My Father, My Friends

~ Memories of World War II ~

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First Edition – May 2014     ISBN: 978-0-9818238-3-6


Read Review by Allen Benzing, B-24 Team Leader and Historian, Commemorative Air Force, August 2014

My Father My Friends - Front Cover



This book features ten veterans who share their memories of their World War II experiences. These men lived through the inherent dangers of the war—whether attacking a surfaced German submarine, bailing out of a disabled bomber or a fighter plane on fire, landing cargo gliders behind enemy lines amidst gunfire, fighting in vicious aerial combat, or tending to the wounded and dying after a horrendous kamikaze attack on the USS Saratoga. Veterans include: a radar operator and a radio operator who served together on a B-24 Liberator; a B-17 engineering officer; four glider pilots who flew the Waco CG-4A and British Horsa; and three fighter pilots who flew the P-51 Mustang, P-40 Warhawk, and F6F Hellcat. Their stories unfold largely in their own words—whether derived from verbal interviews or from poignant  and detailed handwritten journals. Typed  excerpts from these remarkable journals are included; much of this personal history has not been previously published. Foreword by Budd Davisson, Editor-in-Chief, Flight Journal.

6”x9” paperback, 264 pages, more than 270 photos.




Part One – Air Crew Members

Chapter 1 – Homer Marion Barnes, 8th Antisubmarine Squadron and Squadron H 2510th AAFBU  Gone West – August 11, 2012

Chapter 2 – Fenton L. Robinson, 8th Antisubmarine Squadron, 373rd Bomb Squadron of the 308th Bomb Group, and Squadron AO 3505th AAFBU  Gone West – September 24, 2009

Chapter 3 – Chester Leigh “Chet” Peek, 412th Bomb Squadron of the 95th Bomb Group

Part Two – Glider Pilots

Chapter 4 – George Edward Boyle, 319th Troop Carrier Squadron, 1st Air Commando Group  Gone West – April 17, 2016

Chapter 5 – George Leonard “Lennie” Williams, 87th Troop Carrier Squadron of the 438th Troop Carrier Group  Gone West – October 7, 2014

Chapter 6 – Norman Carroll “Boots” Wilmeth, 91st Troop Carrier Squadron of the 439th Troop Carrier Group  Gone West – July 7, 2014

Chapter 7 – George Irvin Theis, 98th Troop Carrier Squadron of the 440th Troop Carrier Group

Part Three – Fighter Pilots

Chapter 8 – Anthony Henry “Tony” Goebel, 487th Squadron of the 352nd Fighter Group [100th Birthday Celebration and 2017 Veteran’s Day Parade]

Chapter 9 – Cary Benjamin “Ben” Jones, 316th Fighter Squadron of the 324th Fighter Group  [An Historical Handoff for the 316th Fighter Squadron Change of Command (CAF – The Flyer, Nov/Dec 2017)]

Chapter 10 – Clarence Paul Ratliff, Fighting Squadrons VF74, VF48 AND VF34 [Awarded France’s Legion of Honor medal, June 16, 2016]

My Father My Friends - Back CoverSupport independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.