American History in Real LifeMovies in the past have often shown characters that were touched by historical events. Yet sometimes, the truth is often more fantastic than anything Hollywood can devise. These stories of real people show how the events of the past touched their lives. Some times the stories are dramatic, sometimes simple, but all in all they weave a tapesty of the richness of the American experience.
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© John Norvell
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Category Archives: U Dorn RTAFB
45 years ago, this week in April, I boarded a “Freedom Bird” heading home from Thailand after a year-long remote combat tour. It was a year filled with many things: honing my flying skills as a backseater in the F4, … Continue reading
National Vietnam War Veterans Day will be observed on March 29. The nine million who served in the armed forces between November 1, 1955 to May 15, 1975, and their families are honored. Of this number: 304,000 were wounded. 1,253 … Continue reading
Recently I watched Band of Brothers. One episode centered on new men entering Easy Company as replacements after D Day. The men are welcomed with less than enthusiasm and are not sure what to make of it. And I thought … Continue reading
Military men and women often share moments that are seemingly out of time. These are universal events singular to the military experience, but shared across generations. Some of these include: being hunkered down in a fox hole; moving across a battlefield … Continue reading
Lest we forget: F-4 Phantom II—445 total lost in the SEA Air War, 382 in combat more than any other fixed wing aircraft First combat loss F-4C 64-0685 (45th TFS, 15th TFW) shot down Ta Chan, NW NVN on 20 June 1965. Final … Continue reading
As July 1973 ended, I had been flying combat missions with the 13th TFS nearly every day for two months against the Khymer Rouge in the area around Phnom Penh and also to interdict supplies being moved down Uncle Ho’s … Continue reading
During my years flying the F4 there was only one time, while flying combat, we had to use the tailhook to stop on the runway. It happened while I was stationed in the 13 TFS at Udorn RTAFB, Thailand. We … Continue reading
As soon as I arrived in the 13 TFS I was taken off the base to meet the Maharajah and order my work suits and a party suit. To go to the Maharajahs to be fitted was a rite of … Continue reading
Remarks by Lt Col John E. Norvell (USAF Ret.) November 10, 2017 President Nye, Dr. Pierce, ladies and gentleman and members of the College community, thank you for inviting me to speak tonight. As a former history professor I routinely … Continue reading