Local WWII veteran remembers D-Day - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |


Local WWII veteran remembers D-Day

CENTRAL TEXAS, TX (KXXV) - A Central Texas World War II veteran has vivid memories of D-Day and the role he played in the invasion by Allied Forces at Normandy. 

But 92-year old Wade Armstrong of Waco says he never spoke of his war experiences until this past February.  He said, "My wife didn't know; we didn't talk about it. My family didn't know."  

Only 22 years old,  Armstrong was based in Lecce, Italy as control tower operator. He had the responsibility of making sure planes in the  98th Bomb Group of the  15th  Army Air Corps took off and landed safely.  On midnight the morning of June 6, 1944, he was in charge of sending B-24 bombers on their 5 hour flight to attack targets along the French coast and further inland. But timing  was very tight.

He said, "I  had instructions down to the second. We were not to drop any bombs after 7:05 a.m." 

Armstrong says of the sixteen planes that successfully took off that morning all of them made it back safely from their mission.  Three days later, he got details from the pilots on the human cost of the invasion.  

He said, "Some of them told me that they could see the water as they did a one-eighty to come back.  It was red like catsup." 
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