My Time in Uniform

WWII vet spends his service in the water, trains as substitute Frogman

When Navy SEALs took down Osama bin Laden, Ernest G. Sealo, a former servicemember in the Army was reminded of his time as a substitute Navy Frogman, which the SEALs descend from. Near the end of World War II, Sealo was a soldier stationed in Calcutta, when India was still under British domination. There, a monthly newspaper announced a swimming competition. It would be in Agra, near the Taj Mahal. As a former member of the Harlem YMCA and his high school swim team, Sealo decided to participate.

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Couple torn apart during war reunites more than 50 years later

Couple torn apart during war reunites more than 50 years later

When Bill Angle was flicking through the newspaper after his wife’s death, he was surprised to notice one obituary: his high school sweetheart’s husband. After steeling his nerves for two days, he called Carolyn, the girl he had met at an outdoor film more than 50 years before. “She was a very beautiful brunette and wasn’t very big. She was the small sort,” Bill said. He asked someone who she was, introduced himself, and offered her a ride home. “And that’s how it started,” he said. That was 1941.

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Lt. Col. David Kramer, West Point (1988-1992), U.S. Army (1992-present)

Lt. Col. David Kramer, West Point (1988-1992), U.S. Army (1992-present)

Lt. Col. David Kramer was born in Moline, Ill. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1992 with a Bachelor of Science in mathematics, and proceeded to Fort Rucker for initial entry rotary wing training in the UH-1 Huey. After graduating from flight school as an AH-1F Cobra pilot, he reported to Korea in November 1993, and was assigned to 1-2 Aviation Regiment (Attack) (2d Infantry Division). There he served as an attack platoon leader in B Company and then as a battalion assistant S3 operations officer.

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WWII veteran serves country through commemorating family, other servicemembers

WWII veteran serves country through commemorating family, other servicemembers

After my six weeks training at Hunter College in Bronx, N.Y., I was assigned to U.S. Navy Communications in Washington, D.C., through WAVES. I worked alongside the reflection pool near the Lincoln Memorial as a yeoman third class. Later the rating was changed to Specialist Q and I was honorably discharged Specialist Q first class. I remember so well after my service, in December 1945, the first thing I did was to join the American Legion, a Jane Delano post, in Hartford, Conn. I still have my 1946 membership card after 67 years. It was an all women’s veteran post.

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Remember Them: Memorial Day 2013

Remember Them:  Memorial Day 2013

Memorial Day 2013 Those who gave us this day are gone. They rest forever since that day the honor guard fired the rifles and the bugler blew taps over them. Those Veterans that remain wait for that day. The responsibility of remembering the fallen is not only the duty of our American Legions, VFW Posts or any Veterans organization, but of all of us. We have to give to all those Veterans who are no longer with us, and those Veterans still living, all the praise and honor they earned. This is what today, Memorial Day, represents.

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From Camp Pendleton to interesting ships to Honor Guard

From Camp Pendleton to interesting ships to Honor Guard

I was a young FMF Navy Hospital Corpsman assigned to the 1/9 C in 1981 and transferred to the 1/3 A. And I proudly served. I was told by my recruiter "Navy hospitals on the beach with pretty nurses." Ha! Being an ex/former Marine I should have known better ... YEP! That's correct my first tour was USMC 1978 at Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, Calif. And boy did I have a blast, especially trying to find my barracks at last call. Between the Corps and the Navy I served on some interesting ships.

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As I remember Vietnam

Landed at Ben Hua. Dispersed from Long Bien. Helicopter to Phu Loi. Fixed engines, helped at a Vietnamese school, stood a lot of guard duty, rode in a lot of different helicopters. Helped rescue three young men in the dark in a heavy VC area. No rockets or mortars had my name on them, so I went home.

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U.S. Navy, 1964-1968, US. Newport News (CA-148)

U.S. Navy, 1964-1968,  US. Newport News (CA-148)

Best years serving my country. After electrician "A" school to my duty station on News. I don't regret one minute of service and I would do it again. It was the most beautiful ship in the fleet. Bill Elliott, EM/2C

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Missles, bombers and tankers, oh my!

Missles, bombers and tankers, oh my!

I saw my first Minuteman missiles when I was stationed at F.E. Warren. After less than a year, I was reassigned and found myself loading up B-52D bombers and KC-135 tankers all by myself at times, while only weighing 99.8 pounds. Many thought I couldn't do it, but I did.

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How the world outside Pennsylvania changed me

How the world outside Pennsylvania changed me

Growing up in a small town in Pennsylvania, you learn early on that freedom is not free. Being part of a family that has served their country with distinction all the way back to the Spanish-American War, leaving my mark was very hard to do. So I decided when I was 17 that I would join the Army Reserves, and after two years of doing this I decided the fast lane was where I needed to be and went on active duty. I served with pride, in stateside assignments as well as two overseas assignments.

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All I did was type

All I did was type

I think we all remember the day we raised our right hand and took our oath. After turning 18, I enlisted in the U.S. Army on Feb. 20, 1975 and left for Fort McClellan, Ala. As a 71L - Admin Specialist, I didn't do anything extraordinary or heroic. I just typed and answered the telephone, and was stationed at Fort Bliss and with the 71st Signal Battalion (Provisional) in Okinawa. However, I was proud to have served in some way. I have been a member of the William W. Fahey American Legion Post 491 in Kennett Square, Pa., for about 17 years now.

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How one cadet found ‘boldness,’ dealt with discrimination during World War II

On June 7, 1942, 12 other blacks and I in the Ft. Worth-Dallas area volunteered to be among the first black apprentice seamen in the U.S. Coast Guard. We were sworn in at the old Texas Electric Building, and as we crossed Burnett Park, a passerby’s voice rang out, “Suckers.” That echo stayed with me for a long time. From the beginning, our racial status was in conflict with stated and democratic principles and goals. My trip to New York was in a segregated coach, and I was forced to eat in a segregated section of the dining room, where incidentally my neighbor was a waiter.

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Robert Burton Eisenberg, Oct. 12, 1944 - June 8, 1967

Robert Burton Eisenberg, Oct. 12, 1944 - June 8, 1967

We are indebted to Theodore (Ted) J. Plante for this photograph. Bob Eisenberg and his best friend, Ted Plante, enlisted in the Navy together in February 1964, about 18 months after their graduation from high school. After boot camp together, Bob went to CT school and Ted went to ET school. The two stayed in frequent touch and coordinated leave together just before Bob's assignment to USS Liberty. During that leave, Bob bought his dream car, a 1967 Pontiac Grand Prix convertible, and the two double-dated until they returned to their respective duty stations.

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Ronnie Jordon Campbell, Nov. 4, 1942 - June 8, 1967

Ronnie Jordon Campbell, Nov. 4, 1942 - June 8, 1967

Eulogy by his daughter Deborah: Who was Ronnie Campbell? That is what my uncle Mike told me to find out. "Just the basic information," he said. His date of birth, where he grew up, his parents' names, etc. Sounds like an easy enough task, doesn't it? After all, this was the man who brought me life. But that question, "Who was Ronnie Campbell?", has always been a mystery to me. I never had the opportunity to know this man, never gazed up into his kind loving eyes, never heard the gentleness of his voice as he told me he loved me, and never felt the warmth of his arms as he held me.

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Allen Merle Blue, Sept. 5, 1943 - June 8, 1967

Allen Merle Blue, Sept. 5, 1943 - June 8, 1967

There could have been a light rain falling that morning, or the sun could have been waiting to burst on the scene. Such was the weather pattern in Yakima, Wash., and on the morning of Sept. 5, 1943, there was no difference. A ray of sunlight was evident when Allen M. Blue was born and a new life began. Allen was the firstborn of four children. He, along with his brother and two sisters, grew up in Spokane, Wash., where at a young age he displayed unusual curiosity. His enthusiasm propelled his interests in many directions.

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William Bernard Allenbaugh, Jan. 23, 1944 - June 8, 1967

William Bernard Allenbaugh, Jan. 23, 1944 - June 8, 1967

William Bernard Allenbaugh was born to William Francis and Elizabeth M. Allenbaugh on Jan. 23, 1944 at St. Joseph's Hospital in Baltimore. Bill's early years were spent in Gardenville, Md. His two sisters, Mary and Eleanor, and brother Michael watched this mischievous kid grow into a gentle man who was admired by many. His primary education was at St. Anthony's School, and from there he graduated to Calvert Hall College High School. His interests paralleled those of many boys, with football and bowling topping his list.

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Philip McCutcheon Armstrong, July 4, 1929 - June 8, 1967

Philip McCutcheon Armstrong, July 4, 1929 - June 8, 1967

Philip McCutcheon Armstrong was a 1953 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md. His service included tours with USS Betelgeuse AKA-260 and USS Liberty AGTR-5 as the ship's executive officer. He was killed in the Israeli attack on Liberty when he was hit with aircraft fire while attempting to jettison flaming drums of gasoline.

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Silver Star citation for David Skolak

Silver Star citation for David Skolak

The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the SILVER STAR MEDAL to David Skolak, Interior Communications Electrician Fireman, United States Navy for service as set forth in the following CITATION: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in connection with the armed attack on USS LIBERTY (AGTR-5) in the Eastern Mediterranean on 8 June 1967. During the early afternoon hours, USS LIBERTY was attacked without warning by jet fighter aircraft and three motor torpedo boats.

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USS Liberty survivor James M. Ennes Jr.

USS Liberty survivor James M. Ennes Jr.

I find it very strange that some Americans can argue endlessly that the attack on USS Liberty was a tragic accident, and not the deliberate attack on a known American ship that survivors know it to have been. A point that baffles me (and my shipmates) about that view is that the Israelis did NOT stop firing when they drew close enough to positively identify us as American. I was lying in a stretcher in a starboard passageway just inboard of the wardroom and almost directly over the torpedo that exploded.

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