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Robert Helwig

Robert E. Helwig (Bob) Service No. 16045837 was based in 1942/5 at Boxted, Essex, Airfield (AAF 150) with the Company 56th Fighter Group & 62nd Fighter Squadron USAAF. Soon after arrival he made close friends with my mother (Kathleen) who lived in the neighbouring county of Suffolk . Throughout Robert`s (Bob) time in England, he was made to feel welcome and "at home" by my mother and her family and they had many fun nights out at the USAF base dances including the local pubs in and around Polstead, Stoke and Nayland. Although everyone was grateful when the war ended, there was great sadness on both sides when in September 1945, Robert had to return to his home in Michigan USA. Following Robert's return, letters between my mother and Robert went back and forth for many months, but it was with great sadness that my mother learned that on 6th December 1946 Robert had died. The record shows that on 30th October 1945 he was honorably discharged. Medals awarded to Robert whilst in service were: E A M E Theatre Ribbon, Silver and Bronze Battle Star, 5 Overseas Service Bars, Service Strip Good Conduct Medal, Distinguished Unit Badge '39 - '44, 1st Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster 34 WD45. Robert qualified in office and other administration procedures and was also as an airplane armourer. As a member of the 62nd aircraft fighter squadron crew, he checked, repaired and maintained all armament equipment such as rockets, machine guns, bomb release mechanism, also loaded and fused bombs. He had a thorough knowledge of mechanism and the principles of this equipment.

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