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vette97 last won the day on October 1 2019

vette97 had the most liked content!

About vette97

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  1. It truly is amazing how he's become quite the celebrity. Shortly after this round-table, the local news interviewed him for a short piece on the 6pm news. https://wnep.com/2019/09/24/75-years-later-wwii-vet-tells-his-story/
  2. It's been yet a year since I posted, so I wanted to provide another update on George. He's been quite the celebrity, travelling and giving interviews. He met a group called the Central Pennsylvania WWI Roundtable in Hummelstown PA when he attended the Reading, PA WWII weekend this summer. They asked him to come speak, last night, to a crowd of about 100 people. He recounted many of the stories he shared in my interview with him on YouTube. At the end, he stuck around and shook hands, and signed autographs. And made the front page of the paper in preparation for this event. Props to the folks who helped get George to the event, about 1.5 hours away from his home. What an amazing group of people, enthusiastic about learning the history from our veterans, in person. I made the 2 hour drive to attend and here are a few photos I took at the event.
  3. Hi:  Received the following message this week. Please get in touch with him. This is wonderful news. So glad to hear that George is still with us. Marion


    Chris ( drchrishuffman@aol.com ) said:


    I'm trying to get in touch with user: vette97.  In around 2011 he posted an article/interview transcript about his meetings/interviews with WWII vet George Jackson (101st Airborne).  I'm a volunteer with a WWII Roundtable group and we're going to have George Jackson as our speaker in September.  I was wondering if vette97 would give us permission to use the photos he attached to his article about George: the "double picture" that shows George in the same stance holding an M1 Garand rifle: in one pic during WWII and in one pic in around 2011.  Does vette97 mind if we use that photo on our website advertisement for George Jackson's speaking engagement with us, and to send to local area newspapers for possible inclusion in an article about his upcoming talk?  Or are those photos copyrighted and we can't use those?


  4. Sgt james F. O'Laughlin's company, C Company, would have jumped and landed in Market Garden on Sept 17. George Jackson's platoon in B Company came in with the gliders on Sept 18. However, they might have known each other. I still need to have this chat with George. In addition, Frank Gubbels recently visited Bastogne to take photos and send them to me, in hopes that we can get confirmation of the location where George was during the battle. I'm working on sending that to him via mail. Exciting times!
  5. Thank you Marion! I will reach out to Raphael and see if I can help. I've been in close contact with Frank Gubbels, as well. George sent him a letter and included a drawing of the area where he was located in Bastogne. We gathered some information from George to help identify the outpost where he performed his watch duties, as well as the area where he was dug in when he was wounded on Dec 25, 1944.
  6. I'm so glad to hear that you go the letter, Frank! He called me last week, super surprised to hear from you, and to let me know that I was "quite a great guy" for helping you get in contact with him. He was truly happy. He called me to confirm that he was writing your address correctly. I looked it up on the Internet and verified it for him. He has had letters lost before and was worried that you wouldn't receive it. But, I'm very happy that you did get it! I think George would be very happy to see any photographs you could share with him. It might help solidify his memory of the area. You're a great guy, Frank! Thanks for helping make George's day! Pat
  7. Thank you all for the kind words. Frank Gubbels, I sent you a private message. I'm always grateful to you, Marion, and all the other folks on here who engaged with me prior to me doing that interview. He was so very receptive of all the questions that came out of this forum, and it truly has changed his life. He feels like quite the celebrity no matter where he goes. In fact, I found this video taken of him at Reading this summer and never knew it was out there. I just searched. Check this out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvxAhm6PBfI
  8. It's been 7 years and I've neglected this thread. My apologies. I just wanted to report that George is still doing very well. As time has gone on, he has been interviewed by many different folks, including the Nat'l WWII Museum, and local historians. He wears his WWII Veteran hat and rarely has to pay for meals when he's out in public. The cold weather in Eastern PA hasn't kept him down. His truck battery died in the cold so he went out to charge it so he could plow the driveway. He's still very active! He even came to WWII Weekend at Reading, PA in June 2017 year and did some dancing! I have a photo of he and I at the dance, attached. I didn't expect him to be there, because we were unable to sync up on the phone prior to the event. During the playing of the Army Song, he came out of the crowd and I ran to him after it was over for a hug. It was great to see him again as it's been a few years, even though we talk on the phone. I also recently started using Ancestry.com to look into my family tree. While I was there, I found the grand-niece of George and shared with her the link to his interview. She was amazed to hear the details and her family is going to get in touch with George soon to talk with him about family information for their family tree. I also looked up his buddy Dick Werner, who died on Oct 5, 1944 in the Netherlands. I was able to find some other family trees that had Dick in them, but none of the owners have gotten back with me yet. George regrets he never reached out to Dick's parents when George made it home to the states. I hope to find someone who might have old photos, letters or memories of Dick, that I can get talking to George. I would love to have George's wish to talk to Dick's family completed. He also wishes he could have seen Dick's grave marker. I found that pretty easily through Ancestry: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/56305115/richard-w-werner/photo Finally, I picked up the book Bridging Hell's Highway: The 326th Engineer Battalion During Operation Market Garden, July 2011, by John Sliz, ISBN: 978-0-9783838-6-2. I didn't know this existed until it turned up on a search I did recently. Amazon delivered it today and it's very small, but has valuable information in it which I want to share with George. I believe we can now identify the exact area and bridge his unit was responsible for. Happy New Year! Pat
  9. vette97

    Letter sent home from Anzio - Sgt Joe Miller - 36th Eng

    Thanks so much for posting this. It is quite interesting how he could take something as scary and deadly as being shelled by Anzio Annie and turn it into a tounge-in-cheek poem.
  10. Thank you! He's really high on life right now. He's so amazed at all the attention. It's a great thing to enjoy it with him when I do get to see him. He passed along to me that the unit he was with was the 167th Combat Engineers prior to volunteering for Airborne duty. I was able to find him in the roster: http://167thengineercombatbattalion.com/Documents/HS%20Transferred.htm It's neat to come across this stuff, bits and pieces, as time goes one.
  11. I just got off the phone with George. A member of the National WWII Museum performed his own interview after finding out about George on the Internet. He was surprised and happy! Apparently, his story is spreading. George finally got the answer he was looking for, as to why he had to be selected to go with those gliders, rather than jump in Holland with the rest of his unit. Larry Miller, a historian with the Museum, let him know that they needed engineers to come in on that glider on that day to help repair a bridge if it was blown up. George is finally happy to get an answer after 60-some years. I'm so happy for him!
  12. vette97

    Best Day of My Life....

    A very nice experience indeed! Thanks for sharing this touching moment!
  13. It's with great pleasure to announce that I was able to perform the necessary editing of the interview, and I found a utility which allowed me to change the bitrate, so that the 6 part series wouldn't take 3 weeks to upload to YouTube (it only took the greater part of one day). The link to the playlist can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=BC2738D08E1055C7 Many thanks to everyone, especially Marion, for the guidance and feedback throughout this process. It has been an honor to produce this interview and I hope that everyone who watches it can learn a little bit more about what it was like to participate in the war. Even though this interview is very long, George is very fun to listen to! I'm honored to have him as a friend. Thank you, Pat Freeman
  14. Progress! Finally, I finished up editing the interview. We discussed so many things throughout nearly 2 hours of discussion and I wanted to keep it in chronological order and relevant to his time in the war, so this required a lot of time set aside to concentrate. I also needed to adjust the audio since my camera placed a very annoying hiss into the recording which I was able to notch out. Now, I just want to include an introduction, some of his pictures and then split the clip so it can be uploaded in sections. I should have about 1 hour 30 minutes when complete. I received a letter from George a few weeks back saying how meeting me, talking about his time in the war, and conducting this interview has brought up so many good memories from the past and how this has made a huge positive impact on his life! I was so deeply touched by this. I can't wait to share his stories!
  15. Hi folks. I've been extremely swamped as a lot of things have come up over the past few weeks. I don't mean to disappoint but I haven't worked on editing the video at all. I promise to make more time for it but it is a task that is going to take a lot of concentration. I want to add some personal discussion and include some of the pictures he allowed me to scan, so I don't need to do that much, but I want to set time aside specifically for this. Marion - I was able to purchase and watch the 2 DVD set of No Bridge Too Far, Part 1. I love it. The stories and the history are great and the music, well, I dance to that stuff so it really helps put me back in that era. I can only imaging how much work this is for you!