Dickinson County

Lt. Edgar I. Doudna


Two Dickinson County Youths Received
Their Wings Wednesday At Gulf Coast Flying Fields

Two Dickinson county young men were members of the “largest class in history” to graduate Wednesday, August 5th at two of the seven advanced flying schools of the Gulf Coast Air Force Training Center, and received the silver wings of the Army Air Force. The youths are Lieut. Edgar I. Doudna, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. F. Doudna of Spirit Lake, and Lieut. Leland A. Moore, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. A. Moore of Terril.

Their graduation marked the end of 27 weeks thorough, intensive flight training for this record class of the Gulf Coast Air Force Training Center, which includes the center one-third or the United States.

Doudna At Lubbock Field

Lieut. Doudna received his wings at the Lubbock, Texas school, where he has taken his final flight training. His parents and his sister Becky were among those attending the
graduation service, having left Spirit Lake Sunday for the south to be present for the graduation of their son and brother. His wife, the former Beulah Jordan, Arnolds Park teacher, was also present.

Lieut. Doudna, graduate of the local school and former engineer student at Iowa State college at Ames, from 1939 to 1941, attended Estherville Junior college in 1931, to study flying under the Civil Aeronautics program. He was called for active duty Dec. 19, 1941, reporting at the Replacement training center at Kelly Field, San Antonio, Texas, to start his training in the Air Corps. From Kelly Field he went to Bonham, Texas where he had further training at Jones Field. His basic flight training was completed in May at Goodfellow Field, San Angelo, Texas. Early in June he went to Lubbock, Texas, for his advanced flight training.

Source: The Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, August 06, 1942, Page 1 (photo included)

Lieut. Edgar Doudna Now On Island of Oahu


Mr. and Mrs. R. F. Doudna were happy Wednesday to receive an airmail letter from their son, Lieut. Edgar Doudna, who left early in September for an undisclosed destination. A wire the last of the week informed them he had arrived safely, but until the letter arrived Wednesday, the family was unaware of his location. He informs them in his letter, which we are happy to be permitted to publish, that he is on the Island of Oahu, in the Hawaiian Islands, and is with a Bombardment Group.

Lieut. Doudna received his Army Air Corps wings in August at Lubbock Field, Texas, at the completion of his flying training.

The letter below will be of especial interest to all his friends in this community.

Sept. 16, 1942

Dear Folks:

Presuming you’d like to hear from your wandering boy, I will enlighten you to what extent the censor will permit. We are permitted to tell that we are located upon the island of Oahu, but just where is of course for you to guess. As you can readily see by the address one the envelope. I realized my desire to join a bombardment group, and they are equipped with Bob’s (his brother) pride and joy. There are three of us from Lubbock still together. I can’t tell you how many others are here also, but suffice it is to say there is a goodly number.

I haven’t ridden in Bob’s plane yet, but have gone through it and find it is everything they claim it is. It appears to me as the ship to bring this war to a close quicker, at least it has the best record of that type. I’ve flown the B-18 and know what the surrounding territory looks like from the air. I’ve seen historic “Diamond Head,” Honolulu, Pearl Harbor – what I’ve seen there, is of course of the type of information I can’t divulge. It’s a shame that when I have the opportunity to see the world I can’t be sending post cards back to you, but I’m not complaining nor trying to buck the system. Some day I’ll be back to tell you all about it so I must remember everything doubly well.

This situation of course makes it harder to write letters as my source of material is limited, and confined to very few types.

I should mention that I’ve been swimming in the ocean, but I’m afraid I much prefer fresh water for my swimming. I inadvertently left my mouth open when I first went under and the water is definitely as salty as is claimed. One thing I’ve found out to my pleasure is the fine and tasty meals that are prepared for us. There seems to be a sufficiency of everything and they really prepare the food in a commendable fashion. We also have an outdoor theatre here and it affords a chance for relaxation, though all I’ve seen so far are cowboy pictures. We are to undergo further training and familiarization – along what particular lines you will have to guess.

We had a particularly smooth crossing so I didn’t have a chance to se if I am liable to seasickness. The ocean is much bluer than I imagined and is as trackless and devoid of signposts as have been removed. It is a marvel the way the ship’s officers are able to keep track of their position and finally reach their destination. It would indeed be a treat to remake this journey during peacetime – particularly to be on deck to witness sunrises and sunsets. I’m afraid though that I still prefer good old Iowa and once I get home again, I don’t believe I’ll ever leave.

If you write me in care of the address on the envelope it should reach me in the shortest time possible. I’ve had no mail yet, but I realize the time involved and must be patient. Love, Ed.
Lt. E. I. Doudna, O-662759
23rd Squadron,
5th Bombardment Group
A.P.O. 935, % Postmaster
San Francisco, Calif.

Source: The Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, September 24, 1942, Page 7