locally owned since 1854

World War II vet, witness to Iwo Jima flag-raising, to speak in Hummelstown

Posted 2/7/18

Japanese submarines and kamikaze attacks weren’t the only threats facing Richard “Dick” Donald and his fellow crew members on the destroyer escort USS Melvin R. Nawman. Typhoons …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

World War II vet, witness to Iwo Jima flag-raising, to speak in Hummelstown

Posted

Japanese submarines and kamikaze attacks weren’t the only threats facing Richard “Dick” Donald and his fellow crew members on the destroyer escort USS Melvin R. Nawman. Typhoons also took their toll, including one near the Philippines on Dec. 18, 1944 that sank three destroyers. According to Donald, the storm raged for 36 hours, with waves as high as 100 feet and 155 mph winds.

The 92-year old veteran will recount his wartime experiences at the monthly meeting of the Central PA WWII Roundtable at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 1 at Grace United Methodist Church, 433 E. Main St., Hummelstown.

Donald served as a “ping jockey,” the term used to describe sonarmen, sailors trained to search for enemy submarines. He and his crew saw significant action off the coast of Iwo Jima in February 1945. It was there that Donald witnessed the raising of the American flag atop Mount Suribachi.

Donald was involved in seven Pacific invasions in World War II. He also served aboard a destroyer during the Korean War.

The Central Pennsylvania WWII Roundtable is a nonprofit organization that provides a forum for veterans, authors, historians and others to share their knowledge and experiences related to the war. Meetings are held the first Thursday of every month at 7 p.m. at the church. Anyone with an interest in World War II is invited. There are no membership or admission fees.

For information, contact Charlie Lloyd at charlie.centralpaww2rt@gmail.com or 717-503-2862, or visit the organization’s website at www.centralpaww2roundtable.org.