Veterans History Project Service Summary:

  • War or Conflict: World War, 1939-1945
  • Branch of Service: Army Air Forces/Corps
  • Unit of Service: 85th Airdrome Squadron; 8th Air Force
  • Location of Service: New Jersey; Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana; Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia; North Carolina; Philippines; New Guinea; Ie-Shima (Ryukyu Islands); Australia; Pacific Theater
  • Highest Rank: Corporal

View full service history

“How is your love life? Mine's fine. I've proposed, and am now anxiously waiting for an answer. I've no fingernails left – chewed them all off… Heck of a note a guy has to propose by air mail.” (Letter to sister Lillian, November 20, 1944).

The oldest of eight siblings, Edward Gottlieb Zahler enlisted in the Army Air Forces following the attack on Pearl Harbor, and served in the Pacific Theater as a flight engineer with the 8th Air Force. His Veterans History Project collection includes 91 letters written to his younger sister Lillian. While his correspondence is light-hearted--full of brotherly teasing, movie recommendations, and funny anecdotes about military life--his letters evidence mutual affection and concern. They also portray the challenges of a family with multiple members in service. As the war dragged on, Zahler became increasingly concerned about the fate of his kid brother Donald, who had enlisted in the Army Air Forces with him and was serving with the 91st Bomb Group in the European Theater. Lillian Zahler donated both of her brothers’ collections to the Veterans History Project in 2018.

[ Photo Album ]

More Resources

[ Postcard to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/26/1942] ]
[ Postcard to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/31/1942] ]
[ Postcard to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/2/1943] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [2/15/1943] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/23/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/24/1943] ]

Show more resources (88)

[ Postcard to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/8/1943] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/19/1944] ]
[ Postcard to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/22/1943] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/8/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/23/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/28/1943] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/6/1943] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/31/1943] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/7/1943] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/17/1943] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler: Includes letter from Ruth to Edward [1/7/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1/13/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1/9/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1/24/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1/28/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [2/6/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/5/1944] ]
[ Copy of letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/11/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/14/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/25/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [5/31/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [6/4/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [6/5/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [6/15/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [6/18/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [7/11/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/7/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/17/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/23/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/26/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/29/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [9/12/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [9/20/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/11/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/15/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/23/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/28/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/12/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/20/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/20/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/6/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/28/1944] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1944] ]
[ Copy of various V mails to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/8/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/9/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/15/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/22/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/29/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/9/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [4/26/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [6/2/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [6/18/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [7/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [7/8/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/2/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/17/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [8/23/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [9/11/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [9/24/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/3/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/6/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/13/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/26/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/4/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/21/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/6/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/16/1965] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [12/21/1944] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [2/17/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/5/1945] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [3/14/1945] ]
[ Vmail to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [1942-1946] ]
[ Copy of letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [11/24/1974] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [7/4/1990] ]
[ Letter to Lillian Zahler from Edward Zahler [10/25/1990] ]