The Eighth Air Force Historical Society
Virginia Chapter

Folded Wings....

High Flight

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds - and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence.
Hov'ring there I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long delirious, burning blue,
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew -
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high unsurpassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand and touched the face of God.

Pilot Officer Gillespie Magee
No 412 squadron, RCAF
Killed 11 December 1941


Abraham Joseph Zeeland Firestone








Abraham Joseph Zeeland Firestone, one of the last of the Greatest Generation, passed on 04/09/2016. He is survived by his wife of 69 years, "the love of my life," Ernestine, four children; Carol Ann "Tess" Firestone, Steven Firestone (Debbie), Claudia Firestone Stiebel (Bill), and William Firestone. Five grandchildren; Stefanie Fischel, Jared Fischel, Matt Fischel (Edith), Sam Stiebel (Emily), Sally Ein (Mark), four great grandchildren, and his brother, Irwin Firestone. A first generation American, Abe landed at Ellis Island at the age of 1 day. He grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y. After joining the Army Air Corp, Abe came to Newport News as a flight officer, assigned to Langley AFB, in preparation for duty in England during WWII While assigned to Langley Field, during the Jewish Holidays, William Morgenstern, the father of Ernestine Morgenstern (Firestone), invited the young officer to come to Rodef Sholom Temple to participate in holiday services. Here, he met his future bride, Ernestine. At the end of the war, Abe returned to Newport News, where he married Ernestine and started Firestone Insurance Services and Cardinal Premium Finance Companies, operating these businesses until he retired in 1994. The success of these ventures allowed Abe to tirelessly give time and financial support to worthy causes, and give generously to friends, those in need, and the greater community. Abe was a World War Two hero, recipient of multiple medals, including two Distinguished Flying Crosses (B-17 Bomber, 34th Bomb Group, Lead Pathfinder aircraft), husband, father, mentor, benefactor and successful businessman. Abe was a man who supported and was deeply committed to his family, his religion (Rodef Shalom Temple), America, and community enriching organizations like Rotary, where he was an active member for over 25 years. To all who knew him, Abe was a man of honor and integrity; his word was his bond. Abe was a man who knew no strangers, always quick with a pun, kind, gentle, and quietly generous to all. He always responded to the regular greeting, "How's it going?" with "I feel like a million dollars...all green and wrinkled." And, he never liked German hot dogs... "they're the wurst. " To all of the people who have joined the Firestone Family in saying goodbye to this truly Quality man, thank you. To the myriad of friends who supported him in his later years, as his health began to falter, we are grateful more than mere words can express. A man's immortality rests through and in the minds and memories of all who survive him


James (Jimmy) Harvell, Chapter Treasurer

James E. Harvell, Jr. 95, of Chesterfield, went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, February 9, 2016. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Daphne Harvell and his second wife, Ina Rae Harvell. He is survived by his children, Carole Nunnally (Bobby Hague), Pauline Vaughan (Gregory) and Robert Harvell (Susan); grandchildren, Christopher Nunnally, Jeffrey Nunnally, Kim Witherspoon, Troy Miller (Anissa), Jennifer Haskell (Ryan) and Nikki Harvell; six great-grandchildren, sisters, Annie Mae Harvell and Beverly Toney (Jerry) and his brother, Billy Harvell (Pat). James was a WWII, 8th Air Force Veteran and a faithful member of Woodlake United Methodist Church.

Kenneth Arnold Rowe

Kenneth Arnold Rowe passed peacefully in his home on July 29, 2012 with family by his side. He was preceded in death by his parents, Arnold and Mabel Rowe; sisters, Shirley Duval and Marcia Weber; and daughter, Shireen Allen. Kenneth is survived by his loving wife, Loretta Rowe; sons, Mark Rowe and John Mertens; five grandchildren, Meredith Rowe, Tyler Rowe, Catherine Coday, Anne Smith and Tara Chevalier; and four great-grandchildren. He was born in Kenosha, Wis., and served with distinction during two Aviation careers - one in the Military and one in Civil Aviation. His military career began in December 1942 and he became a 4-engine bomber pilot at age 19. He flew 13 combat missions from England in the Mighty 8 Air Force, was shot down twice and liberated from a POW camp at Moosburg, Germany when WWII ended in May 1945. After 21 years of active duty, he retired from the USAF in 1963 as a Major and Command Pilot with 5,451 flying hours. Upon retiring, he accepted a flying assignment with administrative duties in the Virginia Department of Aviation. His 30-plus years spanned eight Governor Administrations for Virginia's Aviation Community and was highlighted by an appointment as Director by Governor Robb. He was reappointed by Governor Baliles who included Aviation in his historic Virginia Transportation Trust Fund which increased aviation funding tenfold and continues in existence today. After being reappointed by Governor Wilder, he retired at the end of his term at age 69. During his military career, he received the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal with one OLC, the Purple Heart, the POW Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal. During his Civil Aviation career, he was honored to serve as President of the National Association of State Aviation Officials and received many awards and recognitions highlighted by the National Air Transportation Association's "Ong Memorial Leadership Award," the National Aeronautic Association's "Elder Statesman of Aviation Award" in 1993 and induction into the "Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame" in 1994 by the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society. A Memorial Service will be held at the Virginia Aviation Museum August 10 at 2 p.m., and a funeral service with honors will be at Arlington National Cemetery on a date to be determined. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society.

 Published in Richmond Times-Dispatch on August 5, 2012

Melvin Edward Hanes passed away quietly at home on Friday February 10th after a short battle with colon cancer. He was born in Baltimore, MD, the youngest of three children. He put himself through college at night school, but never completed a degree. He was working as a draftsman for the Deitrich Steel Company while attending Johns Hopkins University until he was drafted in 1942. He was with the 950th Engineering Topographic Company and joined the 952md Engineer in London. There he met and courted Margaret Bertha Murray. They were married April 5th, 1945. He returned to civilian status in January 1946 and joined the US Geological Survey as a Scientific Illustrator. By 1955, he had moved his family to a house in College Park, MD and was promoted to Chief of Geologic Cartography. In 1946 he also joined the Masons in his father's and father-in -law's footsteps. After the move to College Park he continued night classes at George Washington University.

He traveled extensively as a consultant doing mapping in Pakistan in the 1960's and 1970's. In 1973 the family relocated to Centreville, VA when his Branch of the Geologic Survey opened in Reston, VA.

In 1973 he became Assistant Chief for Administration and Production Control and became involved with mapping the uncharted areas of Saudi Arabia, requiring several assignments there. In 1979 he and Margaret began a 2 year assignment in Saudi Arabia and traveled extensively. He retired from Federal service in 1980 and continuing the next year on a personal services contract in Arabia. He returned in 1983 as Technical Advisor, and fully retired in 1984. They joined several seniors groups, and he became more active in the Masons. Margaret passed suddenly in July 1992. Following her death he continued to be active in the Masons, becoming Master of the Skidmare Daylight Lodge. he was also active in the Shriner Legion of Honor, Elks Club, Scottish Rites Lodge, VFW, with NARF and with reunions of the 942nd Army Air Force which included his prior units, and with USGS retirees.

He gardened at home and raised oysters at his vacation home on the lower Potomac, as well as fished and crabbed. As recently as September 2011 he split wood for his fireplace for cozy winter fires. He also worked exhaustively on the genealogy of the Hanes and Murray families, with frequent trips to libraries, pouring over records and duplicating old photos in his studio.

He is proceeded in death by his parents, Elizabeth (Drewanz) Hanes and Walter Glenn Hanes, his siblings, Walter Glenn Hanes Jr. and Verna (Hanes) Ackerman, and his wife Margaret (Murray) Hanes. He is survived by his children Verna E. Hanes, MD of Ronceverte, WV, Melvin Angus Hanes of Houston, TX, and Lorna Margaret (Hanes) Morrison (Terrance) of Niceville, FL; 8 grandchildren: Kathleen M.(Schultz) Leeble (John) of Lewes, DE, Daniel A. Schultz (Susan) of Rosemont,PA, Misty D.(Hanes) Haren (Boyd) of Houston, TX , Gregory T. Hanes of Houston, TX, Megan E. Morrison, DO of Detroit, MI, Patrick A.Morrison, Scott A. Morrison, Bryce M. Morrison, all of Niceville, FL; and 7 great grand children; by Laura Scheuring, his very dear and closest companion, and her 3 children, who were like a second family to him. His passing is mourned by many others to whom he was known as Grandpa or Mel.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society.


James Alexander Kelley

November 30, 1923 - January 5, 2012
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KELLEY, James A., 88, survived by wife, Margaret; son, Karl (Jaineen); granddaughter, Mary

Emma; brother, Buddy;

sister, Caroline; and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his daughter, Laura. James proudly served with the Army Air Corps and was a POW in WWII. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Alzheimer's Foundation of America, or to North Central College, 30 N. Brainard St., Naperville, Ill. 60540. The family will receive friends 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday at the Huguenot Chapel, Woody Funeral Home, 1020 Huguenot Rd., where a funeral service will be conducted at 1 p.m. Monday. Interment Forest Lawn Cemetery. Online condolences at
Published in Richmond Times-Dispatch from January 7 to January 8, 2012


Of Alexandria, VA on Wednesday, December 21, 2011 at Capital Caring in Arlington, VA. Beloved husband of Jacquelyn Hill for 43 years; loving father of Carl Hill (Sherry) and David Hill (Kate); devoted grandfather of two and great-grandfather of five. Warren is also survived by a brother, Franklin Hill (Doris); four nephews and a host of other family and friends.
A visitation will be held Wednesday, December 28, 2011 from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at DEMAINE FUNERAL HOME, 5308 BACKLICK RD., SPRINGFIELD, VA. The Funeral will be Thursday, December 29, 2011 at 2 p.m. at Peace Lutheran Church, 6362 Lincolnia Rd., Alexandria, VA 22312. A graveside service with full military honors will be held Wednesday, February 15, 2012, 11 a.m. at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Warren's honor to Alzheimer's Family Day Center, 2812 Old Lee Highway, Suite 210, Fairfax, VA 22031 or to Peace Lutheran Church.





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HENNINGSEN, Eldon L. Lt. Col. (Ret.), age 93, of Fairfax, Va., died on September 2, 2011. He was preceded in death by his parents, Alfred H. Henningsen and Dena H. Henningsen; his first wife, Mildred E. Henningsen; and brothers, Russell, Thayne and Stuart. He is survived by his wife, Frances Taylor Henningsen; children, Eldon L. Henningsen Jr., Barry A. Henningsen (Debbie) and Karen M. Henningsen; three stepchildren; four grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, one nephew, two nieces and sister-in-law, Evelyn Sanchez.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his honor to Heartland Hospice, 3900 Germantown Rd., Suite 460, Fairfax, Va., 22030.


Colonel, USAF, retired  

Born February 22, 1925. Passed away peacefully in his home on July 13, 2011 with his wife of 67 years, Jane Anne Hughes, by his side. Van and Janie were high school sweet hearts and graduates from Washington Lee High School, Class of 1942. Col. Van Pelt served in World War II and flew 22 combat B-24 missions in Western Europe with the 392nd Bomb Group as a navigator officer. He served his country on active duty for over 30 years. He has one son, Jay Warren, and two grandchildren, Matthew and Katie, who predeceased him. He is survived by his wife Jane Anne; sons, Rick (Kathi), Carl, John, and Pete (Leslie); daughter-in-law, Teresa; 12 grandchildren, and five great- grandchildren. A memorial service will be arranged at a future date at the Fort Myer Chapel with interment following at Arlington National Cemetery.
(from the Washington Post)


Ordway Gates, died January 12, 2011. He was 89 and lived in Williamsburg. He was a bombardier in the 335th Sqn., 95th BG stationed at Horham. He was shot down on 21 July 1944 on a mission to Regensburg and was hidden by the underground in Luxembourg.  Daily Press Obituary follows:

WILLIAMSBURG - Ordway B. Gates Jr., Army Air Corps veteran, accomplished aerospace engineer, beloved husband of Dawn N. Gates and father of eight children, died Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2011. He was 89.

Born Dec. 1, 1921, Mr. Gates grew up in Chesterfield County, Va. He entered the College of William and Mary in 1939 but interrupted his education to serve in World War II as a B-17 bombardier in the 8th Air Force. Shot down in 1944, he was aided by the underground in Luxembourg and evaded capture by being hidden in homes for several months until advancing Allied forces reached the town in which he was sheltered.

After the war, he completed his degree at William and Mary and began work in Hampton at the Langley laboratory of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, the precursor of NASA. His career took him to the Glenn L. Martin Co. in Baltimore, General Electric Space Division in Philadelphia, Martin-Marietta in Baltimore and Lockheed-Martin in Lompoc, Calif., and Washington D.C. During those years he added graduate work in engineering at the University of Virginia, Johns Hopkins University and Drexel University. His work included many space-related projects, including the Nimbus satellite program and the Space Shuttle, as well as undersea monitoring technology and air traffic control.
Mr. Gates retired in 1992 and soon moved to Williamsburg. He was an active member of Williamsburg United Methodist Church. Before age and illness limited his activities, he served as a volunteer with Colonial Williamsburg, the Williamsburg-James City County court system and the Virginia Air & Space Center in Hampton. He was also editor of the newsletter of the Virginia chapter of the 8th Air Force Historical Society.

Mr. Gates was preceded in death by his parents, Sheriff and Mrs. O.B. Gates Sr.; his first wife, Nancy Cogbill Gates; sister, Alice Gates Goodman; and granddaughters, Nancy Page Gates and Hope Marie Ward.

Survivors include his wife of 45 years, Dawn N. Gates of Williamsburg; brother, Judge Ernest P. Gates and his wife, Virginia, of Chesterfield; sons, Robert V. Gates and his wife, Beverly, of Dahlgren, Va., Richard O. Gates and his wife, Susan, of Chesterfield, Marcus H. Gates and his wife, Liz, of Columbia, Md., Ernest C. Gates and his wife, Betsy, of Williamsburg, John C. Gates and his wife, Kathy, of Havertown, Pa., and James A. Gates and his wife, Chris, of Centreville, Md.; daughters, Wendy Gates Nussbaum and her husband, Michael, of Ellicott City, Md., and the Rev. Laurie Gates Ward and her husband, Alan, of Baltimore; grandchildren, Sean Gates of Dahlgren, Caroline Gates-Shannon of Ashburn, Va., Mary-Scott Gates Hennigan of Chesterfield, Marcus Gates of Chesterfield, Matthew Gates of Columbia., Patrick Gates of Columbia., Sarah Gates of Brooklyn, N.Y., Martha Gates of New Haven, Conn., Thomas Gates of Arlington, Va., Nancy Leigh Gates of Havertown, Allison and Melissa Nussbaum of Ellicott City, Sgt. Matthew Machonis of Gardnerville, Nev., Michael, Alex and Emily Gates of Centreville, Brady and Rebecca Ward of Baltimore; great-grandchildren, Owen and Hannah Gates of Chesterfield, Erik and Susannah Gates-Shannon of Ashburn, and Lucy Hennigan of Chesterfield; and many nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 15, at Williamsburg United Methodist Church, 500 Jamestown Rd. Interment will be at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Williamsburg United Methodist Church Memorial Fund or to Hospice House and Support Care of Williamsburg.
Nelsen Funeral Home, Williamsburg, is in charge of arrangements. View and post condolences on our online guestbook at



Jasper Lee "Jack" Anderson


Jasper Lee "Jack" Anderson ROANOKE, Va. Jasper Lee "Jack" Anderson, 90, was called away from his loving family on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2010. Born in Virgie, Ky., he was the son of Marion and Garnet Anderson. He is survived by his daughter, Jacque Kitts and husband Warren, of Roanoke; sons, Jimmie and wife Pat of Manakin-Sabot, Va., Ken and wife Donna of Augusta, Ga., and Kerry and wife Kandi, of Mechanicsville, Va.; grandchildren, Dana Kitts Lane and husband Jeff, Kelly Kitts Dooley and husband Tim, Megan and Matthew Anderson, and Ross and Jeremy Anderson; step- grandchildren, Heather, Chase, and Amanda Aldridge; and great-granddaughter, Noel Dooley. Mr. Anderson is also survived by two brothers, Frank and wife Margie and Raymond and wife Joyce; one sister, Pauline Loustenau; as well as several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife of 63 years, Anita Sykes Anderson; brother, George Anderson; and sister, Helen Anderson Turner. Mr. Anderson enjoyed a diverse career over his lifetime, which included positions as a railroad brakeman, coal miner, and machinist until he retired in 1971. He was a proud member of the Greatest Generation, a decorated veteran of both World War II and the Korean conflict. He was the last surviving crew member of his B-17 Bomber, "Double Trouble", assigned to the 8th Air Force where he contributed to 35 successful bombing missions over Germany. He survived two crash landings in Lille, and Chantilly, France. He remained in the U.S. Air Force until 1961. Mr. Anderson was always known for his keen sense of humor and as an outstanding story teller with a witty saying for any occasion. He was further known as kind-hearted with a special kindness for children. He led a long life full of friends, family, and accomplishments. His memory will be cherished. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in his name to any veteran's organization of their choice.

Published in Bristol Herald Courier on October 21, 2010

A note has been sent to the family by:

Jean K. Hughes, 8th AF Historical Society, VA Chapter
Associate Member


  NOZIGLIA, Robert E., Lt. Col., USAF, Retired, born January 23, 1921, in Brooklyn, N.Y., passed away November 10, 2010, in Alexandria, Va. Col. Noziglia joined the U.S. Army Aviation Cadet Program in 1942. He flew a B-17 bomber in WW II, and C-54 missions in the Berlin Airlift. He then joined the U.S. Air Force, was a B-52H Aircraft Commander and Squadron Commander, and retired with the rank of Lt. Colonel In 1970. After retirement, he moved to Richmond and became the Planning Program Administrator with the Virginia Division of Aeronautics until 1976. He was active in many Richmond area veterans and golfing organizations. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Mae H. Noziglia of Newport News; sons, Robert E. Jr. of Collierville, Tenn., and Charles David of Alexandria; four grandchildren, Robert, Timothy, Rhea, and Manica; and brother, Harold of Tucson, Ariz. He will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery on February 4, 2011 at 3 p.m.

Published in Richmond Times-Dispatch from November 12 to November 14, 2010


HUGHES, Thomas "Tom" Bassett, 54, of Richmond, won his place in Heaven after a long, courageous and inspiring battle with oral cancer. Tom was born in Richmond on January 25, 1956 at MCV. He worked as a painter for over 12 years for Willard Painting. Tom went to Collegiate Schools from K-12 and received the "13 year award" as a member of the Photography Club, Lambda Sigma Delta and graduated in 1974. He went to New England College in Henniker, N.H. and then later to VCU in Richmond. Tom was an active associate member of both the National and Virginia Chapters of the 8th Air Force Historical Society. He had a passion for fishing and won many family trophies for the largest bass and pike of the season in the Adirondacks. He adored spoiling his dogs and found great comfort in their loving antics. His mother, Joan Leilani Eddy Hughes, preceded him in death. His devoted wife of 25 years and loving caregiver, Jean Knaub Hughes, survives him. He is also survived by his father, Arter F. Hughes of Richmond; brother, C. Mackey Hughes II and his wife, Fiona, of Leesburg; nephews, Andrew and Patrick Durham and Arter F. Hughes II; sister, Anne T. Hughes and her husband, Jesus Avila, of Napa, Calif.; nephew, Robert; and niece, Marley Rudolf; sister, Josephine F. Hughes of Richmond; and niece, Leilani Porter; mother-in-law, Catherine A. Knaub; sister-in-law, Sandra K. Armstrong and her husband, Dr. James O. Armstrong; nieces, Ginger and Shelley; nephew, Ben and wife, Cindy; and great-nephews, Owen and Jacob, all of Chester; brother-in-law, James R. Knaub and his wife, Karen, of Arlington; nephew, Seth; and devoted family friend, Marina Weatherless. In lieu of flowers, Tom asked that you make donations in his name to VCU Massey Cancer Center, 401 College St., Richmond, Va. 23298, or the Richmond SPCA, 2519 Hermitage Rd., Richmond, Va. 23220. Online condolences may be made at:

View a slideshow of Tom by clicking here. Provided by his wife, Jean Knaub Hughes.

TRASK, Colonel James E., USAF, retired, aged 88, passed away peacefully at home in Williamsburg on July 12, 2009. Jim was born in Michigan City, Indiana. One of his proudest accomplishments was attaining the rank of Eagle Scout, BSA. He received a BS in Aeronautical Engineering at Purdue University and an MBA at the College of William and Mary. His first love was flying, and he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1941. He was in the first group of American pilots to be sent to England, flying the B-17 in combat, serving in the 482nd Bomb Group (Pathfinders). He served his country faithfully and with pride until his retirement in 1970 at Hqtrs TAC, Langley Air Force Base. Jim's public service continued after retirement in Williamsburg, where he taught at the business school at the College of William and Mary. He was admired by many of his students that kept in touch with him after graduation. He was involved in several organizations, including the Crown Colony Club, Order of the Golden Star - Theta Xi Fraternity, Beta Gamma Sigma (national scholastic honor society), Virginia Chapter of the 8th Air Force Historical Society (past president), American Legion, The Quiet Birdmen, and the Daedalians (a fraternity of military pilots). Jim was preceded in death by his wife of 31 years, Irma Nygren Trask. He is survived by children, James D. Trask and his wife, Melissa, Jeffrey S. Trask and Apryl T. Altman and her husband, Dave; grandchildren, David Altman, Christy Altman, Allison T. Lawhorn and her husband, Jason, Kevin Altman and his wife, Jena, Megan Trask, Caitlyn Trask and Thomas Trask; and great-grandchildren, Vanessa Altman and Jacob Lawhorn. Family and friends will gather at Nelsen Funeral Home Friday, July 17, 2009 from 2 to 4 p.m. and again from 6 to 8 p.m. Colonel Trask will be laid to final rest at Arlington National Cemetery on October 5, 2009 at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to the Mighty 8th Air Force Museum, P.O. Box 1992, Savannah, Ga. 31402, or the Mason School of Business, College of William and Mary, P.O. Box 1693, Williamsburg, Va. 23187-8779. Online condolences may be registered at



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