Veterans History Project Service Summary:

  • War or Conflict: World War, 1939-1945
  • Branch of Service: Army Air Forces/Corps
  • Unit of Service: 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron, 443rd Troop Carrier Group, 10th Air Force
  • Location of Service: China-Burma-India (CBI) Theater; Tokyo, Japan; Manila, Philippines; Pacific Theater
  • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant

View full service history

“It was quite shocking to see how close those mountains were to us! It seemed like the crags sticking up were just about scraping our belly.” (Video interview, 21:58)

Though he initially trained as a pilot, Kenneth Stepherson ended up serving in the Army Air Forces as a radioman, where he drew on his experience as a lifelong ham radio operator. Departing for the China-Burma-India Theater in 1945, he and his crew served as part of a troop carrier squadron, ferrying troops and supplies from India to China. This route meant navigating the Himalayas, infamously known as “the Hump,” which featured notoriously bad weather. As Stepherson discusses, visibility was so poor during most of his flights through the Hump that he and his crew “flew blind,” depending solely on their instruments to navigate. In his oral history interview, Stepherson offers vivid and detailed descriptions of flying the Hump, and also of his service in China following the end of the war.

Transcript: XML

About this Item

Title

  • Kenneth Stepherson Collection

Names

  • Witt, Gary
  • Lausanne Collegiate School
  • Stepherson, Kenneth
  • Ross, John

State of Birth

  • TN

Home State

  • TN

Headings

  • -  Stepherson, Kenneth
  • -  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
    • Unit of Service: 2nd Troop Carrier Squadron, 443rd Troop Carrier Group, 10th Air Force
    • Location of Service: China-Burma-India (CBI) Theater; Tokyo, Japan; Manila, Philippines; Pacific Theater
    • Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
    • Dates of Service: 1942-1946
    • Military Status: Veteran

Materials

  • Video: DVD [1 item] -- Oral history interview (collected 11/05/2003)
  • Manuscript: Transcript [1 item] -- Typewritten document (collected 07/04/2004)

Collection Number

  • AFC/2001/001/54774

Cite as

  • Kenneth Stepherson Collection (AFC/2001/001/54774), Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Online Format

  • image
  • online text
  • video

Additional Metadata Formats

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/xxxx), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Manuscript material:

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

Recording:

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

Photograph:

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

Computer file:

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

Artifact:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/xxxx), 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:

Witt, Gary, Lausanne Collegiate School, Kenneth Stepherson, and John Ross. Kenneth Stepherson Collection. 1942. Personal Narrative. https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.54774/.

APA citation style:

Witt, G., Lausanne Collegiate School, Stepherson, K. & Ross, J. (1942) Kenneth Stepherson Collection. [Personal Narrative] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.54774/.

MLA citation style:

Witt, Gary, et al. Kenneth Stepherson Collection. 1942. Personal Narrative. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.54774/>.