Woodbury County

Sgt. Bernard N. Hagan

 

MEN AND WOMEN IN SERVICE

Private Bernard N. Hagan, son of Mr. and Mrs. Bernard C. Hagan, 2611 Jennings street, has been transferred from the air force technical supply school at Southwestern Institute of Technology, Weatherford, Okla.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, May 12, 1943

Soldier Returning for Funeral Survives Two Train Collisions

5 killed in First Wreck; Crash Again Within 14 Hours

On the way home to attend the funeral of an Uncle Joseph Hagan, Sergeant Bernard N. Hagan, 21, stationed at an army air force school of applied tactics at Orlando, Florida, was a passenger on a train which had two collisions within about 14 hours. In the major wreck, about five persons were killed.

Sergeant Hagan, a son of Mr. and Mrs. Bernard C. Hagan, 2611 Jennings Street, said that he was a passenger on the Dixie Flier on the Atlantic Coast line when the 24-coach train, traveling about 60 miles an hour hit an army truck near Louisville, Kentucky, loaded with caterpillar tractors.

Thrown from Seat

“It was about 6 o’clock Saturday morning,” began the young Sioux Cityan. “I was asleep in a chair car and was thrown from my seat by the impact.

“Soldiers and sailors aboard the train administered first aid. Seven of the cars were derailed and the bodies of the dead were carried into a small town about the size of James. Traffic was partially tied up for about six hours. The driver of the truck was killed and a baby in the vehicle suffered a fractured leg after being thrown about 40 feet. The truck was demolished.”

Struck Automobile

The sergeant said that the same train about 4 p.m. Friday struck an automobile near Jacksonville, Florida. A sailor, described as the driver of the car, was not injured.

The younger Hagan was graduated from Central High School in 1940. He became a director of personnel for Peter Kiewit Son’s Co. of Omaha, which constructed the Sioux City army air base here,

He entered the service in January 1943. He arrived home Monday morning and will remain here until Monday.

Source:  The Sioux City Journal, November 15, 1943

Survives Two Train Crashes

Sergeant Bernard N. Hagan, son of Mr. and Mrs. Bernard C. Hagan, 2611 Jennings Street, survived two train crashes with 14 hours before arriving here Monday from Orlando, Florida to attend the funeral of an uncle, Joseph Hagan.

At 4 p.m. Friday, the Dixie Flier, on which he was a passenger, struck an automobile near Jacksonville, Florida and at 6 a.m. Saturday the same train struck an army truck loaded with caterpillar tractors, near Louisville, Kentucky, which resulted in several casualties.

Sergeant Hagan will return next Monday.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, November 16, 1943 (photo included)

Pacific Veteran Back on Furlough

S. Sgt. Bernard N. (“Bernie”) Hagan, son of Mr. and Mrs. B. C. Hagan, 2611 Jennings street, is home on a 30-day furlough after spending the last 17 months in the Pacific area as a supply sergeant with the 494th bomb group.

Sgt. Hagan’s heavy bombardment group, well known as Kelly’s Cobras, was the first B-24 group to bomb the Philippines and Japan.  Stationed in the Hawaiian Islands, Palau, the Philippines and Okinawa, he flew to every island in the South Pacific except Iwo Jima getting supplies.

It was the Sioux City man’s job to go ahead with the ground forces and help establish landings at Palau and Okinawa.

“When being transferred from Palau to Okinawa a Japanese suicide plane crash-dived our Navy transport,” Sgt. Hagan related.

“I received The Journal, sometimes three and four months late,” he said, “but even then I was glad to get it and after passing it around, so were about 30 other men from Iowa.”  The sergeant wears four battle stars, the Asiatic-Pacific campaign bar and the Philippine liberation and good conduct medals.

Sgt. Hagan entered the Army in January, 1943.  A graduate of Central high school, he played Junior Legion and semiprofessional baseball.

Two other Sioux Cityans were members of the same squadron, the 867th.  They were Cpl. Nels Gustafson, an armorer, son of Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Gustafson, 1225 21st street, and S. Sgt. Wally Kent, a gunner, whose mother, Mrs. Bessie Kent, lives at 1012 Pierce street.

Source:  The Sioux City Journal, August 1, 1945 (photograph included)

Sgt. Bernard Hagan, son of Mr. and Mrs. B. C. Hagan, 2611 Jennings street, was honorably discharged at the Santa Ana, Cal., separation base after 32 months of service in the army air forces.  He saw action in Hawaii, Palau and Okinawa.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, October 26, 1945