Categotry Archives: Military

by

Robert H. Dowd

1 comment

Categories: Military

Robert H. Dowd, a decorated war hero, meteorologist and author, died on Aug. 5 from kidney failure. He was 81.
Born and raised in Miami, Dowd attended the University of Florida for one year before enlisting in the Army Air Corps. Trained to fly B-26 Marauder bombers, Dowd was sent to Europe a week after D-Day in 1944 to provide air support for ground troops. He received a Purple Heart and a distinguished flying cross.
When the war ended, Dowd joined the research and development division of the Air Force, and flew some of the first hurricane tracking missions. He went back to school to earn a degree in meteorology, and after a brief stint in Korea, was assigned to Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland where he gave weather briefings to the pilots flying Air Force One. In the late 1960s, Dowd flew AC-47 Gunships in Vietnam in a special operations squadron. He also monitored launch and recovery weather as the chief meteorologist for six Apollo flights (8-13).
Dowd retired from the military in 1973. He spent a decade as a mortgage banker in Miami, then turned his attention to writing. In 1997, Dowd published “The Enemy Is Us: How to Defeat Drug Abuse and End the ‘War on Drugs.'” He was also one of 75 retired veterans who urged the federal government to reconsider its military involvement in the Colombian civil war.

by

George Marquardt

9 comments

Categories: Military

Gen. George William Marquardt, the Army pilot who photographed the atomic attack on Hiroshima, died on Aug. 15. Cause of death was not released. He was 84.
On Aug. 6, 1945, Marquardt flew the plane, “Necessary Evil,” right beside the “Enola Gay,” the B-29 that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. Marquardt captured the blast on film. At least 80,000 people were killed in the attack.
Three days later, Marquardt was flying the Enola Gay beside the bomber “Bock’s Car” when it launched the atomic bomb against Nagasaki. According to the Nagasaki City Atomic Bomb Records Preservation Committee, more than 73,800 people died.
“I have never for one moment regretted my participating in the dropping of the A-bomb. It ended a terrible war,” Marquardt told The Salt Lake Tribune in 1995.
After his discharge from the military, Marquardt moved to Salt Lake City, where he worked as a sales manager and vice president for the Allen Steel Co.

by

James Culp

3 comments

Categories: Military

Cmdr. James D. Culp, a war hero who survived more than three years in Japanese prisoner of war camps, died on July 25 of cancer. He was 86.
Culp dropped out of high school, joined the Navy and served six years aboard the destroyer Pennsylvania. A few months before the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Culp volunteered to become a PT boat gunner in the new Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron.
In 1941, Culp’s boat was grounded during a night raid in the Philippines. The crew swam ashore, behind enemy lines, but Culp remained on the boat to help shoot down a Japanese plane. The event was chronicled in the book, “They Were Expendable,” by William Lindsay White, and in a 1945 movie of the same name starring John Wayne.
Culp eventually made it to the American-held positions on the Bataan Peninsula. While fighting with the 4th Marines on Corregidor Island, he was captured and sent to a prisoner of war camp in Japan. The Allies declared victory three years later and Culp took command of the POWs, a move that earned him a Bronze Star.
After he regained his strength, Culp became a welfare officer at the naval prison on Terminal Island in San Pedro. He served as a gunnery officer during the Korean War, then as an executive officer at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
Culp retired from the military in 1964. He spent a year working as a safety engineer for NASA before moving to California to become professional skipper.

by

Idi Amin

1 comment

Categories: Criminals, Military, Politicians

iamin.jpgIdi Amin Dada Oumee, the former Ugandan dictator responsible for the deaths of at least 100,000 people, died on Aug. 16 of kidney failure. He was either 78 or 80.
Amin was born to a peasant father and a self-proclaimed sorceress of the Lugbara tribe. He dropped out of school and joined the Kings African Rifles of the British colonial army. In 1951, Amin also started boxing. At 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, Amin served as Uganda’s heavyweight boxing champion for nine years.
In 1966, President Milton Obote appointed Amin to be the military’s chief of staff. Five years later, Amin overthrew Obote and declared himself president for life. Under Amin’s rule, an army of 15,000 men was formed and told to rape and pillage — in order to keep the peace. He also deported the country’s entire Asian population.
As Uganda plunged into economic chaos, Amin ordered the deaths of anyone who opposed him. He described himself as “a pure son of Africa,” and fed his enemies to crocodiles. Obote described him as “the greatest brute an African mother has ever brought to life.” Human rights groups estimate that between 100,000 and 500,000 people were killed during Amin’s eight-year reign.
After surviving 22 assassination attempts, Amin decided to invade Tanzania. In 1979, Tanzanian troops responded by seizing control of the Ugandan capital. Amin was removed from power and forced into exile. He fled to Libya, Iraq, then Saudi Arabia, where he lived comfortably until his death.
Timeline of Amin’s Life

by

Leeland Thomas Engelhorn

No comments yet

Categories: Extraordinary People, Military

During World War II, Leeland Thomas Engelhorn was shot out of the sky, starved and held as a prisoner of war.
Engelhorn, a 170-pound North Dakota native, worked as a gunner and a radio operator on a B-24 bomber. After conducting a strike against a German aircraft-production plant in 1944, Engelhorn’s plane was shot down. He bailed out, survived the fall and started walking toward Switzerland. While stealing some fruit from an orchard, Engelhorn was spotted. The orchard owner and his wife gave him a cigar then turned him in to German authorities.
The Nazis took Engelhorn to a POW camp in Poland where the doctors cleaned his shrapnel wounds without the benefit of anesthetics. When Russian troops advanced toward the camp, the Germans moved all 6,000 allied prisoners. Known as the “Black March,” the POWs were forced to walk hundreds of miles through one of the worst European winters in history. Almost 1,500 died from cold and hunger.
When he was liberated by American troops, Engelhorn weighed only 95 pounds. For his stamina and bravery, he received the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.
After the war ended, Engelhorn returned to America and earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in geography from the University of North Dakota. He became a founding faculty member at Grossmont Community College, and was named a National Educator of the Year in 1972.
Engelhorn died on July 28 from complications of prostate cancer. He was 80.

1 2 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40