Last WWII Marine flying ace dies at 100, served in 110 combat missions
The last living U'S. Marine Corps fighter ace of World War II has passed on at the age of 100. ColonelDean Caswell died at his home in Austin, Texas on Sept. 2
Last WWII Marine flying ace dies at 100, served in 110 combat missionsThe last living U'S. Marine Corps fighter ace of World War II has passed on at the age of 100. ColonelDean Caswell died at his home in Austin, Texas on Sept. 2katu.com
My uncle died around 1970. He was in the Army and went in at Saipan, Okinawa, Philippines, etc. when he died, my dad said to me…the war killed him.As I said above, I bought one of the books written by Dean Caswell, "Kamikaze Madness" on eBay and was bowled over to find that he had actually signed it twice on the inside cover. Whoever sold it didn't mention that little fact.
But the real surprise was the book itself, I learned more about the War in the Pacific than I'd even had a clue about, through his descriptions of the actual battles which he participated in, leading up to the invasion of the Japanese homeland.
We have no idea how hard our Soldiers, Navy and Airmen fought to keep this Country Free; the sacrifices, the willpower and the perseverance under overwhelming pressure that they endured are generally ignored by those who have no understanding of how we got here and in most cases could care less.
The Japanese people were raised from childhood to believe that giving their lives for their Emperor and Country was the only natural and honorable way to live their lives. In the end, they were sending up 17 year old Kamikaze pilots who were only trained to take off and fly behind a "leader" to whatever their target might be. Our airmen fought an exhausting and almost constant battle to keep our carriers safe and support the ground troops as they fought for every single inch of the enemy held islands leading to mainland Japan.
I wish everyone could read that book, it's not just Dean Caswell but excerpts from the diaries of many other Marine and Navy pilots who told it like it was.
We owe them all a debt of gratitude that can never, ever, be repaid.