510th Fighter Squadron

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Stories (18)

Ponder Anew - A WWII Warrior's Story

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At the heart of all good theater is a great story. And "Ponder Anew: A WWII Warrior's Story" certainly fits that description — thanks to the considerable talents of esteemed artists (and husband-and-wife team) Robert Kiefer and Carol Ponder.

An engaging example of reader's theater, the play is based on the memoir of Ponder's father, Lt. Herschel D. Ponder, a fighter pilot who flew P-47 Thunderbolts in Europe. As part of the 510th Fighter Squadron of the 405th Fighter Group, Ponder provided close air support to troops at the front, often seeking out "targets of opportunity" behind enemy lines.

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Lt. Robert Griffiths

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P-47 Pilot Lt. Robert Griffiths joined the 510th Fighter Squadron in August of 1944. He flew his first missions helping pave the way for US troops to gain ground in Europe. By the time he was flying, the Luftwaffe was virtually wiped out. He longed for air to air combat, but it didn't look like he was going to see much.

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Clark Bremseth Collection

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The Clark Elmo Bremseth photo collection has been posted to the website under Photo Archive.  There are 143 images together, and his Daily flight log which will be added later.

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Capt Peter Harrings

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Gregory PONS of France has sent us a copy of Capt. Peter Harrings photo album.  Great images of lots of Maintenance Folks supporting the war effort!

We are always looking for help in identifying Buzzards in Uniform, so if you recognize anyone, let us know!

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Capt William F. Shaeffer

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Jason Helland, Grandson of William F. Shaeffer sent us his Grandfather's WWII Photo collection of the 510th.

We are always looking for help in identifying Buzzards in Uniform, so if you recognize anyone, let us know!

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Lt John Drummond

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Lt. John Drummond's photo collection was recently added to the 510th Fighter Squadron Gallery.  The collection contains 180 photos of Lt. Drummond's time in the Military to include with the 510th Fighter Squadron.

Lt. Drummond was captured by the German Army when his P-47 named "Raid Hot Mama" was shot down.  He was taken to the Stalag Luft I camp where he remained for the rest of the war.

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Vernon J. Schwering

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Vernon J. Schwering was assigned to the 510th Fighter Squadron during WWII. Mike Barrowman scanned the photo album and submitted the images for posting to the website. See the entire WWII Photo collection.

We are always looking for help in identifying Buzzards in Uniform, so if you recognize anyone, let us know!

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Dedication by Ralph C. Jenkins

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Ralph C. Jenkins
Colonel U.S.A.F., Retired
Commander, 510th Fighter Squadron (1945)

I hope I won't be out of line speaking for all the 510th Fighter Bomber Squadron commanders, from the beginning at Walterboro, South Carolina through war's end in Europe. Bruce Parcell was commanding officer from the unit's organization, 5 November 1943, until his death in combat on or about 27 July, 1944 when I took command. Parcell organized the unit, supervised its training, moved it to Christchurch and led its first combat missions. Then there were those who took over while I was on stateside leave in November and December, 1944 when the 510th distinguished itself on missions at Metz (and its Ft. Driant), Chateau-Salins, Saar Valley east of Nancy, and Bastogne in the Ardennes. Upon returning to Europe I was privileged to command until war's end.

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WWII Chronology and Statistics

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Adolph Hitler’s Germany was spreading its evil brand of "order" throughout Europe, while Japan sealed its control of Malaysia and the western Pacific with the Imperial Army’s occupation of Singapore. Then, in a classic case of misjudging an enemy, the Japanese navy struck a devastating blow to Pearl Harbor and other U.S. Pacific garrisons.

Admiral Yamamoto spoke a vision when he said, "I fear we have awakened a sleeping dragon." For the people of the United States quickly recovered from their shock and began gearing for battle.

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WWII OBSERVATIONS

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General observations and random thoughts about the 405th Fighter Group at Strip A-8, Located near Picauville, France, from 29 June 1944 to 11 September 1944.

 

This essay was written in response to a request by Mr. Reme Chuinard, a Frenchman who is compiling an account of the fighter plane activity in Normandy and Brittiany.  Mr. Chuinard selected the 510th Fighter Squadron to typify all P-47 units.   He was a teenager during 1944 and lived through the action.

 

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