Warriors In Their Own Words | First Person War Stories

Warriors In Their Own Words | First Person War Stories

Remarkable stories of war told by the men who fought for a proud nation. Their words. Their voices. Our first episodes tell riveting stories from World War II, then we move on to the Vietnam War and other dramatic conflicts.

Episodes

April 29, 2021 39 min
Col. Bill Gara tells stories of the 1st Engineer Combat Battalion of the 1st Infantry, which he led from the 1944 Normandy landings through May of 1945. Gara served from North Africa to Omaha Beach and the Battle of the Bulge. See additional photos and learn more about the 1st Engineer Battalion at firstengineerbattalionveterans.org and tune in next time to hear the rest of his interview on Warriors in Their Own Words.
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Content Warning: this episode includes graphic descriptions of wounds and combat, as well as strong language. Dr. Jon Heavey is an emergency room physician on the front lines of the battle against COVID, who began his medical career as a battalion surgeon with the 101st Airborne Division in Iraq. Read Jon’s 2012 article “An Unbearable Price” in the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine for more about his service as battalion surgeon.
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Lt. Bill Story was born in Winnipeg, Canada. He began his military service as a platoon sergeant in the Winnipeg Light Infantry at the age of 19. In 1943, he became the first enlisted man in the First Special Service Force to be field commissioned as a lieutenant.    The Devil’s Brigade disbanded in 1944 and, in 2013, the unit received the Congressional Gold Medal for their service. Lt. Story was inducted into the Special Forces De...
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Lt. Bill Story was born in Winnipeg, Canada. He began his military service as a platoon sergeant in the Winnipeg Light Infantry at the age of 19. In 1943, he became the first enlisted man in the First Special Service Force to be field commissioned as a lieutenant.    The Devil’s Brigade disbanded in 1944 and, in 2013, the unit received the Congressional Gold Medal for their service. Lt. Story was inducted into the Special Forces De...
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Mike Howard shares stories from his 22 year career with the CIA. Mike is a former station chief for the CIA and corporate security expert. After his career in government, he served for over a decade as the Chief Security Officer for Microsoft, overseeing physical security worldwide for the company, including the personal security for Bill Gates. Keep an eye out for Mike’s upcoming book on leadership, out later in 2021, titled “The ...
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Lt. Col. Winston M. Roche enlisted in the US Army at 17 and served as a combat engineer in the trenches in France for nearly two years. He recorded this interview with the Honor Project at the age of 93 and passed away in 1994 at the age of 95.  Learn more about Lt. Col. Roche in his Los Angeles Times obituary.
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Lt. Col. Winston M. Roche enlisted in the US Army at 17 and served as a combat engineer in the trenches in France for nearly two years. He recorded this interview with the Honor Project at the age of 93 and passed away in 1994 at the age of 95.  Learn more about Lt. Col. Roche in his Los Angeles Times obituary and tune in next time to hear the rest of his interview on Warriors in Their Own Words.
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Jake Wood tells stories from his service in Iraq and Afghanistan. Jake is currently the CEO and co-founder of Team Rubicon, a disaster relief organization that retrains military veterans to deploy as emergency responders. He is also a Marine Corps combat veteran. He enlisted in the Corps in 2005 and deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan with the 2nd Battalion - 7th Marine Regiment, which suffered some of the highest casualties of any un...
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December 30, 2020 1 min
Warriors in Their Own Words is back with all new episodes hosted by Ken Harbaugh. In partnership with the Honor Project and Evergreen Podcasts, we’re rebooting this podcast at a time when our nation needs these stories more than ever.  For generations, Americans have answered the call and gone where their country sent them. They’ve done their best to serve with honor, often under unthinkable circumstances. In Warriors in Their Own ...
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February 5, 2019 58 min
The 1st Air Cavalry Division was the most lethal assault force assembled in Vietnam.  The pilots were the first to fully harness the power of helicopters and their soldier's combat record was second to none.  Steven E Warren served a year in the infantry in Vietnam, but then returned home to train to fly helicopters. Soon he returned to the conflict, as a Huey helicopter pilot in the 1st Air Cavalry.  We spoke with him about hi...
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November 20, 2018 57 min
Charles L. Phillips was a 26-year-old Captain in the U.S. Army Air Corps, piloting B-29 bombers in the Pacific theater during the final years of WWII.  He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his heroics during the strategic bombing campaign over Japan. We interviewed Charles Phillips in 1991 and he told us remarkable stories, from his early training in Texas, to the firebombing of Tokyo in 1945.
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October 28, 2018 58 min
In this special episode, we feature an interview with a German U-boat veteran from World War II. Rudi Toepfer graduated from the German Naval Academy and served as the chief engineering office on submarines as they hunted for Allied convoys in the Atlantic Ocean. After the war, he moved to the United States. He worked for Hughes Aircraft for 30 years and became a leader in the Elks Lodge and Masons. This is Rudi's compelling fi...
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October 19, 2018 52 min
Bob Hoover learned to fly as a teenager in Tennessee, flew over 50 combat missions in World War II and went on to become a legendary test pilot.  Hoover was Chuck Yeager’s backup pilot in the Bell X-1 program and flew the chase plane when Yeager first broke the sound barrier. In 1950 he joined North American Aviation as an experimental test pilot, an association that would last 36 years. This Episode is Part 2 of the remarkable sto...
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October 12, 2018 50 min
Bob Hoover is one of history’s greatest aviators.  His career spanned from barnstorming in prop planes, to dogfighting in World War II and then on to flight testing supersonic jets and performing spectacular aerobatic demonstrations. Hoover was the backup pilot for the Bell X-1, and flew the chase plane as his friend Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier in 1947. Smithsonian’s Air & Space Magazine named Hoover Number Three on th...
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October 5, 2018 52 min
John Nicely was a Sergeant in the US Marine Corps during the brutal Pacific island campaigns of WWII. He saw his first action in the battle of Saipan in June 1944. From there he continued fighting from island to island and eventually prepared for the invasion of Japan. Nicely and his unit entered the devastated city of Nagasaki, just 25 days after the nuclear blast. We met up with him at a reunion of the 2nd Marine division in 1994...
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September 26, 2018 69 min
General Frank “Pete” Everest was a record-setting US Air Force Test pilot. As a fighter pilot in World War II he flew over 150 combat missions. He then went on to lead the Air Force flight test program, flying with other legendary pilots like Chuck Yeager and George Welch. In the 1950s Everest set records like taking the X-1 to an altitude of 73,000 feet and the X-2 to 1957 mph. In this episode Pete Everest tells stories of those p...
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September 19, 2018 47 min
John C. Muir was a decorated combat veteran of the Vietnam War. He hailed from four generations of men and woman who served in distinguished military service. He was also cousin to John Muir the famous naturalist who's been called “The Father of America’s National Parks.” In 1965, Muir volunteered for the US Marine Corps and was sent to Vietnam as a Rifleman. John C. Muir was an excellent storyteller who delivered powerful word...
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September 12, 2018 54 min
Col. Walker “Bud” Mahurin was an American combat fighter pilot. Flying P-47s with the 56th FG in WWII, he became an ace three times over in the skies over Europe. After the war, he remained in the US Air Force. The outbreak of the Korean War in 1950 found him in the Pentagon, working on fighter aircraft procurement. The skills he exhibited in WWII would once again be tested, this time in a new arena of air warfare, the jet age dogf...
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September 6, 2018 67 min
Walter Bodlander was a military intelligence officer for the US Army during WWII. He was born in Germany in 1920. As a Jew, he knew he had to flea Hitler’s regime. He eventually made his way to the United States and volunteered to join the Army to fight the Nazis. Military Intelligence wanted to use his fluency in German to interrogate Nazi prisoners on the front lines. Walter was soon dispatched to England to join the D-Day invasi...
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August 27, 2018 53 min
Colonel Charles Bussey courageously flew P-51 Mustangs as a fighter pilot in World War II. His training came with the famed Tuskegee Airmen, the all black Army Air Corps unit. Bussey also went on to serve as a decorated Commander of Army engineers during the Korean War. Charles Bussey was a war hero, but his first struggle wasn't in a combat zone overseas. His first battle was at home in what you might call the fight for the ri...
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