Interview with Alvin Banker who joined the U.S. Marine Corps on July 16, 1942. He attended boot camp at Montford Point, Camp LeJeune, NC Montford Point, which opened April 26, 1942, was a segregated training facility constructed to accommodate the first African American Marine Corps recruits. Banker was one these recruits. Banker was assigned to a Special Duty Platoon of the 51st Composite Defense Battalion. He remained at Montford Point as a cook and Mess Supervisor until September of 1946.
Interview with Charles Paty, Jr., a Charlotte, North Carolina native, enlisted in the Navy at 17 immediately after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. He served in the Pacific theater aboard the Battleship North Carolina and subsequently in the occupational army of Japan. He was discharged and returned to North Carolina in 1945.
Interview with Claude Kiger who enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps on December 8, 1941. He completed basic training at Paris Island, SC, and advance training at Camp Geiger, NC (now Camp LeJeune). He was assigned to the 2nd Division, 2nd Battalion, and deployed to the Pacific Theater.
Interview with Clayton Whitley, a native of Williamston, North Carolina. He was drafted into the US Army in 1940 at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He attended boot camp at Fort McClellan and was assigned to the 26th Infantry Division of the Massachusetts National Guard. Whitley was stationed at the Aerial Training and Observation Command at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. From 1942 to 1945 he served as General George Patton's personal driver in North Africa, Italy, France, Belgium, and Czechoslovakia.
Interview with Cliff Morris who enlisted in the 252nd artillery in Wilmington, NC in 1940. He completed basic training at Fort Screven, Georgia, after which he served in Trinidad with the Army Coast Artillery for 18 months. After the start of WWII, Morris applied for entrance into the Army Air Corps, and completed pilot training in Nashville, Tennessee before going overseas with the 15th Air Force.
Interview with Clyde Hilbourne of Lake Waccamaw, North Carolina, who enlisted in the Navy during World War II, graduating in 1944 from quartermaster school as a seaman first class. He went aboard the Battleship North Carolina at the end of 1944, working in navigation, and served in the Pacific. He was present at the battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. After the war, the ship returned to New York and Hilbourne returned to his family in Columbus County, where he worked as a saw filer in various mills, ending up at the Riegelwood plant, now National Paper.
Interview with Fred Day who joined the U.S. Army in 1944. He completed basic training at Fort Bragg in Fayettville, NC. He served with the 9th Army Division in England and France and was a member of the occupation force in Germany after World War II.
Interview with John Stocks of Columbus County, North Carolina, who enlisted in the Army in 1940 at the age of 20. He was deployed in August of 1942 and sent to Scotland aboard the Argentina. From Scotland he went to Algeria, serving there and throughout Africa, then Italy, as a private first class. He was discharged immediately after the German surrender and returned to North Carolina in May of 1945.
2001 interview with Joseph R. Reaves, a lifelong Wilmington resident and trainee in the state's first Reserve Officers' Training Program (ROTC) at New Hanover High School. Reaves served in the US Navy from 1942-1946 and later during the Korean War.
Interview with Corporal Joseph B. Walker, born in Richmond, Virginia, grew up in Durham, NC. He joined the Corps in 1943, was assigned to the 51st Defense Battalion, and saw duty in the occupied islands of the Pacific. Trained as an electrician in the Corps, he returned to Durham after the war and worked for forty-three years in that trade.
Interview with Margaret Rogers who grew up in Wilmington, NC. She was in first grade at Williston Primary School when the war ended in 1944. In this interview, Rogers describes wartime Wilmington from a child's perspective. She relates her impressions of the POW camp located across the street from her school. She speaks of ration tickets, blackouts, and Liberty ships standing in the Cape Fear River.
Interview with Ruth McSwain who was 16 years old when the United States entered World War II. She was a student at Women's College in Greensboro, NC. In this interview, McSwain describes how the war shaped her life and her community. She also recounts some of the war experiences of her late husband, Clyde McSwain, who was a fighter pilot in Europe during World War II.
Interview with Sam Bissette who joined the US Army Air Corps in October 1942 in Wilmington, NC. He attended boot camp at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. His assignment involved S2 intelligence and administrative duties at Shaw Field with the 455th Basic Training Flying Squadron. Bissette saw action in Cherbourg and Lorient, France in and around Southampton, England.
Interview Stanley Rehder who was called into WWII because of his involvement in ROTC in high school and at NCSU. He was called up in March 1943 and completed his basic training at Camp Walters, Texas. Afterward he returned to NCSU with ASTP for six more months of college classes. He shipped to Liverpool around Christmas in 1944. He recounts how a torpedo struck and sunk his ship on Christmas day 1944, drowning almost every man in his company.