1944, William Briggs, 15th USAAF,  B24 Aerial Engineer/Waistgunner

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William B. Briggs

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A daughter's attempt to put pieces of my dad's puzzle found after his death

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Army Patches: 2nd Air Force, Northwest, US Zone of the Interior
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My daddy, Tech. Srg. William Bernard Briggs, Sr., served in the USAAF from 1943 to 1944 state side training with the 2nd AF Northwest United States, Zone of the Interior, 3rd AF Southeast United State, Zone of the Interior, and the 4th AF Western United States Zone of the Interior.  From November 1944 to June 1945, he served with his crew with the 15th USAAF, Bomber Squandron 781, Bomber Group 465, stationed at Pantatella Field in Italy.


Christmas letter to my father from my mother

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Sometime in 1944, my mother, Ruth Briggs, sent a package to my father, William Briggs. Enclosed in the package with this letter was a gold wedding band because they could not afford a ring when they married on October 5 1940. This is one of the sweetest love letters I have read.
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This letter makes me cry everytime I read it.  My parents were from poor families and started out poor.  At the time of their marriage, October 5, 1940, there was not enough money to buy a wedding band for my father.  While my father was state side training on Christmas 1943, my mother sent him this letter, vows and a wedding band for my father.  He wore this band to his grave.  


Robert French B-24 Crew finish training-Autumn 1944

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Robert French b-24 crew, assigned to the 15th USAAF in the European Theatre of Operation.
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This photo was taken in Casper, Wyoming in winter of 1944, just before being deployed for the ETO. Captain Robert French, Francis Donohue, F/O David Bowman, Pvt. Frederick P. Wagner, Sgt. Harold F. Qagnan, Sgt. Francis Donohue, Sgt. Lehman V. Wood, Sgt. Danny Horton


Story cannot be fact checked--Romanian family shelters William Briggs, shot down

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I am piecing together pictures, documents and memorabilia from my deceased father's belongings to honor his service to the USA during WWII. The origin of this picture has not been fact checked, only a family story, which is continued with the image of the inscription on the back.
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These are the children of the Romanian family who sheltered my father after he was shot down on March 2, 1945.  


Parachuting to safety, March 2, 1945, MACR 1-2379

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B-24 (42-52762), Scorpio, shot down on March 2, 1945 over Austria.  All crew members parachuting to safety. MACR 1-2379


15th USAAF, December 1944

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1944, Sgt. William B. Briggs (left) and unknown crew member of B-24, Squadron 781, Bomber Group 465, Italy.
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The Scorpio joined the 15 USAAF in December of 1944, stationed in Panatella Air Field, Italy.  



Contributor: ruth_briggs490
Created: March 12, 2013 · Modified: May 15, 2016


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