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Personal Narratives


For Further Reading: 1940-1945

Names of individuals mentioned in the articles are noted beneath each citation.


"Medical Student Back with Family Here,

Tells of Terror in Yugoslavia."
Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 21 October 1941.

James Pekich.


"Sea Tragedy Brought to Squirrel Hill Home:

Wire from Navy Gives News of Death on Destroyer James:
Youth Loses Life 'In Line of Duty.'"
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 5 November 1941.

Antonio Caruso.

Lieutenant John J. Daub, Jr.
Wilson "Bud" Taylor.
F. F. Zapesnik.


"Army Awards Hero Medal."

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 8 November 1941.

Matthew L. Pelikan.

Colonel Douglas Johnston.


"'I Gave Him Everything in the Book...':

Ex-Oakdale Boy, in RAF, Tells About Shooting Down Nazi Plane."
The Pittsburgh Press, 23 November 1941.

Gus Daymond.

Adelaide Keenan.
Bob Mannix.
John Wallace.
Tom Wallace.


"50 Navy Mothers Weep for Local War Victims:

Join Mrs. Giovanna Caruso in Memorial Service at YMCA:
Taps Played for American Dead."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 5 December 1941.

Joseph James Caruso.

Robert Kenneth McLennand.
Mrs. Edith McLennand.
Mrs. Lillie Meyers.
George Sneathen.
Ralph Fellis.
Mrs. Priscilla Wood.
Mrs. Geraldine Smith.
Mrs. Olive Meadowcroft.
Mrs. Matilda Sackel.
Mrs. Isabelle Lynch.
Mrs. Lily Hulme.
Mrs. Mary Ewen.
Mrs. Catherine Gessner.


"Calm Pervades City on War's Outbreak:

Little Emotion Apparent as People in Street Realize Grim Task Facing Nation:
'Well, That Settles It.'"
Charles H. Allard.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 8 December 1941.


"Many from Pittsburgh in Pacific District:

Both Army and Navy Men There include Western Pennsylvanians:
Local People in Conflict Area."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 8 December 1941.

Mrs. J. B. Armstrong.

James B. Armstrong, Jr.
Lieutenant Edward T. Barrett.
Edwin P. Baumgart.
R. C. Beerbower.
Private First Class Ralph C. Beerbower, Jr.
Ben D. Childress.
Virginia Childress.
Mary Cobel.
Mr. and Mrs. Charles J. Cone.
Elizabeth Cone.
Elizabeth Friedman.
Mrs. Joseph Glowenle.
Private Eugene S. Heck.
John C. Heck.
Mabel Hogan.
Edmund Kozalla.
Mr. and Mrs. Fred C. McGrath.
Harry McGrath.
Mrs. T. K. McKay.
Mrs. Leslie C. Macpherson.
Reed Manross.
Eleanor Cook Maxwell.
Lieutenant-Commander S. Arthur Newman.
George S. Oliver.
Ensign Persifor S. Oliver.
Mrs. J. Lee Owens.
Charles Remensnyder.
Karl A. Remensnyder.
Julianna Schmitt.
Ensign Frederick Owen Schweizer.
Mrs. John H. Shenkel.
Paul A. M. Snyder.
Bernard Stoecklein.
Mr. and Mrs. Christ Stoecklein.
Mrs. Elizabeth Sullivan.
Sgt. John R. Tassey.
Mrs. Paul C. Urdank.
Frank R. Walton.
Mary Jo Walton.
Captain J. R. Watt.


"Nun, Former Pittsburgher, Unreported in Philippines:

Former Press Reporter's Last Letter Forecast Start of War."
The Pittsburgh Press, 18 January 1942.

Sister Maria Del Rei (Ethel Danforth)
Miss Marie McSwiggan.


"Attack Not Surprise, Pittsburgher Asserts:

Engineer, in Java at Outbreak of War, Says Earlier Assault Was Expected:
Dutch Forces Were Ready."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 27 February 1942.

Dr. Alexander Loudon.
Arthur W. Schmid.


"Pittsburgh Warned of Raid Peril."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 8 April 1942.

Mrs. Charles C. Gates.

Mrs. Clifford Heinz.


"Pittsburghers Escaped Bombs with Hawaii Japs."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 13 April 1942.

Mr. and Mrs. Randolph McMurtry.

Larry McMurtry.
Randy McMurtry.
Mrs. J. C. Evans.
Walter L. Fugh.


"Missionary, Wife Survive 115 Bombings of Singapore."

The Pittsburgh Press, 28 April 1942.

Dr. Raymond L. Archer.

Edna Caye Archer.
Mr. and Mrs. Earl Killian.


"Is Frequent Guest Speaker of Clubs."

Anne Weiss.
The Pittsburgh Press, 14 June 1942.

Joan Grant Brightman.

Lucas Brightman.
Mr. and Mrs. Harrison Brightman.


"Pittsburgh Doctor Tells of Blackouts, Rationing."

The Pittsburgh Press, 7 July 1942.

Dr. John Donadeo.

Miss Rose Donadeo.


"Yugoslav Pilot Tells of Escape."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 15 August 1942.

Pilot Sergt. Milan Mitich.

Sergt. Yukaden Yelich.
Pvt. Daniel Oresconin.


"Surgeon Back from Bataan:

Pittsburgher Feared Dead Returns Home."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 18 August 1942.

Lieutenant Colonel William J. Kennard.

Mrs. Marian Brown Kennard.


"Missionaries Home from Jap Camp."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 28 August 1942.

Mrs. Nelson Cherry.

Annie Bailie.
Mrs. George M. Johnston.
Sarah C. Johnston.
June Tauber.


"5-Cent Whistle Saves Lives of 6 Shipwrecked:

Former Railroader Tells Story of Indian Ocean Adventures."
The Pittsburgh Press, 28 August 1942.

Raymond Cummings.


"Americans Demanding Privileges Disgust Pittsburgher

Who Survived Bataan Battle:
Flight Surgeon Amazed to Find Home Front Asleep
U.S. Soldiers and Filipinos Never Gave Up Hope Help Would Come."
Kenneth Nevins.
The Pittsburgh Press, 4 September 1942.

Mr. and Mrs. Fred H. Brown.

Mrs. J. A. Feery.
First Lieutenant Raymond M. Gehrig.
General Harold George.
Mrs. Marian Brown Kennard.
Mrs. Mary E. Kennard.
Lieutenant Colonel William J. Kennard.
Capt. John P. Randolph.
Col. Boyd "Buzz" Wagner.


"Mill Workers Get First Hand Story of War:

Veteran of Libya and Pacific Stress Needs of Fighters."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 9 September 1942.

Captain Bartle Bull.

Earl Schenck.


"Nazi Spies in Greenland Say 'Heil Hitler' Once Too Often."

The Pittsburgh Press, 15 September 1942.

Mr. and Mrs. Walter B. Dodds.

Sgt. Frank Fiechtner.
Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Fiechtner.


"Pittsburgh Flier Tells of Battle with Japs."

Mary Hallam.
Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 18 September 1942.

Lieut. Edward J. Magee.

James M. Magee.
Lieut. Gen. H. H. Arnold.
Maj. Conrad Necrasson.
Pvt. Arvid Hegdahl.
Gen. Douglas MacArthur.


"Pittsburgher Tells How Pals of 'Black Watch' Died at Dieppe:

Transferred to American Army Just Before Allied Assault,
'Binks' Dangerfield Feels Raid's Sacrifice Worth-while.
AEF Warrior Pleads 'Make Planes! Buy Bonds!'"
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 19 September 1942.

Benjamin M. "Binks" Dangerfield

Harry Dangerfield.
Harry Dangerfield, Jr.


"Indiana, Pa, Gunner Bags Jap Zero in Rabaul Raid."

Harold Guard.
The Pittsburgh Press, 6 October 1942.

Corp. Dan Raher.

Lieut. Fred Wesshe.
Sgt. J. J. Wilfley.
Lieut. Melvin McKenzie.


"Pearl Harbor Veteran Tells of Japanese Attack:

McKees Rocks Soldier Fires Pistol at Enemy Pilots Who Killed His Buddies:
Youth Modest about His Part."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 8 October 1942.

William F. Fedorko.

Martin Vandrelli.
Joseph Tuckerman.


"Astoria's Loss Told by Sailor Here."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 14 October 1942.

Tony Magnelli.

Joseph Magnelli, Sr.
Joseph Magnelli, Jr.


"Quincy Sailor Floats in Sea for 10 Hours:

Swissvale Gunner Home on 30-Day Leave."
The Pittsburgh Press, 16 October 1942.

Joseph John Carr, Jr.


"Missionary Describes Jap Camp's Horrors:

Wants To Return to China and Continue
Her Work There When War Is Over:
Six Weeks Was 'Lifetime of Horror.'"
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 17 October 1942.

Leona L. Ross.

Mrs. Robert H. Rensch.


"Home on Leave after Two Weeks in Russian Hospital,

He Expects To Return to Active Duty Soon."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 19 October 1942.

Jim Yahner.

August Porta.


"'We Blew Hell out of It!'

Gob Says of Guadalcanal:
Pittsburgher aboard Stricken Quincy Describes Solomons Battle."
The Pittsburgh Press, 21 October 1942.

Boatswain's Mate First Class Russell Hall.

Mr. and Mrs. William Hall.


"Blairsville Man Pictures Sinking of Carrier Wasp:

Describes Havoc Caused by Torpedoes and Struggle in Smoke Fumes at Sea:
Sailor Saved by Quick Thinking."
Ralph Mahoney.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 28 October 1942.

Mrs. Carol Datum .

Raymond Kane.
Victor Maycock.
Mrs. Antonio Mermer.
John S. Mermer.
Stanley Mermer.
Captain Forrest Sherman.


"Ex-Pittsburgher on Hand To Greet Troops at Oran."

The Pittsburgh Press, 9 November 1942.

Major Edgar Guerard Hamilton.

Mrs. Charles Leroy Goodman.
William R. Hamilton.


"Navy Officer Here Who Warned Over War Dies in Action."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 30 November 1942.

Lt. (j.g.) Walter M. Straub.

Mrs. Margaret Straub.
Mrs. Edna Straub Whitesell.
Miss Frieda Straub.
Walter M. Straub.


"Glenshaw Soldier Didn't See Much at Casablanca but Heard Plenty:

Nine Months in Navy, Youth Gets Real Baptism of Fire
As His Battleship Moves into Thick of North African Fight:
'Fired So Fast We Didn't Have Time to Think.'"
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 1 December 1942.

Andrew A. Caruso.


"McKeesport Controller Tells of Casablanca Raid."

The Pittsburgh Press, 2 December 1942.

Boatswain's Mate John W. Montgomery.


"McKeesport Sailor Tells of Transport Torpedoings:

North Africa Invaders Also Fought Axis Planes and Shore Batteries, Scarred Veteran Asserts."
The Pittsburgh Press, 3 December 1942.

Boatswain's Mate John W. Montgomery.


"North Side Man Swims 6 Miles as Ship Sinks:

Torpedoed off Africa, Sailor Returns Here."
The Pittsburgh Press, 3 December 1942.

Fireman Second Class Michael Tolkacevic.


"Donora Sergeant Awarded Purple Heart for Gunnery:

Flying Fortress Crew Member, Home on Leave, Bagged 4 Nazi Planes before Being Wounded."
The Pittsburgh Press, 8 December 1942.

Sergeant Eddie Jones.

Mr. and Mrs. Eddie Jones, Sr.


"Hungry Leathernecks Kill Japs to Get Food Supply:

Mt. Lebanon Captain Tells of Living in Rat-Infested Foxholes during First Days on Guadalcanal."
The Pittsburgh Press, 8 December 1942.

Captain J. R. "Red" Scott.

Mrs. Marie Scott.
Lieutenant Melvin Port.
Wes Bennett.
Captain Marvin Schacher.
Dinah Shore.


"Pittsburgher Tells of U. S. Fliers' Brilliant Fight

in Battle of Java:
Pearl Harbor Made It Tough to Reach Destination--
And It Got Tougher after That."
Frank M. Matthews.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 22 December 1942.

Lieutenant Edward Magee.

Congressman James M. Magee.
Fred Ambrose.


"Sailor's Appendix Removed as Storm Lashes Destroyer."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 22 December 1942.

Lieutenant (jg.) Albert G. Roode.

Seaman Second Class C. D. Vaughn.
Mrs. Ruth Roode.
Peter Roode.
Mrs. Sarah Roode.
Edith Roode.
Chief Pharmacist's Mate A. P. Manner.
Pharmacist's Mate Second Class L. B. Whited.
Lieutenant Commander Roger B. Nickerson.


"Thanksgiving Letter Late for Christmas:

Hero of Philippines Air Unit Writes to Parents Here."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 30 December 1942.

Private First Class John R. Reid.

Mr. and Mrs. John Reid.
Sergeant William Kuening.
Mr. and Mrs. Charles W. Kuening.


"Trouble to Join Desert Forces Useless; Newsman Sleeps in Mud:

Former Post-Gazette Reporter Sent to Africa
Where He Regrets Lack of News of Other Fronts:
Irony of War Changes His Plans."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 30 December 1942.

Staff Sergeant Charles H. Brown.


"North Side Sailor Tells of Two Weeks on Raft:

14 Men in Indian Ocean Sing,
Tell Stories to 'Keep from Going Crazy,'
But Praying Helps Most."
The Pittsburgh Press, 28 January 1943.

August T. Ellis.

Mrs. Mary Ellis.
Miss Thelma Steiner.


"Wounded Pittsburgher, Home on Furlough,

Asks Return to Action."
Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 10 February 1943.

Corp. Raymond R. Moore.

Mr. and Mrs. John Moore.


"Lieutenant Monro Graphically Describes

Battle off Guadalcanal in Letter to Father."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 13 February 1943.

Lieutenant George N. Monro, III.

William L. Monro.


"Local Doctor Revealed as Rescuer:

Saved Life of Rickenbacker's Companion on Pacific Isle."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 17 February 1943.

Captain Eddie Rickenbacker.

Lieutenant (jg) William J. Hall.
Joseph M. Hall.
Lieutenant James C. Whittaker.
Lieutenant John DeAngelis.
Staff Sergeant James W. Reynolds.
Robert Hall.
Captain George F. Hall.
Staff Sergeant James M. Hall.


"Sub Skipper Home, Enjoys Snow, Cold."

Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, 19 February 1943.

Lt. Com. William E. Ferrall.

Joan Ferrall.
Mrs. George K. Ferrall.
Madeleine Ferrall.


"Pittsburghese Goes to War:

Eerie Procession of Sound Traces Nazi Reprisal Raid:
Danver Glad It Wasn't Pittsburgh;
Concussion Makes Typewriter Dance;
Life in Hotle Lounge Goes On As Usual."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 5 March 1943.


"Wilkinsburg Staff Sergeant Finds Desert Modern and Friendly:

Yanks See North African Cities Rise from Starvation and Death:
People Joyous over Arrival of Americans:
Quick Recovery Follows Break in Nazi Control."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 5 March 1943.

Sergeant Lemuel E. Gearinger.


"Schenley Boy Hailed for Pacific Service:

Quick to Enlist after Pearl Harbor
Without Waiting for West Point Course
Carpenter Proud of Son in Marines."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 19 March 1943.

Constantine Knox.

John E. Knox.
John Knox.


"Pittsburghesque Goes to War:
Theater Directress Tells of Air Raid."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 8 April 1943.

Jane Ellen Ball.


"Pittsburgher's Tank in Historic Meeting:

American, British Armies Cut Greetings Short as
They Join in Tunisia:
Pursuit of Rommel Still Main Job."
Don Whitehead.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 9 April 1943.

Alvin J. Chape.

Harold V. Boyle.


"Pittsburghesque Goes to War:

District Soldiers Crash the Headlines."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 10 April 1943.

Private Charlie Schnappauf.

Corporal Pat Gallagher.
Corporal George Spontak.
Charles F. Kiley.
Johnny Dado.
Ray Rafferty.
Jackie Johnson.
Jimmy Brown.
Christy Hart.
Sergeant Angelo Saccio.
Private Elmer Wichman.
Private Leonard Donato.
Sergeant William S. Buchanan.
Andrew A. Rooney.
Roy Klein.
Michael Pochan.


"Marine Corporal also Chalked Up Note for 'Mom and Pop'."

The Pittsburgh Press, 23 April 1943.

Lieutenant Colonel Jimmy Doolittle.

Miss Peggy Fry.
Corporal Larry Bogart.
Captain Mark Mitscher.
Frank Bogart.


"Pittsburghesque Goes to War:

Kittanning Nurse Tells of Lucky Crossing."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 27 April 1943.

Lieutenant Esther Atwood.
George Boileau.
Lieutenant Cordelia Brown.
Mr. and Mrs. D. K. Brown.
Lieutenant William Mease.
Lieutenant Helen Weyers.


"Hospital Plane Crashes on Reef:

Dreams of Milk Shakes Haunt Marooned Marine:
Mt. Washington Private, on Furlough, Tells of 12 Days Privation in Pacific."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 11 May 1943.

Marine Private First Class Paul F. Beiswenger.
Ensign M. E. Herbst.


"Pat Is Getting Around:

Former Steward Here Feeds Captured Nazis:
Sergeant Donadeo Serves Generals Taken in Fall of Bizerte to Yank Army."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 11 May 1943.

C. R. Cunningham.
Sergeant Pat Donadeo.
Major General Ernest N. Harman.


"Pittsburghesque Goes to War:
Nary a Pittsburgher on 'Pittsburgh' Ship."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 14 June 1943.

Lieutenant J. W. Stanley.


"Oakland Bombardier back from Guadalcanal:

18-Year-Old Corporal Has Undergone 80 Attacks in South Pacific Battles:
Dropped Last Army Bomb on Island."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 7 August 1943.

Corporal George R. Istik.


"Danver Returns from England:

Feels Guilty at Breakfast:
Returning Writer Thrilled by Statue of Liberty,
Steel Mills and Bacon and Eggs."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 30 October 1943.

Ray Otfinowski.


"Danver Finally Finds a Ship and Starts Perilous Trip Home:

Writer Ends Up in Hospital but Only Because There Was
No Place Else aboard for Him and His Typewriter:
First of 12 'Atlantic Convoy' Installments."
Charles F. Danver.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 1 November 1943.

Captain John Thunberg.


"A C-Ration Episode on the Cassino Front."

Michael A. Musmanno.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 9 May 1944.

Captain Molland.
Major Bob Woodward.


"Frenchman Lauds City Man for Liberating Village:

Sends Letter to The Press Telling How North Side Lieutenant
Moved Into His Town."
The Pittsburgh Press, 3 December 1945.

M. Georges Noe.

Lieutenant Melvin S. Stock.



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