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Robert Grace in his airman gear [1943]

Veterans History Project Service Summary:

  • War or Conflict: World War, 1939-1945
  • Branch of Service: Army Air Forces/Corps
  • Service Unit/Ship: 411th Squadron, 373rd Fighter Group
  • Location of Service: Maxwell Field, Alabama; Carlstrom Field and Eglin Army Airfield, Florida; Bainbridge, Georgia; Richmond, Virginia; Millville Army Airfield, New Jersey; Woodchurch, Kent, England; Belgium; Hillsgrove Army Air Base, Rhode Island
  • Highest Rank: Captain
  • Collection Number: AFC/2001/001/48153

View full service history

"He says, 'Boy, you speak pretty good English for a Frog.' And I says, "I'm not a Frog; I'm an American pilot.'" (Audio Interview, 1:26:45)

After the U.S. entered World War II, recent high school graduate Robert Grace wasn't eligible to enter the air cadet program without a college degree--unless he passed a test, which he did. During training, trying to have a mock dogfight with another pilot, he dove at the wrong plane, carrying an instructor, and almost washed out, but he was given a second chance. So it could not have come as a surprise that, when he was shot down over Belgium on his 11th mission, he managed for months to evade capture by the Germans, even with a broken leg. Sheltered by families, by monks, and by the Underground (who mistook his Midwestern response, "Yeah" for the German "Ja"), Grace lived up to his name and was finally taken in by Allied forces pushing inland after D-Day.

Robert Joseph Grace Collection
Interview / Recording

About this Item

Title

  • Robert Joseph Grace Collection

Names

  • Grace, Robert Joseph
  • World War II - Korean War Roundtable
  • Donohue, Jerri R.

Home State

  • Ohio

Headings

  • -  Grace, Robert Joseph
  • -  World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal Narratives
  • -  United States. Army Air Forces/Corps.

Repository

  • Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Gender

  • Male

Status

  • veteran

Service History

  • World War, 1939-1945

    • Branch of Service: Army Air Forces/Corps
    • Service Unit/Ship: 411th Squadron, 373rd Fighter Group
    • Location of Service: Maxwell Field, Alabama; Carlstrom Field and Eglin Army Airfield, Florida; Bainbridge, Georgia; Richmond, Virginia; Millville Army Airfield, New Jersey; Woodchurch, Kent, England; Belgium; Hillsgrove Army Air Base, Rhode Island
    • Highest Rank: Captain
    • Dates of Service: 1941-1945
    • Entrance into Service: Enlisted
    • Military Status: veteran
    • Service History Note: The veteran earned the rank of Lieutenant Colonel while serving in the Reserves after WWII. He was shot down on 5/29/1944, his 11th mission, over the Ardennes Forest of Belgium. With the help of Belgian resistance members and the local population, he was able to evade capture by the Germans and make it back to safety.

Materials

  • Photograph: Digital print [3 items] -- Photograph (collected 1943-1945)
  • Manuscript: Book [1 item] -- Typewritten document (collected 1999)
  • Audio: Audio Cassette [1 item] -- Oral history interview (collected 2006-06-29)

Collection Number

  • AFC/2001/001/48153

Cite as

  • Robert Joseph Grace Collection (AFC/2001/001/48153), Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Online Format

  • audio
  • image

Additional Metadata Formats

IIIF Presentation Manifest

Rights & Access

Using VHP Material in Publication or Exhibition

The Veterans History Project (VHP) at the Library of Congress collects, preserves and makes accessible the firsthand recollections of U.S. military veterans who served from World War I through more recent conflicts and peacekeeping missions, so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand what they saw, did and felt during their service. The Veterans History Project Collection includes oral histories along with documentary materials such as original letters, diaries, photographs, and memoirs.

Veterans and interviewers contribute these materials to the Library for scholarly and educational purposes, retaining any copyright they may hold. Therefore, permission must be obtained before using the interview or other materials in exhibition or publication. Researchers or others who would like to make further use of these materials should contact the Veterans History Project for assistance.

As a publicly supported institution, the Library generally does not own rights to material in its collections. Therefore, it does not charge permission fees for use of such material and cannot give or deny permission to publish or otherwise distribute material in its collections. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item from the Library’s collections and for securing any necessary permissions rests with persons desiring to use the item.

Please contact us with questions.

Obtaining Copies of VHP Materials

In order for VHP materials to be duplicated, we must receive written permission from the interviewee for you to obtain a copy of the recording unless the proposed use is limited to personal use, research, or other uses permissible by copyright law. If the interviewee is deceased, their next-of-kin may grant written permission.

Please contact VHP for assistance if you need to contact a veteran for permission to use their materials in exhibition or publication, or if you have received permission from the veteran and need access to high-resolution copies of VHP collection materials.

Citing VHP Materials

Please use the following formats when citing Veterans History Project materials (substituting the appropriate name and collection ID number).

Materials as a whole:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Manuscript material:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Memoirs (MS02), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Transcript (MS04), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Correspondence (MS01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Recording:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Audio recording (SR01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Video recording (MV01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Photograph:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Photographs (PH01), photographer unknown, Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Photographs (PH03-PH14), Ralph Williams photographer, Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Computer file:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Computer file (CF01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Artifact:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Artifact (AR01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Grace, Robert Joseph, World War Ii - Korean War Roundtable, and Jerri R Donohue. Robert Joseph Grace Collection. 1941. Personal Narrative. https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.48153/.

APA citation style:

Grace, R. J., World War Ii - Korean War Roundtable & Donohue, J. R. (1941) Robert Joseph Grace Collection. [Personal Narrative] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.48153/.

MLA citation style:

Grace, Robert Joseph, World War Ii - Korean War Roundtable, and Jerri R Donohue. Robert Joseph Grace Collection. 1941. Personal Narrative. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.48153/>.