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Category Archives: world war 2

Presley Bazelle Land

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As we approach Memorial Day, we honor Presley Land of Alvord, Texas.  United States Army Sergeant Presley Bazelle Land was killed on the island of Okinawa on June 17, 1945.  He was the oldest son of Jessie Clarence and Sarah Isabelle Magers Land and was born in Alvord, Wise County, Texas on October 22, 1916.  Jessie was a farmer and Isabelle was a housewife.  Presley graduated from Alvord High School around 1933 and married the former Vera Katherine Richards on September 4, 1937.  Presley had attended college for one year and was working as a clerk in Fort Worth for Convair, an aircraft manufacturer, at the time he enlisted in the service on May 24, 1943.

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Posted by on May 21, 2020 in biography, memorial day, world war 2

 

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British Flying Training Schools in the WWII Era

Prior to the United States’ entry into World War II, a number of joint agreements were instituted between the United States and the United Kingdom, including the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan, the British Flying Training Schools and the Arnold Scheme. Each one involved training airmen from the U.K. at facilities in the United States.  The British Flying Training School involved seven locations where training was carried out.  From west to east, they were Lancaster, California; Mesa, Arizona; Sweetwater, Texas; Terrell, Texas; Ponca City, Oklahoma; Miami, Oklahoma and Clewiston, Florida.  The school at Sweetwater was only open a few months, but the school at Terrell was in operation from 1941 to 1945.

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Posted by on April 2, 2020 in aviation, world war 2

 

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USS Indianapolis

The U.S.S. Indianapolis (CA-35) is part of a fascinating World War II story.  The ship was a heavy cruiser that played an important role in the atomic bombing missions that led Japan directly to its surrender and the end of the war.  Indianapolis was ordered in 1929 and her hull was laid down at the Camden Yard in New Jersey on March 31, 1930 by the New York Shipbuilding Corp.  According to Naval History and Heritage Command, her displacement  was 9,800 tons, her length was 610 feet, beam was 66 feet and draft was 17’4″.  The ship was constructed to accommodate a crew of 1,269, achieve a speed of 32 knots and was armed with 9 8-inch and 8 5-inch guns.  The Indianapolis was the second of two ships of the Portland class.

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Posted by on March 19, 2020 in biography, maritime, world war 2

 

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Jack Lummus, Medal of Honor Recipient

Jack Lummus was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions on the island of Iwo Jima during World War II.  According to a May, 1945 newspaper report based upon an interview with a fellow Marine, 1st Lt. Lummus was killed while leading an infantry and tank attack on the island on March 8, 1945.

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Posted by on January 23, 2020 in biography, heroes, medal of honor, memorial day, world war 2

 

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Governor John Connally, Jr.

Governor John Bowden Connally, Jr. was born February 27, 1917 to John Bowden and Lela Wright Connally in Floresville, Wilson County, Texas, the third of seven children.  In 1920, his father’s occupation was listed as being a stock farmer (rancher) in Floresville, which is located on the southeast side of San Antonio.  By 1930, the family had moved into San Antonio for a time, as John, Sr. was operating a bus on a bus line.  Governor Connally attended San Antonio Harlandale High School but graduated from high school in Floresville.   After his graduation, he entered the University of Texas in Austin where he received his undergraduate degree and later earned a law degree.

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