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Elmer  H.  Reinhart

 

Personal Legacy
ELMER H. REINHART
World War II
Memories and Biography

(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)

January 27, 1988

Dear Will:

Your book arrived about ten days ago and I am glad to have it. I haven't been all the way through it yet, but I find it very interesting.

I am enclosing a listing of the former POWs that I told you about and I hope you find it useful. We have a reunion of our group every two years now as we grow older. The last one in 1987 was in Chicago and there were 20 of us from that raid. This number includes men from the 93rd, 98th, 376th, and 389th groups as well as the 44th. There were originally about 110 of us in that camp and about 65 of us still living. Some never attend our reunions, which are held from July 29th through August 1st each time. The next one will be held in Las Vegas in 1989. I have attended five of the last six and expect to attend the next one.

You mentioned in your letter about a long poem that Ray Ward is writing. I would like to have a copy when it is completed. At our last POW meeting, I obtained a copy of a one-page poem about the Ploesti raid that is very touching, but I only have one copy at the present time and I do not want to delay this letter any longer before I have any copies made. I will send you one in the future.

I am sure you spent a great deal of time preparing your Roll of Honor book and I hope it is a financial success. I am enclosing a $10 check instead of the $5 you asked to help a little. I did get a copy of your 67th history book when I saw you at the 44th reunion at Ellsworth Air Force Base in Rapid City, SD. Unless there is a great deal of change, I don't think I need another copy.

You sure did do a lot of traveling after the reunion in Norwich in foreign countries and I think that is great. I should have done the same thing but I had arranged to attend a high school reunion in Illinois before going to England the following week, so I returned to the USA without delay following the reunion at Norwich.

It was four months before I returned to Honolulu, however. I am fortunate to have friends and relatives in so many places on the main land that I enjoy being with and they seem glad to have me visit them. I spent about two week sin the Washington, D.C. areas last summer and got to visit some of the famous places there including the National Capitol and some of the Smithsonian Museums.




I lost my wife in 1981 and since that time, I have traveled quite a bit, including trips to Alaska, through the Panama Canal and around the Hawaiian Islands. As you may know, I had about five years of active duty and stayed in the Reserves for another 30, so I have full military privileges and they are a bit help and will be in the future.

I am not sure which reunions I will be attending this year, if any, but hopefully we will meet again soon. Aloha... Elmer (Reinhart)





ELMER H. REINHART
World War II
Memories and Biography

(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)

8 January 1993

Dear Will:

I received your letter a few days ago and glad to hear from you. There were a few items in it that I thought maybe I could expand on that might be of interest to you. I am sending you a list of the POWs that were held in Romania following the low-level raid on 1 August 1943 with their addresses and phone numbers. We have a reunion every two years and the next one will be at Wright-Patterson AFB at the same time the 44th Bomb Group will be there. As you can see from the enclosed letter from Joseph Kill, we will be staying at the Hope Hotel. We usually have from 20 to 30 POWs at our reunions along with their wives and children.

As you can see from the roster, these include members from all five groups. I have not heard of any other plans for these groups. It appears from Joe Kill's letter that we will all be together at the Holiday Inn for the reunion banquet on 1 August 1943. We will probably have a chance to visit each other at other times while we are there.

I am also including a copy of the order that sent me and my crew to England during April of 1943. You will note that Lasco and Carpenter are on the same order. Lasco and I went through all our training together, were assigned to the same bomb group, flew the same missions and were shot down on the same raid. We remain close friends and expect to see each other again in Dayton. Joe Kill and Al Mash are also close friends.

Richard H. Pendleton was assigned to my crew at Pueblo, CO and remained with my crew through our training and combat missions. He survived the war, married, had a family and business in Odessa, Texas and was killed in an automobile accident in the early 1950s. His wife now lives in Florida and plans to attend our next reunion in Dayton.

I have not yet received my copy of the latest 44th Logbook so do not have a copy of John McClane's video but want to get one so you have seen a lot of pictures I have not seen. I am enclosing one of myself with the Shipdham Church in the background and one of Reg Carpenter carrying the 44th banner.

I hope to visit with you when I come to Air Force Village West this spring. Last year I spent January and February at AFVW and found it a bit cool, wet and foggy as compared to Honolulu weather so this year I decided to stay in Honolulu during these months. Also, I want to get my income tax out of the way early so will not be coming to California before late March or April. I am undecided as to when I will make my permanent move to AFVW but as long as my health is good, I will probably remain a resident of Hawaii.
So until we meet again, Aloha. Elmer Reinhart
 
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