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God, Country and Self-Interest:
A Social History
of the World War II Rank and File

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toby Terrar

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CWP

Silver Spring, Maryland

2004

 

Publishers Cataloging-in-Publication Data

 

Terrar, Toby, 1944-

God, Country and Self-Interest: A Social History of the WorldWar II
Rank and File / Toby Terrar.

 

p. cm.

Includes bibliographical references, index, maps and illustrations.

ISBN                  (cloth): $ 16.95 --ISBN                  (paper): $9.95

1. World War, 1939-1945--War Work--United States.

2. World War, 1939-1945--Women--United States.

3. World War, 1939-1945--Naval Operations, American.

4. World War, 1939-1945--Personal Narratives, American.

5. World War, 1939-1945--Campaigns--Pacific Area.

6. World War, 1939-1945--Aerial Operations.

7. World War II.

8. Military Biography.

9. Air Pilots, Military--United States--Biography.

10. War, Causes of.

11. War--Religious Aspects.

12. War (Philosophy).

13. United States, Navy--Biography.

14. United States--Foreign Relations.

15. United States--Social Conditions.

16. United States--Social History.

17. United States--Economic Conditions.

18. United States--Intellectual Life.

19. Social History.

20. Imperialism.

21. Social classes--History.

22. Women--United States--Biography.

23. California History.

24. South Carolina History.

25. Kansas History.

 

E743.T42         2004

973.91

CWP
15405 Short Ridge Ct.
Silver Spring, Maryland 20906

http://www.angelfire.lycos.com/un/cwp


To order:      (301) 598-5427
E-Mail: CathWkr@aol.com


Contents

List of Illustrations. v

Acknowlegements. viii

Preface. xi

     Self-interest......................................................................................................... xii

     The Older Generation......................................................................................... xix

     Religion........................................................................................................... xxxii

Chapter 1: Ed's Preparation. 1

     Coffeyville............................................................................................................ 1

     Naval Flight Training............................................................................................. 7

     Corpus Christi Basic Training: May-November, 1942......................................... 10

     Opa Locka: November 1942-January 1943....................................................... 18

Chapter 2: Hazel Before the War 21

     Dalzell, South Carolina....................................................................................... 21

     Nurse Training: Newport, Rhode Island.............................................................. 34

     Nursing at the University of Michigan Hospital: 1936-1942................................. 40

Chapter 3: California. 47

     Coffeyville, North Island and Alameda: January-March 1943.............................. 47

     TBF: Torpedo Bomber....................................................................................... 55

     El Centro: April 1943......................................................................................... 57

     North Island (Coronado, California): April-July 1943.......................................... 59

     Holtville and Hazel Hogan: July-August 1943...................................................... 66

     Otay Mesa (Brown Field): August-October 1943............................................... 68

Chapter 4: Marriage. 73

     Courtship: 1943................................................................................................. 78

     Marriage: September 3, 1943............................................................................. 83

     The Ceremony................................................................................................... 86

Chapter 5: Westward to the South Pacific: October-November, 1943. 93

     Ed Gets Underway........................................................................................... 101

     Work............................................................................................................... 110

     Espiritu Santo and Letters from Hazel............................................................... 115

Chapter 6: Combat: Tarawa, November-December, 1943. 119

     Preparation for Gilbert Islands Invasion............................................................. 125

     Tarawa: November 20-December 8, 1943....................................................... 128

     Christmas 1943: San Diego.............................................................................. 137

Chapter 7: Hazel on the Home Front: 1944. 142

     Budgetary Planning........................................................................................... 146

     Correspondence and Socializing....................................................................... 148

     Catholicism...................................................................................................... 152

     Housing............................................................................................................ 153

     The Baby: June-December, 1944..................................................................... 155

     Work............................................................................................................... 162

Chapter 8: The Marshalls: January-February, 1944. 169

     The Trip Back to the Central Pacific: January 12-31, 1944................................ 170

     Marshall Islands: January 31-February 22, 1944............................................... 171

     Western Marshalls............................................................................................ 180

Chapter 9: Hawaiian Vacation and Combat Fatigue: March-May, 1944. 185

     Hawaii: March 1-March 15, 1944.................................................................... 187

     Recuperation: March 15-May 31, 1944............................................................ 189

     Barber's Point, Hawaii: April 21-May 31, 1944................................................ 198

     Ed Catches Up with the Chenango.................................................................... 202

Chapter 10: The Marianas (Guam, Saipan, Pagan): June-August, 1944. 211

     The Beginning of the Campaign: June 2-21, 1944.............................................. 212

     Pagan: June 21-24, 1944.................................................................................. 217

     Rest in the Marshalls (Eniwetok): June 25-July 10, 1944................................... 221

     The Big News.................................................................................................. 222

     Guam (July 10-30, 1944)................................................................................. 224

Chapter 11: Making the News: July 30, 1944. 231

     Rest at Eniwetok & Manus: August 3-September 10, 1944............................... 243

Chapter 12: Morotai: September, 1944. 251

     Morotai Island: September 15-24, 1944........................................................... 253

     Back to Manus: September 25-October 12, 1944............................................ 260

     Politics............................................................................................................. 261

Chapter 13: Philippine Invasion & Great Philippine Sea Battle: October 1944. 265

     Leyte Gulf Invasion: October 16-24, 1944........................................................ 267

     D-Day............................................................................................................. 272

     Sinking a Lugger: October 23, 1944................................................................. 276

     To Morotai: October 24-28, 1944................................................................... 276

     Battle of Sibuyan Sea (October 24, 1944)........................................................ 278

     Surigao Strait (October 24-25, 1944)............................................................... 280

     Attack on Taffy-I and Battle of Samar: October 25, 1944................................. 281

     Back to Leyte (October 28-30, 1944) and Manus (October 30, 1944)............. 288

     Pearl Harbor and Home................................................................................... 291

Chapter 14: Conclusion. 295

     Family Reunion................................................................................................. 295

     Chenango......................................................................................................... 301

     Flight Instructor: January-September, 1945....................................................... 308

     The Soviets, the Civilian Bombing and the War’s End........................................ 312

     Future Problems............................................................................................... 322

Glossary. 325

Bibliography. 329

Index. 337

 


List of Illsutrations

 

Figure  0-1:   Ed Terrar, Sr. coalmining in 1914....................................................... xvi

Figure  0-2:   United Mine Worers President, John L. Lewis.................................... xvii

Figure  0-3:   Wendell Willkie in Coffeyville, Kansas............................................... xxii

Figure  0-4:   Coffeyville Resistance to World War I............................................... xxv

Figure  0-5:   Ed Terrar, Sr. and the Coffeyville American Legion.......................... xxvii

Figure  0-6:   Ed Jr.’s stamp collection and American imperialism............................ xxx

Figure  0-7:   Alfred Mahan and self-interest......................................................... xxxiv

Figure  1-1:   Ed in the horse cavalry, 1939................................................................ 3

Figure  1-2:   Ed’s diploma from Coffeyville Junior College, 1942............................... 6

Figure  1-3:   Ed in first pair of Naval coveralls, 1942................................................. 9

Figure  1-4:   Ed’s ground school notes at Corpus Christi in 1942............................. 14

Figure  1-5:   Ed’s preparatory travels in the United States, 1942-1943.................... 20

Figure  2-1:   Hazel with siblings, 1920..................................................................... 22

Figure  2-2:   Annie Hogan’s 1924 letter giving up custody of her children................. 22

Figure  2-3:   Hazel with siblings on bail of cotton at Charlie’s, 1926......................... 24

Figure  2-4:   Hazel on high school graduation day, 1931.......................................... 34

Figure  2-5:   Map of Newport Hospital................................................................... 37

Figure  2-6:   Newport monument to caring for the aged and newborn...................... 38

Figure  2-7:   Hazel in nurses training, 1935.............................................................. 39

Figure  2-8:   Graduation photo of nurses from Newport.......................................... 39

Figure  2-9:   Hazel in uniform with friends at University of Michigan Hospital............ 42

Figure  2-10: Annie Hogan and Estelle Hunt on vacation, 1938................................. 43

Figure  2-11: Annie Hogan in corner grocery which she ran from 1930 to 1950........ 44

Figure  2-12: Hazel and friends at Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1941................................. 46

Figure  3-1:   Ed visiting Columbia Drug Store in Coffeyville, January 1943............... 47

Figure  3-2:   Bernie and Gerry Volm. Bernie was killed........................................... 49

Figure  3-3:   Creepy Flint. A great pilot who hated the Navy................................... 52

Figure  3-4:   Point Arena Lighthouse, site of Ed’s emergency landing, 1943............. 54

Figure  3-5:   Map of the desert (Imperial Valley) where Ed and Hazel met............... 58

Figure  3-6:   Ed with his 1931 Rolls Royce............................................................. 60

Figure  3-7:   Ed’s sister, Rosemary, visiting him in Los Angeles, spring 1943............ 61

Figure  3-8:   Los Angeles weekend with Bill McClelland, spring 1943..................... 61

Figure  3-9:   Ed’s buddies socializing at the Hotel del Coronado.............................. 64

Figure  3-10: Map of San Diego area where Squadron-35 trained............................ 66

Figure  3-11: Portrait of the Torpedo Squadron 35 aviators in October 1943........... 72

Figure  4-1:  Ensign Hazel Hogan in the spring of 1943 at San Diego........................ 75

Figure  4-2:  Hazel on the obstetrics ward, Naval Hospital, San Diego...................... 76

Figure  4-3:  Hazel on the beach at Coronado, California.......................................... 79

Figure  4-4:  Ed at Otay Mesa (Brown Field) in the summer of 1943........................ 81

Figure  4-5:  Terrars’ marriage ceremony at Sacred Heart in Coronado.................... 87

Figure  4-6:  Outside the church after the ceremony, September 3, 1943.................. 87

Figure  4-7:  Part of Annie Hogan’s announcement of daughter’s marriage................ 88

Figure  4-8:  Hazel in her white Navy uniform shortly before retirement..................... 89

Figure  4-9:   Ed and Hazel’s first home in Chula Vista, 1943................................... 90

Figure  4-10: Hazel playing golf, September 1943.................................................... 92

Figure  5-1:   Chenango as an oiler......................................................................... 94

Figure  5-2:   Chenango as a flattop........................................................................ 95

Figure  5-3:   Air and ground team for a TBF......................................................... 100

Figure  5-4:   Section from Pacific map used in Ed and Hazel’s secret code............ 102

Figure  5-5:   Ed Terrar on the Chenango.............................................................. 109

Figure  5-6:   Hazing on October 27, 1943, when crossing the equator................... 110

Figure  5-7:   Certificate of initiation as a shellback................................................. 110

Figure  6-1:   Map of Pacific operations................................................................. 123

Figure  6-2:   Map of Tarawa Atoll........................................................................ 129

Figure  6-3:   Tarawa’s bloody beach on November 20, 1943............................... 130

Figure  6-5:   Womenhood according to the commercial press................................ 140

Figure  6-6:   Hazel dressed up, Christmas 1943.................................................... 140

Figure  6-7:   Chenango AG-35 torpedo, fighter & diver bomber aviators............. 142

Figure  7-1:   Pottery pattern Hazel bought, 1944................................................... 144

Figure  7-2:   Stationary with Hazel’s name............................................................ 149

Figure  7-3:   Hazel pregnant, spring 1944.............................................................. 150

Figure  7-4:   Hazel on the phone........................................................................... 150

Figure  7-5:   Mr. Ludwick, Hazel’s landlord at La Mesa, 1944............................. 155

Figure  7-6:   New baby pictures pasted in baby book, July 1944........................... 157

Figure  7-7:   Hazel and baby................................................................................. 159

Figure  7-8:   Congratulations card from Estelle Hunt, godmother, 1944.................. 160

Figure  7-9:   John Donlon introduced Ed and Hazel, baby’s godfather................... 161

Figure  7-10: Hazel and Peggy Dalzell, giving baths to their babies.......................... 162

Figure  7-11: Baby toilet........................................................................................ 164

Figure  7-12: Dr. Kellogg and his backyard garden in Chula Vista.......................... 168

Figure  8-1:   TBF air support in the Marshall Islands, February 1944..................... 175

Figure  8-2:   Ed’s souvenir Japanese money with signatures fellow aviators............ 179

Figure  8-3:   Ed’s souvenir Japanese money taken at Kwajalein............................. 184

Figure  9-1:   Ed and friends at Waikiki, Hawaii, March 1944................................ 188

Figure  9-2:   Map of Outrigger Canoe Club.......................................................... 197

Figure  9-3:   Ed sitting on a volcano...................................................................... 200

Figure  9-4:   First in sequence of Ed’s ill-fated landing........................................... 209

Figure  9-5:   Second in sequence of Ed’s ill-fated landing...................................... 209

Figure  9-6:   Third in sequence of Ed’s ill-fated landing.......................................... 209

Figure  10-1:   Operations map, Marshalls & Marianas, February-Aug. 1944......... 213

Figure  10-2:   Aircraft Action Report for attack on Pagan Island............................ 219

Figure  10-3:   Eniwetok officers club..................................................................... 222

Figure  10-4:   Ed relaxing on island near Turk....................................................... 222

Figure  11-1:   Map of Orote Peninsula, Guam (Marianas)..................................... 232

Figure  11-2:   The newsmaking landing on Guam, July 30, 1944............................ 234

Figure  11-3:   Crew that made the first Guam landing............................................ 235

Figure  11-4:   Coffeyville Journal’s coverage of Guam landing............................ 240

Figure  11-5:   Ed’s watercolor of Rex Hanson on the toilet, August 19, 1944........ 247

Figure  12-1:   Souvenir "imperialist" missionary money........................................... 252

Figure  12-2:   Map of Morotai & Halmahera in Moluccas, September 1944.......... 254

Figure  12-3:   Dr. Harold Thornburg, killed during the Halmahera attack................ 257

Figure  12-4:   Watercolors painted by Ed of native culture at Manus...................... 262

Figure  12-5:   More watercolors painted by Ed of native culture............................ 263

Figure  12-6:   Wood carving by Ed depicting a native............................................ 264

Figure  13-1:   Map of Leyte in the Philippines....................................................... 267

Figure  13-2:   Orville Hardastle, Chenango’s chief sailor...................................... 268

Figure  13-3:   Sam Forrer..................................................................................... 270

Figure  13-4:   Celebration of 5,000th landing......................................................... 275

Figure  13-5:   Ed’s flight log book......................................................................... 289

Figure  13-6:   Chenango Torpedo Squadron-35 (enlisted)................................... 290

Figure  13-7:   The Chenango at Barbers Point, Hawaii (November 1944)............ 292

Figure  14-1:   Ed’s spoils of war: a bath robe........................................................ 294

Figure  14-2:   Diagram of Terrar’s family home in Coffeyville................................. 297

Figure  14-3:   Guest book for open house at the Terrar’s...................................... 299

Figure  14-4:   Visitors at the Terrar’s in Coffeyville................................................ 300

Figure  14-5:   Ed, Hazel and Toby at home in Coffeyville...................................... 301

Figure  14-6:   Troops demonstrating to come home............................................... 308

Figure  14-7:   Hazel and Toby at Lake Michigan, Evanston, Illinois........................ 312

Figure  14-8:   The Soviets in Manchuria................................................................ 315

Figure  14-9:   Squadron mates at a reunion........................................................... 321

Figure  14-10: Plaque presented to Ed and thank-you note to the Marines.............. 323

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Acknowledgements

 

 

During the five years off-and-on of its writing, I had the good fortune to live with my parents, the main subjects of this study. Whenever there were questions, I consulted them and their letters, pictures and souvenirs. I also owe a debt to the scholarship of the late Brooke Hindle and his wife Helen, with whom I once enjoyed a meal and learned about the pleasures and difficulties of writing Naval history. Their work was a constant guide, as my footnotes reflect. The writings and diaries of squadron mates and friends Norman Berg, Bill Marshall, Bruce Weart, Charley Dickey, Robert Exum, Estelle Hunt, Bill Gentry, Jack Ross, Anthony Hernandez, Don Starks and Edward Ries benefited this study. Not least in helping to educate me were my parents’ annual squadron and carrier reunions, along with the U.S.S. Chenango Newsletter, which shipmate Larry Lippert and his wife Dorothy facilitate. These sources allowed me to share in the memories, writings and insights of comrades such as the late Charlie Carpenter and his wife Dottie.

I am gratefully to the CW Press editors, Betty Clark, Virginia Lewis and Patrick Knight, for their comments, editorial suggestions and encouragement. Finally, the staff at the Library of Congress, the Mullen Library at Catholic University, the Montgomery County Maryland Public Library and the Martin Luther King Public Library in Washington, D.C. deserve my thanks.



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Design of prior page:

These items were carried by Ed Terrar in his pocket throughout the war. Most soldiers had such keepsakes that brought comfort and symbolized what the war was about. Ed’s flag had been carried by his father in the First World War. They both felt it brought luck. The rosary was given to Ed by the Coffeyville Knights of Columbus. Each Catholic recruit was given one. The dollar bill was part of Ed’s wages and special in several ways. It had “Hawaii” printed on it and was longer than the normal bill. The government made these for use in Hawaii because it was feared the enemy would pass counterfeit bills there. The counterfeits could be spotted because they would look like normal stateside bills. Ed’s bill was also special because on it were the signatures of his friends, given as part of an initiation on February 9, 1943 into the “short snorters.” That same month Archbishop Francis Spellman in Action this Day: Letters from the Fighting Fronts (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1944), p. 70, explained about the “short snorters”:

On Wednesday, I had the honor of having luncheon with the Prime Minister, Mr. Winston Churchill. . . His first question to me was, “May I without irreverence ask if you are a ‘short snorter’?” As I explained to you in an earlier letter, a “short snorter” is one who has crossed the ocean in an airplane. The certificate of membership in this society consists of signatures on a dollar bill which must be always in a short snorter’s possession. If the person challenged is unable to produce the certificate of his short snortship, he is penalized by being obliged to treat everyone to a short “snort,” that is, a small drink. The price of the treat has now been stabilized at a dollar.

After the war Ed carried his “short snorter” bill and rosary with him for 60 years. The flag was kept in a dresser drawer.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preface

            This is an account of how my parents, Ed and Hazel (Hogan) Terrar, joined the Navy in 1942, met each other in July 1943, married shortly thereafter, and started their family. It is also about World War II, as that was when they started out together. It is more social history than military history because it looks at the war through their eyes. Ed remarked on August 23, 1943, soon after meeting Hazel, "I'm convinced that if an individual understands himself, he understands the world."[1] Similarly, an understanding of those like the Terrars during the war helps in understanding the war.

            This is also about the help which can be gained from studying their lives. Both of them viewed history as they did the bible, a help to life. Starting as children, they were attracted to literature which, as Hazel put it in one of her high school essays, "gave a moral lesson and revealed hidden sin."[2] Like many others, they kept their wartime letters, pictures and official documents because of a sense of history, that is, a belief that there was a lesson in them. Much has been written, often with official assistance, by and about those who commanded the military. But the rank and file have their own story and lessons.

            The nineteenth-century Russian novelist, Leo Tolstoy, made an epoch out of Napoleon’s invasion of his country. In War and Peace he concluded that history, like most military battles that he had studied, was chaotic and uncontrollable. The epoch for the Terrars was World War II. Unlike Tolstoy, their conclusions were more optimistic about the nature of history and their control over it. Tolstoians may gaze at their destiny with the same sort of dumb amazement as an animal in a trap, but not working people like the Terrars. I have been hearing bits and pieces of their story since my earliest recollections. Writing it down has allowed me to gain perspective on how it fits together and how it relates to the epoch which my own generation faced in Vietnam.

            Self-Interest. One point made by this story is that working people promoted their own self-interests by the war. I knew professional soldiers that viewed combat as a path to promotion. Similarly, oil, steel, banking and other corporations profited in the form of military contracts. But that the non-professional, National Guard soldiers who constituted the rank and file gained something was unexpected. The benefits were not enough to have incited the war and would have been obtained quicker without it. But the rank and file did not come up empty-handed. Personal profit from war is recorded from the earliest periods. The Peloponnesian War veteran, Thucydides (471-400 B.C.), in an account of that struggle traced its origins to “honor, fear and interest.”[3] For hundreds of years both the Spanish conquistadors and British imperialists fought for “glory, God and gold.”[4] American Revolutionaries in the Federalist Papers, which promoted the adoption of the U.S. Constitution, maintained self-interest was a foundation for the new republic.[5]

            Nineteenth-century academics such as James Mill developed a formal theory of philosophy, utilitarianism-pragmatism, in which self-interest was basic.[6] The Terrars were optimist pragmatists. They made the best of the war and hoped for the day when it would be over.[7] This philosophy was expressed in a letter Ed wrote on April 5, 1944, "I don't know how things will work out but they always seem to work out somehow and I think they'll work out for the best."[8] This philosophy was common even under the worst circumstances. Historian William McBride, in discussing the letters of another Pacific soldier, remarked:

His letters are those of a man who is trying to make the best of his status as a prisoner in an alien environment, a man whose future is captive to events beyond his control.[9]

            Looking out for themselves in the case of the Terrars actually meant doing well, not unlike the 36-year-old Navy lieutenant and budding novelist, James Michener, who volunteered to do two consecutive two-year tours during the war as an "inspector" in what he called "paradise," the South Sea Islands.[10] Illustrative of the Terrars good fortune were military wages, which were double and triple what they had made before the war.[11] There had been an economic depression. They believed hard times would return after the war and perhaps a communist revolution. They talked of buying a small farm with their military bounty, so that they could live off the land.[12]

            In addition to wages, the Terrars did well in their social life,  travel and housing. The war gave them the opportunity to meet and start a marriage that was still going strong three wars later. Their first home together in 1943 was an ivy-covered cottage in Chula Vista, California. It was surrounded by eucalyptus trees, a sweet-smelling flower garden, and rock lined fishponds. Ed's squadron-mates became his life-long friends. A number of their naval acquaintances were what Ed's mother called "refined people." They came from well-connected and well-heeled families. They had gone to the "right" schools and had jobs with the big corporations on Wall Street. Ed cultivated them. For a time in 1943 before going to sea he co-owned with squadron-mate Buddy Beal a 1931 Rolls Royce.

            Hazel, who had been employed as a nurse for a decade prior to and during the war, was able to quit work. Despite the misgivings of her new spouse, she preferred being a "housewife" and going shopping with her friends.[13] She soon had her first baby, which was a joy. Ed was able to spend several months in the spring of 1944 in Hawaii. He surfed, played volleyball in the sand at the exclusive Outrigger Canoe Club and ate good meals at beautiful homes high in the mountains overlooking Honolulu. He made realistic watercolor paintings and woodcarvings. Except for not having Hazel, it was perfect.[14]

            Looking out for one's self-interest put another way, meant the war was only part of the picture. The notion that the war was only hardship resulted from the misleading notions promoted by special interest groups. For such interests, the idea of "making the best of things," at least for working people, was blasphemous. These special interests required the conscription of large public resources to conduct international commerce; but they begrudged sharing the gains with the public. Theodore Roosevelt typified special interest patriotism. He came from a merchant family that for several generations used public resources for personal gain. In the name of patriotism he encouraged the invasion of the Philippines, Cuba, Santo Domingo, Columbia, Mexico and the area needed for the Panama Canal. But when trade unionists forced concessions from the empire builders, he condemned their patriotism as "the doctrine of envy, the doctrine of greed, the worst, basest passion of mankind."[15]

            Special interest groups maintained trade was the "lifeblood of nations" and equated it with American honor and prosperity.[16] Corporate narcissism became patriotism. If they had had their way, those who they conscripted to do their fighting would have been paid with “honor” or “freedom,” not with material benefits. Ed's Navy textbooks during basic training, which he still had in his possession years later, condemned such patriotism:

A demagogic appeal to "Old Glory" often smacks of a thin veneer of patriotism subtly concealing motives of self-aggrandizement to organizations and the self-interests of the individual. Most enlightened men believe that much strife, graft, and needless bloodshed have been perpetrated in the name of patriotism and religion.[17]

            The Terrars, like most young working people, found that looking out for themselves was part of their heritage. For example, Ed's dad, Ed Sr., had gone to work at age eleven in the Rhondda Valley coalmines of South Wales. When he migrated to the United States at age twenty-one in 1912, he was already a skilled miner with ten years experience. Ed Sr. had coalmining uncles, aunts and cousins scattered throughout Pennsylvania, Maryland, Iowa and Arkansas. He migrated to America during a yearlong strike when his uncle John Lee in Mystic, Iowa sent him a ticket. By taking up mining in Iowa, he made one of his many choices to make the best of things.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            At the national level, America's fifty million workers often made the best of things during the war. Illustrative was the United Mine Workers (UMW). Its president, John L. Lewis, had the respect of the Terrars, not only because he was a fellow Welsh coalminer but because he, like Ed Sr., did not drink alcohol, was faithful to his wife and children and spoke as an equal to the mine owners and politicians, whether they wanted it or not. Miners held the trickle-up theory of value. They produced value by their labor deep underground. They had to fight the parasites on top to retain that value. They used collective bargaining in reaching agreements.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The war made collective bargaining even more necessary than usual. Typically, Lewis explained to a United States Senate committee headed by Harry Truman in 1943 that it was unfair to restrain labor from collectively adjusting wages to the rising cost of living without also restricting the capitalists.[18] He summarized, "Congress can't condone a policy in this country that fattens industry and starves labor, and then call upon labor patriotically to starve."[19] That workers did make the best of things and prospered, resulted in unending complaints from the big corporations.[20]

            My misunderstanding about the nature of the war and self-interest resulted not only because of failure to appreciate the economic boom. It came also from equating the war with the hand-to-hand fighting at battles such as Tarawa. Hand-to-hand fighting was the exception. Most of the soldiers were not combat troops and did little or no fighting. Even among the Naval forces, some were more exposed than others. The front-line, full-length, fast carriers (CVs) saw the main action. Ed was on a Sangamon-class escort carrier or CVE. They were second-line ships, not normally involved in prime attacks. They were half the size and speed of the Essex-class carriers, had few big guns and were crewed largely by married draftees and teenagers, not by career military.[21] Ed's ship had been an oil tanker before the war. On it a landing deck had been constructed. It provided air protection and fuel for convoys. Even the fast front-line carriers spent much of the war on routine patrols, not in combat.[22] Ed saw combat and both welcomed and hated it. But combat was only part of the picture.

            Self-interest did not mean people did not love their country. But surrendering common sense and unquestioning obedience was not the way to love it. Major Evans Carlson, who was the operations officer for the 4th Marine Division during the Tarawa invasion, noted one of the problems caused by blind submission. It made for poor soldiers. During the Tarawa attack in October 1943, which was Ed Jr.'s first battle, many of the officers were killed in the first hour. The rank and file, as Carlson put it, "lacked initiative and resourcefulness. They were not trained to understand the need for sacrifice. Too many men waited for orders - and while they waited they died. What if they had been trained not to wait for orders?"[23] Carlson was angry. Lives could have been saved.[24]

            If self-interest did not mean people did not love their country, it also did not mean they were infected with the pathological profit-seeking that World War II veteran Milt Felsen encountered as a prisoner of war. In discussing the various personality types in his camp, Felsen described the profit seekers:

I was most baffled by the entrepreneurs. They would first circulate through the various barracks using their cigarette capital to trade, barter, and buy rings, blankets, cigarette lighters, foodstuffs in cans, clothing, wallets, anything they thought someone might possibly buy. They would then congregate along the main walkways, lay this junk out on a blanket, and sit all day flailing their arms against the bitter cold. They were apparently driven by some relentless inner compulsion to amass wealth for its own sake, since there was nothing they could buy with it in the camp and all those cartons of loose cigarettes would be stale and worthless if and when they ever got out.

It seemed to me like a metaphor for the frenetic auctioneering on the floor of the stock market or for the race of the very rich to acquire even more possessions they could never use before they died of a heart attack in the effort and before their pampered children, having nothing to strive for, committed suicide in colorful ways at early ages. The profit system did seem to have its faults.[25]

            The Older Generation. Despite looking out for themselves, the Terrars' experience had plenty that was negative. They and millions of others around the world put their lives and fortunes on the line, but the war came with no input from them. The only decision they were allowed to make was whether to enlist, be drafted or go to jail. The Terrars seldom echoed the semi-official "yellow bastard" race hatred.[26] Rather they voiced anger, as Ed put it at the time, "because hate is legislated. . . shot into our blood and brain like vaccine or vitamins."[27] They were disappointed in their parents and the older generation for letting the country fall into the "mess," as they called it. Ed remarked in one of his 350 letters to Hazel in 1944 that he would like to give "lasting peace" to his child with whom Hazel was pregnant, something which "the present generation did not give”:

If one generation of Americans could be spared, it would be the luckiest. But I suppose that we like our predecessors shall soon forget the monstrosities of war & will permit it to creep up as previous generations have done. Gee where do I get this philosophic thought - enough![28]

Historian Gerald Linderman found that vows about their sons being spared the experience of combat were "a rite of foxhole existence."[29]

            The Terrars were like most young Americans in not wanting to go to war. A national poll found that 90% of the youth opposed entering the war.[30] Japanese youth had similar sentiments.[31] Sixty-eight thousand were imprisoned for their war resistance.[32] Even the 2,530 Japanese “volunteer” pilots who died on suicide missions between October 1944 and August 15, 1945 did so unwillingly. Aviator Saito Mutsuo explained, “In November 1944 we were summoned to listen to a special speech from the commanding officer. He explained to us that the army was to set up its own tokkotai (suicide squadron). Pilots from our base, he said, were being invited to volunteer. Then he went into one of the hangars, and we were called in one by one to see him. He gave us two pieces of paper, and we were asked to write our name on one of these to indicate our feelings about joining the tokkotai. One piece of paper said ‘eager.’ The other one said ‘very eager.’ ‘In that case,’ I said to the commander, ‘I hope that you will not mind if I only write myself down as being ‘eager.’ As far as I know, everyone else in the squad did the same. No one really wanted to join the tottotai.”[33]

            The American youth may not have wanted to be conscripted but the $10,000 fine and five-year prison term imposed by the draft law made resistance difficult.[34] The Republican presidential candidate in the fall of 1940 was Wendell Willkie (1892-1944). Willkie had taught school in Ed's hometown, Coffeyville, Kansas in 1914. Later, he worked as a lawyer for the banking house of Morgan but also defended labor leaders such as William Schneiderman before the United States Supreme Court.[35] In his campaign he came to the defense of the youth, accusing Roosevelt of playing politics with their lives.[36] He kicked off his campaign with a parade and rally in Coffeyville on September 16, which Ed attended.[37] Willkie would have had Ed's vote on November 5, had he been old enough to vote. Twenty-four million voters agreed with Ed and the youth, but this was not enough to defeat FDR, who won with only 54 percent (27 million) of the nation behind him.[38]

           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Terrars stayed up-to-date on world events and had negative feelings about the politicians who encouraged the war's approach. Illustrative of their information sources was a subscription to Capper's Weekly that Ed read regularly. It had interesting stories, jokes and world news.[39] It reflected the anti-corporate agrarian tradition that was popular in rural Kansas. Beginning in October 1937 it denounced Roosevelt for his "Quarantine the aggressor (Japan)" policy and advocated that United States companies be required to immediately withdraw from China. There was an undeclared war going on between China and Japan. FDR was helping China and the Wall Street-owned corporations there. The withdrawal of American economic interests would, in the Weekly's view, deflate the "rendezvous with destiny" that FDR had in mind for America's youth, just as Thomas Jefferson's embargo of trade had done for an earlier generation.[40] Scripture too was invoked, "If your hand causes your to sin, cut it off. . . If your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out" (Mk 9:42-47). In the view of Capper's Weekly, the special interests such as Standard Oil and National City Bank, which dominated America's foreign policy, did not profit working people. Such interests should be "plucked out and thrown into hell, where the worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched" (Mk 9:48).

            In addition to Capper's Weekly, the Coffeyville Journal, was, in Ed's view, first rate in covering the drift towards war and incidents like Japan's invasion of China in the 1930s. Ed had worked as a paperboy for the Journal in one of his first jobs. The newspaper and the local radio station were owned by the respected (by the Terrars) Welshman, Hugh J. Powell.[41] William Peffer founded the Coffeyville Journal in 1875. He had been forced to migrate to Kansas in 1861 from Morgan County, Missouri because of his outspoken anti-slavery Republican beliefs.[42] In the 1890s as a U.S. Senator from Kansas, he opposed “paternalism for the rich,” such as the construction of battleships for the corporations that traded in Asia and Latin America. He noted at the time that fourteen American states had recently been under martial law because of labor discontent and feared that naval armaments were being created “to suppress rebellion and insurrection and revolution amongst the common people.”[43] Also of note in keeping the Terrars informed was the Emporia Gazette, edited by the Republican isolationist, William White (1868-1944). Ed regularly consulted it at the Coffeyville Public Library.[44]

            At school Ed also found views that were negative to FDR's foreign policy, such as at the periodic lectures sponsored by the administration, which the entire student body attended. One of these was by Stanley High, a writer for the Saturday Evening Post. In his lecture High maintained that American involvement in the First World War, which had started in April 1917, was a mistake. George Washington in his farewell address had admonished the country to stay clear of foreign entanglements. High reasoned that the "war to save democracy," as World War I was called, had really been about protecting corporate investors. First the corporations had sold goods to England and France, then extended credit, then made loans and finally troops had to be sent to insure the return of the money. He warned that FDR was in the process of repeating the World War I mistakes.

            Ed went home and repeated High's lecture to his father, who was a World War I Army veteran and commander of the Coffeyville American Legion post. Ed's father "took umbrage" at the isolationist sentiments to the extent they were critical of World War I. However, like his son during World War II, Ed Sr. at the time of the World War I draft had not wanted to enlist. The first page of the Wednesday June 20, 1917 edition of the Coffeyville Sun had carried an account of the marriage on the previous day of Maye Gergen and 26-year-old Edward Terrar, Sr.[45] On the same page was the announcement of a second draft called for November 1917. The first draft registration of June 5, 1917 had resulted in the conscription of 625,000 men, aged 21 to 30 years.[46] A third item on the bottom of the page was about the arrest in Coffeyville that day of 29-year-old Roy Hancock. His crime was that he had been giving an anti-war harangue on Walnut Street, had been carrying Industrial Workers of the World literature and had failed to have in his possession a little blue draft registration card. Ed Sr. was among the last to be drafted on April 27, 1918.[47]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Ed Sr. had not wanted to go to war and when he returned from it, he had been bitter. He was an immigrant and talked "politics." His mother-in-law, Rosetta Gergen, told him to shut up, "You are an Englishmen, not an American. If you do not like things the way they are, keep it to yourself."[48] Ed was an original member of the American Legion. The Legionaries were angry because they felt much as the isolationists did in the 1930s. Historian Paul Koistinen summarized:

The Legion rank and file seethed with resentment about alleged wartime profiteering and the unequal burden shouldered by the fighting forces. In order to remove the promise of riches as an inducement to war and to distribute the burdens of warfare more equitably, the returning veterans demanded a total draft of manpower and capital in any future emergency.[49]

            Ed Sr.'s bad feelings reflected not only the unequal burdens carried during the war. Soon after the war there was industrial conflict as in November 1919 when 800,000 mine and steel workers, including many returned veterans, went out on strike. Their purpose was to force wages to catch up with the cost of living that had gone up during the war. The government treated harshly both the strikers and their leaders, such as Mother Mary Jones (1830-1930). Ed Sr. and those in mining communities from Virginia to Colorado respected Mother Jones for the leadership she gave them.[50]

            Despite mixed feelings about the nature of World War I, Ed Sr. and the American Legion took a negative view of empire building. At their national conventions in 1935, 1937 and 1939, the Legion endorsed a policy of isolation, strict neutrality and the removal of profit making from war.[51] They criticized Franklin Roosevelt for failing to apply the neutrality laws to the Sino-Japanese war and for playing the role of so-called "peacemaker."[52]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            One of the popular anti-imperialist speakers at Legion gatherings in the 1930s was the retired Marine Corps general, Smedley Butler. He criticized American's foreign policy in harsh terms for its subservience to special interests:

War is just a racket. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of people. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few at the expenses of the masses. I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing more. If a nation comes over here to fight, then we'll fight. The trouble with America is that when the dollar only earns six percent over here, then it gets restless and goes overseas to get 100 percent. Then the flag follows the dollar and the soldiers follow the flag.[53]

            The Legion's rank and file respected Butler, because he knew first-hand the history of how special interests used foreign policy. He voiced what many felt after their experience in World War I, "I wouldn't go to war again as I have done to protect some lousy investment of the bankers. There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights. War for any other reason is simply a racket. There isn't a trick in the racketeering bag that the military gang is blind to. It has its 'finger men' to point out enemies, its 'muscle men' to destroy enemies, its 'brain men' to plan war preparations, and a 'Big Boss' Super-Nationalistic-Capitalism."[54] Despite Butler’s comments, the “military gang” was opposed to pushing Japan into a war in the fall of 1941. They had their attention on Europe and were unprepared for a confrontation in the Pacific.[55]

            Like the veterans movement, the labor movement influenced young people, such as Ed Jr., to view the war's approach negatively. Trade unionists were not against corporations making profit. But just as they did not approve of unfairness to American workers, so many, including John L. Lewis, viewed the golden rule as teaching that it was not right during the first part of the 20th century for the U.S. military, diplomacy and foreign aid to be used to battle overseas trade unionism, agrarian reform, indigenous governments and for strikebreaking and usury in China, Japan, the Philippines, Guam and Hawaii.[56] Trade unionists quoted Deuteronomy 25:4, "Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn."[57] Both U.S. and foreign workers were "the cattle that treadeth out the economic corn."[58] Both the American Federation of Labor and the Congress on Industrial Organizations opposed foreign entanglements and wars. As the AFL at its October 1939 convention stated, “The Federation will do everything in its power to have our government maintain its neutrality in spirit and in act.”[59]

            Labor’s views were voiced in the government by officials such as Harry Dexter White in the Treasury Department. He maintained there were no inherent conflicts in Asia. If Japan could be assured of raw materials, it preferred to live in peace with the United States. He was angry at FDR and the special interests led by the United States Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers and the National Foreign Trade Council for dragging America into a war to gain what he believed were minor trade objectives and small national advantages. Typically, in June 1941 he attacked America’s diplomacy for its “Nineteenth century pattern of petty bargaining with its dependence upon subtle half promises, irritating pin pricks, excursions into double dealing, and copious pronouncements of good will altering with vague threats – and all of it veiled in an atmosphere of high secrecy designed or at least serving chiefly to hide the essential barrenness of achievement. . . . Where modern diplomacy calls for swift and bold action, we engage in long drawn out cautious negotiation; where we should talk in term of billions of dollars, we think in terms of millions; where we should measure success by the generosity of the government that can best afford it, we measure it by the sharpness of the bargain driven; where we should be dealing with all-embracing economic, political and social problems, we discuss minor trade objectives, or small national advantages; instead of squarely facing realities, we persist in enjoying costly prejudices; where we should speak openly and clearly, we engage in protocol, in secret schemes and subtleties.”[60]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            From labor’s perspective it made little difference whether the Dutch imperialists monopolized the East Indies oil fields or the Japanese. It was Borneo’s 150 oil wells and their 17,000 tons of production that was the target of Japanese imperialism, not Pearl Harbor. Their conquest from the Netherlands gave Japan a source of petroleum after this had been cut off by FDR’s embargo. For its part the labor movement in Borneo welcomed the Dutch defeat.[61]

            For many in Ed's generation, the Pearl Harbor attack and the war were not surprising. For a year prior to the attack they were being mobilized to fight it.[62] Rank-and-filer John Boeman, who, like Ed, also served in the Pacific, commented on his lack of surprise and on Roosevelt's determination to wage war:

No sudden surge of patriotism, born of surprise at Japanese treachery, could I honestly claim. Speculation on United States entry into the war had tended from the "if" to the "when" for at least two years. Since the German invasion of Poland young men had been leaving our community in increasing numbers to enter the Army or Navy; men and women had left the farms and small towns in our area to work, at fabulous wages for those times, in defense factories and munitions plants. I knew of no secret Red Plan, or Orange Plan, or Rainbow Five Plan, but I knew fairly well what was printed in our daily newspaper, the Chicago Tribune. On my eighteenth birthday, only days before the attack on Pearl Harbor, a Tribune article described what it called the President's blueprint for total war involving ten million American service people on at least two oceans and three continents. This latest of many Tribune articles purporting to expose President Roosevelt's determination to wage war said the blueprint called for a massive invasion of Europe by United States troops in July 1943. To me the news from Pearl Harbor that Sunday simply validated many past assumptions.[63]

            Religion. The Terrar’s disappointment with the older generation and concern for self-interest was not lessened because of religious beliefs. Ed was a Catholic and Hazel a Methodist.[64] She became a Catholic after she married. For some people religion meant little more than "consolation." For others, the Terrars included, it also had political consequences, as embodied in doctrines like the mystical body of Christ, and the commandments against killing and theft. In their own lives the golden rule and self-interest were not in conflict. However, they had doubts that the same could be said about FDR's foreign policy.

            Typically, no matter how much the troops were told it was permitted, many felt killing was wrong.[65] When one of Ed's shipmates shot some Japanese soldiers who were running along a beach, the shipmate cried tears, "They did nothing against me."[66] Combatants regularly became sick to their stomach when killing and afterward had remorse, shame, guilt, flash-backs and despair. Some even committed suicide. More common were stupor, alcoholism and "anxiety neurosis."[67] The latter meant being unable to sleep or having bad dreams when one did sleep. Ed Jr. spent several months on a psychiatric ward because he was not able to sleep and eat. His weight went below 100 pounds. Conscience, fear and religion worked independently of the media and empire builders. Combat led some to have a different feeling about war and the imperialist forces which incite it that remained with them long after their service experience.[68]

            Much of the media called World War II a "good war" and Franklin Roosevelt a moral leader.[69] Not the Terrars. They called the war a "monstrosity."[70] Their religion did not teach reverence for politicians, but rather doubt that under such rule, there could be justice, mercy and peace.[71] The patron saint of Naval careerists, Alfred Mahan, voiced the imperialist religion about war being a necessary evil because humanity was imperfect and quoted scriptural passages such as Romans 13 about government leaders being sent by God’s providence.[72] In similar fashion religious nationalism in Japan centered on worship of the sun goddess. Her advocates, starting with Prime Minister Tojo Hideki, in imitating the British empire, maintained that Japan and its ruling class were divine and could not lose a war. They played on the ideals of the youth who were encouraged to sacrifice their lives.[73]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Religious nationalism won few believers among working people like the Terrars.[74] They did not equate the kingdom of God with America (or Japan) or its rulers with God’s anointed. Their religion was reflected both in trade unionists like John L. Lewis and in agrarian-influenced Republicanism, whose national platforms attacked corporations for promoting war.[75] Lewis condemned politicians, starting with FDR, who had never worn a uniform, but wanted to send off the youth to do their fighting.[76] These leaders, as Lewis put it on October 25, 1940, were "living in the purple" like the British landlords.[77] At the expense of the public, they habitually lived beyond their means with yachts, expensive vacations, servants and children in private schools.[78] Working class opposition to religious nationalism was also reflected by the American Catholic bishops through the National Catholic Welfare Conference (NCWC). The NCWC urged neutrality and opposed peacetime conscription, as in the Burke-Wadsworth Bill.[79]

It was common among working people to understand America's policy and the origins of the war from a religious perspective.[80] To expand his knowledge on the subject, Ed purchased all the books he could find about Asia and packed them in his canvas sea bag when he left port in San Diego. Some which he discussed with and recommended to Hazel were Carl Crow's Master Kung: The Story of Confucius (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1938), Arminenon Tempski's Born in Paradise (New York: Duel, Sloan & Pearce, 1940), Wilfred Burchett's Pacific Treasure Island: New Caledonia, Voyage Through its Land and Wealth, the Story of its People and Past (Melbourne: F. W. Cheshire, 1941) and On the Road to Peking.[81] While at sea, Ed and his shipmates subscribed to a number of magazines and newspapers, listened regularly to radio broadcasts and attended intelligence briefings offered by the ship's intelligence department on Asian policy and their role in it. Some studies have maintained that the troops were influenced not by religion or ideology but by solidarity with their comrades, duty, self-sacrifice, honor, not wanting to be shamed as cowards, or "manhood and womanhood."[82] But these influences were compatible with religion and self-interest. They were part of it.

            The rank and file who saw the war in a religious perspective found America's Asian policy as bringing no benefit. They had nothing invested in Asia or Hawaii. No matter who ruled, they received no spoils of war. If anything, as both the agrarians and labor complained in the 1930s, Americans were paying inflated rates for sugar, pineapple, coconut, petroleum and other raw materials because corporate monopolies such as the Big Five in Hawaii and their counterparts in the Philippines and China, dominated transportation, land, labor and crops. For these corporations Japan's mortal sin was not the attack on Pearl Harbor but the threat to trade. This threat meant nothing to working people.[83] As Ed's fellow aviator, Jack Swayze, commented, "If we tried to list the problems and disagreements solved by the war, we would find it difficult. We should then consider this question: was the war necessary?"[84]

            Many found that their war experience taught them nothing.[85] It was horrible and they did not want to think about it. They put it behind them and went on with their lives. The Terrars went on with their lives, but they had a sense of history. They found that understanding the war helped in living life. They reflected on and shared their experience. This account is part of their reflection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



 



 

 

 

 

Chapter 1:
Ed's Preparation

            For different people World War II started at different times. For the Germans and Poles, it started on September 1, 1939, when Germany attacked Poland. The Chinese were fighting as early as September 1931, when their province of Manchuria was taken by Japan. The U.S. did not become involved, at least in armed struggle, until late in 1941, when Pearl Harbor was bombed by the Japanese. Ed was not enthusiastic about the war but, given few alternatives, he wanted to make the best of the situation. For him that seemed to be Navy aviation. His part in the hot war started in October 1943 when he went to sea aboard the escort carrier U.S.S. Chenango. Hazel never was involved in the hot war but did serve stateside in the Navy Nurse Corps.

            Coffeyville. For Ed, the preparation for the hot war involved a number of steps that he took while still at home. Ed's family consisted of his parents and two younger sisters. They lived in a two bedroom, one story house, which expanded to three bedrooms when Ed's dad obtained his $500 Veterans Bonus in the 1930s. Coffeyville was an industrial town of 12,000 people with a number of oil refineries, smelters and flower mills, glass and brick factories, several railroads, including the Missouri-Pacific and the Katy, an airport, grocery, drug and other retail stores and a National Guard unit. It combined the best of rural and urban living. Ed raised rabbits, his neighbors on both sides had chickens and the family across the alley had a cow in order to have fresh milk. At the same time, the town had a high school, from which Ed graduated on May 27, 1938, with a grade ranking of 66 out of 252 students.[86] The town also had a junior college, a library, churches, parks, swimming pool, riding stables, tennis courts and golf course.[87]

            In preparation for the service, Ed took advantage of Coffeyville's resources. One of his early steps began on June 6, 1939 when, at age 19, he enlisted as a private, first class in Company B, 114th troop of the Horse Cavalry, Kansas National Guard. Later in the war that troop was transformed into Battery B, 127th Field Artillery of the National Guard.[88] Ed enlisted about a year after he had graduated from Field Kindley Memorial High School. The unit which he joined was a cavalry outfit. He stayed in the unit about a year until he received a discharge on November 14, 1940, to go off to Chillicothe Business College in Missouri for four months. He found riding horses once a week to be fun and he was paid for it. In addition the horses were available to take a date out riding. Ed could not remember actually having taken anyone out, but it was a good thing in theory. The lore which he learned included the names of the various breeds, such as the quarter horses (13-14 hands), which were small, good natured, favored by cowhands and good for racing; Morgans (14-15 hands), which were the horses used by the cavalry and were good for jumping; and thoroughbreds (15-16 hands), which could be taught the five gaits (walk, trot, gallop, rack and run).

            Looking back, Ed wrote about the pluses and minuses of his National Guard days:

            In the fall of 1938 I was going to Junior College in Coffeyville and working at the Columbia Drug Store and I joined the National Guard [actually June 6, 1939]. The unit in Coffeyville was the 114th Troop of the horse cavalry of the Kansas National Guard. The troop drilled every Monday night - and one could go to the stables and ride whenever he was so disposed. This was a big inducement to join - because one could not only ride but one could take a girl friend also. Additionally as a Private I received $1.25 for each drill attended.

            The troop was commanded by a fine officer - Captain Braum Bentley and there were two Lieutenants - one named Belt and one named Romig - also fine fellows. The top sergeant and only full time soldier was named Beeson. He was basically in charge of the horses - which were kept at Forest Park. The troop met at the Memorial Hall - unless we were going for a night ride in which case we went to the stables at the park. I had not been in long when I became the company clerk - mostly because I could type. I also carried the guidon - a small banner or pennant with the numerals "114" upon it - when we mounted. Although I finally became a fairly good horseman - I could take jumps quite good - I managed to get thrown off one night ride and spent the rest of the night walking through farmers' fields looking for the horse - which we found a bit after daybreak the following morning.

            One summer [1939] we went to Ft. Riley for two weeks training - Ft. Riley was in Kansas and was a Calvary station - the regular Army used it as a principal facility - then called a remount station. The next summer [1940] we went to Ft. Snelling in Michigan [Minnesota?] for two weeks - and this was a horrible experience - it rained almost the entire time we were there - and the mosquitoes were large, numerous and hungry. Perhaps the worst part was taking care of a horse. Every night, after having ridden the horse all day in the rain, when we stopped for the night the first thing that had to be done was to rub down the horse - having removed the saddle, etc. - then go with a canvas pail and get a bucketful of oats, which were then hung about his head. Then it was pitch a tent, and find food - actually the company cooks did the cooking - and my memory was that it was pretty good food - probably I was starved by the time we got to eating.[89]

           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            The second step in what became Ed's preparation for the war, after his National Guard activities, was flight training. Ed had gone on his first flight when he was about nine years old at the Old Parker Airport in Coffeyville. It was a short ride in the ten-passenger, two-pilot-plus-stewardess "ultra-modern airline" tri-motor Ford. The plane had three propellers. Ten years later, on October 18, 1939 the Civilian Pilot Training (CPT) program was instituted as a joint effort of the Coffeyville Junior College and the fixed-base operation at the Coffeyville Municipal Airport run by Jack Lightstone.[90] Lightstone sold gas and maintained the hangar.[91] Ed and eight others signed up for the program. He later recalled that at the time he took the course, he did not anticipate going into the service or fighting a war. He took the training because it cost nothing and flying a plane was fun.[92]

            Ed commented on the Civilian Pilot Training program:

I took this course, which included instruction of about eight hours, then solo flight and another period of instruction and solo practice till a total of about 35 hours was accumulated at which point one qualified for a private pilots license - issued by the Civil Aeronautics Administration. Instruction was in a Piper Cub. Ground school included some navigation, some instruction about airplane and engine construction and some meteorology.[93]

Ed gave more details of his initial Coffeyville flight training in another account:

In the first course the training was conducted in a Piper Cub - a small airplane in which there were two people sitting tandem. The plane would take off at about 35 miles-per-hour and cruise at about 50 mph. It was a very simple plane and we learned to solo in it. My recollection is that we had maybe 50-60 hours.[94]

          Ed finished up the initial flight training program in January 1940 and received a private pilot's license. Eighteen months later in October 1941, having received a discharge from the National Guard, Ed took an advanced flight course offered by the junior college. By then the draft was looming close. He recollected:

In the summer of 1941 there was instituted a follow on program of this known as the advanced Civilian Pilot Training Program in which there was about 50 more hours of training in a Waco airplane bi-wing, similar to the N3N used to train Navy students in basic training. I was flying a cross-country flight (required for completion) from Coffeyville to Pittsburgh, Kansas to Miami, Oklahoma and back to Coffeyville on the afternoon of Sunday December 7, 1941. On the leg from Pittsburgh to Miami, I heard on the radio that the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor.[95]

The radio to which Ed was listening on his December 7, 1941 flight was like a car radio. There was no two-way radio on the plane.[96]

            A third step in Ed's war-preparation was the enactment of the Selective Service Act on September 16, 1940.[97] A month later on October 16, 1940, some 16 million young men, including 20-year old Ed, appeared at precinct election boards for registration with the draft. Males between 21 and 36 were put on the draft rolls. The U.S. would not be at war for another year, but people were being drafted starting on October 29, 1940.[98] It was only a matter of time before everyone Ed's age would be in the military. His unit in the National Guard was scheduled to be called to active service on December 23, 1940.[99] Ed's desire not to be a horse soldier, led him to undertake studies in Missouri in November 1940. That allowed him to withdraw from his National Guard contract in a respectable way, as he later explained:

In the fall of 1940 the Congress had passed a draft law. So I had to register. I believe that I had gotten out of the National Guard [on November 14, 1940] when I went off to school [Chillicothe Business College] in the fall of 1940. Even though one had to enlist for some period of time - one could get out early - and Capt. Bentley had no trouble authorizing an early discharge to go to school. By the time it came for me to register for the draft in the early part of 1941 [actually October 16, 1940] I had horrors of having to go back to the Calvary - warlike conditions were such, that there was no doubt that the National Guard would be called to active duty - and it was in 1942 [actually December 23, 1940], I believe, but as a field artillery unit. But I had horrors of going to war in Europe astride a horse - and always having to care for it before I could care for myself. So the experience at Ft. Snelling combined with the Civilian Pilot Training caused me to decide that I wanted to become a military pilot if possible. And because of the relative attractiveness of a ship over the land based units I decided to try for the Navy.[100]

            A fourth factor in Ed's war preparation was obtaining his associate of arts degree. This was necessary to obtain an officer's commission. He had gone to Coffeyville Junior College for two years, starting in the fall of 1938. When he finished in May 1940, he was three units short of the required 60 credits for the AA degree. At the time he did not try to obtain the other credits because he did not think he would need the degree. Eighteen months later, however, in December 1941, he saw the need for the degree. Ed went to the dean, Karl Wilson, and told him the problem. The dean told him to speak to Mr. Johnson, the band teacher. Ed had been in the band and had never received academic credit for it. Johnson agreed to give him credit, which allowed him to obtain his AA degree. It was granted in May 1942.

 

 

 

 

 

 

            The final hurdle in Ed's war preparation involved the physical and character requirements for joining the pilot program. Physically, Ed was underweight, as he summarized:

I only had one major problem getting into the Navy - and that was my weight - the minimum weight was 120 pounds and I weighed about 112 pounds. So after eating fattening foods like Hershey bars, thick milk shakes, and a couple of trips to Kansas City - where the recruiting base and doctor for the Navy was located - I finally drank so much water that I was sick and vomited - I finally, according to the doctor weighed in at 120. And so in early February 1942 I reported to the Naval Air Station, Kansas City, Kansas for flight training.[101]

In Ed's view either he was finally 120 pounds or the doctor took pity on him and faked it. The days on which he went to Kansas City were long. He would leave from Coffeyville at 2:50 a.m. in the morning and arrive there at 7:10 a.m. It was a four and one-half hour trip. He would arrive back to Coffeyville at 1:30 a.m. the next morning, sleeping on the train each way. The cost was $5.00 round trip.

            The Navy had character as well as physical requirements. Three recommendation letters were required. One of his letters came from Hugh Powell, the Welsh-American publisher of the Coffeyville Journal. Working for Mr. Powell as a paperboy had been one of Ed’s earliest jobs. Another recommender was the Irish-born Fr. John O’Brien, the pastor at Coffeyville’s Holy Name parish from 1921 until 1947. According to Maye Terrar, he was not as “refined” or respected as their former priest, Fr. Peter Tierney. He had a tendency to browbeat money from the parishioners who often did not have enough to care for their families. Maye resented this.[102] Ed’s third character reference was from Carl Edwin Ziegler, Sr., a lawyer who lived in a big house located several blocks from the Terrars. Carl’s parents had become wealthy through oil and land dealings. Carl was in the American Legion with Ed Sr. Carl Ziegler Jr. and Ed were friends.

            Naval Flight Training. Ed Terrar Jr., age 21 years, joined the Navy reserve on January 12, 1942.[103] This was about a month after the attack on Pearl Harbor. He did not have to report for duty until February 1942. When he did report, it was at Fairfax Naval Air Station [NAS] near Kansas City, Kansas.

            Prior to leaving home, his mother, Maye, told him that he would not make it as a pilot. He ignored her. On a number of big issues in his life, Maye was similarly negative. For example, a year earlier he had wanted to attend Kansas University at Lawrence to become a medical doctor. For a short time he did attend. But he dropped out because he could not earn enough to pay his way. His mother would not help him. She had talked to Ed's high school German teacher, Miss Georgia Cubine, whose opinion she followed. Maye was working class but was often deferential to those who were "refined," meaning they had money or formal education. Miss Cubine had gone to Northwestern University and been the captain of the swimming team in 1892. She thought Ed did not have enough stick-to-itness.[104] Maye controlled the money, not Ed's dad. That was both a virtue and a vice. In Ed's view, no one could come near Maye in stretching a buck. This was a virtue in raising a family but when Ed needed money for college, her fiscal prudence was a vice. She did help with the college education of Ed's two younger sisters. But this was later and they had more money. The war had proved profitable for them.

            Maye had gone to a business college, where she learned to take short hand, type and do bookkeeping. After Ed had come back from Lawrence, she helped him attend Chillicothe Business College at Chillicothe, Missouri, starting in November 1940. He only attended for four months until he obtained a job back in Coffeyville, but it was enough for him to remove himself from the ranks of the horse cavalry and for him to learn a bit about double entry bookkeeping.[105] A third time Maye was negative was after the war. Ed went to law school at night while working a full-time job. Maye said he would not succeed. He ignored her, graduated and became a member of the District of Columbia Bar.

            The day before Ed reported at Fairfax for flight training, he took the train to Kansas City. Among the things he carried with him was an American flag that Ed Sr. gave him. It was the same one that his dad had carried in World War I and was a foot square when unfolded. Another item he carried was a black rosary, which was given him by the Knights of Columbus, of which his dad was a member. Ed carried both in his pocket throughout the war. At Kansas City the night before reporting for flight training, Ed stayed at the home of Fr. Herman J. Koch, who was a parish priest there. The priest was a friend of Ed's sister, Rosemary. He lived in a big house and took Ed out to dinner. The next morning the priest drove him to the air station. Ed had not told the recruiting officer that he wore glasses. That would have disqualified him to be an aviator. Fr. Koch told him to put the glasses in his pocket. Ed did not wear glasses again until he was 35 years old. He had obtained glasses in the first place because he was having headaches and did not really need them to see.

            At Fairfax, Ed, along with about 100 others, took eight hours of flight instruction. The base was known as an "E" base. The "E" stood for elimination. Ed remembered:

I had signed up for the V-6 program. At this base, known as an "E" base, one received eight hours of instruction and then either soloed or did not solo. If one did not solo, then it was to a boot camp as an apprentice seaman. I soloed.[106]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About half in Ed's class were cut. Ed maintained in later years that his prior flight training did not give him an edge. He just had a natural talent for flying. Among those in his February 1942 class who also survived was Charlie Carpenter of Topeka, Kansas, who had graduated from Washburn University and joined the Navy on December 8, 1941, the day after the Pearl Harbor bombing. Other survivors included Al Moret, a Marine from Springfield, Missouri and Alfred Lindgren (1920-1987), who grew up on a farm near Salina, Kansas, graduated from Kansas State University at Manhattan and married his hometown girl friend, Annie. Lindgren was later a builder in Kansas City.

            All except Moret ended up in the same squadron during their year at sea.[107] One of those who washed out was Jay Hannen. He had been an attorney for a small county in northern Kansas. When he was flying up, he was always afraid that he would not make it to 500 feet. When he was above 500 feet, he was afraid he would not be able to go down. When he was stationed in San Diego the following year, he and his wife looked up Ed, who was also there.[108] After the war Jay ended up practicing law in Denver.

            Upon soloing at Fairfax, seaman second class Terrar advanced to the rank of Naval cadet. He and the other survivors were ready for basic flight training. The Navy had schools at Corpus Christi, Texas and Pensacola, Florida. There were more recruits than training classes, so Ed had to wait until May of 1942. The collecting pool for the classes was at the NAS in New Orleans, Louisiana. At New Orleans Ed did no flying but he did go to ground school for flying theory. In charge of the cadet pool was Bobby Pike, who had graduated from the Naval Academy in 1934. Pike hated the Navy and told the cadets, "You won't get paid or trained here, but as long as you don't commit treason, you won't get in trouble. New Orleans is a great place, so enjoy yourself."[109]

            Corpus Christi Basic Training: May-November, 1942. From May 14, until November 14, 1942, the date he received his commission as an officer, Ed trained at the NAS, Corpus Christi, Texas. The school at Corpus was a new facility, having only been opened in 1941 when the demand for pilots started to boom. Upon entering the training, Ed signed an agreement to serve four years of active duty. At the same time, he signed an oath to "uphold the constitution and defend it from its enemies, foreign and domestic." There were about 100 people in Ed's Flight Class 5A-42-C(C). They included Paul "P.D." Thompson from Mississippi, Joseph P. "Joe" Sims from Philadelphia, Howard Tuttle (1920-1996) from Cleveland, Bernie Volm from St. Louis who had gone to Westminster College and was Jewish, Burke Martin from Vera, Arkansas, Charley Dickey, Woody Truax, Buddy Beal and Bob Straub, who later went to the University of Michigan Law School and was general counsel for a railroad. Thompson, Sims, Straub and Tuttle became Ed's squadron mates at sea.[110] Truax and Volm were both killed during the war. There were many other training groups at Corpus, as new classes started every two or three weeks.

            The pictures of Ed and his classmates at Corpus were printed in a yearbook put out by the facility.[111] Several years later in the summer of 1944 the same picture of Ed was published in some newspapers after he was publicized for his part in the capture of Guam. He commented at the time after seeing the newspaper clipping that he did not like the picture:

The picture was a gooney one, wasn't it? It was taken when I was a cadet with nothing much to think about but getting a commission and scared to death I wouldn't.[112]

            If Ed feared he would not obtain a commission, one of his buddies did not want one. Cadet Burke Martin told Ed at the beginning of their six-month course that he (Burke) intended to bust it. Burke took the final flight test three or four times and failed it each time. This allowed him to withdraw from the . With his free pilot's education, he then obtained a job with Pan American Airways, making twice as much as his Corpus Christi classmates. He played a game on the government not unlike the game which the government played on young people. The government used the inducement of aviation to attract youths. They recruited more than were needed. The excess were cut and used to fill less attractive Naval jobs.[113] In Martin's view, what was good for the goose (the government's self-interest) was good for the gander (the rank-and-file's self interest). In 1944 Ed had dinner with Burke several times in Hawaii and admired his success. Burke was then flying Pan American's San Francisco to Hawaii run. He received one week off per month and spent two weeks per month in the states.[114] Years later at the time Pan American went bankrupt, Martin was its senior pilot. He made the best of the war.

            In basic training the cadets learned to fly three types of planes. First, there was the N3N, which had fixed landing gear and was the basic Navy training plane. The second type was the SNV (Navy Vultee) and the third the SNJ, which had retractable landing gear. The cadets slept in dorms with four people to a room. A typical day consisted of rising at 5:30 a.m., shaving, showering and breakfasting. By 7:00 a.m. they would be in the ready room and by 7:00 or 8:00 they would begin flight operations. This would last until 5:00 p.m. when they had dinner.

            Naval pilots kept a log that listed each flight they took. Ed logged 228 hours at Corpus. The first recorded flight in his Aviator's Flight Log Book was June 8, 1942 when he flew a NSN3 for 1˝ hour.[115] He soloed four days later for 1.3 hours. Norm Berg, who served on the same ship as Ed, but a year earlier, mentioned in his account of training that the custom when he first soloed was for the senior cadet to cut off with scissors the bottom half of his tie. This was then pinned under the cadet's name on a plaque.[116] Ed did not remember this custom when he went through.

            While in the service Ed wrote home to his parents regular accounts of his progress. At Corpus he also made a 78-speed phonograph recording that was several minutes in length on June 12, 1942.[117] This was a month after the program had begun and four days after he had made his first flight. His mother kept the recording. In a voice that had more of a southern twang and higher pitched than later in life, he described the program:

Hello Folks,

Probably a little surprised to hear my voice? I am surprised too. A gentleman down here is making these records. So I thought I would make one for you all.

            Been flying a lot lately. I took my A and B check yesterday - combined check yesterday. Got enough. Felt pretty good about that. I flew three hours again today. Right now I am in the acrobatic stage and it is a lot more interesting.

            Ground school is a lot more interesting than it was, at least the last several weeks. Next week we start navigation and aerial photography and it will be a lot more interesting, a lot more practical at least. Kind of looking forward, especially navigation will be very interesting.

            I think we have about 365 flying days here a year. Very warm right now and sultry and radiant humidity in the air. Outside of it being pretty warm, it is really nice. Get up around 5,000 feet and it feels cool. A nice layer of clouds. Sun does not beat on you too much.

            You know I am losing an awful lot of hair down here. In fact I have very little left. Very fortunately we wear a helmet or else I would probably be sunburned on my head. You should see my nose. It is about the color of a real ripe tomato. Outside of that I am doing fine. We get plenty of sleep. Food wonderful.

            I think [there is] everything conducive to a healthy atmosphere. Certainly is a very enjoyable atmosphere. I am doing all right. I'll talk to you.[118]

            As mentioned in the phonograph recording, besides flying, the cadets also had ground school. This included the link trainer, which was a simulated aircraft cockpit. When the flight controls were moved, the trainer would also move. Among the things outlined in Ed's ground school class notes was an elaborate chart in his handwriting of the chain of command, from the president, Franklin D. Roosevelt to the secretary of the Navy, James Forrestal, on down the line.[119] In his notes is also a listing of the various aircraft carriers and many exercises in navigation using mathematics and geometry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            As a senior citizen Ed still had the books he had been required to purchase for ground school. These included Austin Knight's Modern Seamanship, Leland Lovette's Naval Customs, Traditions and Usage and The Bluejackets' Manual: United States Navy. He signed all three with "EFTerrar, Jr." on the inside cover. Aside from his signature, there are no other markings or signs of use.[120] Lovette's book still has the price tag on it, "Ship's Service Store, NVTIIA, $3.55," as does The Bluejackets' Manual, which sold for $.90.

            In Knight's Modern Seamanship one could learn the "rules of the road," how to tie knots, define nautical terms, predict the weather and handle a ship. Lovette's book traced naval history back to John Paul Jones and the American Revolution. It gave the verses to Anchor's Aweigh and other songs. It had illustrations of naval battles, instructions on precedence, naval weddings, toasts at official dinners, and information about the uniform and pay of naval officers. In the Bluejackets' Manual were lessons on such things as respect for authority, desertion (resulted in 18 months in prison), theft, inspection, naval clothing, arms and gunnery, signals and gas masks, types of anchors, steering, electricity, watches underway, ships (Saratoga and Lexington were 888 feet long), pay incentives ($2 per month extra for a navy cross), and "the immense help an honorable discharge is to you in seeking a position later in life."[121] Lovette in Naval Customs advised the cadets that military service was "quite as moral as any minister's, because morality consists in the conservation of the best interests of civilization, and you are not seeking your own good, but the ultimate good of your country."[122]

            On a majority of the days at Corpus after the first month, Ed flew for an hour or more, as indicated in Table 1-1.

Table 1-1
Ed Terrar's Flight Hours
 at Basic
Flight Training, Corpus Christie

                                    1942    dual      solo      flights    total      cumulative

                                    June     21        36        39        57       

                                    July      10        30        32        40        98

                                    Aug.                 11        8          11        109

                                    Sept.    20        5          19        25        135

                                    Oct.     1          70        57        77        212

                                    Nov.                15        13        16        228

            One day in June 1942 toward the end of the initial phase of training, Ed did an emergency parachute jump out of his Yellow Peril. He was at 700 feet. He had been told by his instructor to put the plane into an inverted spin. That is, the aircraft was put upside down and then placed in stall, which caused it to spin toward the ground. The instructor mistakenly thought Ed had been told how to free himself from such a situation. Ed bailed out because he thought they were going to crash. Bailing out of an open cockpit was easy. The G forces caused by the spin threw him out as soon as he undid the seatbelt. Because the student sat in the back of the plane, the instructor did not even know he had exited. Ed later learned that to stop a spin, one pushed the control stick forward. This forced down the elevator on the tail wing, which made the nose go down and resulted in increased air speed and an end to the stall. This was done while neutralizing the rudder by holding even the two foot pedals that controlled the rudder. Once some speed was obtained, the throttle could slowly be applied, the stick eased back and the plane leveled off. In general the Navy taught that the throttle controlled the altitude, position of the nose and speed of the aircraft.[123] As it turned out, the Yellow Peril was such a stable aircraft that one could simply let go of the stick and peddle, and it would come out of the spin on its own. Ed was embarrassed for having bailed out, when he learned the plane could right itself without the pilot doing anything. He did not find himself in trouble for bailing out, as no one had told him what to do about a stall.

            One of the skills Ed learned early in the program, besides freeing himself from a stall, was landing when the engine lost power. In actual operations in a single engine plane he never had this problem, but it was something that one had to be ready for. James Michener, who was not an aviator, claimed to have taught pilots that when they lost power on takeoff, they should plow in straight ahead, no matter what was there. If an attempt to turn back to the airfield or carrier was made, the torque would spin the plane to the port and the result would be worse than going straight.[124] Ed did not buy this. He was taught to continue forward only if there was still enough runway to land. If he was at 500 feet, he would do a 90-degree turn and put it down on a cross runway. If he was at 1,000 feet, he would have enough time to do a 360-degree turn and come back in.

            In July 1942 Ed flew the SNV and the OS2U-3 and practiced combat and engage-the-enemy flying. In August and September, 1942 the emphasis was on instrument flying and continued combat practice. In October and November, 1942 he flew the SNJ-4 and did gunnery, scouting and instrument practice. Other areas covered were navigation, technical night flying and the Morse code. The code proved difficult for Ed to learn. Corpus had a swimming pool. In it the cadets had to learn how to rescue someone that was drowning.

            The instrument flying that Ed practiced during the summer of 1942 allowed him to fly in overcast, fog, clouds and at night without having an horizon to guide him. The trick was to believe the instruments, which was not always easy. A common problem when flying without an horizon was vertigo or dizziness. It became so bad for some that they were dismissed from school, or, if they became aviators, then terminated from their careers. It was a problem for Ed, but he kept quiet about it, telling only his pals Howard Tuttle, P. D. Thompson and perhaps Smiley Morgan. He did not want to be dismissed.

            Norman Berg, in his account of flight school, gave a description of learning instrument flying and vertigo:

            "Watch the altimeter and air speed indicator - they tell me if I'm flying level and not gaining or losing altitude. Watch the gyrocompass and the turn and bank indicator to be sure the airplane is flying straight. Don't chase the rate of climb indicator or the magnetic compass. They bounce around too much to try and follow. Scan all the instruments and don't stare at just one.

            "Cadet Berg [said the instructor], give me a one needle width turn to the right to a heading of 045 degrees."

            I remembered what I had to do. My gyrocompass read 275 degrees. I checked it against my magnetic compass. "OK, concentrate," I told myself, "Start to turn." There was a small quarter-of-an-inch-wide vertical bar called a needle in the turn and bank instrument. I started my turn, and I saw the needle in the turn and bank instrument moved one needle width, about a quarter of an inch to the right.

            Now, stay in the turn until you get to the compass heading 275. Damn, my air speed is going up. I'm losing altitude! I have to get the nose up! Too high - now the air speed is dropping! What's my compass heading? Still losing air speed, better add some power. Shit! What the hell is happening? I'm getting in trouble. Better stop the turn. Center the needle. Get the wings level! Get the nose down! There! The air speed is OK. Altitude, OK.

            Damn, I'm still in a turn; I can feel it! I'm still turning. Vertigo! We were told about this. It has something to do with the inner ear. I check my instruments. I'm flying level, no turns, level. Almost lost it. Still feel like I'm in a turn. It's an awful feeling. My senses are all mixed up. How long does it last? Just watch those instruments. Norm. Hold on. Don't force the instructor to take over the controls. There, it's better. I've got it now.

            Then I heard my instructor. "Had a little vertigo, Cadet?"[125]

            In late September 1942 as graduation from flight school approached, Ed ordered $400 worth of tailor-made uniforms, including one green and one blue suit, several white suits and three pairs of shoes (brown, black and white).[126] "Aviation greens," which were a work uniform, consisted of dark-green trousers with a khaki shirt, a dark-green jacket and brown shoes. The Navy and the other services invested heavily in uniforms and medals. Alvin Kernan, a fellow TBF pilot, commented on this care for appearances, "The Navy liked people to dress well, so it provided a large clothing allowance."[127] Some people joined the military or a particular branch of service for little more reason than that they liked the uniform of the recruiting officer and there was a compulsory conscription law.[128] When Ed joined, the uniform meant little, but he was always serious about appearances.

            Opa Locka: November 1942-January 1943.  The next step in Ed's training after earning his wings and obtaining his commission as a naval ensign on November 14, took place at Opa Locka, Florida, which was near Miami. He traveled with Bob Straub from Corpus to Florida in a 1941 Ford owned by Howard Tuttle. Ed was paid $107 for the 1,500-mile trip. He reported for duty on November 19. There he did pre-operational and "type training." This meant he did training in the type of plane that he would be flying in the Navy. The ensigns were allowed to request the type of plane they wanted to fly. Ed later said that he had joined the Navy to fly off a carrier, so he chose torpedo bombers. If there was any glamour in flying fighters, he maintained he was not aware of it.[129] Some chose to fly multiple engine planes because they wanted to fly commercially after the war.

            Ed trained in SBCs (Curtis scout bomber) and TBDs (Douglas torpedo bomber) with a focus on bombing, torpedoes, navigation, tactics and night flight.[130] From November 24 until January 3, 1943 when he finished up in Florida, he flew almost daily, including gunnery training runs on Christmas day, 1942 and New Years day, 1943. The war was on, pilots were in demand and there was no time for vacations. Among his achievements was qualifying for landing aboard an aircraft carrier.

            At Opa Locka Ensign Terrar lived in the Bachelors Officers Quarter (BOQ) and wore khakis. He made $200 per-month, which was more than twice the monthly $70 he had made as a clerk at his Oil Country Specialties Co. (OCS) job prior to enlisting. Naval pay was composed of a base rate to which was added allowances. The flight pay allowance amounted to one-half the base and was given if you were in the air four hours per-month. To the base was also added an allowance for food and rent, if you were ashore; an allowance for sea duty, if you were at sea and an allowance if you were married. While at Opa Locka during Christmas, 1942, Ed found time to spend some of his new wealth on Mildred, his youngest sister. He sent her a red Indian cape which he had bought at the House of Elinor in Miami Beach, Florida. It was a swanky place. Mildred wore the cape to dances and other fancy occasions for years afterwards.

            Ed was also not so busy that he did not kept up with the progress of the war. During his six weeks in Florida, things were at a turning point in Europe. The German Sixth Army under General Friedrich Paulus had reached Stalingrad on the Volga River on August 23, 1942. It advanced no further. Forced into hand-to-hand fighting in cellars, sewers and factories, the Soviets, unlike the French and Polish, stood their ground, then counter attacked on November 19, 1942, the day Ed reported at Opa Locka. The counter attack ended with three-fourths of the 400,000 German troops dead and the rest surrendering on February 2, 1943.

            By early January 1943 when Ed completed type training, he and a number of his fellow ensigns had orders to proceed to California to become part of a squadron being formed. Another new Naval ensign, Hazel Hogan, also had orders for California.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Chapter 2:
Hazel Before the War

            The war came with no input or invitation from Hazel Hogan. But as with Ed, she took advantage of it for her own interest. There were no draft laws for women; nevertheless, she joined the Navy Nurse Corps. It meant twice the pay, travel, marriage and was a good thing to do for the country. She served only nine months, but her preparation for the service in terms of education and work experience was even longer than Ed's.

            Dalzell, South Carolina.  Hazel was from Sumter, South Carolina. Her dad, Claude Hogan, had died on November 21, 1923 at age 35, leaving six children between the ages of 4 and 14. Claude had run a dairy. This consisted of some land and a house, which he rented at Green Swamp. This was on the edge of Sumter. Each day he milked and fed the cows, then covered his milk route in town in a horse-drawn wagon. On rainy days he would take the children to school in the covered wagon. After Claude died, the cows and wagon were sold and the money was put in the Sumter Trust Co. The Trust Company went broke, but every year Claude's widow, Annie (Jones) Hogan, received a small distribution.[131]

            Hazel was nine years old when her dad died. After trying to hold the family together for a year on an income of $10 per week, Hazel's mother had to split up the children and farm them out to relatives.[132] In the fall of 1924 Hazel (age 10) and her next oldest brother, Robert Edmunds (age 13) were sent to live with their maternal uncle, Charlie Jones (age 45), and his wife, Clyde (age 34) and their five children: Lorenzo (Ren, age 10), Annie Mae (age 7), Eute (age 5), Lena (age 2) and Allene, who was born that fall. Charlie and Clyde lived in the country out at Dalzell, South Carolina, which was ten miles west of Sumter.

            Although Annie Hogan opposed it, Charlie formally adopted Edmunds and Hazel. Annie wrote in the summer of 1924 about her plans:

Dear Charley

            Guess you'll have to take Edmonds and Hazel. I'm going to work the first of Sept. [1924] at Schartz's [drygoods store], they're offered me ten a week, will stay out here the rest of this year then will get rooms or small house in town maybe by time Claude [the oldest boy] will have a steady job. Listen Charley don't make me sign a paper until I know just exactly what I will do. Its an awful thing for a mother to sign away her child. Suppose you or Clyde should tire of the bargain or suppose I get in position to take care of them. Its heart breaking to give them up but I fully realize my position and do appreciate what you and Clyde want to do for me. Will do what I can to keep them clothed. You won't want Edmunds until school opens. Let him stay with me until then. Oh! if some way would open up for me to keep these together. I know Claude would rather you have them than anyone if he could ________

            Have asked Lillie [Annie's sister-in-law] to take Rosie for the winter. Guess I'll hear from her in a day or two. Seems that my whole life and heart is broke. Wonder if I'll ever be contented again. I'll [?] not to sign a paper you or Clyde would not mistreat my children would you? I should die if you did and I pray I won't live long enough for them to condemn me for giving 'em away. I know you can't love them as you do your own, but just remember they have no daddy and a mother that can't provide for them.

                                                                                    Love from

                                                                                    Annie[133]

 

 

 

            Charlie and Clyde were good people. Annie's concern about them mistreating her children was unnecessary. What became a seven-year stay at Dalzell was a happy one for Hazel. At the same time, as Annie had feared, this did not stop Edmunds, but not Hazel, from blaming her for farming them out. When Edmunds was age 20 and in the Army, he wrote about this to Hazel in the summer of 1931:

            . . . Tell me How is Uncle Charlie getting along and Aunt Clyde and the rest of the Family? I have a foolish idea that I may carry out if things do not turn out as I expect them to do in the army. I might come back and finish school, That is if I can find a place to stay. I would not worry mother by staying with her. I honestly believe she does not care anything about me, she may have lots of worry's but in her worry I am the least. I have found out that you and I were never cared for by her, she said that she did care for us but that was just to console us. But since I have heard from her, she constantly raves about Rosie and Claude, as if it interested me. What becomes of those two does not interest me what so ever. That may be a rather broad statement and a little harsh, but I mean every word I say. I heard from Rosie once in three years, that was when I was in Panama then she wanted me to send her a lot of junk. Since I did not send her anything she would not write anymore. Little girl I have grown considerably older since you seen me last and I have learned a lot of things.

            I suppose you are tired of this junk and I will not bore you anymore by writing any further. But just a few words of advice, please watch your steps; do not do anything that you will regret in later life, also slow down just a bit.

                                                            With Lots of Love

                                                            Edmunds. . . . . .[134]

            Charlie Jones always wanted a place of his own but was never able to achieve it. He worked as an overseer on a 500-acre farm. His job ran from sun-up to sun-set. He was often on a horse or in a buggy. He was good at his work, such as doctoring horses. His neighbors would call the veterinarian only if Charlie could not fix things up. The Joneses did not drink alcohol except for the wine they made in season from their grapes. They were Democrats and both voted. They subscribed to The State (Columbia, South Carolina), the Sumter Daily Item, the Progressive Farmer (Birmingham, Alabama), the Saturday Evening Post, and the Ladies Home Journal, which had a book-length novel in each issue.[135] Hazel had her own subscription to the American Magazine, which was published by the Crowell-Collier Co. in Springfield, Ohio.

            The Joneses tried to live by the golden rule. Besides their niece and nephew that they took to raise, they kept two neighborhood widows and their children supplied with homegrown flower, cornmeal and meat. Six black families worked the farm as sharecroppers, raising cotton, corn, wheat and oats. The Joneses worked hard to keep both the blacks and the boss happy. When the blacks ran short, they fell back on the Joneses.[136] The Depression that came in the late 1920s created difficulties. The Wildcat, which was the student newspaper at Hazel's school joked about it. In an article about a recent election of the 1930-1931 officers of the school's Future Palmetto Farmers Club, it was noted that no treasurer had to be elected, since the club was as "broke" as all the other farmers. Hazel's first cousin and adoptive brother, Ren Jones (1914-2002), was a member of the club.[137] Instead of farming, however, he later followed a military career, becoming a master sergeant in the Air Force. He then worked nineteen years on the atomic bomb for the Vitro Corporation of America.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Dalzell had a rural Confederate tradition. Hazel's great grandfathers and those of everyone else in the neighborhood had been Confederate soldiers. Sumter and Dalzell were the scene of battle in the last month of the war during "Potter's Raid."[138] Each family had stories about the part played by their ancestors including the women.[139] At school too, the tradition was celebrated, often with even more respect than it had been shown by the original participants. For example, on January 20, 1931, the fifth, sixth and seventh grade students at Hazel's consolidated school staged a commemoration of Benjamin Franklin, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson's birthdays for the entire student body. Hazel was then a senior. The program in the auditorium included an oral biography and stories about Lee and Jackson and the singing of "Dixie."[140]

            Sometimes Hazel rode a horse (bareback or with a saddle) named Old Dan. She and her friends would swim in Ardis' Pond, which was about five miles distant. They also liked to play basketball in the backyard. They had a homemade hoop attached to a building. Other outdoor activities were croquet and hide-and-seek. Twice per week the ice truck came with 100-pound ice blocks, which the Jones covered with sawdust to keep from melting. It was nice to have iced-tea on a hot day. In-doors the children played checkers, hearts, and set-back. Some played the piano by ear. Ren, who had his own dog, enjoyed coon hunting with some of his classmates in the river swamp. Like his dad, he loved to fish and later in life had his own boat. Friends of the children would come over in the winter and spend the night. They would chat in the living room, eat pecans, play the piano and sleep three to a bed. In the summer while she was in high school, Hazel worked on Saturdays in a little store up the road from where she lived. She worked from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and made $1. They sold goods such as peas, corn, canned goods, ribbons, and shoestrings.

            In 1906 Hazel's foster mother, Clyde, had lost five of her siblings and her mother from typhoid fever. Clyde had also came down with it but survived. As a result she was always careful about keeping the kitchen and food clean. The Joneses did not have electricity, running water or plumbing. There was a hand pump in the backyard. It was sometimes the children's job to draw the 3 buckets of water that were necessary for each meal and that were stored on a shelf in the kitchen. They also had to bring in the wood that fueled the cook stove. On the stove was often a pot of hominy grits. The children helped with washing the dishes and sweeping the floors, including the two porches. The Joneses had a swept yard, meaning no grass. The sandy soil was raked.

            There were African-Americans like Thelma Mack that would work in the kitchen or do chores for compensation, but only when they were not working their own places. The black women had spiritual beliefs and told stories as they worked that sometimes scared the children. Out in the fields the blacks harmonized as they worked. The music sounded good to the children. The music was not spirituals but perhaps what they sang at church. One of the blacks, named Leo, played the piano. When Clyde would go away, Ren, would have Leo come in the house to play the piano. Another of the blacks was Paris Glover. He later became a judge in Maryland. He received an education on the GI Bill. All of the Jones children graduated from high school, but college was beyond their means.[141]

            The Joneses lived only a few miles from Hazel's maternal grandparents, "Momma Jones" (Fannie, 1858-1931) and "Poppa Jones" (Bob Jones, 1854-1935). Momma and Poppa were first cousins to each other. Their common great grandparents were William Jones (1764-1809) and Ann Beth (Freeman) Jones (1763-1847). For his service in the American Revolutionary War, William received from the government a 60-acre land grant at Dalzell, the same land on which Momma and Poppa raised their eight children. Each Saturday Charlie, Clyde and the children visited Momma and Poppa and brought them cooked and uncooked food. They also picked up Momma and Poppa's dirty laundry and left off the clean laundry that had been taken the week before. In turn Momma and Poppa would gave, in season, figs, grapes and pears to their visitors. In the ashes of the fireplace would be roasting hickory nuts and sweet potatoes. Hazel's younger brother, Hugh, often lived with Momma and Poppa. On weekends he would come over and stay with the Joneses. Sometimes on a Saturday afternoon the Joneses would go to town and see a picture show. During the county fair they would go on carnival rides.

            Near the road on which the Joneses lived was the Horeb Baptist church and the Providence Methodist church. The Joneses were Methodist. Clyde played the organ for the congregation.[142] Since there were only three or four families (about 20 people) that came to services at Providence, Rev. Cooke, the preacher, only came every other Sunday. He lived in a parish house at Rembert, which was 10 miles distant. Sometimes they would have a communion service. They drank grape juice in a little cup. They passed a plate for donations. Horeb's minister also came only on alternative weeks. So the people would go to Providence one week and to Horeb the next week.[143]

            The paternal side of Hazel's family were Baptists. When she had lived in Sumter before her dad died, they were members of the Salem Baptist Church. Hazel won a Bible from her Sunday school because she memorized a number of Psalms and passages from Scripture. These included Psalm 23 (The Lord is My Shepherd), Psalm 24 (The Earth is the Lord's) and Psalm 100 (Make a Joyful Noise unto the Lord).[144] Prayer was not restricted to church. Before each meal, Charlie would say the following prayer: "Lord make us thankful for these our blessings which we are about to receive through Christ our Lord. Amen." There were also daily prayer services at Hazel's school during chapel period.[145]

            Hazel finished elementary school in May 1928. The following year her brother, Edmunds, had a run-in with Charlie and ran away to Sumter, living with his mother and going to high school for a time. Annie wrote to Charlie at the time:

Dear Charlie-

            I don't know the real trouble but Edmunds [age 18?] came to me this morning, said he left last night because you criticized him so harshly about his report. I am awful sorry it happened for I do want him to finish school. Says he going to Navy or work. Will do what ever you advise. Of course I am not going to scold him for its no use for he's only a child after all and never was hard to control.

            I think he will be willing to go home if you want him.

                                                                                    Annie[146]

Edmunds enlisted in the regular Army on February 18, 1929. One of his early posts was the Army hospital at Fort Clayton in the Panama Canal Zone.[147]

            Unlike her brother, Hazel stayed on with her aunt and uncle and graduated at age 17 from Hillcrest High School at Dalzell in May 1931. Her class was the first to enter and graduate from the school, which had been formed from the consolidation of several smaller rural schools.[148] There were eleven, not twelve grades. Hazel was president of both her junior and senior class, in which there were twelve students. She was also president of the 4-H club and a starting forward on the basketball team in her sophomore, junior and senior year. The Wildcats, which is what the team was called, wore green and white uniforms. Hazel was one of the leading scorers and her name appeared weekly during basketball season in game reports in the local newspaper, the State.[149]

            In academics Hazel's grades were average.[150] One of the tasks assigned the students was to memorize poetry. Because of this, Hazel could still recite what she learned seventy years later. This included "September," by Helen Hunt Jackson.[151] There was also "Carry me Back to Old Virginia" by the 19th-century black minstrel, James Bland.[152] There was "Where Go the Boats?" written by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894).[153] And there was "What is so Rare as a Day in June," which was the Prelude to The Vision of Sir Launfal (1848) by James Russell Lowell (1819-1891).[154]

            The poetry often taught a lesson. For example, The Vision of Sir Launfal was a democratization of the Arthurian story of the Grail. It began by depicting Launfal, a haughty landlord. The night before he is to begin a quest for the Holy Grail he has a dream vision in which he sets out on the quest. His first act is to toss a gold piece scornfully to a beggar. When he returns in the winter he has been chastened by his own suffering on the quest and shares his crust of bread with the beggar in a true spirit of charity and brings him a drink from a stream in a wooden cup. The beggar is transformed into Christ and the bread and wine into his body and blood. The wooden cup is the Grail that Launfal has sought. Having learned his lesson, he opens his hall and shares his bounty with anyone who wishes it.[155] Lowell, an abolitionist, was called the "schoolroom poet" because of his popularity as a school text.

            Another of Hazel's academic assignment was to read books and write reports about them.[156] One of the books upon which sixteen-year-old Hazel reported was Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, which, according to the report, was written "just before civil war." Hazel summarized:

Hester Pynne is led out of the prison and is led on the scaffold before the jearing town people. Arthur Dimsdale goes on the scaffold and confesses his crime. Then he died. Hester Prynne in her sorrow realizes she is up for a public example and bears it all well. This book was very interesting and I liked very much. It gives a moral lesson and reveals hidden sin.[157]

            Besides athletics, politics and academics, another of Hazel's activities in high school was acting in the school plays, including The Charm School, a three act comedy.[158] She was also in the cast of Climb Though the Rocks be Rugged and in a girls minstrel. In the later she was among those who told jokes about the local teachers, preachers, doctors and merchants. The participants dressed in white with black jackets. There were two acts. The school song was sung and the chorus entertained. The event raised $74 for the athletic association.[159] In another production, the Zader-Gump Wedding Nupituals, portraying characters from the comic strips, Hazel played Mandy.[160]

            When Hazel was in her last semester in high school during the spring of 1931, her friend, Nina Lee McCathern (Moore) came to stay with her. Nina's parents had moved to Woodrow, South Carolina and by staying with Hazel, Nina was able to finish up her schooling at Dalzell.[161] During her last semester, Hazel went to the senior reception with Elias Morris, the brother of her classmate, Lillie Morris. Elias later went to the Citadel. Hazel had bought a long formal dress for the reception with money she saved in the bank.[162] The reception was held on Friday May 8, starting at 8:30 p.m. at the high school.[163] When Hazel's class graduated on May 24, there was an elaborate commencement program.[164] She was voted "Best All-Round Girl," "Most Popular," "Cutest" and "Best Athlete."[165]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Nurse Training: Newport, Rhode Island.  After she graduated, Hazel ended her seven year stay at Charlie and Clyde's. She went to Sumter and for about a year lived with her mother at 302 Oakland Ave, the apartment above Mr. Walling's main grocery store. Her oldest brother, 22-year old Claude Hogan (1909-1951), was also in Sumter. He lived at the YMCA and worked as a plumber's assistant.[166] Sometimes Hazel would fill in for the regular worker at Mr. Veith's clothing store. On weekends she would work at J. C. Penny's on Main Street. She worked on a commission and sometimes made less than $1 per day. This was when Herbert Hoover was president. According to Hazel, when he came in, the people thought he was great. When he left they thought he was bad. Hazel's uncle, Fred Jones, was a sheriff in St. Andrews, South Carolina. He would come for a visit on his police motorcycle. Once he took Hazel and her older sister, 23-year-old Rosie (1908-1993), out to Dalzell to visit their grandfather, Poppa Jones, on the motorcycle. It was after Momma Jones had died and he was living by himself. Hazel rode on the back, Rosie on the front. It was cold. During the summer of 1931 Hazel bought a season swimming ticket for Pocalla Lake.[167]

            By the time Hazel came to stay with her mother in Sumter, her brother Edmunds had enlisted as a medic in the Army and was stationed at Fort Adams in Newport, Rhode Island. Hazel's plan when she came to Sumter was to earn some money and apply to a nurse's training school. Edmunds referred to the plan in a typewritten letter to her on August 10, 1931:

My Dearest Sister,

            Received your most welcome letter several days beforehand. Tell the "cockeyed" world I was certainly glad to hear from you. One thing that I would like to ask of you, when you write again will you please make your letters a little longer. You get me interested in the things that you tell me then you have to stop.

            By the way, how are you getting along with your hospitals. Have you been accepted in any yet? Please let me know how you getting along with your work. You know little sis, I am very interested in you and what you are doing, but according to my actions I do not show it. Because if I were interested, you would say that I should write more often than I do.[168]

            Edmunds later wrote Hazel about a nursing program at the Newport Training School for Nurses, in Newport, Rhode Island. It was affiliated with the Newport Hospital. He helped her apply to the program and went to see Ms. Minnie Goodnow (1871-1952), who was the superintendent of nurses there between 1929 and 1935.[169] Hazel was accepted and enrolled in the program in September 1932. Edmunds and his girl friend, whom he had met while stationed in Panama, met Hazel at the New York City train station when she came up from Sumter for the first time. They stayed at a hotel in New York City. They told the hotel keeper that they were brother and sister, but they were forced to take separate rooms anyway. That was expensive, as neither had much money.

            There were 40 students in the three-year program and about 15 in Hazel's class. The program offered the student-nurses room, board, and an allowance of $8.00 per month. They received standard nursing school courses, such as nutrition and anatomy. Among the books which Hazel studied and which she still had on her bed-side book shelf and referred to in her senior years were: Gould's Pocket Pronouncing Medical Dictionary: 40,000 Medical Words Pronounced and Defined, Diana C. Kimber and Carolyn Gray's Textbook of Anatomy and Physiology, Arthur Eisenberg and Mabel Huntly's Principles of Bacteriology in Fifteen Lessons and Florence Anna Ambler's A Textbook of Medical Diseases for Nurses Including Nursing Care.[170] The later book dealt with topics such as kidney stones, tuberculosis, leukemia, disinfection, caring for isolated patients and hypodermic injections. Kimber and Gray's Textbook of Anatomy and some of her other books were well annotated with Hazel's handwriting.[171]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            In addition to academics, the students received much on-the-job training. They worked 56 hours per week if they were on the day-shift and 72 hours per week if on the night-shift, which went from 7:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.[172] They had both a 10:00 p.m. curfew and a wake-up bell that sounded at 6:15 a.m. The student uniform was changed in 1932 from drab gray to blue with white cuffs and white pinafore apron. Caps were of the folded type and made by the nurses and changed monthly.[173] The many hours Hazel spent on her feet and her tight-fitting shoes gave her a life-long reminder of her training: big bunions on both her feet. Soaking, nursing and trimming them was part of her ritual in later life. The training program was not a bad deal for both Hazel and the hospital. She always felt she had a good deal of medical knowledge and never commented negatively on the program in later life.[174]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Among Hazel's classmates was Mary Estelle Hunt of Woonsocket, Rhode Island. Estelle was the youngest child and only daughter in a family that included six sons. She had wanted to be a lawyer but when she was seventeen, her dad died. She had no money, so she could not go to college. She along with four other graduates from her high school went into the Newport nurses training program. Later, she became the Godmother of Hazel's first child and a life-long friend. A second friend was Elsie Moore, who was a fellow southerner. Elsie had graduated from college before going into training and roomed with Estelle. Mary Carpener was another friend. After graduating, classmate Stephanie "Stackie" Stack (d. 2000) married a professor of psychology, Phil Krawiec. Years later in the 1960s and 1970s Stackie and her husband would come from New York and visit Hazel and her family in Washington, D.C. and vice versa.[175]

            The training program lasted through the summer. Newport was on the ocean and the hospital was only a few blocks from the beach. Sometimes Hazel and her friends would go swimming. Estelle was a Catholic, as were some of the others. Hazel frequently went to the local Catholic church with Estelle on Sunday and liked it. People often mistook Hazel for Estelle and vice versa. Once in their probationary period, which was the first six months, Ms. Marie Rayworth, the operating room (EOR) supervisor became mad at Estelle. She met Estelle on the second floor of the hospital and accused her of leaving a mess on the first floor. Estelle denied it, but Ms. Rayworth marched her to the first floor. As they were arriving, they saw Hazel bringing a mop to clean up the mess. Hazel had been the one that dropped a half-gallon jar of mineral oil. Ms. Rayworth apologized to Estelle.[176]

In June 1935, three years after entering the training program, 21-year-old Hazel graduated and was given a diploma. Ed commented at a later time that Hazel did not seem ambitious but the fact that she did not marry right out of high school and went into one of the few professions opened to her where money was not needed for an education, indicated that she was thinking ahead.[177] She made the best of things. After graduating she went back to Sumter, because there were no jobs in Newport. Half the nurses in Newport had no jobs during the Depression.[178] However, Hazel's friend, Estelle Hunt, did manage to stay and work at Newport Hospital.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Nursing at the University of Michigan Hospital: 1936-1942.  In December 1935 Estelle found out there were jobs at the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor and that it was also possible to go to college there. She notified Hazel. As a result both of them went to work at the University of Michigan Hospital in January 1936. They roomed together at a campus dorm near the hospital. Later they lived at a big two-story house at 200 Forrest Avenue along with 12 other graduates. The residence was right across from the tennis courts. Hazel made $120 per-month plus she received room and board. As at Newport, Estelle and Hazel were frequently mistaken for each other. Once a supervisor told them to appear before her together, so she could figure out who was who.

            Normally the nurses rotated from department to department at the hospital. But Hazel worked mainly on the tuberculosis ward, which was on the 8th floor. This was because the patients stayed there for longer terms and became attached to her and were advocates for her not being rotated. The attachment resulted from her giving good care, and being kind and understanding to them.[179] Also keeping Hazel on the TB ward was Dr. John Alexander (1891-1954), a surgeon. He had a national reputation and was influential at the hospital.[180] In 1926 he had come to the University of Michigan where, in conjunction with the Michigan State Sanitarium at Howell, he initiated the first lung surgery program in the country.[181] By the mid-1930s when Hazel went to Michigan, Alexander had a team that trained new surgeons during their internship and residency. A resident would perform 300 to 500 operations per year and act as first assistant in twice that number.[182] This was the period when several new drugs were coming into use, including penicillin, which was discovered in 1929 and the sulfonamides (sulfadiazine), which cured and prevented infections by streptococci, meningococci, gonococci and other pathogenic bacteria. Nevertheless, tuberculosis was still a leading cause of death and feared as much as cancer is today. Recovery was not certain and death was common.[183]

            After she had been nursing at Michigan for a year and one-half, Hazel enrolled as a part-time student in September 1937 at the University of Michigan. In this she followed the lead of Estelle. They sought a bachelors degree in public health through the School of Education. School cost $75 per-semester for out-of-state students and $55 for in-state. At the hospital, there were three shifts. Estelle and perhaps Hazel worked the 3:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. shift. This allowed them to go to classes. They also frequently worked on weekends. The school of education gave Hazel advanced standing, that is, thirty credits toward a bachelors based on the classes and hospital training she had taken at Newport. At the School of Education Hazel took "Principles of Public Health" and "Public Health Law." However, her heart and mind were not on school. She used her free time to date and have a good time. She failed the "Principles" course and received an incomplete in the law course. In February 1938 she was put on probation and took no more courses.[184] Estelle, however, finished with a certificate in public health.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

           

 

 

Besides Estelle, Hazel had a number of other friends at Michigan with whom in later years she kept up with by Christmas cards and visits. They included Margaret "Ham" Hamlin, who married George Phillips, a doctor of pharmacy; Agnes Smith from Hastings, Michigan; Marge Carstens, Jolia Dick, Josephine "Jo" Threlkeld, Dr. Walt Work of Ann Arbor and later of San Francisco, and Dr. Kyril B. and Joy Conger, who later lived at Gladenyne, Pa. Her friend Ida "Bonnie" Bignatti later married Bert Webb (1917-1989) and had five children. Vicki Kolenic from Muskeegn Heights, Michigan dated a doctor for a long while, but they did not marry. Hazel roomed with Dorothy "Dot" Brawner, who later married Dan Brawner, a career Air Force officer. Harriet Moore (Shapiro)  in later years lived in the same Leisure World community at Silver Spring, Maryland, at which Ed and Hazel lived.[185]

            In her spare time, Hazel liked to go to the movies and play golf. One time while riding a bike, she broke her ankle. For a time she and Estelle took horseback-riding lessons together. That meant learning how to put a horse through its five gaits. Estelle remembered that sometimes they would drink beer from a bucket. Occasionally Hazel went to mass with Estelle. Hazel was also fond of dressing well, going shopping and keeping up appearances. She made good money; it did not end up in a savings account.

            In 1937 Estelle and Hazel bought a Chevrolet for $600 from a housemate that had married. That is, they took over the payments on the car, which were $25 per month. The car was eight months old. In August 1937 they vacationed together in their Chevrolet to Sumter. On the way South they gave a ride in West Virginia to an old working man in overalls with a big mustache who was hitchhiking. He kept them entertained while he was with them. Estelle took a picture of him and Hazel standing by the roadside where they dropped him off. Estelle did not like having her picture taken. In North Carolina they stopped and Hazel had her picture taken with some black children along the road. While at Sumter they visited and toured. This included taking Hazel's mother, Annie, age 53, and her aunt, Lizzie (Bess Jones) Troublefield, down to the beach at Charleston. On the way they went to a tobacco auction at Lake City, South Carolina. Hazel had a paternal aunt, Caro Spann, in Lake City. Lizzie wore a poka dot jumpsuit and straw hat. While in Sumter, they also went swimming in the hot springs at Poinsetta Park.[186]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Annie was managing a corner grocery store on Liberty Street for Mr. Wilbur Walling. She did this from 1930 until her death in 1950. She was thin, lively and a heavy smoker. Her eyes were so brown that they were almost black. She was proud of being able to manage a store and did a good job at it. She called Hazel and Estelle, who were both 23 years old, the two princesses. Estelle maintained that Annie did not like Catholics and Northerners. Nevertheless, they were both thin and of the same stature and got along well. Each Sunday Annie made sure Estelle went to mass.[187] Lizzie Troublefield was more heavy set. Annie was still in the apartment above Mr. Walling's main store at 302 Oakland Avenue. Lizzie also lived there and "kept house." Lizzie's husband, James Mclurin "Max" Troublefield (1875-1933) had been a housepainter and an alcoholic. He had died a few years earlier.[188] There was room there for Hazel and Estelle when they visited.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

           

Hazel and Estelle also went out to Dalzell to visit her aunt and uncle, Clyde and Charlie Jones. At the same time they visited Hazel's great uncle, Harry Jones, who was a half-brother to her grandfather, Poppa Jones.[189] Harry wanted them to take him to the bootleggers to obtain corn whiskey that was sold in quart jars. Estelle remembered that on one of their evenings in Sumter, Mr. Walling took Hazel and herself out and made them high on liquor. Annie and Lizzie were mad at Mr. Walling for doing this. Lizzie asked Estelle if she had a fuzzy tongue or some such expression for a hangover.[190]

            The war brought big changes for the country, for Hazel and for her friends. A number of Michigan nurses went to work at an aircraft plant near Ann Arbor because of the good wages. In 1940 Estelle took a job with the visiting nurses in Detroit and left Ann Arbor. In 1943 Estelle joined the Army and went to Europe. After the war she finished up her schooling at the University of Minnesota on the G.I. Bill and made a career in the Public Health Service.[191] After Estelle left Ann Arbor, Hazel's roommate became Bonnie Bignatti.

            The government made a considerable effort to recruit nurses into the armed services. Hazel had done well at Michigan but had no roots there. She was like Millicent Linsen, who joined the military in February 1943. Linsen's biographer wrote of her reasons for joining:

I think she signed out of a combination of duty to her country, a quest for adventure and, being 29 and still single (having watched most of her friends get married), she was feeling a need to change her life. In any case, she always referred fondly to being in the service and of some of the friendships she made and kept for years afterwards.[192]

            For some nurses the war offered little in the way of self-interest. Fifty years later, Estelle Hunt still could not talk about it and would cry when reminded of it. European and Asian nurses on the front line had similar experiences. Tsuruko Matsuda was Hazel's age. She was from Hokkaido province in Japan, learned nursing at a three-year training school, and worked in a state hospital in Manchuria.[193] When dieing, she noted that the young combat casualties called for their mothers, not for the emperor, God or country. She started the war with patriotism, but by the end, she found herself agreeing with the soldiers. Mothers, not emperors, cared about children. She concluded that laboring people had no self-interest in imperialist wars. For Hazel, however, the war was not harsh; it meant joining the Navy, travel to California, marriage and motherhood.

 

 

 

 

 



 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 3:
California

            Ed and Hazel both came to California in early 1943. After completing his training in Florida, Ed had orders to join one of the many newly-forming escort-scouting squadrons and make final preparations for going to sea and engaging in military operations.

            Coffeyville, North Island and Alameda: January-March 1943. Ed was given a week between leaving Miami on January 7, 1943 and reporting to the NAS at North Island, San Diego, California on January 14. He flew to Kansas City and visited his family for several days at Coffeyville. One of the spots he went to while at home was the Columbia Drug Store, where he had worked as a soda jerk and carhop. Someone took a picture of him in uniform in the store. He also visited his friend Carl Ziegler, Jr. and Carl Jr.'s father, who was a lawyer in town.[194]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            When his quick visit home ended, Ed took the train from Kansas City to San Diego. Because it was on the Pacific Ocean, San Diego during the war was security conscious. Navy aviator Frederick Mears described how San Diego, along with Coronado and North Island, which were also part of the town, had been transformed in the week following the Pearl Harbor bombing:

            The next night, December 8, Lieutenant Gil Schlendering of the Marine Corps and I came out of the movies in San Diego and strolled up to the cocktail lounge of a hotel overlooking the city for a beer before going to bed. We were tasting our drinks and listening to the gowned entertainer tinkling the keys of the piano with "Harbor Lights" when the lights suddenly went out.

            San Diego was undergoing its first blackout. The presence of fifty or sixty unidentified planes in the San Francisco area a few hours earlier was the reason.

            The bartender lit candles and set them on the bar. In the flickering darkness we looked out over the city and saw the lights blink out in groups and one by one. It was impressive to see a great community in our country succumbing to the dark mantle of war for the first time. To Gil and me it was exciting, too. We peered out the window and almost hoped to hear the sirens wail and the dull "whoompf" of bombs to complete the picture we had seen so many times in the movies.

            We noticed also that many lights did not go out, in particular a large neon sign about two blocks down the street. The blackout was only partial and hence relatively ineffective.

            During the first week of the war there were feverish preparations both on station and in San Diego to meet any wartime actuality which might develop. On the station, the windows of the hangars and of most of the buildings in use at night were given a coat of black paint as a permanent way of preventing light escaping during the blackout. Sailors and Marines busied themselves digging zigzag trenches about four feet deep to be used as bomb shelters, and these made jagged scars all over the base. Circular anti-aircraft pits protected by sandbags and housing .50-caliber machine guns were dug at intervals around the field. Sentries on the alert challenged constantly, especially at night. The training planes were scattered around the edge of the field about 300 feet apart, and the regular service planes were chocked in dirt revetments to shield them from bomb splinters.[195]

            By the time Ed arrived in San Diego a year after the Pearl Harbor bombing, the town was even more militarized, if not as apprehensive about an immediate attack. Ed was initially assigned for a month to the carrier qualification unit at North Island. On January 15, 1943 he filed a "Confidential Data Sheet" which gave instructions on what he wished to have done upon his death. It was similar to the one he had done upon entering basic training at Corpus Christi. He requested that his personal effects be returned to his father, E. L. Terrar, 312 W. 4th St., Coffeyville. Under life insurance data he listed a policy by the Veteran Affairs for $10,000. The beneficiary was E. L. Terrar. The location of the policy was unknown. He was requested to list two officers "in this vicinity in order of preference who you wish to inventory your effects." They were his buddies, "B. H. Volm, Jr. and H. M. Tuttle," both Ens. A(V)-N USNR. Bernie Volm himself had his effects inventoried the following year. He crashed in the Atlantic. He was practicing dive-bombing on March 19, 1944, went too low and was not able to pull out before hitting the water. He left a widow, Gerry. She had previously been widowed twice by two other Naval aviators. They had both been killed. She had a small son by one of them. Making the best of the war was not easy for her and her son.

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Ed's first West Coast flight was on January 19, 1943 when he soloed in an SNJ. On January 26 he re-qualified on carrier landings aboard the U.S.S. Long Island in an SNJ. There was a printed checklist of tasks that had to be done on each takeoff and landing, which was posted in the cockpit of each plane. For years after the war, when Ed could not go to sleep at night, instead of counting sheep, he would go through the checklist for landing on a carrier. It included eight or ten items, such as turning off arming device, wheels down, flaps down, full-rich gas mixture, full pitch on the propeller, hook down and flaps open to cool the engine, if over 200 degrees. The list for carrier takeoff included full-rich gas mixture, pitch full-high, flaps down and, on the older planes, choke the air.

            On February 16 after a month at North Island, Ed reported to the NAS at Alameda, which was about five miles across the bay from San Francisco.[196] Alameda was where Air Group VC-35 was being formed in February 1943. The "C" in "VC 35" stood for composite. The air group had three components: a torpedo squadron (VT-35), a fighter squadron (VF-35) and a dive-bomber squadron. The torpedo squadron had nine TBF model planes. The dive bombers had nine SBDs or scouts and the fighters had eighteen F6Fs. Remembering back, Ed stated in 1969 that Squadron 35 had about 32 planes, with 65 pilots and 100 enlisted people, such as mechanics for the airplane motor, for the air frame and for the electrical system, plane handlers, gunnery people to load the ammunition, yeomen to do the paper work, supply personnel to obtain the parts, and several pay masters.[197]

            While at Alameda, Ed attended mass regularly, as he tried to do wherever he was stationed. Masses there on Sunday were at 7:00 and 8:45 a.m. Later at sea there was no priest; so going to mass was less regular. Besides a church, Alameda had an Officer's ("O") Club with a swimming pool, tennis courts and dining room. The base also had a library and nightly movies for 10 cents admission. There was a ferry between the base and San Francisco that operated seven times per day.[198]

            At Alameda Ed met Corwin F. "Smiley" Morgan from Pensacola and Andy Divine. He served with both during his year at sea. Smiley and Andy had already seen duty in Torpedo Squadron-8 under Admiral William F. "Bull" Halsey (1882-1959). They were among those sent as replacements to that squadron after the battles at Midway and Guadalcanal. The Battle of Midway in the Central Pacific was in June 1942. Of the original Torpedo Squadron-8, a total of nine TBDs and nine pilots were shot down. Only aviator John Gay survived. The Battle of Guadalcanal was in the Solomon Islands of the South Pacific between August 1942 and February 1943.

            Smiley told how at Guadalcanal the squadron had been short on bombs and long on bottles of beer. They would fly to Rabaul, which was in Japanese hands and bomb the beach with empty green beer bottles. Coming down, the bottles whistled like bombs and may have scared a few Japs to death but were otherwise harmless. The squadron was also short of gasoline, unlike the Army Air Corps, which had plenty of fuel for its P-40s. Smiley recalled one adventure in which he and Andy stole one of the P-40s. They had to run quickly to the plane before the ground crew realized what was happening. That meant they carried no parachutes. While Andy piloted, Smiley removed the chocks from the wheels and they were off. It was a liquid-cooled engine. While they were flying it, the plane became damaged by anti-aircraft fire or, more likely, by incorrect flying and the engine froze up. They made an emergency landing along the beach. On the way down, Smiley put down the wheels. After it touched down, it flipped nose first into the sand and onto its back. If they had left the wheels up, they would have skidded to a stop. Smiley stayed in the Navy after the war and retired from it. Later he sold insurance. Andy survived the war but he and his wife, Sara were killed in a traffic accident in Fresno, California. They were broadsided at an intersection.

            Others in the squadron whom Ed met for the first time at Alameda were Robert C. "Creepy" Flint, Steve Mandarich, Sam Dalzell, Dan Miller, Ed "Sonny" Simpson, Emmet A. Shaw, who was shot down at Leyte, but survived, and Lt. Harold B. Thornburg. Creepy Flint (1914-1986), the torpedo squadron commander, was from Lawrence, Kansas. He had graduated from Kansas University in 1937, where his father taught journalism.[199] In Ed's opinion, Creepy was the best pilot he ever met, but he hated the Navy. On the day in July 1943 when he made lieutenant commander, Creepy invited his comrades to go to San Diego to get drunk. That evening he was arrested for being drunk and out of uniform. Later, after being at sea for a number of months and hating it, he came up with a scheme to get himself back to shore. While landing after being out on patrol, he shot up the deck. He had arranged to be the first one to land, so no one was hurt. He claimed he had forgot to set the safety catch on his wing gun. However, he had earlier told some of the men what he was up to. In his view he made the best of things by getting himself kicked off the carrier. After the war he obtained a franchise in Seal Beach, California to sell ready-mix concrete in bags. By the mid-1960s he was living in Las Vegas. He died at Riverside, California.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Ed "Sonny" Simpson was a fighter pilot. He graduated from Rutgers University in 1937 and began to work with his dad in the construction business in New Jersey. In January 1940 he enlisted and went to the Naval Air Station at Pensacola, Florida where he earned his wings. He then became a flight instructor until going to sea. After squadron commander Creepy Flint withdrew himself from the war, Sonny took over as the squadron commander. While flying was dangerous, death was not something that often entered Sonny’s mind. Unlike being a soldier on the ground, "Flying was clean cut. If you crash, you're gone. If you land in the Pacific and they don't find you, you're gone."[200]

            Steve Mandarich (1911-2001) was the air group commander. He had graduated from the Naval Academy in 1933. The government had no money to give everyone a job, so those in the lower half of the class, including Steve, ended up civilians. In 1938 however, with the government preparing for war, those that had graduated from the academy were offered commissions. Steve took flight training. In the early part of the war he flew from the carrier Wasp in the Atlantic. Steve was the air group commander only briefly. By the time Ed went to sea in October 1943, Mandarich was commanding another air group, which was stationed on the carrier Lexington. Steve received the Distinguished Flying Cross and three awards of the Air Medal. After the war he stayed in the Navy, serving in the Korean War, and became a rear admiral. He lived in Washington D.C. in the late 1950s where Ed sometimes saw him. One of his assignments was as chief of staff to Admiral Richard E. Bird's arctic expedition in 1956.[201]

            Lt. Harold B. Thornburg was the medical doctor (flight surgeon) for the squadron. He was born in Rochester, Indiana. His father, who was also a doctor, moved to Santa Monica, California. Harold graduated from the Southern California School of Medicine several years prior to joining the squadron. He was married with two sons and a daughter on the way. Ed did not think much of him as a doctor.[202] There was often little for Dr. Thornburg to do. So he liked to go as a joy-riding passenger in the planes. Eventually he was killed doing this in a plane flown by James B. Gladney of Columbia, Tennessee that was shot down. Ed later said that Thornburg had no business being in a plane and had refused his requests to be a passenger. Ed's logbook recorded, however, that Thornburg was a passenger with him on one occasion, August 10, 1943.[203]

            Speaking of death, Ed had a close call at Alameda. His assignment upon being sent to California was to pilot torpedo bombers. The newest torpedo bomber was the TBF (made by Grumman) and, a little later, the TBM (made by Martin). They were about the same, with the TBM having some improvements. By early 1943 the first copies of the TBF had already been distributed to the front line air groups. But Ed had never seen one. He was talking with a pilot friend from another squadron one Saturday evening in February 1943. The pilot told him that his squadron had a TBF. He said it would be OK for Ed to fly it the next morning.

            After mass that morning, Ed took off alone in the TBF without a crew or check out. One of the new instruments in the plane was a radar altimeter. He pushed a button and it told him how far above the ground he was. There were clouds. To test out the instruments he flew into them. It was in the clouds that his troubles began. He descended to get out of the clouds. The altimeter said he was at 200 feet, but there were still clouds. He could not go any lower because there were mountains all around Alameda and it was dangerous. He flew to a dozen different spots to remove himself from the clouds. But each time, the altimeter said he was down to 200 feet above the ground and there were still clouds.

            So he decided to fly southwest for an hour, which he knew would put him over the ocean. He could then safely go down to fifty feet, fly back east at fifty feet until he arrived at the coast, fly under the Golden Gate Bridge and on over to Alameda. However, one of the anomalies of flying around the Bay area, of which Ed was ignorant, was that because of ore in the ground, the compass deviated considerably from true north.

            Ed flew out over the Pacific, came out of the clouds at fifty feet, flew back to the coast, turned left and started looking for the Golden Gate. He flew until almost 4:00 p.m. He was running low on fuel. He decided that if he did not find the Golden Gate by 4:00 p.m. he would fly to 10,000 feet and parachute. Just about this time he spotted what turned out to be Point Arena lighthouse at Point Arena, California. There was no level place to put the plane down except the short cliff area above the sea where the lighthouse stood. Ed came in very slow, landed and put the nose into the ground to keep from rolling off cliff into the sea. It ruined the propeller and shaft. The plane had to be taken off in a boat. Ed had missed the Golden Gate because, instead of flying southwest, he had been 17 degrees off, due to the anomaly in the compass reading. When he flew back to the coast, he had not been flying due east but 70 degrees north. This resulted in arriving back to the coast north of the Golden Gate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Looking back, Ed said, "God was with me." Had he found the Golden Gate, he would have flown under it. This was because to fly over it would have put him back into the clouds. But flying under the bridge was dangerous because he could not see the stanchions that supported it. Had he found the bridge, he would probably have crashed into a stanchion.

            The commander of fleet air at Alameda was Admiral William K. Harrill (1892-1962), a 1906 graduate of the Naval Academy. He was mad over Ed's TBF incident. A week earlier one of Harrill's pilots had been flying over a racetrack and circled to see the races. He crashed and was killed. It was bad for the admiral's record to have pilots needlessly being killed. The admiral put Ed under house arrest. A Marine was assigned to follow him everywhere he went, except when flying. Eventually, Ed became tired of this. He was going with a woman at the time whose father was both a lawyer and retired Navy captain. Ed had met her at a tea dance, which was put on for the officers on Sunday. The dances were a chance for those that were far from home to have a social life.

            The lawyer told Ed what he already knew. He had been within his rights in taking the plane up and doing what he did. The admiral could do nothing.[204] So Ed went to the admiral and confronted him: either give him a court-martial or end the house arrest. The admiral was outraged and ordered Ed out of his office. But by the time Ed arrived back to the BOQ, the Marine had been called off. The admiral also said he would write a negative fitness report. But that was an idle threat, as only Ed's immediate commander was allowed to file a fitness report. Ed was not one for allowing himself to be pushed around.[205]

            TBF: Torpedo Bomber. Ed's squadron obtained their own TBFs in early March 1943. On Mar. 7, Ed's Flight Log first recorded him flying it. The TBF was the biggest carrier plane ever made. It could cruise at 250 knots for 8 hours and reach altitudes of 13,000 feet. Its single propeller was 13 feet in length. Norman Berg, who flew the TBF, described its size:

It was almost 18 feet from the top of the cockpit to the ground. The wingspan was 54 feet 2 inches and had a gross weight of 15,905 pounds. I can still recall my thoughts as I walked up to the TBF-1 for my first flight: This bird is too damn big to fly off a carrier. It turned out to be a wonderful airplane - very stable in flight, plenty of power with a 1,700 hp engine. It stalled at about 60 knots, with no tendency to fall off on one wing. When it stalled, the nose would just drop straight down and immediately pick up air speed again. It was really a joy to fly.[206]

            The TBF crew consisted of a pilot, turret gunner who sat at the top middle of the plane, and tunnel gunner who sat below. When the TBFs eventually obtained radar, the tunnel gunner was the one that worked it, although the pilot also had a monitor. For the mere flying of the plane only the pilot was needed and sometimes Ed soloed in it. Besides the turret and rear guns, there were also wing guns, which were controlled by the pilot. They were the only ones that shot forward.

            The function of the TBF was torpedoing and bombing. It could carry a single 2,300-pound torpedo under its fuselage or bombs of various sizes: a single 2,000-pound bomb, or two 500-pound bombs or ten 100-pound bombs. The torpedo and bombs were dropped from heights of 2,000 to 3,000 feet. The torpedoes were used against ships and the bombs against land targets. During training the warheads had only sand in them, but the torpedoes always had a motor, which propelled them once they were dropped into the sea. Ed piloted 13 hours in February 1943 and 17 hours in March. Among the skills he worked on were navigation, gunnery and tactics.

            While Ed was at Alameda, Edward "Butch" O'Hare (1914-1943) was one of the celebrities that was there. O'Hare had graduated from the Naval Academy and become an aviator. On February 22, 1942 he had shot down five Japanese bombers that were on their way to attack the carrier Lexington. For this he received the Congressional Medal of Honor and toured the country selling war bonds from early 1942 until the middle of 1943. He went back to sea as a lieutenant commander and skipper of a squadron in October 1943 at the same time that Ed first went to sea. He died soon after on the night of November 27, while helping to cover the landings in the Gilbert Islands. Ed also helped cover the landings. O'Hare received the Naval Cross posthumously and Chicago's principal airport was named after him.[207]

            Ed had enough free time at Alameda that he volunteered several times to ferry planes up to the NAS at Whidbey Island near Seattle, Washington. He did this to increase his flight time, as planes to fly were in short supply. Once on the way up, he came out of the clouds near Mt. Rainier and saw someone driving a car on a road high up on the mountain who was at Ed's level. Ed and the car driver waved at each other. On the way back from Whidbey Island, the ferry pilots would hitch a ride in DC-3s. On one trip Ed was in a hurry to come back to see a girl friend or attend to some squadron matter. He was told a flight was just leaving. He ran out to the plane just as it was closing its doors. There were about six others in the passenger compartment that seated thirty-six. They were soon at 11,000 feet and the passengers were cold. Normally a plane did not go higher than 5,000 feet on the Whidbey Island-Alameda run. Ed went up to the flight deck and found a short young pilot with his feet on the console and the autopilot doing the flying. Ed asked where was the co-pilot. The pilot said there was none, as they were short-handed. Ed asked why they were at 11,000 feet. The pilot said he feared hitting something. He only had 165 hours of flight time and had landed a DC-3 only twice. Ed had twice as much flight time and volunteered to co-pilot. He took the plane down to a more comfortable 5,000 feet and landed it at Alameda. Ed's thinking was that if they were going to crash, he would prefer that he did it.[208]

            El Centro: April 1943.  In early April 1943, Ed and the newly constituted Air Group VC-35 moved to southern California where they continued to practice. Others joined the air group at this time, including a number of gunners, radar operators, navigators and mechanists. Each plane had its own crew. For example, on April 26, Clark "Dutch" Schoonmaker from Winsted, Connecticut took his first ride with Ed.[209] Dutch and Ed stayed together during the air group's up-coming yearlong cruise. Dutch's rating was aviation machinist mate second class but he was a turret gunner while on the Chenango. Ed addressed him by his last name, "Schoonmaker," and he addressed Ed as "Mr. Terrar." After the war they used first names. Other new air group members included Richard Stagno, Sr. from Louisiana. He was part of the crew that was piloted by Joe Sims. Anthony "Tony" Hernandez and Don Starks crewed the plane piloted by Smiley Morgan. Tony operated the radio and Don was a turret gunner. Ed was often the wingman for their plane.

            For a short time after arriving in southern California, the air group was at North Island in San Diego and worked on navigation, bombing and tactics. On April 15 they went to the desert (Imperial Valley) about 130 miles east of San Diego for a week of bombing practice. While there they were stationed at the NAS in El Centro. The following month, the El Centro base was transformed into a Marine Corps Auxiliary Air Station (MCAS). It was hot at El Centro: above 100 degrees at night and sometimes reaching 124 degrees during the day. It was also fertile, with the farms in the area irrigated by water from the Colorado River via the All-American Canal.[210] Ed stayed at the BOQ,  where there were two men to a room.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            While at El Centro, Ed was sometimes the duty officer. One time a fighter pilot had an attack from the after effects of malaria that he contracted at Guadalcanal. This caused him to end up bailing out of his plane near the small town of Calpatria, California. The plane went into an irrigated field of flax. There was much water. Ed went to the crash site with a Navy truck and a crew of six enlisted men. They had to take the guns off the downed plane. It took four or five days and they stayed at a motel in Calpatria. One night while at the motel Ed heard a noise. There was a reeve at the motel. A reeve was a walk-in room-sized refrigerator. A Navy truck was unloading goods into it. It turned out there was a black market operation in butter. Ed went back and told the folks at the base that they should investigate.

            North Island (Coronado, California): April-July 1943. Following their week of training in the desert, the air group came back to San Diego on April 24. Years later Ed still remembered how beautiful he found Coronado with all its flowers in bloom in April, after being in the desert.[211] He flew 38 hours in April and 34 hours in May.

            Despite the training program or perhaps because of it and the new-found wealth it offered, Ed and the other pilots had a full social life. Soon after arriving in California, Ed and his best friend and roommate at Corpus Christi, Buddy Beal, bought a 1931 Rolls Royce convertible for about $100. Another of Ed's friends, Howard Tuttle (1920-1996) had had a 1941 Ford convertible even before he went into the service. Over the Easter weekend of 1943 the squadron had leave. Ed and Howard went to visit Howard's sister at Palm Springs, California. Howard's dad was born rich and never worked. His grandfather had a shipping contract to bring ore from the Great Lakes to the Cleveland foundries.[212] Howard had gone to Brown University. The family lived in Cleveland but had a place in Palm Springs. When Howard was growing up, his dad would tell the children that he did not have enough money when they asked for something. Howard later realized his father never worked but did have enough. Howard resolved that he would work and if he ever had to tell his children that they did not have enough money, it would be true. He believed one’s worth as a human was in labor, not money. What economists call this the labor theory of value. He liked flying and after the war he made a career being a commercial pilot. This was despite having inherited plenty of money and having married a woman who had even more. Her family owned some of the coalmines over which the United Mine Workers contested.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

            Besides the visit to Palm Springs, another of Ed's social activities in the spring of 1943 was entertaining his 21 year-old sister, Rosemary. She took the train to the west coast for a vacation with him. It was a three-day ride each way and a nice adventure for her. Ed met her in Los Angeles. They stayed at the Ambassador Hotel, on Wilshire Boulevard, which in Ed's view was best hotel in Los Angeles. Rosemary never did come down to San Diego on that trip.

            Ed spent another weekend in Los Angeles with a friend from Coffeyville, Bill McClelland. They went up on the train. Bill was older than Ed and stationed at the destroyer base in National City, which was south of San Diego. They went to visit people Bill knew from Coffeyville. Periodically Bill would attend picnics at Long Beach for people from Kansas that were held during the war.[213] While in Los Angeles Ed and Bill spent the night sleeping on the floor of someone they met on the trolley. Bill was friendly and would talk to anyone. That is how they obtained their floor-space accommodations. The military authorities favored divisions between officers and enlisted, but for many, including Ed, friendship was sometimes stronger than the prejudices of military authority.[214] Later, when the squadron went to sea, some of the aviators, such as P.D. Thompson, enjoyed visits to the enlisted quarters.[215]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

           

 

On June 21, 1943 Ed again qualified on carrier landings aboard the U.S.S. Altamaha (CVE 18).[216] The landing