SUBMITTED BY: Name: Thomas Lloyd From: West Palm Beach, Florida E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: My grandfather, Randall N. Christmas, was a First Lieutenant with the VMB 443(He is found in pictures which detail plane number 405). I never met him, nor did I ever here of any stories concerning events during his service time. He returned from the service to raise a family, and to graduate from the University of Miami. He went on to the legal profession, as well as into local politics in the Miami, Florida area. He continued to fly with the Marine Air Reserve, flying the Cougar 9F9, up till 1964, when he ended his service as a Major. He died July 27, 1969. I would love to correspond with anyone who either knew or knew of my grandfather.
COMMENTS: I am a cousin of Lieutenant Richard Curtis Hudson who was a pilot with Squadron 443. I recently found some letters and pictures and was wondering if anyone remembers Dick?
Added: November 15, 2010
SUBMITTED BY: Name: Michael s. Vieira From: Coconut Creek FL E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: RE: DONALD WEATLEY(Pamela Weatley) Hello Pamela, I'm hoping you see this sometime soon (I myself have not viewed the guestbook in sometime although I do visit the site often) your Father Donald and my Father Joseph Vieira were in the same aircrew together. Dad didn't say much about the war but he did speak of your Dad whenever I pressed him on it, he said he was a great guy and considered him his best friend while serving in the pacific. having flown in combat together along with the rest of their crew I'm sure they had a bond that we could never understand. we lost Dad in 2001 so he missed seeing the website as well however I'm glad to see you found it as its such a wonderful tribute to these veterns that were somtimes overlooked due to the magnitude of the war in which they fought.
Added: November 13, 2010
SUBMITTED BY: Name: Donna M. Yirka From: Washington State E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: Duane Yirka was my Father. I am the eldest daughter. My father Duane Mark Yirka and his eldest son Donald Yirka died on July 28, 1968 in a plane crash piloted by my father. They were laid to rest at Sunset Hills Memorial Home in Bellevue, Washington. I visit often to remember my father and brother. I was 17 when I lost them both. My father was an amazing man who I loved very much. He had a smile and zest for life I have seldom seen in other men. He took good care and protected all of us his 8 children. I still miss them both greatly and am glad he was able to serve his country as my brother Douglas's statement acknowledges.
COMMENTS: My father, Donald Wheatley, told me stories when I was growing up of his WWII experience. I remember watching WWII movies and shows with him. It was because of him that I developed a love for avaition. I even have all of his military items, pictures, and bomber jacket (which is very sentimental to me). He died in 1996. I wished he had lived to have seen this website. He would have been very happy. Thank you for putting this site together. It brings back fond memories of my father.
Added: July 7, 2010
SUBMITTED BY: Name: George Bartlett From: :Potomac, MD E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: I saw where lane Perry had written. Lane I tried to reach you since I am a friend of your Dad's. We were together on Emirau for amost a year. My email failed to get to you. If you read this please contact the webmaster and get my email address and write. Thank you. George Bartlett
Added: July 7, 2010
SUBMITTED BY: Name: Ralph Soderberg Jr. From: Kailua Kona Hawaii E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: My father retired as a Lt. Col in 1967 out of Camp Pendelton, CA. He passed away in January 1981. I am a middle school US history teacher and was always curious about dad's WWII Service. His print squadron book was misplaced before I was Aware of it. My mother Phyllis who married dad at Cherry Point in 1943(?) is 90 and recently in assisted living in Dana Point, CA. I was going through a photo album and found a squadron 443 reunion photo and had my clue to dad's history. google search took me to the squadron web site. I have id'd Dad in a couple of photos. Thank you for keeping this legacy Alive for the children, grandchildren, and greatgrandchildren Of this "greatest generation" of American heroes. Ralph and Peter Soderberg June 9, 2010
COMMENTS: I am still amazed by the response this site has received. Glad to report that my father David W. Harry is still with us and going strong!!! If anyone would like to correspond with him, please feel free to contact me. I know he would just love to hear from others. Thanks and SEMPER FI!!!!
Added: May 13, 2010
SUBMITTED BY: Name: John Hawkins From: Atlanta, Ga E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: My Dad T-Sgt.Joe R. Hawkins USMCR flew with VMB-443 ,nav-bomb, from June 1945 - Nov 1945 then transferred to VMR-953 until June 1946....There is a book out call "Leatherneck Bombers" by Alan C. Carey published by Schiffer Military history Book, shows pictures of VMB-443 flight crews on Emirau 1945.... My dad passed away 6 June 2002, 76 yrs old...He never saw the book but some of the stories he used to tell are in the book.... I hope some of my dad's friend s are still around to read the book and see the pictures... We will remember them....
Admin reply: I was a Nav-Bomb in 443 at the same time that you mentioned. I do not seem to recall him, but I followed the same path from Emirau to Tsingtao, China, flying regular Tsingtao - Tientsin - Peking circuits as an R4D Navigator. If you are not already familiar with it, a website Marine Photographer is a collection of Frank Kern's of Mag 61 photos. Morris Cave
Added: April 27, 2010
SUBMITTED BY: Name: Michael S Vieira From: Florida E-mail: Contact
COMMENTS: I'm Joseph W Vieira'a youngest son I am literally in tears as I write this My Father was a Happy-go- Lucky soul and never spoke much about his time as a Radio Gunner in this bomber group I would like to thank you for createing this site from the bottom of my heart I will Cherish this and return often!