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William  A.  Rendall

 

Personal Legacy
WILLIAM A. RENDALL
World War II
Memories and Biography

(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)

22 April 1988

Dear Will:

I think I last spoke to you at the Beeches in Shipdham. We were passing through with my old RAF evadee buddy.

But first, my congratulations on the 44th LogBook. Outstanding!

Please find my check enclosed to cover the cost of a copy of the 44th Roll of Honored Casualties.

After six months in France as an evadee, I was captured by the Gestapo under compromising circumstances. I was their guest in Fresnes Prison in Paris when the Wehrnmacht evacuated and I had he good fortune to end up in Stalag Luft III at Sagan. Center compound of Sagan was probably the best POW unit in Germany under command of Col. Pel. Spivey and later General Vanaman. A friend of mine, Tom Mulligan, of Delmar NY was one of the security staff who was instrumental in getting many of the administration and security records (some in code) back to the states after the war. Tom died in 1985 and with the direction of the Stalag Luft III organization, the family has given the papers to the Air Force Academy for preservation.

I have spent time with the Mulligan sons and an interested family friend cataloging these papers, pictures and artwork and found it very interesting. The three cartons totaled 51 lbs. when shipped several weeks ago.

I am planning to attend the annual meeting of the Air Force Escape and Evasion Society in Denver on May 18-22 and spend some time at the Academy.

I am particularly interested in members of the 44th who may be involved with the Escape and Evasion and Stalag Luft III.

Gratefully,

Bill Rendall




WILLIAM A. RENDALL
World War II
Memories and Biography

(Taken from a letter to Will Lundy)

12 Van Buren Dr.
Kinderhook, NY 12106-9750

Dear Will:

A quick tale of interest. I believe I told you in a previous letter that I had attended the Escape and Evasion Society in Denver last May. It was a good opportunity for Everett Childs and me to spend time together and reminisce our days together in the French Resistance. Childs was a navigator on his first mission, Schweinfurt 14 October 1943, 384 BG (17's) when he went down coming down near Bar-le-duc, Marne, France. He had been skipping around until we met in an organization in January which claimed to have the connections to fly us out by touch down Lysanders in the Marne.

We moved from safe house to safe house until Easter listening to BBC for our coded message. We finally gave up and went into the woods to join a small maguis where we picked up a Canadian squadron leader, George Hill (Spitfire Ace-14), and an English engineer out of a Lanc. Things got hot so we split. Childs and Hill were caught on a train near Pau and Van de Velde and I were caught in an organization that had been infiltrated. We all ended up in Fresnes Prison in Paris.

Childs escaped off the train taking him to Germany and managed to get back through the lines near Orleans, and was sent back to England for seven days of one-on-one interrogation by a Captain of Intelligence.

We learned the address in Denver where we could get a copy of this report since it is now declassified.

It is interesting to read now, as there are many small points of information that we have forgotten. When Childs dropped out of that moving train, he was within five miles of where he had hit the ground ten months before.

I would like to make the reunion in Fort Worth, but I think that there is a conflict with Escape and Evasion in Pittsburgh and I have invited the daughter of one of my helpers to be our guest.

Thanks again for your help.

Gratefully,

Bill Rendall
 
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