|e-Newsletter for January 2003
Walthall Crew Update:
To date we have managed to find LT Quentin Ingerson, Navigator, SGT Kazmer Rachak, and the sister of LT William Myers, Norma Newson. These individuals have also been contacted by Mr. Wilfried Krahwinkel, military historian for the Island of Borkum. The story of the Walthall crew appeared in the Fall/Winter edition of the O&W Newsletter. You can also read about the crew at www.486th.org/BS832/Walthall.htm. The fate seven of the nine members of the Walthall crew is tragic, and only one of many such fates suffered by downed airmen behind Germany's lines in the last year of the war. LT Ingerson, and SGT Rachak served the remainder of the war as POWs (Kriegsgefangener).
Kazmer and Quentin knew little about the circumstances of their crewmates fate, other than they had perished. Kazmer memorialized his crew by creating an embroidered hanky from any scrap materials he could find, and using a hanky as the base. 60 years later a memorial will be dedicated on the Island of Borkum where the rest of the Walthall crew were murdered by a soldier of the Wehrmacht. Research into the events that day is being conducted by Mr. Krahwinkel, Colonel Helmut Scheder, Dr. Bryan van Sweringen and Dr. Zühlke. The memorial has won the support of the Mayor of Borkum, local clergy, and members of the local Rotary Club. The Rotary Club is giving consideration to funding the project. Dedication is expected to take place on the 4th of August, 2004. Norma Newson is making plans to attend the dedication ceremonies, but Kazmer and Quentin have, thusfar, declined the invitation.
Quentin and Kazmer were located using home of record information provided by Dr van Sweringen, and the website www.whitepages.com . Other potential family members were identified, but to date no one has replied to the mailings. Interestingly, Norma (Myers) Newson was not on the original mailing list, because she was not identified in the searches. Contact with her was established when the wife of one of the men (not related) on the contact list spoke of my letter with her beautician. The beautician new Mrs. Newson, and suggested that Mrs. Myers (no relation) contact her. She did, and passed along my contact information. No small miracle in my book!
Fall/Winter Newsletter Edition:
The latest issue of the O&W Newsletter is in the mail, and members should have their copy soon. If you're not a member, or your dues are due, send your dues to Gus Lovan; 19 Sweetgum Dr.; Pawley's Isle, SC 29585. Dues information can be found on the association page.
As your read the newsletter, you may become aware of several type-O's and grammar errors. I tried to have these corrected, but "the train had left the station." I apologize for mispellling anyone's name, particuarly Mr. Kazmer Rachack.
Thanks to everyone who sent me a "job well done." Doing the e-newsletter I found it somewhat easy, and didn't worry about deadlines. Doing the official newsletter has given me a new outlook on the difficulty of the job. I doff my hat to all past editors of the newsletter.
I've already begun plans for the next newsletter. If you would like to have something included for the Spring issue, please let me have your articles, information, or requests for information by March 1st.
B-17 Flying Fortress Units of the Eighth Air Force (Part 2) by Martin Bowman -- This book deals with the Fortress units of the 3rd Air Division, and features "Rack n Ruin" and "American Beauty" from the 486th.
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