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Pilots refight a battle in the 3rd Scouting Force Snack Bar. (L to R) Tom Fitzsimons (ex 382 BG), John Stein (ex 390 BG) and Earl Degeneres (ex 487 BG) recount aerial exploits while corporal Klein looks on in the background. Tragically, Fitzsimons and Stein were killed shortly after this photo was taken and until recently, Degeneres was thought to have been killed as well. The Scouting Force history book is finished but the search goes on for as yet undiscovered Scouts. The latest find, Earl Degeneres of the 3rd Scouting Force, was indeed an astounding episode. Dick Atkins received a call from Neil Fitzsimons, brother of 3rd Scout Tom Fitzsimons, stating that he had found a letter from Earl to Tom's mother dated 23 May 1945. The astounding part was that Earl was reported KIA in April 1945! Dick immediately hit the computer, launched into a telephone search and found Earl's brother on the 3rd call. He gave Earl's number in Oregon and they were talking moments later. Earl has attended the reunions since 1997 in San Antonio. Investigations are still underway concerning the 1945 report of Earl's death.

Photo: Dick Atkins

 

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