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Lt. General James Edmundson on: His Memories of World War II
James Edmundson Q: What do you remember of your participation in the Second World War?

JE: My wife and I, we'd been married a year and were stationed at Hickam Field in Hawaii. And we were there, living on base, that Sunday morning, 7th of December, when the Japanese hit the place. So the war started with a bang for me...

When the war was over,...I was on [the Pacific island of] Tinian. And I get called into our wing commander's office...General Raimey, General Roger Raimey. General Raimey says, "I've just been on the horn with General LeMay down in Guam, and he said, `Roger, your 58th wing is the best wing in the 20th Air Force, so you're going to lead the parade on the mission,' " which was a show-of-force mission: 500 B-29s to fly over the deck of the Battleship Missouri while the papers were being signed there in Tokyo Bay [during the surrender ceremonies]. And Roger says, "Now, Eddy, I'm telling you, you've got the best group in my wing, so you're going to lead it and I'm going to fly with you."

So I saw the Pacific war from start at Pearl Harbor to leading the 500 B-29 formation that passed over the deck at low altitude when the papers were being signed.

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