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In 2015 someone told me that a World War II veterans group was having a reunion in town, and he asked me to make a wooden basket for the group. This fellow said his dad served in this group during the war, but has since died.

The name of the group was The Carpetbaggers, and they flew out of England in B-24s. They flew really low around 300 feet. They dropped spies, weapons, motorbikes, and supplies behind enemy lines to the resistance forces. After the war many of the German airports had been destroyed so the same group dropped food and medicine to the German people.

I was asked to make a wooden basket for them and have engraved on it a B-24 with the name of the plane, Miss Fitt, the airport that they flew out of, and other information on it.

I made it and took it to their reunion. As can be expected all of the guys were in their 90's. My friend told them it was a gift that they would give away as a door prize. Each of the guys wanted their picture taken with me holding up the basket.

Here is a picture of the leader of the group.

I just got my issue of National Geographic Magazine and starting on page 79 is an article about this group along with a picture of the leader, Eugene Polinsky, whom is in my picture.

Malcolm / Kentucky USA
 

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most excellent Malcolm....
 

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Very nice of you to contribute...good looking basket too...!
 

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Theo
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On my second tour worked for a Captain that had been given a battlefield commission in WWII. They had lost his paperwork, so somehow he could not get promoted. He was a tough guy. He had known our commander, Lieutenant Colonel, from years earlier. He used to come in mornings, jacket unbuttoned, hat cocked on his head, enter the commander's office, and say, "How's it going baldy", then come upstairs. Nothing was ever said about this. When he retired, he did retire as a Major. Forget his enlisted rank, but if you want to see his photo it appeared on the cover of Life magazine, on a troop ship, loaded down with equipment, on the way to Europe and war.

Knew two cooks in our company, on my first tour. They had been buddies in WWII, infantry. They both claimed that one of them had been shot six times by a sniper. He would pop his head up from behind a long, just far enough to peek over, and the sniper would shoot him in the forehead. The bullets would travel under the skin, over the top of the skull, and come out the back. Six times. The reason I think this is true is because they never said, "No s###, this really happened", or "Once upon a time".
 
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You've shown us many great boxes and other projects, but I doubt many were as truly appreciated as this basket. Thanks for including the mprnews article - quite a guy.
 

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Love it, WWII era aviation was such an amazing time. And the courage it took to go up when attirtion rates were so high, especially before the German AF was pretty well subdued. I'm digging for the National Geographic now.
 

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Mike
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There are a lot of these groups around comprised of WWII veterans. My father belonged to one of them, they among the first to land in Normandy, they were in a smoke generator company so they went ahead to smoke the rivers so the troops could cross under cover of the smoke. They had a reunion every year and slowly the group got smaller and smaller. When my father passed there were only about 5 members left and that has been 15years ago so I'm not sure if any of them are still alive.

I'm sorry to say there are very few WWII veterans left and we should celebrate each day we have with them.

Nice basket Malcolm, a nice tribute to their service for our country.
 

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Thank you for taking the time and your skill to make something special for these folks. Us newer old guys have great respect for the older old guys.
 

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Great basket and great story Malcolm, I was too young to serve but have fond memories of lying on my back in the pasture watching the p-38's and p-51's practice dog fights over head.
Herb
 
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