Hamilton County

 

Sgt. George O. Hall

 

 

 

George Hall Missing in Philippines

Sgt. George O. Hall, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ralph O. Hall of this city, has just been reported missing in action in a war department message to his father from the adjutant general. Sergeant Hall was stationed in the Philippine islands as a radio operator and radio mechanic with a squadron of flying fortresses.

The youth was graduated from the Webster City high school with the class of 1936 and attended the local junior college for one year. Before enlisting in the army air corps in Dec. 1939, Hall was employed at the First State bank in this city for some time.

Won High Honors

Sergeant Hall was one of the outstanding members of his division at March Field, Cal., winning a medal as sharp shooter there and placing second in a field of 2,000 men with a grade average of 93, just two tenths of a point behind first place.

In April, 1940, Hall entered the air corps technical school at Chanute Field, Rantoul, Ill., and was graduated Sept. 7, of that year as a radio operator and mechanic. He returned to duty at March Field where he became first radio operator with one of the original squadrons of flying fortresses. for a time, the youth helped in ferrying Boeing bombers from the factory to flying fields, making many cross country hops. He also participated in the aerial war games in Virginia in Oct., 1940, staged by President Roosevelt for the benefit of South American army officials and diplomats.

Flew to Philippines

In Oct., 1941, Sergeant Hall flew to the Philippine islands where he was stationed when the Japanese attacked Dec. 8. His parents received a cable message from Manila the day before Christmas saying that he was safe. They received a letter dated Feb. 4 in which their son said he had been promoted to the rank of sergeant and that everything was going well. A second letter, dated April 6 was received recently, stating that he was happy to say “mail can now reach me” and that he was anxious to hear from home.

George is the oldest of three children. He has a brother, Charles in Santa Monica, Cal., and one sister, Dorothy, at home.

The announcement that he was missing, made public Tuesday by Hall’s parents, came on his twenty-fifth birthday.

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, August 11, 1942

Geo. Hall Safe in Philippines

George O. Hall, Webster City air corps member who was reported missing in action in the Philippines shortly after the fall of Corregidor is safe in the Philippines where he has been with the guerrillas, his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Hall have been notified.

A V-mail letter from their son has just been received by the Halls giving them the first news of his whereabouts since the government announced he was missing more than two and one-half years ago. The letter, dated Nov. 22, said in part:

“I am in good health as usual and hope that all of you are, too. Our position here is getting better daily. It shouldn’t be so many months before I can see you again.

“Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. A friend of mine and I are having a goose which we managed to kidnap somewhere. I suppose this will not reach you until long after Christmas but I am wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

“The news program is just coming on. We always get the latest news including what Tokio has to say. Tokio is very worried just now and will be far more so by the time you receive this.

“P.S. I am somewhere in the Philippines with the guerrillas. Same tactical work as before.”

A radio technician, Hall was aboard one of the first Flying Fortresses to make a cross-water flight in the fall of 1941 to Clark field, on Luzon island in the Philippines. For this achievement, the group of airmen, including Hall, received the air medal.

Shortly after his arrival in the Philippines the war broke out and from then on the Halls heard little about their son. In May 1942, Corregidor fell and the airman’s parents were notified that their son was missing in action.

Never Gave Up

Mr. and Mrs. Hall never gave up hope, however, that their son was safe somewhere. That hope was strengthened a year later when the government sent them a letter saying that the Webster City soldier would be continued to be listed as missing.

That as definitely encouragement since usually after a year and a day, a missing serviceman is declared dead unless there is some hope that he may be a prisoner or safe in friendly hands.

Just what their son has been doing in the nearly three years with the guerrillas the Halls do not know, but they are anxiously awaiting further word.

However, they are sure of one thing—it was the thrill of a lifetime to receive George’s letter and to learn beyond any doubts that he was alive and well.

Source: Webster City Freeman, Webster City, IA - Jan. 18, 1945

LIEUTENANT HALL RECEIVES LETTER FROM PRESIDENT

First Lt. George O. Hall, recently returned from four years’ duty in the Philippines, has received a congratulatory letter from President Harry S. Truman.

The letter, addressed to “members of United States armed forces repatriated in April,” said in part:

“It gives me special pleasure to welcome you back to your native shores and to express on behalf of the people of the U. S. the joy we feel at your deliverance from the hands of the enemy. It is a source of profound satisfaction that our efforts to accomplish your return have been successful.”

Lieutenant Hall served for two years as a radio operator with guerrilla forces on Mindanao following the fall of Bataan early in 1942.

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, Webster City, IA - May 28, 1945