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Posts posted by bigschuss

  1. Oh, I see...


    So the sight maybe "set" at a certain distance


    Then if the trooper needs to shoot an enemy either further or closer, he makes adjustments if needed...


    Got it...


    So, does one click equal what...50 yards, 100yards?


    Then I suppose the soldier needs to be a pretty good judge of distance


    The rear sight can indeed be set for any distance, but as M1Ashooter mentioned, with a battle zero set at 300 yards, a GI could hit a man-sized target out to 300 yards by holding center of mass. So, he does not really need to be a good judge of distance. You must remember that hundreds of thousands of GI's who were drafted had never shot a rifle before. The M1 Garand was, by design, a very effective killing tool even in the hands of inexperience soldiers. Point and shoot, if you will.


    Also, the WWII Garands had lock-bar rear sights. To adjust the sight a soldier had to first loosen a locking bar that kept the sight locked in place, then adjust the site, then re-lock the locking bar. This would not have happened in combat like you see in the movies.


    1 click equals 1 inch at 100 yards.


    My brother and I shoot Garands quite a bit at the range, and we play a game much like HORSE in basketball. I'll call a shot…"300 yards, prone, battle zero set at 300" and take it…if I make it he has to take it and gets an H if he misses and so on. Things get fun when we start messing with the ranges and battle zero…"100 yards, kneeling, battle zero set for 300."

  2. Absolutely amazing! My Great Cousin, Louis E. Machala, was a B-17 pilot and was killed on a rutine training flight in 46 I believe, I will have to look it up. My grandmother to this day still believes the plane was sabotaged, but I just wonder how many people who lost loved ones here in the states thought that as well. How close was the actual sight compared to the one yall had visited the day before? Thanks so much for sharing!



    Thanks for all of the coments guys. I thought people might appreciate this story. I think the world of my brother for making the efforts to help my Gram out. What a journey!


    Brandon, my Gram and brother weren't off by much. Their first visit to the crash site got them to the farm. But my brother's GPS just couldn't find the exact spot. On the second visit with the gentleman from the restaurant, he got them to the exact spot, which was just off by a few hundred yards or so.


    Jordan77, I agree that divine intervention played a role. My Gram is an old school, devoted Catholic. I think she had some help that day.


    Thanks for letting me share,


  3. The next morning they were having breakfast at a little greasy spoon in Talihina, and my brother signed the restaurant's guest book...Scott Mahar, Adams, MA.


    They left and planned to head back home. Soon after, a gentleman came in, had his breakfast, and was paying his bill when he noticed the name. He happened to be the guy my brother talked to on the phone who happened to know the exact spot of the crash.


    He called every hotel in town to find my brother. When he eventually contacted him my brother told him about not finding the spot. This gentleman made plans that day to bring my Gram and brother to the spot so my Gram could finally say good-bye to her brother.


    They met. They walked to the same farm. And eventually my brother (who is a collector, albeit Civil War) and my Gram came face to face with my Uncle's destiny...the debris field.



  4. ...and a close up of the wreath. It contained pictures of Uncle Tommy's family (he was married with one child and one on the way) and all of his grandkids and nieces and nephews.


    As a side note, they actually found his wedding ring in the crash debris inscibed to his wife (my Aunt Kay).



  5. My brother had a GPS unit and the grid coordinates from the crash report punched in. But try as they did, they just couldn't located the exact crash site despite hours and hours of searching. Mr. Medders got them close, but they just couldn't find any evidence.


    My Gram was O.K. with that. She was just happy to be able to lay a wreath in honor of her brother 50 years to the day and time (7 PM) that the B-29 crashed.


    Here is the farm....



  6. That's where my brother took over. He was a journalist at the time and his deep curiosity began to kick in. The 50th anniversarry of the crash was also approaching, and my Grandmother expressed an interest in visiting the site. None of my family had ever been to the site, which was in a small town called Talihina, OK.


    My brother started his quest with a single phone call to the Talihina town hall and asked the woman if she knew anything about a B-29 crash in 1949. As luck would have it, there happened to be an old timer who overheard the woman say "What? A B-52 crash? When?" He took over and my brother's journey took off.


    In the following months, he received e-mails, letters, and phone calls from all of the good people of Talihina who remembered the crash. He began to piece together the story and became ever more intrigued.


    He and my Gram bought plane tickets and had no idea if they could ever actually find the crash site.


    A local Talihina newspaper clipping....



  7. This story began in the mid 90's when I met a guy on one of the early AOL militaria forums who could obtain USAAF crash records. I was always curious about my Uncle's crash, so I paid him $20, and he produced a 3 document record of he crash. The records is very detailed and very grisly. It contains crash photos, autopsy records, funeral home expense records, and an investigation into the causes of the crash (turns out it was probably a high altitude explosive decompression which led to anoxia of the crew because they weren't wearing oxygen masks).



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