Recorded memoir of Thomas Baker, part 1 of 2 (side A of cassette) (MC 371/882/15/1)
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Recorded memoir of Thomas Baker, part 1 of 2 (side A of cassette)


MC 371/882/15/1

1 side of audio cassette

nd [c 1985]

489th Bomb Group

Thomas Baker

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[00:00-05:00] Comments on enlisting after attack on Pearl Harbour; pre-war work as ice-cream seller, Montgomery, Alabama, and at textile mill, Opelika, Alabama. Describes army processing, medical examinations and training bases. [05:00-10:00] Training continued. Describes working as military policeman and guard, barracks in New Jersey, and incident in a New York bar with Fred ?Bowen. Describes journey to United Kingdom on ship ? 'Pasteur,' including crowding and ?Emery Ambrose accidentally stepping off ship. [10:00-15:00] Journey continued: presence of German submarine. Anecdotes about North Pickenham and incident at base with Fred ?Bowen. Describes journey from North Pickenham to Halesworth: convoy of trucks painted black; tracers and aeroplanes shot down; volunteering to guard shot-down aeroplanes; German fighter jets penetrating the squadron and attacking their base. [15:00-20:00] Continues: summary of casualties and aeroplanes shot down. Descriptions of aeroplane crashes and incidents he was called to attend: identifying bodies; a soldier shot by an uncontrollable B-24 tail-gunner. [20:00-end] Continues: dog finding a body and bomb landing near their tent. Remarks on the English people. Describes trip to England with his wife and daughter, 1972. Anecdote about an Englisman's bicycle stolen in Halesworth. For continuation recording, see MC 371/882/15/2.