By Paul A. Roales
September 18, 2009
Updated May 14, 2013
One of my hobbies is military history and I find many interesting military artifact at flea markets, estate sales, or in person. Once I acquire an item I enjoy researching it and the history of the original owner. If I find them of sufficient interest I add them to my collection. If not, they are resold on eBay along with the research I have done.
A word on my background: I am a retired Petroleum Geologist living in Tulsa, OK. I was in the US Army from 1963 to 1966 with most of that time spent as an Instructor of Meteorology at Ft. Monmouth NJ. That period was during the start of the US involvement in the Viet Nam conflict and I knew several men who later served there.
This series of articles will tell the stories of the owners of the military artifacts I have found and kept in my collection. To date most of them concern World War II men, but I will not ignore women or any other military conflict if I find suitable artifacts. It is titled HEROES because each of these men or women was truly a hero. Some died for our country, some survived wars and returned to live a long and fruitful life. But all contributed to our liberty and freedom. However, EVERYONE who serves honorably in the military, whether in war or in peace, deserves the title HERO.
The first story (on Lt. Robert P Rist) is an article I wrote for the Smithsonian’s AIR & SPACE magazine. It was published in their November, 2006 issue. One of the others (on Cpl. Charles Chibitty) was previously posted by me on the www as a separate story. The others are original to this series.
The stories will be as accurate as I can make them. Military (and personal) records are not always complete so there may be gaps (or gaffs) in the write-ups, but I TRY to keep them accurate. After I have written up the backlog of stories I have in my collection and posted them here I will add additional stories as I acquire and research new material. So check back periodically to see the latest additions.
I hope you enjoy my efforts. Your comments are encouraged and appreciated. If a story moves you to comment, or if you have a correction to make, feel free to email me Paul Roales. You can also return to MY HOMEPAGE HERE.
NOTE: January 14, 2010. #6 on Frank L. Roales requires a special comment. This story was written by my brother Frank E. Roales about our uncle SM3c Frank L. Roales who was lost at sea during World War II.
STORY #1: ROBERT P. RIST; 339th Fighter Squadron; South Pacific; World War II.
STORY #2: EUGENE H. WHALEN; 750th Bomber Squadron; Europe; World War II.
STORY #3: CHARLES CHIBITTY; Last Comanche Code Talker; Europe; World War II.
STORY #4: LEROY R. BORDEN; 717th. Bomber Squadron; Italy; World War II. (Added Oct. 19, 2009)
STORY #5: ALAMEDA, CA SHORT SNORTER; USA; World War II. (Added Oct. 30, 2009)
STORY #6: FRANK L. ROALES; U.S. Navy Armed Guard; North Atlantic; World War II. (Added Jan. 14, 2010)
STORY #7: FRANK J. RYAN; U.S. Navy; USS Vincennes & USS Iowa; World War II. (Added May 11, 2010)
STORY #8: WILLIAM F. DOOLEY; U.S. Navy; USS Tulsa between the wars and U S Army in World War II. (Added September 1, 2010)
STORY #9: USS Fuller ; (AP-14/APA-7); South Pacific; World War II. (Added May 8, 2011)
STORY #10: ARTHUR VINCENT COLE; 48th. Fighter Squadron; Mediterranean; World War II. (Added May 8, 2011)
STORY #11: GORDAN CARPENTER; 21st Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron; CBI; World War II. (Added June 24, 2012)
STORY #12: JOHN ALLAN WHITFIELD; Buried at Sea; South Pacific; World War II. (Added July 15, 2012)
STORY #13: HARRIS HENWOOD REED; WWII Navy Blimp crewman. (Added Feb. 26, 2013)
STORY #14: HENRY ANDREWS BABCOCK; WWI Army Air Corps.(Added April 7, 2013)
STORY #15: USS LEEDSTOWN SINKING; WWII U. S. Navy.(Added May 14, 2013)