Merian C. Cooper, extraordinary life of a hero of 2 nations and King Kong | Pacific Paratrooper

Merian C. Cooper was born in Jacksonville, Florida, United States. He was the youngest of his siblings and at the age of six, he started to dream about exploration and adventures, a common dream am…

Source: Merian C. Cooper, extraordinary life of a hero of 2 nations and King Kong | Pacific Paratrooper

Intermission Story (8) – Jimmy Stewart | Pacific Paratrooper

Jimmy Stewart suffered such extreme PTSD after being a bomber pilot in World War II that he acted out his mental distress during ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’.  Stewart played George Bailey in the classi…

Source: Intermission Story (8) – Jimmy Stewart | Pacific Paratrooper

Intermission Story (4) – A Japanese Ace | Pacific Paratrooper

“In the ocean of the military, reflective of all distinguished pilots, an honored Buddhist person.”  So translates the name awarded to Japanese pilot Hiroyoshi Nishizawa following his death i…

Source: Intermission Story (4) – A Japanese Ace | Pacific Paratrooper

June 4, 1939 Vacation Cruise to Freedom – Today in History

So it was that a vacation cruise to freedom became the “voyage of the damned”. MS St. Louis returned to Europe

Source: June 4, 1939 Vacation Cruise to Freedom – Today in History

Filipina Heroine | Pacific Paratrooper

Cpl. Magdalena Leones

The Silver Star is the third-highest honor for gallantry in the U.S. Armed Forces. Previous recipients include Audie Murphy, Chuck Yeager, and Norman Schwartzkopf. But few people have heard of Magd…

Source: Filipina Heroine | Pacific Paratrooper

May 10, 1941, Prisoner #7 – Today in History

At the end of WWI, Rudolf Walter Richard Hess enrolled in the University of Munich.  He’d been wounded several times in the Great War, serving in the 7th Bavarian Field Artillery Regiment. As a student, Hess studied geopolitics under Karl Haushofer, an early proponent of “Lebensraum” (“living space”), the philosophy which later became…

Source: May 10, 1941, Prisoner #7 – Today in History

The History Girls: Pamela Gibson of Bletchley Park by Janie Hampton

Pamela Gibson is the oldest surviving person to have worked at Bletchley Park decoding centre during the Second World war. ‘But Bletchley was not my whole life,’ she says in her strong, velvety voice. ‘I’ve had other careers too.’ She also holds the world record for the longest ‘rest’ between jobs as an actor, proving that it’s quite possible to restart a career after 60 years.

Pamela was born in her grandmother’s drawing room in…

Source: The History Girls: Pamela Gibson of Bletchley Park by Janie Hampton

Intermission (5) – POW in Japan

Can you imagine what it must be like to be marched out to face a firing squad, say goodbye to your closest friend who is standing next to you and then have the squad shoulder their rifles and march…

Source: Intermission (5) – POW in Japan

Two Bloggers Tackle WWII – Book Reviews | Pacific Paratrooper

The ordeals of the POWs put to slave labour by their Japanese masters on the ‘Burma Railway’ have been well documented yet never cease to shock. It is impossible not to be horrified and moved by their stoic courage in the face of inhuman brutality, appalling hardship and ever-present death.While Barry Custance Baker was enduring his 1000 days of captivity, his young wife Phyllis was attempting to correspond with him and the families of Barry’s unit. Fortunately these moving letters have been…

Source: Two Bloggers Tackle WWII – Book Reviews | Pacific Paratrooper

Color Was Added To These Photos Of WWII Refugees And They Suddenly Seemed Devastatingly Timeless.

Photo: Henry Burroughs—AP / Photo colorization by Sanna Dullaway for TIME

During WW2 more than 60 million Europeans fled their homes to escape persecution and all the horror and devastation that war brings with it.

Time may have moved on, but sadly the situation remains as dire as ever with nearly 34,000 people throughout the world being forcibly displaced every day due to conflict or persecution. That is 24 people every single minute.

The current number of displaced people across the globe is now at it’s highest point since WW2 and…

Source: Color Was Added To These Photos Of WWII Refugees And They Suddenly Seemed Devastatingly Timeless.

Intermission (11) – Swamp Ghost

On February 23rd, 1942, a B-17E Flying Fortress bomber crashed in one of the most remote and wild places on Earth: the impenetrable Agaimbo swamp located in the island nation of Papua New Guinea.  …

Source: Intermission (11) – Swamp Ghost

Saburo Sakai, WWII Japanese Ace – know who you’re up against | Pacific Paratrooper

As the Intermission stories come to a close, until we reach the break of 1944-1945, we take a look at one of the pilots the Allied Air Forces were up against…..   Saburō Sakai in the co…

Source: Saburo Sakai, WWII Japanese Ace – know who you’re up against | Pacific Paratrooper

Intermission (3) – Current News on The Hump

At 7:40 a.m. Jan. 25, 1944, five B-24 Liberator heavy bombers from the 308th Bombardment Group, 425th Squadron, took off from their base at Kunming, China, on a routine supply run to India. Their r…

Source: Intermission (3) – Current News on The Hump

Women in WWII | Pacific Paratrooper

In honor of Women’s History Month this week’s posts will be a dedication to them…..

As WWII unfolded around the globe, women were also affected. Some found themselves pressed into jobs and duties they would never have previously considered. Hitler derided Americans as degenerate for putting the women to work, but nearly 350,000 American females alone served in uniform voluntarily. A transformation of half the population, never seen before, that began evolving in the early ‘40s and continues today.

For the WASPs, 1,830 female pilots volunteered for Avenger Field outside Sweetwater, Texas alone and it was the only co-ed air base in the U.S. These women would ferry aircraft coming off the assembly lines from the factories to the base. They acted as test pilots; assessing the performance of the planes. The WASPs were flight instructors and would shuttle officers around to the posts where they were needed. For artillery practice, they would…

Source: Women in WWII | Pacific Paratrooper

Eye Witness Account – Bougainville | Pacific Paratrooper

stevecibik

Lt. Steve Cibik, 21st Marines

“We were a veteran company with Guadalcanal behind us and we thought we knew the jungle.  But here on Bougainville we were battling a jungle such as we had never dreamed of.  For 19 days we struggled in miasmal swamps, fought vines that wrapped themselves bout our neck like whips, birds that dived at us like screaming Stukas, bats whose wings whirred like falling artillery shells, snakes, lizards and insects without name or number.  For 19 days we attacked this natural enemy with our machetes and knives, hacking our way through…

Source: Eye Witness Account – Bougainville | Pacific Paratrooper