My beloved grandmother passed away recently, and my mother and I have been going through old photos. We rediscovered snapshots my grandfather took while stationed in Africa during WWII. Here are some of my favorites.
*As far as I can tell, these were all taken by my grandfather. I’ve tried to verify the accuracy of the photos as best I can. These photos were snapped with my iPhone, hence the added fuzziness.
This is my grandfather Carl. He was an airplane mechanic in the Army Air Forces during the North African Campaign of WWII. During the war, he had a pet monkey named Jocko, he was stabbed and he contracted malaria. Those were the only things he shared with my mother. He died in 1974, before I was born.
This is him with one of his favorite planes, 1943. (Possibly a B-25?) *I wonder* why it was his favorite…?
Here he is in the beginning of the war with some of his Army mates.
Here’s another. Grandpa is in the lower left corner. 1945.
Army mate working on what I believe is an A-20.
A puppy named Peanuts at camp in Africa. I love the shadow in the corner.
This is Grandpa’s Army mate Deidzec. Grandpa updated the back of the photo when Deidzec was killed in action. He died three days after the Germans took Tunis, Tunisia.
This is a cemetery in Fedala, Morocco, for American soldiers who fell during the invasion of Africa. Photo was taken a few months after Operation Torch (November 8th-16th, 1942).
This is a Nazi cemetery in Tunisia, 1943.
Here are downed Nazi planes in Tunisia, 1943.
Here are members of the Nazi’s Afrika Korps, 1943.
Downed Royal Italian Army airplanes in Africa, 1943.
Spaniards cleaning machine guns in Africa, 1942 or 1943.
Women’s Army Corp with the United States Army, 1943.
U.S. Navy airship, 1945.
British Hawker Hurricane that belly landed. Pilot survived.
Bombed out buildings in Tunisia, 1943.
Bombed out church in Tunisia, 1943.
Bullet-riddled church in Tunisia, 1943.
Snapshots of locals in Morocco and Tunisia.
This is a family in France that invited my grandfather to Easter dinner in 1945. Grandpa wrote on the photo that he was fond of the sweet little boy in the middle.
Children in Italy asking for gum and candy, 1945.
My grandfather, grandmother and mother ten years after the war. My grandfather died in 1974 at the age of 60. My mother — his only child — was 24 when he passed. It was difficult, she told me, and she wished that her father had been more emotionally available during his short life. From what she heard, he was the life of the party until the war took a toll on him.
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