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WWII Heritage

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  • WWII Heritage

    Hi all, pretty much brand new to Tactical Gamer and the forum community. Just thought I'd create a thread for all of us that had grandfathers or whomever serving in the Navy in WWII.

    My grandfather served aboard one of Canada's only Aircraft Carriers during WWII. The HMS Nabob was a light carrier fulfilling the duties of ASW or Anit-Submarine Warfare. She participated in Operations Offspring (a mine laying mission), and Operation Goodwood (A concentrated carrier strike against the German ship Tirpitz).

    While returning from Operation Goodwood she was torpedoed by German U-354 and took heavy damage. The crew did an amazing job of patching the ship and she managed to return to Scapa Flow under her own power. She was labeled as not worth salvaging and that's where my story ends.

    My grandfather is my hero, and I'm the only one of his grandkids he ever shared the story with. I was just wondering if this great community had their own stories to share.

    A cool side note regarding a near mutiny onboard HMS Nabob can be found here. http://www.royalnavyresearcharchive....CORT/NABOB.htm

  • #2
    Re: WWII Heritage

    My grandfather, along with his three brothers were all Navy pilots during WWII. I don't know much about my grandfather's involvement in the war, but I've talked to one of my uncles about it at length, and my aunt about the "publicity" stuff he refuses to talk about. He served aboard the USS Intrepid and the USS Shangri-La during the war as an aerial photographer. He would go fly above the enemy-held islands and take pictures, often times finding himself in a dogfight. A few articles were written about him in the newspapers, as well as a National Geographic article which I haven't gotten my hands on yet. He was also dubbed the first American pilot to "land" on Japan during the war, when he was dogfighting over the home islands and actually skimmed the ground during the fight!

    After this post I think I'm gonna go call my aunt and see if I can borrow some more of her articles.

    I didn't join a squad once and this guy named Nardini took me into the back room and beat me with a sock of oranges.


    • #3
      Re: WWII Heritage

      Both grandpas were in WW2, froget what one of them did but other broke up codes that the Japanese used.. He did it away from the battles and front lines but still got the job done.. Other was in the Navy I know, just not sure what he did.
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      • #4
        Re: WWII Heritage

        My grandpa was in the Navy during WW2, he manned one of the cannons on his battleship (i don't know what they are called)
        I'm Back.


        • #5
          Re: WWII Heritage

          My grandpa was being shipped off to the Pacific in an M10, just before the Japanese surrendered.

          My paternal grandpa served in the artillery in both world wars, and got hit in the lung with shrapnel before he shipped home and died of old age.


          • #6
            Re: WWII Heritage

            My grandfather (actually my wife's) was a P-51 Mustang pilot in WWII. He crashed after a run and was picked up after spending over a week and riding through a typhoon in a little yellow raft before being picked up by the USS Trutta. The sub had just begun a combat tour, so Gramps was stuck on the boat until they made a port call. He was in bad shape when rescued and the crew of the boat really took care of him. You might say they adopted him as an honorary crewman. Gramps now attends not any type of aviator reunions, but he always goes to the WWII Sub Vets conventions to share sea stories with all his buddies. I went one year and was amazed. Those are true heroes.
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            • #7
              Re: WWII Heritage

              My grandfather was a Lt. (I believe) in the US Army Rangers at the time of the D-Day Invasion. He was either part of the 2nd or the 5th during the storming of Omaha Beach.

              He didn't talk about it much.


              • #8
                Re: WWII Heritage

                My grandfather was a Marine in WWII. I don't have any good war stories to share, he was always reluctant to share them. The story he liked to tell, because he was a very religious man, was how he was asked to serve alcohol to the troops for some occasion and he refused on the grounds that it was against the precepts of his religious beliefs. He had no problem with drinking, he just didn't feel it was good for his own faith to serve alcohol as he himself did not drink. His CO threatened to throw him in the brig, and my grandfather stood his ground and started preaching at him...long story short, his CO didn't throw him in the brig and ended up attending "services" my grandfather started holding for the other soldiers where he was stationed. He was always amazed at how faith spread in those times amidst all the killing and heroism.
                | | |


                • #9
                  Re: WWII Heritage

                  Wow, great stories so far. I know that it's getting on in years and it's important for us to keep their story alive. Good job guys.


                  • #10
                    Re: WWII Heritage

                    Both of my grandfathers served. My father's father was a meteorolgist and flew weather reconnaissance planes in Europe during the war. For a while Jimmy Stewart was his commanding officer, my grandmother still has some of Stewart's letter praising her new groom Tony. Obviously flying weather flights were not nearly as dangerous as bombing sorties but he recounted a few hairy situtations flying over France.

                    My mother's father had quite a different tour in the Army. He was stationed in Panama in Defense of the Canal. Obviously there wasn't a lot of activity there but they were always on alert since it was (is) such an important waterway.

                    One little thing that dawned on me several years ago that both of my grandfather's came from large families. My father's father had three brothers and my mother's father had four. All of them served either in the European or Pacific theaters and they all came back completely unscathed...pretty lucky.


                    • #11
                      Re: WWII Heritage

                      My Dad landed on the beaches of mainland Japan just a few days after the end of the war. He did a tour in Japan as an occupants taking up knives of a few inches to the biggest guns that they had. He said they piled them in big piles.
                      The Old Guy


                      • #12
                        Re: WWII Heritage

                        On October 27th 1941, 1,975 Officers and men of the 1st Battalion of The Royal Rifles of Canada and the 1st Battalion of the Winnipeg Grenadiers embarked on a 22 day journey to the British colony of Hong Kong.

                        The Japanese attack began shortly after 8 am on 8 December 1941 (Hong Kong local time), less than eight hours after the Attack on Pearl Harbor (because of the day shift that occurs on the international date line between Hawaii and Asia, the Pearl Harbor event is recorded to have occurred on December 7). Outnumbered three to one (Japanese: 52,000 / Allied: 14,000)
                        the Commonwealth forces held on for 17 days of bloody fighting and on December 25th the remaining defenders surrendered.

                        Of the 962 men of the Royal Rifles, 130 were killed 227 wounded and in the ensuing 4 years another 129 would die in the prison camps.

                        Now for the family heritage part. Corporal F.C Cameron, A company 1st Battalion Royal Rifles of Canada was my Grandfather and other then the Battle of Hong Kong he spent 4 years as a POW in a Japanese prison camp. My Grandfather died when I was only 5 due to health complications caused from his 4 years as POW. I know very little of what actually happened to him during his military service and my Father knows even less as I'm the one who's done any research on it. In fact when he and I attended a Hong Kong Vets convention last year we found out that during the fighting he had been wounded.

                        On a better note last Christmas my Father had my Grandfathers medals, uniform patches and the flag he was buried with framed for me as a gift. So theres my family's heritage at least on my Fathers side that I know of.


                        • #13
                          Re: WWII Heritage

                          My maternal grandfather was a demolitions expert but did almost all his time as a cook.

                          He did use his demo skills from the stories he told. Dynamite to get tons of fish and even some birds through concussive explosions. He said the trick was to first scare the birds so that they would take off. Then, when they got about 3 feet in the air, set off the explosives because if you did it while they where on the ground most wouldn't be effective. But when they where in the air the shock wave would knock them silly and they would fall to the ground pretty hard.

                          He completed basic training shortly before the Pacific war ended and spent most of his time in the occupation of Japan. He had all kinds of pictures and shipped back tons of loot he either won or stole, he was never real clear on that. I know that he made thousands of dollars a month by gambling.
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                          • #14
                            Re: WWII Heritage

                            My fathers dad was an MP in Persia during WWII. The kept him a private and turned him into an MP since he spent so much time in the stockade anyway.

                            My mother's dad was drafted but stayed stateside because of his Parkinson's.

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                            • #15
                              Re: WWII Heritage

                              I had a great great uncle who was a pilot in World War I and Died over France.

                              As for WWII My grandfather was in the navy, he ended up being a cook on a mine sweeper in the South Pacific. Though he himself didn't disarm the mines (he did have a great story about a lemon meringue pie that he was baked in between going to Okinawa from Iwo Jima that I will tell on teamspeak, its quite humorous).

                              As he put it, the "Japanese" (he wouldn't say it in this way) didn't really mind them, they went in, disarmed the mines and didn't fire on anyone (you could say he was in the battle of Midway, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa and possibly Guadacanal, but the last one i am not sure of) however no one really fussed over a minesweeper, it wasn't heavily armed and it just sailed in, disarmed the mines that he said didn't work have the time and sailed off.

                              My grandfather did like probably all of our grandfathers/father in laws/family members of our wives, get tattoo's, I remember my grandfather had a green serpent on his arm, with an anchor, it was old school and big, and he told me how he woke up with it, after a night out in hawaii before they shipped out.

                              *my mother's best friend's father who just recently passed away (he wasn't in my family but I did know him since I was born) fought on the beaches of Normandy during D-Day, and then was shipped to the pacific where he ended up getting shot in the leg, and then took out a machine gun nest before being pulled out and put on a hospital ship. I believe at okinawa (i am pretty sure he was in the battle of Iwo Jima during the Island Hopping Campaign, but the distance and date might prove otherwise. So i am not completely sure). He was a great man, and was Jewish, and walked out of Saving Private Ryan in the opening minutes scene due to the fact that it brought back memories, and was the most realistic re-enactment he ever witnessed. (he never watched it again.)
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