15th Army Air Force in WWII-history-USA--Slide show destination~vienna-original version
Destination~Vienna• Destination~Vienna New Historical Narrative Retraces WWII Conflict from One Air Force Navigators Aerial View Kevin W. Edwards Delivers Captivating Historical Record and Personal Narrative• A new book, "Destination Vienna", written about a 783rd Navigator, has just been published. Kevin W. Edwards, the son of the late William W. Edwards, a former 2nd Lieutenant/Navigator who served in World War II with the 783rd Squadron of the 465th Bomb Group, has written a book about the 15th Army Air Corp. centering on his fathers experience as a Navigator with the 783rd. "Destination Vienna" retraces a mission, in his fathers own words of the events he and his crew experienced on a single day in March 1945 when their plane was hit and the subsequent events that followed. The subject of the book was the 465th. Bomb Groups 166th mission in Italy. The narrative is cleverly interspersed with history and the events that evolved leading up to this particular Vienna mission.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS- Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13The Author would like to thank all those who I would like to thank Gene F. and Mary helped with this book. Moxley for their effort and dedication to Many thanks and special appreciation to chronicling the history of the "Missing In all the men and women of the World War Action" crews of the 465th Bomb Group. II generation who worked tirelessly, A very special thanks to both the brave fought valiantly, and sacrificed greatly to crews from the 783rd Squadron of B-24 keep the world free from evil. Liberator bomber #44-49894, Call letter A debt of gratitude and thanks to all of Blue "U", and to the Cella replacement those who served with the 15th Army Air crew may their sacrifices always be Corps for their courage and commitment remembered. to duty, honor, country in the face of Love and thanks always to my lovely great peril. wife, Sharon, and our two children, Kyle Thanks, to all of our Allies, partisans, and Kelly, for their support and resistance fighters, and those people of encouragement in the writing of this Austria and citizens of Vienna, who book. despite great personal hardship and May you always walk in danger, provided aid and comfort to U.S. sunshine, May you never want servicemen in need through unheralded for more. and ,at times, even unrecorded acts of May Irish angels rest their wings heroism. right beside your door.
Destination~Vienna “I know that I shall meet my fate,Somewhere among the clouds above.” Yeats
High Flight Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings; Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth of sun-split clouds, and done a hundred things You have not dreamed of, wheeled and soared and swung High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung My eager craft through footless halls of air Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace Where never lark nor ever eagle flew And, while with silent lifting mind I’ve trod The high untrespassed sanctity of space, Put out my hand, and touched the face of God John G. Magee 3 September 1941
DESTINATION~ VIENNAThis book is dedicated to my father, William W. Edwards, whoserved his country in World War II as a navigator on a B-24bomber with gallantry and valor in a time of great peril. Andalso to the courageous 783rd Squadron crew of B-24L-#44-49894-call letter Blue "U" who flew with him, as they all risked theirown lives and made great sacrifices to keep us free.Let their names always be remembered.Pilot-1st Lieutenant William E. Herman-KIACo-Pilot-Lieutenant David N. Reeher -MIANavigator-2nd Lieutenant William W. Edwards-MIABombardier-Lieutenant Kern McIlhenny -MIANose Turret Gunner-Sgt. Billy J. Irwin-KIATop Turret Gunner-Sgt. Thomas F. Dennick -MIABall Turret Gunner-Sgt. Ernest Fink-KIAFlight Engineer/Waist Gunner-S/Sgt. Earl E. Eiberger-KIARadio Operator/Waist Gunner-Sgt. Doyle B. Mayo -MIATail Turret Gunner-Sgt. Robert H. Canterbury-KIA"A Man is not Dead until he is Forgotten
World War II was a great conflagration ofunimaginable horror and destruction resulting in over 70million killed, millions more displaced, families broken ordestroyed, great cities and even whole countries left inruins. This book will backdrop, from the end of World War Ior "The War to End All Wars" on the 11th hour of the 11thday of the 11th month in 1918, and the signing of the Treatyof Versailles the almost immediate series of events that ledup to World War II.
We will chronicle these events as they relate to the lifeof one individual and his ultimate entanglement withthe dynamics of a world engulfed in war. This book willretrace the mission of one solitary B-24 Liberatorbomber crew on a single day in March 1945, whenthey met their "fate, somewhere among the cloudsabove." We will see the kindred spirit of completestrangers, who were thrust into and subsequentlybanded together by untenable circumstance, to riseand act to cast off the yoke of evil.
In Vienna, too, the word Gestapo expressed the quintessence of Nazi terror.Himmler
VIENNA~FINAL DAYSSt Marxer Friedhof-3rd District Cemetery
Tuskegee Airmen- 332d Fighter GroupThe combat record of the Tuskegee Airmen• Over 15,000 combat sorties (Including 6000+for the 99th prior to July 44)• 111 German airplanes destroyed in the air• 150 German aircraft destroyed on the ground• 950 railcars, trucks, and other motor vehicles destroyed• 1 destroyer sunk by P-47 machine gun fire• Sixty-six pilots killed in action or accidents• Thirty-two pilots downed and captured, POWs• NO Bombers were ever lost to Enemy Aircraft whilebeing escorted• 150 Distinguished Flying Crosses earned• 744 Air Medals• 8 Purple Hearts• 14 Bronze Stars•••We of the 464th and 465th Bomb Groups•••As well as all of the other Groups in the 15th AF"SALUTE YOU!"
REFLECTIONS To fallen soldiers let us sing Where no rockets fly nor bullets wing Our broken brothers let us bring To the mansions of the Lord No more bleeding, no more fight No prayers pleading through the night Just divine embrace, eternal light In the mansions of the LordWorld War II Memorial- Where no mothers cry and no children weep Washington D.C. We will stand and guard though angels sleep Through the ages safely keep The mansions of the Lord inspired by the movie- We were soldiers
Mission AccomplishedCella Crew Stateside-1945 GOD BLESS THE USA !
Special Acknowledgement-Glenn Miller and his Orchestra
ABOUT THE AUTHOR KEVIN W. EDWARDS …………is the son of the late William W. Edwards, a former 2nd Lieutenant/Navigator with the 783rdSquadron of the 465th Bomb Group/55th Wing of the 15th Army Air Force in Italy. He was born inBridgeport,Connecticut and grew up in Stratford, graduating from Stratford High School. Presently, he isa 2nd career high school teacher of Mathematics at Wilby High School , after having been a mechanicalengineer and manufacturing executive for over 30 years. He graduated from Sacred Heart University inFairfield, Connecticut with a Master of Arts in Teaching, Fairfield University(Bridgeport EngineeringInstitute ) in Bridgeport, Connecticut with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, NorwalkState Technical College in Norwalk, Connecticut with an Associate in Applied Science-MechanicalEngineering Technology.He resides with his wife Sharon and their two children, Kyle and Kelly, in Waterbury, Connecticut.