E-MAILS FROM JIM MC EWAN
OF THE 8TH PHOTO RECONNAISSANCE SQUADRON
6TH PHOTO RECONNAISSANCE PHOTO GROUP

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Jim McEwan

Jim McEwan is an archivist and historian for the 8th Photo Reconnaissance Squadron's Veterans Association.

 

Subject:    P-38 Lightning
Date:        Fri, 18 May 2001 02:13:15 -0400
From:       "fiber-net.com" <mcewan@fiber-net.com>

DEAR PETER,

LARRY PACKARD CONTACTED ME IN RESPONSE TO YOUR INTEREST IN THE HISTORY OF WW 2 IN AUSTRALIA.. WE WE ARRIVED IN TOWNSVILLE WHERE WE FLEW OUT OF LITTLE DIRT FIELD (this would have been the Stock Route airfield) THAT WAS LOCATED DOWN A SHORT ROAD LEADING FROM THE FRONT OF GARBUTT FIELD. IT WAS FARM LAND BUT LATER WHEN I CAME DOWN TO TOWNSVILLE FROM PORT MORESBY TO HAVE OUR B-17 REPAIRED THERE WERE A FEW LARGE HANGARS ON THAT LITTLE ROAD.

THE P-38 AIRCRAFT THAT WE BROUGHT TO AUSTRALIA WERE THE FIRST TO BE SENT OVERSEAS. I SEE LARRY SAYS I WAS A GUNNER ON A B-17 BEFORE THE THE P-38 GOT THERE. WE LOST THREE OF THE P-38S REAL FAST THEN WE RECEIVED THREE B-17 WITH TWO DAYS TRAINING WE WERE MADE GUNNERS. WHICH WORKED OUT REAL WELL.

ONE NOTE ABOUT WHERE LT. WATTS ENDED UP. TO THE BEST OF MY MEMORY HE STOPPED JUST ABOUT THE CENTER OF THE SALT FLAT. I THINK I CAN MAKE A ROUGH MAP OF THE AREA AS FAR AS THE FIELDS AND THE SALT FLAT LOCATIONS ARE TO ONE AND OTHER.

I NEVER SENT AN E-MAIL TO AUSTRALIA SO HERE GOES.

REGARDS,

JIM MC EWAN

 


 

Subject:    P-38 LIGHTNING
Date:             Mon, 21 May 2001 09:49:29 -0400
From:            "fiber-net.com" <mcewan@fiber-net.com>

HI AND A GOOD GIDDAY,

I TALKED TO RALPH W. WATTS VIA PHONE YESTERDAY. HE RETIRED A FULL COLONEL FROM THE A.F. I WILL ASK HIM IF HE INJURED HIS HAND. I DON'T THINK SO AND THE REASON I SAY THAT IS HE MADE A PERFECT LANDING.

RALPH DOES NOT HAVE A COMPUTER, BUT HIS SON DOES, BUT HIS HOME IS IN TEXAS.

THE HOUSE WHERE THE PHOTO LAB WAS LOCATED WAS ON THE SAME STREET THAT THE MOVIE WAS LOCATED. WAS IT THE WINTERGARDEN??????.

I DO NOT RECALL THE STREET NAME BUT WILL CONTACT SOME OF THE OLD PHOTO MEN THEY MAY BE ABLE TO HELP. AS I REMEMBER I WOULD COME FROM GARBUTT FIELD TURN LEFT TOWARDS CASTLE HILL ONE OR TWO BLOCKS THEN TURN RIGHT THE LAB WAS ON THE RIGHT A FEW. WILL ALSO CHECK WITH RALPH WATTS HE SPENT MUCH TIME AT THE LAB. OH YES ALMOST FORGOT BUD SOWERS WAS THE LAB OFFICER HE LIVES IN FLORIDA AND I WILL CALL HIM AS SOON AS I ANSWER ALL OF YOUR VERY INTERESTING QUESTIONS.

YES I THINK. I DID SEE AN AERIAL PHOTO OF TOWNSVILLE. WILL DO SOME LOOKING FOR IT AFTER SIXTY YEARS MY RECALL IS LESS THAN PERFECT.

PLEASE FORGIVE.
MORE LATER,

JIM

 


 

Subject:    P-38 LIGHTNING
Date:             Mon, 21 May 2001 10:14:19 -0400
From:            "fiber-net.com" <mcewan@fiber-net.com>

LOTS OF MAIL LOVE IT.

THE NEAREST I CAN SAY ABOUT THE FAIRY BATTLE WAS MAY 1942 THE EXACT DAY NO.

THE REASON FOR THE CRASH WAS I WAS SICK WITH THE FLU YOU CAN SEE I WAS ALL BUTTONED UP ON A NICE WARM DAY IN TOWNSVILLE. THIS PILOT WAS STUNTING OVER HEAD WHEN I SAW WHITE SMOKE TRAIL FROM HIS ENGINE, HE DEADSTICKED IT BUT FELL SHORT OF THE FIELD BY ABOUT 100 FEET AND HIT A DITCH THAT WIPED OUT HIS UNDERCARRIAGE. HE WAS NOT HURT.

THE TWO PICTURES ON TOP OF PAGE 9 WERE TAKEN AT TOWNSVILLE THE LITTLE DIRT FIELD (Stock Route airfield) NEAR GARBUTT. I THINK GARBUTT IS THE MAIN AIRFIELD AT TOWNSVILLE. I MADE A DRAWING OF THE LOCAL AREA I WILL SEND LATER. I NEVER KNEW THE NAME OF THAT LITTLE DIRT STRIP. THE MAN SITTING ON THE P-38 ON PAGE 9 IS BURT KLATT, HE WAS THE LINE CHIEF. A GREAT GUY FROM BROOKLYN NEW YORK.

JIM

 


 

Subject:   P-38 LIGHTNING
Date:           Mon, 21 May 2001 10:43:37 -0400
From:          "fiber-net.com" <mcewan@fiber-net.com>

HI ,PETER,

ROGER ON THE MAP. PRETTY DARN CLOSE AS I RECALL IT.

ALMOST FOR GOT PIC ON PAGE 18 IS AT STOCK ROUTE. WHAT I CALL THE DIRT STRIP. BY THE WAY HILLIARD IS STILL ALIVE AND KICKING I WILL SEND HIS E-MAIL ADDRESS TO YOU . BILL WAS A PHOTOMAN, HE MAY KNOW THE ADDRESS OF THE LAB DOWN TOWN.. IN THE MEAN TIME I WILL CONTACT BUD SOWERS TO SEE IF HE CAN HELP.

AGAIN THE PICTURES ON PAGES 12 AND 18 SHOW WHEEL COVERS ON NOW SEE PAGE 26 ALL WHEEL COVERS ARE REMOVED. WHILE AT STOCK ROUTE WE HAD BRAKES OVER HEATING WHEN TAXING FROM GARBUTT TO STOCK ROUTE FIELD . WE HAD TO USE BRAKES TO STEER IN THOSE DAYS. BY REMOVING WHEEL COVERS THAT CURED THE PROBLEM.

JIM

 


 

Subject:    Wheel covers
Date:             Mon, 21 May 2001 11:08:40 -0400
From:            "fiber-net.com" <mcewan@fiber-net.com>

PETER,

DON'T THINK I MADE MYSELF CLEAR ON THE WHEEL COVERS. THE REASON I SAY THAT THE PICTURE ON PAGE 12 IS AT STOCK ROUTE IS THAT COVERS WERE REMOVED LONG BEFORE WE WENT UP MORESBY, ALSO THE SHIP SHOWN IS AN F-4. BY THE WAY I JUST CALLED BUD SOWERS. HE WAS NOT AT HOME. HE GOES AWAY ON LONG TRIPS UP NORTH TO VISIT HIS CHILDREN. BUT I WILL KEEL TRYING.

HERE IS BILL HILLIARD'S E-MAIL HILLIARD@IJ.NET. IF THIS DOESN'T WORK LET ME KNOW AND I WILL GET IT RIGHT FOR YOU,

JIM

 

REFERENCE BOOKS

The Eight Ballers: Eyes of the Fifth Air Force
The 8th Photo Reconnaissance Squadron in World War II
By John Stanaway & Bob Rocker
www.schifferbooks.com

 

 

 

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This page first produced 21 May 2001

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