Local Military

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Lawrence Willison

Hometown Hero: Springfield vet recalls saving ship in WWII

Name: Lawrence WillisonHometown: Born in Mattoon, Ill., in 1919Current Residence: Springfield, OhioFamily (spouse, children or grandchildren): Wife, Kay, for 68 years; five children, (three daughters, two sons); 15 grandchildren; and 20 great-grandchildren.Career After the Military: Worked on the railroad before the service and afterward.Hobbies: Painting and readingBranch of Service: United ...

Vietnam veterans honored with new exhibit at Air Force museum

Under heavy enemy fire, Army Green Beret 1st Lt. Randy Harrison had one chance to get on board an Air Force Huey helicopter or face the likelihood of death. Door gunner and Air Force Staff Sgt. Fred Cook wasn’t going to wait any longer: He fired an M-60 machine gun ...

Paul Chappell

Speaker addresses ‘controversial’ issue at Wittenberg — hope

Iraq War Veteran Capt. Paul K. Chappell spoke at Wittenberg University on Monday night about peace and hope in the 21st century. Chappell serves as the peace leadership director for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. He has been leading discussions and lectures on waging peace, ending violence and learning what ...

One of the U.S. Air Force’s most unusual aircraft is shown at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force last year. The CV-22 Osprey, a tiltrotor aircraft that combines the vertical takeoff, hover and vertical landing qualities of a helicopter with the long-range, fuel efficiency and speed characteristics of a turboprop aircraft, was designed for use by special operations forces. CHUCK HAMLIN / STAFF

2 Ospreys to fly over Air Force Marathon, museum

Two CV-22 Ospreys are scheduled to land on the lawn at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, according to the museum.The 20th Special Operations Squadron crews of the tilt-rotor aircraft, based at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., will meet veterans of the “Green Hornets,” ...

John and Bev Titus look over their daughter Alicia’s drivers license. The license was the only found of Alicia’s after the plane crash on 9/11. Bill Lackey/Staff

Champaign County family fights for peace since daughter’s 9/11 death

The terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, shattered thousands of lives and left lasting scars that have continued to haunt some residents in Clark and Champaign counties for 15 years.For John and Beverly Titus, it meant the loss of a daughter and more than a decade spent trying to create ...

James Fred McDaniel

Hometown Hero: Springfield vet completed secret WWII missions

Name: James Fred McDaniel Hometown: Dayton/SpringfieldCurrent Residence: Masonic Community, SpringfieldFamily: Widowed, five wives; one daughter, two granddaughters and two great granddaughters.Career after the military: After the military, I returned to Dayton and became a market manager at Kroger Co., (I opened the first self-service meat department for Kroger); worked at ...

Pilot relives ‘miracle’ flight on B52

A “huge” flash lit up the cockpit of the lumbering B-52D above North Vietnam, jostling the giant jet and turning a bombing run into survival for pilot commander Capt. Kenneth J. Curry and his crew. The enemy surface-to-air missile exploded near the left wing on April 9, 1972, spraying the ...

Fred Smith

Springfield vet remembers praying during trips to enemy territory

Name: Fred D. SmithHometown: Kansas City, KansasCurrent Residence: Springfield, OhioFamily: Spouse Veatrice Glover Smith; two daughters, Donna Smith Burch and Andrea Smith Walker-Wallace; one son, Keven Smith; five grandsons, William Burch III, Larry Walker Jr., Christopher Burch, Ryan Burch and Joshua Smith; three granddaughters, Kimberly Walker, Gabrielle and Bethany Smith; ...

5 things you probably didn’t know about the American Legion

1. The organization is based in Indianapolis and has 2.2 million members around the country. 2. It is the single largest donor of blood to the American Red Cross. 3. It was founded in Paris in 1919, and the first national convention was held later that year in Minneapolis, Minn. ...

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