the nation’s most-popular talk radio host in my post, Rush Limbaugh Threatens to Sue Democrat Committee.

TUESDAY, Nov. 11: On Veterans Day, I shared news about several special men in my life. The ones in my post, Story of Four Not-So-Famous Brothers Inspires, served during World War II. The one in my post, Wrongly Convicted By Military Justice System, American Soldiers Deserve as Much Attention as GITMO Detainees, served in the modern Army.

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 12:  I offered a warning in my post, YOU Might Be On A Federal Watch List!

THURSDAY, Nov. 13:  I showed off my printed wares along with dozens of other authors at a book lover’s event in O’Fallon, Mo.

FRIDAY, Nov. 14: On this busy day, I shared news about an auction, an interrogator, an indictment and a Saturday talk radio appearance on “TIPPING POINT with BOONE CUTLER” in Reno, Nev.

FYI: A film crew from Los Angeles will be visiting soon to interview me as part of a documentary they’re shooting. Though I can’t divulge more details at this time, I can tell you that the findings I share inside my second nonfiction book, The Clapper Memo, will be front and center. Meanwhile, I hope you’ll read and share my pieces and, of course, buy my books — including the one endorsed by Santa Claus. Thanks in advance!

Click on image above to order Bob's books.

Click on image above to order Bob’s books.