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WW2 Kelly Helmet

The Rooster

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The Rooster

Greetings all,

I scored this lid today. Seller said it was used in the Pacific in WW2.

Curiously had it labeled as a ww1 M17. But in reading description.. Seller mentioned it was used in the Pacific.

Opinions appreciated. Incised like BugMe was telling me about !

Looks ike 64 th


Thank You. Rooster



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I think it is a M1917A1. Used very early in WW2, you see them in pictures from Pearl Harbor, Wake, Philippines, etc...

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I saw this one as well. I wasn't certain about the markings though so I held off. As for the shell itself it's not uncommon to see M1917s converted into M1917A1s which were common early in WWII

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Source: Fold3




Source: NARA



Source: WWII Memorial Website



Source: FamilySearch.org









Publication: Kingsport Times-News

Location: Kingsport, Tennessee

Issue Date: Sunday, January 28, 1945

Page: Page 22


Convey Sighted By O.C. Duncan Leads To Battle A Kingsport youth, T/Sgt. Oscar C. Duncan, was one of the first crew members of two: Fifth Air Force photo reconnaissance planes to sight two great convoys October 21, discovery of which led to the great Naval battle of Leyte Gulf. Duncan was turret gunner on a B-24 mapping plane piloted by First Lieutenant John H. Wooten, Navasota, Texas, one of the photo reconnaissance planes of the Dumbo unit of the 20th photo organization in the Southwest Pacific, which was on routine mission to southern Luzon, Sighting of the first convoy was made by the navigator on Lieut. Woolen's plane, First Lieutenant Jay E. Robbins, of Grants Pass, Ore. This was immediately confirmed by the nose gunner, Staff Sergeant Edwin P. Stevens, Mountain-Lakes, N. J. The convoy was photographed. Flying south to locate an airstrip on Panay Island, the two planes, detouring from their regular course sighted the second convoy off the southwest coast Negros Island. Of this discovery Sergeant Duncan,"I was looking for carrier planes and possibly the carriers themselves. At first I couldn't believe my eyes and called Lieutenant Wooten to look. He and Lieutenant Robbins, who had discovered the first convoy, both confirmed that it was a convoy and we prepared to make our run over it," "We crowed in front of it, circled to the right of it, made our run, then returned. We still weren't positive it was Japs so we challenged them. They anewered with a burst of gunfire but none of the bullets hit the ship. We radioed ? then got the hell out of there fast." Of that first sighting of the convoy Lieut. Woolen related, "we had been flying through cloud formation at 30,000 feet and bad broken out over the Tablas Strait southeast of Mindoro Island. None of us were expecting anything like we saw but had been warned that there might be enemy carrier activity in this area. The sighting by Robbins and Stevens were confirmed by recognizing the pagoda type meats of the Japanese ?. We made a run over the convoy taking pictures. It was en route to our assignment target so we continued to the target after making the first run. The target was obscured by clouds so we turned back and made another run over the convoy. Photo interpretation later reported that there were six cruisers, eight destroyers, nine freighters, three transports and one battleship in the first convoy and three battleships, one heavy cruiser, one light cruiser, and two destroyers in the second convoy.


Source: http://varney.yolasite.com/xxrs.php


20th Combat Mapping Squadron


This was the plane and crew Edwin P. Stevens was in. It doesn't show his name here but according to one of the newspaper articles previously posted, he was part of First Lieutenant John H. Wooten's crew. Remember, he and the Navigator sighted the convoy that kicked off the battle of Leyte Gulf. He's in the picture below.





The S/Sgt stripes on the helmet match with the Edwin Stevens, the nose gunner as the article mentions him as a S/Sgt.


The 64th was assigned to the 43d Bombardment Group, 15 January 1941 – 29 April 1946. In the one WWII Memorial screen shot I posted, it shows Edwin P. Stevens served with the 43rd Bomb Group. Great catch Dave. It’s starting to make sense a little now. The stations of the 43rd are right exactly in the area where Edwin was, that is, New Guinea and Leyte area.


Also found this. The date of birth matches. That helmet is for sure Edwin Paul Steven's helmet.


Other notes:


On the front of the cart the guy is pulling on the helmet, there appears to me to be two dice, one on top of the other. I believe the top dice indicates the number 4 and the bottom dice indicates the number 3, therefore 43rd.


Also, the colors on the shield are gold and blue which is the same colors used on the patch for the 43rd. The patch also as that type of scroll as seen on the helmet with his initials in it.



Source: https://www.kensmen.com/




Source: https://www.kensmen.com/



Source: http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/abouthp/histnfacts/publications/measure/pdf/1991_01-02.pdf



Source: http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/abouthp/histnfacts/publications/measure/pdf/1969_12.pdf



Source: http://hparchive.com/measure_magazine/HP-Measure-1973-08-09.pdf



Source: https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/name/gladys-stevens-obituary?pid=148175738


Gladys Irene Stevens


Our beautiful mother, Gladys Irene Stevens, passed from this life on Friday, January 7, 2011.


She was born in Australia, on June 14, 1923, and came to America as a war bride after marrying Edwin Paul Stevens, who served in the United States Air Force. She proudly served in the Australian Woman's Army during the World War II.


Mom loved life and taught us how to celebrate all that life has to offer. Her hands were made to create, she sewed, knitted and crocheted, made lace and canned chairs. Our dinner table expanded to welcome whoever came to the door. Mom loved all growing things. She gardened and delighted in the birds that came, like small children, to her feeders.


She was loved by people of all ages; a testament to her open heart and the ability to find goodness and common ground in all. She loved the gentle teachings of Thich Nhat Hahn, mediated, practiced yoga and tai chi and sang with sufis.


Mom will be greatly missed and remembered by her three daughters, Judy Alderon, Jeri Kastner and her husband, Ted, and Anne Stevens; her grandchildren, Kylie and Dane Alderson, Jessica Kastner, Sara Rose Schmidt and John Schmidt; four great-grandchildren, Allen, Jake, Darren and Tristan; and of course her beloved dog, "Honey".


Her family in Australia and so many wonderful, caring friends will miss her and treasure her memory.


We will miss you, mom, but our hearts will awaken with the passing of winter and find you in the blossom of spring.

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The Rooster

Wow!!!! Thank you Matt! And thank you everyone. Amazing!!!

And Il repost the pic from the link from BEAST.

You can see the top part of his tatoo in post #26. Thank you !!!!


Thank you for all that great info MAtt!





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You're welcome Dave. I know you'll be proud to own that helmet for sure.


Also from the Facebook link BEAST posted.




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Decided to actually check the Pacificwrecks.org website for any other info about Ed "Lucky" Stevens and the links below have information mentioning his name.








Also, here's another pic with him in it.


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Wow, fantastic helmet and fantastic amount of history. I forgot to bid on it, but I'm glad someone here got it for a steal!

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Truely an incredible helmet with great history behind it. Congrats, glad it's in a good home and not rusting away in someone's basement

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That is an amazing helmet! You should send for his records, hopefully they were not destroyed in the fire.


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The Rooster

Great helmet and even better story

Nice work Matt


I have to second that Matt. Great work sleuthing all of that out.

Thank you Sir!!!

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Just seeing this... Great helmet and research! Some observations: Stevens enlisted before Pearl Harbor when this style of helmet was the norm. He may had this from the start or early part of his service. Pre-war and early war, Army vehicles sported serial numbers painted Blue Drab. Looks like Stevens' serial number was painted this color in a style similar to that used on vehicles.



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  • 2 weeks later...

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