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Paul "Bud" Haedike was drafted into the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1943. Before long he was assigned as a togglier bombardier on a B-17 bomber crew. From the final months of 1944 into 1945, Sgt. Haedike took part in 23 bombing missions over Europe, and none of those missions came with a guarantee he would return to base safely. In fact, Haedike remembers cooks at his base in England telling crews to eat up since it might be their final meal.

In this edition of "Veterans Chronicles," Sgt. Haedike recounts his first mission, which resulted in a crash landing in Belgium and an emotional return decades later. He also remembers the plane constantly taking anti-aircraft flak througout the missions, the sub-zero temperatures aboard the bombers and his work getting the bombs ready to drop, and how he knew when to drop them.

Now 97, Sgt. Haedike remains full of sharp memories and good humor about his service in the United States Army Air Corps during World War II.
Paul "Bud" Haedike was drafted into the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1943. Before long he was assigned as a togglier bombardier on a B-17 bomber crew. From the final months of 1944 into 1945, Sgt. Haedike took part in 23 bombing missions over Europe, and none of those missions came with a guarantee he would return to base safely. In fact, Haedike remembers cooks at his base in England telling crews to eat up since it might be their final meal. In this edition of "Veterans Chronicles," Sgt. Haedike recounts his first mission, which resulted in a crash landing in Belgium and an emotional return decades later. He also remembers the plane constantly taking anti-aircraft flak througout the missions, the sub-zero temperatures aboard the bombers and his work getting the bombs ready to drop, and how he knew when to drop them. Now 97, Sgt. Haedike remains full of sharp memories and good humor about his service in the United States Army Air Corps during World War II. read more read less

about 1 year ago #b-17, #europe, #flak, #usarmyaircorps, #veterans, #wwii