Archive for Friday, July 18, 2003

Speakers to include hometown heroes

July 18, 2003


Biographical information on selected Memory Tent participants, provided by the speakers and the Dole Institute of Politics:

Lynn Ashley, Forest Park, Ohio, was a member of the Women's Army Corps. She was stationed at the Bombardier Training Center in Carlsbad, N.M., where she determined which aircraft were available for flight, assigned aircraft to training flights and distributed training schedules.

Harold "Hal" Baumgarten, Jacksonville, Fla., was on the first wave of troops landing on Omaha Beach on D-Day, June 6, 1944. He wrote "Eyewitness on Omaha Beach" about his experiences, and he has been interviewed numerous times, including on National Public Radio and CNN. He also spoke at the opening of the National D-Day Museum in New Orleans.

Samuel Billison, Kinlichee, Ariz., was a Navajo code-talker for the U.S. Marine Corps, serving in Japan. He has worked for national recognition for Navajo code-talkers and has a G.I. Joe doll modeled after him.

Everett E. Buhler, Lawrence, is a Kansas University graduate who was a Naval aviator and instructor. He flew many missions during the war, including in the October 1994 Leyte Gulf Battle in the Philippines, which was key to the downfall of Japan.

Roy E. Creek, Lawrence, participated in the D-Day invasion while serving with the U.S. Army. He was company commander of E Company, 507th PIF, 82nd Airborne Division, which seized a major bridge at Chef-du-Pont, France. He later became an administrator at the KU Medical Center.

Beulah Duncan, Lawrence, was a communications officer with the U.S. Coast Guard. She coded and decoded classified materials and messages. She later worked at KU Continuing Education.

Louie Frydman, Lawrence, is a native of Poland who was apprehended by Germans in 1943 and sent to a concentration camp in Lublin, near the Soviet border. He later was sent to Auschwitz and was in the Allach camp when it was liberated by the U.S. Army. Frydman is a retired KU professor of social welfare.

Les Hannon, Lawrence, was a mechanic with England's Royal Air Force who later helped repair houses destroyed during air raids. He later ran the Gustin Bacon plant in Lawrence.

Dick Hewitt, Lawrence, was part of the U.S. Air Force's 78th Fighter Group, flying missions out of Duxford, England, from 1943 to 1945. He flew 440 hours and 144 combat missions in the P-47 Thunderbolt and the P-51 Mustang. He had five aerial kills and five ground kills.

Robert Hite, Camden, Ark., was a Doolittle Raider whose 16 crew members were shot down over Japan. A Japanese court martial condemned all of the crew, but the emperor granted a reprieve to all but two. During his 40 months as a POW, Hite's weight dropped to 80 pounds, and he was bitten by bugs, rats and lice, suffered from starvation and had water poured down his nose.

Herman A. Johnson, Kansas City, Mo., was a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of black pilots. He worked his way up to the rank of major in the U.S. Air Force. Johnson served two terms in the Missouri House of Representatives.

David M. Jones was a member of the Doolittle Raiders who bombed Tokyo in April 1942. Many, including Jones, were required to bail out of their planes over China after the raid. In December 1942, he was shot down over Bizerte, North Africa and spent the rest of the war as a prisoner in Stalag Luft III. He later was commended for his constant agitation and harassment of his German captors and served as director of the B-58 Test Force.

Claudine "Scottie" Lingelbach, Lawrence, was commissioned as a Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Services officer, serving as an ensign in the Joint British Chiefs of Staff in Washington, D.C., and later for the U.S. Navy Logistics Department.

Catherine Lynch, Boone, Iowa, was a volunteer nurse with the U.S. Army Air Force, serving with Gen. George Patton's 3rd Army in the 123rd evacuation hospital. After the war, she was a nurse at Percy Jones General Hospital in Battle Creek, Mich., and was a nurse for Bob Dole when he returned to the United States.

Jadwiga Maurer, Lawrence, is a native of Poland. Her family relied on a branch of the Polish underground called Zegota to survive the German invasion of her home country. Her town, Presov, was liberated in January 1945. She now is a retired professor of Slavic language and literature at KU.

Glenn McDole was a U.S. Marine who was captured in 1942 by Japanese troops in Corregidor, in the Philippines. He and 150 fellow POWs planned to escape in what is now known as the "Palawan Massacre." McDole and 10 others avoided capture; McDole hid under a garbage pile to reach the bay, where he was rescued by Filipino fishermen.

Charles E. McGee, Bethesda, Md., was a Tuskegee airman who remained on active duty for 30 years. He flew missions during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

Archie Mills, Lawrence, flew with the U.S. Navy in the Battle of Midway and the Guadalcanal campaign, among others. After the war, his jobs included serving as Navy flight instructor, navigator and operations officer before retiring from active service in 1961.

J.W. "Buck" Newsom, Lawrence, attended the U.S. Naval Academy before serving in the Pacific Theater aboard the USS Hopkins, USS California and USS St. Paul. He held several positions before retiring in 1964 as a captain. He later became vice president of Centron Productions, Lawrence.

Jaroslaw "Jarek" Piekalkiewicz, Lawrence, fought with the Polish resistance known as the Home Army against the German invasion of his home country. He later became a prisoner of war, escaped and was sent to a camp for troublesome Allied soldiers. He escaped again and was liberated by Americans. He later became a KU professor of political science and Russian and East European studies.

Margaret Ringenberg, Fort Wayne, Ind., was a member of the Women's Airforce Service Pilots, who also was a flight instructor. She has logged more than 40,000 hours of flight time during her career, which now includes air races. A chapter of Tom Brokaw's book "The Greatest Generation" was devoted to her, and she wrote a book of her own, "Girls Can't Be Pilots."

Virginia Visser, Hingham, Mass., was in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps, serving in 1944 and 1945. She was stationed in Liverpool, England; Dijon, France; and Naumburg, Giessen Welzheim, Stuttgart and Fulda, Germany. Her husband, John, was president of Emporia State University from 1967 to 1985.

Saturday"Heroes of Lawrence, Part 1"7 p.m.-8:15 p.m.Emcee: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dennis GraylessSpeakers: Scottie Lingelbach, Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service; Capt. "Buck" Newsom (U.S. Navy retired); Bud Sudlow, Navy-Air Sea Rescue, Pacific campaign; Charles Wright, U.S. Marine Corps, Pacific campaignSunday"Doolittle Raiders"11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.Emcee: First Lt. Elizabeth SagerSpeakers: Lt. Col. Robert Hite (U.S. Air Force retired); Maj. Gen. Davey Jones (U.S. Air Force retired)"Tuskegee Airmen"12:45 p.m.-1:45 p.m.Emcee: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dennis GraylessSpeakers: Herman Johnson; Col. Charles McGee (U.S. Air Force retired)"Comanche/Navajo Code-Talkers"2 p.m.-3:15 p.m.Emcee: First Lt. Elizabeth SagerSpeakers: Samuel Billison, Navajo, U.S. Marines in Okinawa; Charles Chibitty, Comanche, U.S. Army in Normandy; Samuel Tso, Navajo, U.S. Marines in Iwo Jima"Normandy"3:30 p.m.-5 p.m.Emcee: Martin Morgan, historian, National D-Day MuseumSpeakers: Col. George Russell Barber, chaplain; Harold Baumgarten, Omaha Beach, wounded five times; Roy Creek, 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment; Walter Ehlers, Medal of Honor recipient; Leonard "Bud" Lomell, U.S. Army Ranger, Pointe-du-Hoc"Pearl Harbor Survivors"5:15 p.m.-6:30 p.m.Emcee: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dennis GraylessSpeakers: Fred "Fritz" Kropf, U.S. Navy, USS San Francisco; Harold Hall, U.S. Marines, USS West Virginia; Lonnie Cook, U.S. Navy, USS Arizona"Holocaust Survivors"6:45 p.m.-8 p.m.Emcee: Adrian CruzSpeakers: Mr. and Mrs. John Bergl, authors of "From the Heart"; Lou Frydman, concentration camps at Majdanek, Natzweiler and Dachau; Jadwiga Maurer, child of the HolocaustMonday"Medal of Honor"8 a.m.-9:30 a.m.Emcee: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dennis GraylessSpeakers: Bob Bush, U.S. Navy, Okinawa; Mike Colalillo, U.S. Army, Germany; Walt Ehlers, U.S. Army, Normandy; Jack Lucas, U.S. Marines, Iwo Jima;"Remembering Winston Churchill"12:45 p.m.-2 p.m.Emcee: Adrian CruzSpeaker: Duncan Sandys, great-grandson of Winston Churchill, will provide "The British Perspective""Women of World War II"2:15 p.m.-3:45 p.m.Emcee: Beth SagerSpeakers: Lynn Ashley, Rosy Riveter/Women's Army Corps; Beulah Duncan, U.S. Coast Guard; Scottie Lingelbach, WAVES; Pat Lynch, European Liberation/Sen. Dole's nurse; Eleanor "Polly" Payton, U.S. Marine Corps Reserves; Margaret Ringenberg, Women's Airforce Service Pilot; Virginia Schuyler Visser, U.S. Army nurse"Prisoners of War"4 p.m.-5:30 p.m.Emcee: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dennis GraylessSpeakers: Richard Hibbs, Bataan Death March; J.D. King, German POW; Glenn McDole, escapee at Palawan Island; Jaroslaw (Yarek) Piekalkiewicz, Polish resistance/German POW; Richard Schiefelbusch, German POW"Heroes of Lawrence, part 2"5:45 p.m.-7 p.m.Emcee: Adrian CruzSpeakers: Everett Buhler, Naval aviator, Battle of Leyte in the Philippines; Les Hannon, Royal Air Force; Lt. Col. Dick Hewitt, U.S. Air Force retired; Lt. Cmdr. Archie Mills, U.S. Navy retiredTuesdaySen. George McGovern, B24 pilot8 a.m.-9:15 a.m.Emcee: Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dennis Grayless* Bales Organ Recital Hall, Lied Center

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