Twin pilots in basic training; Lowcountry unit deactivated

By SAMMY WAY
Posted 9/16/18

75 YEARS AGO - 1944

April 8 - April 14

- In France, it was difficult to distinguish between the DeLeiris twins, and cadet tactical officers at Shaw Field are having the same trouble. You can imagine what trouble German pilots will have when …

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Twin pilots in basic training; Lowcountry unit deactivated

Posted

75 YEARS AGO - 1944

April 8 - April 14

- In France, it was difficult to distinguish between the DeLeiris twins, and cadet tactical officers at Shaw Field are having the same trouble. You can imagine what trouble German pilots will have when they face this pair. This war has a personal angle for Gilles W. DeLeiris and Alain W. DeLeiris, who are 21, are the same height, weight and of a resemblance phrased by the expression: "Like two peas in the same pod." They are members of Cadet Class 44-C, now taking basic flying training at Shaw Field.

- With all the outward appearance of a major league spring training camp, Shaw Field's baseball prospects are preparing for the season's opener - but unlike the play-for-pay players, there's not a 4-F participant in the crowd. Now that the "no-travel" regulation has been rescinded, the ball players are hard at work with the expectation of being ready to start "swinging" within a month. Last year the Shaw Field fliers were the class of the S.C. Servicemen's league. They swept through both halves of a split season to cop the Palmetto league championship. But this is war, and many of the "ole timers" have switched scenery.

- Lt. Robert (Bobby) Bauman narrowly escaped death recently when his Corsair plane and another collided in mid-air during gunnery practice in California. Lt. Bauman's plane caught fire and went into a spin. He was able to parachute to safety, but the pilot of the other Corsair was killed.

- A large crowd of aviation cadets, cadet wives and Avi-aides enjoyed a buffet supper dance at the Cadet club here. Spring flowers were used throughout the club rooms, and the dining table was centered with an attractive floral arrangement interspersed with Easter eggs and other holiday decorations. Guests danced to recorded music. Arrangements for the affair were in the charge of Mrs. R. C. Williams, hostess.

- Riley Bradham Jr., in a letter to his parents, states, "It's still impossible for me to write personally, but I'm still being helped very much by American Red Cross workers, one of whom is doing this for me. I celebrated my 21st birthday in grand style and not without birthday cake, thanks to very good friends in the hospital. The Red Cross threw a party for me, which was really enjoyable." Riley was wounded in action in Italy recently.

- Sumter stores will begin closing April 12 at one o'clock and will continue the half-day holiday on the same day each week during the remainder of April and May, June, July and August, the Sumter Merchants Association announced. The short work days were given to employees last year, and the merchants voted again this year for the same plan. Sumterites are reminded to do their shopping early on Wednesdays.

- Sumterites who were at Pawley's Island for the Easter holidays report that a marvelous time was had by all Harriet Martin, Bo Carrigan, Kenneth Hill, "Hon" Folsom, Mary Quincy and Robert Muldrow had dinner at Garden City on Sunday evening. Gladys Elkes, Dick Warren, Patti Levi, Billy Jones, Jean Dunn, Lauren Booth, Jimmy Moise and Margaret Newton spent Saturday afternoon at Myrtle Beach. A group enjoyed a visit to Litchfield plantation on Monday. They were Lauren and Jean, Vivian Burress, Jimmy, Patti, "Tillie" Cuttino, George Blanding and others.

- Summer arrives on Saturday, April 15, as far as the Shaw Field soldier is concerned. On Saturday, the G.I.s will put away their olive drab uniforms and make their initial 1944 appearance in khaki. Just to add to the assumption that summer is really here, the Shaw Field swimming pool will be opened on the same date. Unlike the 1943 change-over from olive drab to khaki, the soldier will have no optional period this year in which he can wear either the summer or winter uniform. This year everyone will change to khaki on the same date.

- A subcommittee of the State Democratic Executive Committee was urged by Gov. Olin D. Johnston to speed up and simplify its plans to permit persons in the armed services to vote in the summer primaries. Advocating a longer time between the first and second primaries in order to allow for mailing and receiving the soldier ballots, Johnston asked the committeemen to take prompt action rather than wait until the statewide Democratic convention. In a prepared statement to members of the committee, Johnston also offered to call a special legislative session to repeal any remaining primary election laws as a possible check to court action like that which resulted in the U.S. Supreme Court decision that Texas must let blacks vote in Democratic primaries.

- Two Shaw Field fliers, one of them a native of Turbeville, were fatally wounded when their plane crashed during a routine training flight two miles north of the base. Occupants of the plane were 2nd Lt. John R. Eberhardt, 22, flight instructor, and his student Aviation Cadet Julian I. Cole, also 22, whose home was in Turbeville. Lt. Eberhardt, who has been stationed at Shaw Field since Sept. 14, 1943, is survived by his widow and parents Mr. and Mrs. John S. Eberhardt of Hanover, Illinois. Cadet Cole was survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John C. Cole of Turbeville. He graduated from Turbeville High School in 1937. After completion of his primary flight training at Bennettsville, he arrived at Shaw Field on Feb. 12.

50 YEARS AGO - 1968

Dec. 8 - 14

- Parade Chairman Billy Baskin declared the Bishopville Christmas Parade the biggest and best that Bishopville has ever put on. There were approximately 64 floats and units in the parade. Town dignitaries were: Willie Green Dechamps, senator; Dan Laney Jr., House of Representatives; Hugh Colclough, mayor; members of the Town Council; members of the Lee County Board of Commissioners; officials of the Bishopville Chamber of Commerce; and Miss Bishopville, Miss Peggy Ann Denny.

- The excellent support growers are giving the $1-per-bale program will enable the 1969 cotton research effort to be one-third larger than that of 1968, according to South Carolina trustees of the Cotton Producers Institute. Major attention will be focused on the cotton insect problem which is becoming more serious and costlier and on developing all-cotton durable press fabrics, the trustees added. Some pests have become more resistant to certain insecticides and development of newer and more toxic materials has become far more expensive. Durable press is a prime consideration in markets involving 4.2 million bales of cotton.

- Samuel Itly Wilson, 74, died this morning after an extended illness. Born in Manning, he was the son of Judge John Snowden Wilson and Elizabeth Jane Ingram Wilson. Mr. Wilson was a member and deacon of First Presbyterian Church. He was a prominent farmer and active businessman throughout South Carolina. Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Louise Shannon Wilson; a daughter, Mrs. Frederick Rutledge Baker Jr.; a daughter-in-law, Mrs. John S. Wilson, widow of a son, John Snowden Wilson, who preceded him in death in July 1965; four sisters; six grandchildren; and a number of nieces and nephews.

- Is South Carolina football improving? Ask the North Carolina Shrine Bowl All-Stars - I'm sure they would tell you that the South has "risen again." Spearheaded by a rugged defense and an offense that liked to control the football, the South downed the North 21-7 for the eighth time in the past 10 years. Overall, the series is deadlocked at 14-14 with four games ending in ties in the classic.

- The schools in District 17 are going one step further in helping students prepare for a future by acquainting them with different jobs around Sumter. This pilot program, which is under the guidance program, is stressing vocational education for junior high and senior high students. Recently the ninth-grade representatives from McLaurin Junior High School visited the Chamber of Commerce to talk about industry and get an overall picture of business. After a visit to the Chamber, the groups were taken to different places around Sumter to view the jobs and to find out firsthand about certain ones they may be interested in. The students will also learn what education is needed to fulfill such a job so they can plan their courses accordingly.

- William Blyther smashed his old scoring record at Ebenezer High School last night, hitting 49 points to spark the Bulldogs to their fourth-straight win, 96-65. A 6-3 senior guard, Blyther hit on 20 field goals and nine free throws to set the new record. His point making led Lincoln to a commanding 54-32 lead at the half, and from that point on the Bulldogs had things pretty much their way.

- Morris College registered its first win of the 1968-69 campaign edging out Kitrell College of North Carolina, 101-92. It gives Morris College a 1-2 record with the first conference game of the season set at home against South Carolina Area Trade College. Jimmy Floyd scored 28 points to spark a Morris College comeback in the second half. Morris was down at intermission 56-46 but outscored Kitrell by nine points in the third period and outpointed the visitors by eight points in the final stanza.

- The Air Force's highest decoration for heroism, the Air Force Cross, has been presented to two TAC pilots for actions in Southeast Asia by Gen. William W. Momyer, TAC commander. The decorations were pinned on Maj. Larry D. Armstrong of MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, and Capt. Hal P. Henning of McConnell Air Force Base, Kansas, during ceremonies at TAC headquarters at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. Maj. Armstrong received the Air Force Cross for action as an F-4D aircraft commander in Vietnam on Feb. 8, 1968. He made a visual high-speed run across a heavily defended enemy airfield, damaging and destroying several aircraft on the ground. When the lead crew had to eject over hostile territory, the major remained in the area to cover and direct the rescue effort of the two downed pilots. Capt. Henning earned his medal for heroism as an F-106 pilot in Southeast Asia on Oct. 27, 1967. He was on a strike mission in North Vietnam. His aircraft was damaged by a surface-to-air-missile, which knocked off one external fuel tank and caused the aircraft to flip over. Capt. Henning managed to control his aircraft and continued on to the target through heavy anti-aircraft fire.

25 YEARS AGO - 1993

Sept. 10 - 16

- Area high school English teachers will have an opportunity to brush up on their communication skills while earning graduate credits thanks to a grant awarded to USC Sumter. The $7,128 grant, awarded by the S.C. Department of Education, will enable USC Sumter to offer Communications for the Workplace, a special topics institute on applied academics, commonly known as "tech prep" concepts.

- Schools in Sumter District 2 will join communities across the state in celebrating Industry Appreciation Week. S.C. Industry Appreciation week is an annual promotional event designed to recognize industries in the state. Each District 2 school has six industries they have been asked to contact and to invite to activities. The benefit is two-fold: first, the industries learn about a school in Sumter 2; and second, students learn about the industries of our county.

- A Lowcountry unit of the South Carolina Army National Guard that has an armory in Manning will be deactivated in a ceremony at the gravesite of its historical and spiritual forebearer Revolutionary War Gen. Francis Marion, the "Swamp Fox." The 4th Battalion, 178th Field Artillery Battalion, which traces its lineage to the Lowcountry militia companies of the Revolutionary War and is one of the oldest and most honored units in the state National Guard, dies as a victim of the end of the Cold War.

- Sumter High School head coach Tom Lewis would have loved to have gotten his 100th career victory against Summerville. Instead he had to settle for being the coach of the 403rd team to lose to Green Wave head coach John McKissick as Summerville edged the Gamecocks 19-13 at Summerville Memorial Stadium. Lewis, though, was not worried about records. His major concern was how his young team would fare against the Green Wave, ranked third among 4A teams in the Associated Press poll. He questioned whether the Gamecocks were worthy of their No. 6 ranking. The players provided the answer, according to Lewis.

- Clarendon Hall scored two touchdowns within the first six minutes of the game and rolled to a 28-0 win over Wilson Hall at Spencer Field. Quarterback Lonnie Robinson ran for three touchdowns and passed for the other to spur the Saints' attack. Robinson rushed 18 times for 147 yards and handed off to tailback Neal Brown 22 times for 129 yards as Clarendon Hall collected 294 rushing yards in the contest.

- Seven sewing plants in Sumter and Clarendon counties have been closed because their owner, United Apparel Group of New York, is in "serious" financial trouble, the manager of one of the plants said. Some of the plants, which closed abruptly in August, had been reopened since, but they closed again in the past weeks, said Arnold Nessbaum, the manager of Summerton Apparel, one of the closed plants. At least three plants in Williamsburg, Florence and Dillon counties have closed also.

- Economic development and civic leaders in Sumter, Clarendon and Lee counties are talking up the importance of industrial jobs to the economy as they make final preparations for South Carolina Industry Appreciation week. The statewide promotional event, which is sponsored by the State Development Board and local organizations, is a way to recognize existing industries and to advertise the state as pro-industry to companies looking for locations to build new plants. The theme for the week this year, which appears to highlight the state's effort to attract greater foreign investment, is "South Carolina Industry: Partners in a World Class Future."

- Employees of Clarendon School District 1 will not be offered an early retirement incentive this year because district trustees say the program is too expensive. Trustees voted not to offer the program, which has been approved by the state. "When the General Assembly passed the early retirement incentive, which is a one-time deal, each state agency had to decide if they would offer this program," District 1 Superintendent Dr. Milton Marley said. "There's just one catch, they didn't give you any money for it."

- The city of Bishopville will borrow $200,000 to make ends meet until property tax revenue starts coming in around Jan. 1. City council voted 4-1 in a special noon meeting to approve the "tax-anticipation" note. Council-woman Dot Smith cast the dissenting vote. "Without the facts and figures in front of me, I couldn't vote for it," Smith said. "I'm not sure we need it." Some local governments borrow money on a tax-anticipation basis to pay bills from the time a new budget year begins until property owners begin paying taxes for that year.

- Sumter's public housing complexes will receive a regular dose of funding for the next five years for needed improvements and modernization, thanks to a new federal grant. The Housing Authority of Sumter will receive about $347,000 each year from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for plumbing repairs and replacements, new floors, new appliances and the repaving of parking lots, said Housing Authority Executive Director J.B. Raffield. The grant replaces another competitive, long-term grant that the city of Sumter had to apply for every five or 10 years and didn't always receive. The new, annual dispersal of funds makes repairs and modernization more manageable he said.