My father enlisted in the U S Army Air Corps right after our nation declared war. He was stationed at Perrin Field near Sherman, Texas which is near Whitita Falls (according to the stories I heard). My mother joined him later in Texas and I was born near the end of the war.
One aspect of our family history during World War II has to do with Dad’s enlistment, training and service. In the early 1930’s Dad rolled a car and broke his back. He was in a full body cast for months and had to suffer all the tortures associated with such a medical procedure. He said that when he was injured in the wreck was the only time he saw my grandfather cry. In the late 1930’s, Dad and his brother Bayne took the boat to Alaska to look for work. My aunt and uncle lived in Juneau and it was a chance to visit family as well. The idea was to get a job in the gold mines but no jobs turned up. Bayne stayed in Alaska and worked with a commercial fishing outfit and Dad returned to Idaho.
In the years ahead he worked for Boeing Aircraft manufacturing in Seattle, WA. But when our nation declared war after the Pearl Harbor Attack by Japan, Dad enlisted in the U S Army Air Corps. He had basic training and then was shipped to Texas where he was trained as a mechanic for medium bombers. He spent his time at Perrin Field near Sherman, Texas keeping the bombers flying.
Uncle Bayne joined the U S Army and was stationed in England. He and his unit worked with the French resistance in many projects. They assisted resistance personnel behind enemy lines via parachute drop. This group also, aided in providing supplies and medicines behind lines to the populations of France and Belgium.
Uncle John was a carpenter in Dutch Harbor, Alaska when the Japanese army attempted an invasion of the Aluetian Islands. I don’t know much about his .participation during this invasion.
Uncle Wayne was the youngest of the Hickman brothers. He enlisted in the U S Navy and was a combat medic in the fighting in the South Pacific theatre against the Japanese Army.
My uncle Ormond was from Mom’s side of the family. He was in the U S Army and spent the War stationed in California. He was an airplane mechanic and may have worked on trainer aircraft. When he had a pass and some time off, he would go out side the base and help in the local agriculture harvest. When he returned to Idaho he bought a small homestead and started raising cattle and horses. By the 1950’s he had accumulated enough cash and continued to buy land and increase his herd. He would winter the cattle on the home ranch but in the summer the cattle were herded to the mountains (some years near Avery, Idaho) where he had a grazing permit from the U S Forest Service. By the time he retired to live in Lewiston, he had purchased 11 smaller ranches and was elected Cattleman of the Year by the county.
The rest of my uncles were either older or too young to serve during World War II.