WWII veteran remembers more than three years of fighting in North Africa and across Europe

(Image: WTVC)

Cleveland, Tennessee's Norman Barnard was drafted in 1941.

"I was 24-years-old and engaged to get married," Mr. Barnard said.

He trained with the Army Air Corps. Then he was on his way to fight in the North African Campaign of World War II.

He was a flight engineer on the brand new B-26. The job included pulling up the landing gear on take off. "You watched your instruments." Mr. Barnard said the job also included, "any mechanical work and you was also the waist gunner."

He flew seventeen submarine patrol missions. Seven combat missions over North Africa, and when he wasn't flying he was working on the planes.

After those missions he was moved up to crew chief and he spent the rest of the war on the ground.

"Crew chief was in charge of all mechanical work on that plane," Mr. Barnard said. "Anything that was done he was responsible for it."

He was in Africa, Italy, France, and several places in between from 1942-1945. He saw a lot of fighting during his more than three years of fighting in World War II. He was in Nuremberg, Germany as the war in Europe was ending.

"War is hell," Mr. Barnard said. "That's all there is to it."

He came home and married the girl he was engaged to. She passed away a few years ago. Norman and Louise Barnard were married for sixty-two years.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off