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Capt William Carlyle "Sully" Sullivan
Airplane Commander

The beautiful remote country of southeastern Colorado was an ideal place for four brothers to grow up. I was born at Norwood, CO December 13, 1918. Most of the people made a living by farming and ranching; most of the kids were cowboys as were their fathers. Summer cow camp was 12 miles away by foot or horseback. There were plenty of chores to keep everyone busy. Packing water to the house, chickens and corrals and wood for the cook stove and fireplace were never ending jobs. Lots of water was packed in and out on washday. A big garden was a necessity. Fathers were often away from home helping the big ranchers move their cattle for cash, groceries and clothing. A good market was miles away and transportation over mountain roads was poor.

In 1930 an aunt found a farm near the market in Denver, CO. That farm has been home to me since that time. A dairy farm was popular in those days but it was an every day job with few profits. I worked part time at a copper mill in Nevada so as to attend Colorado University, which was only seven miles from home.

Then came Pearl Harbor. Two years of college qualified a student to enlist in the Army Air Corp. I was one among the first students to enroll in the program. During World War I it was learned how valuable an airplane could be and an active air program, The Army Air Corp, was introduced. I enlisted for pilot training January 6, 1942 and soon learned my name would be "Sully". Along with a number of students from Colorado I was sent to Kelly Field, an Air Corp. Replacement Center, for basic training. I received Primary Pilot Training at Garner Field at Uvalde, TX then trained in navigation and more powerful aircraft at Randolph Field. On September 6, 1942 I was among 65 Coloradoans to receive silver wings and Second Lieutenant commissions in the Army. I graduated with the class of 42-H at Lubbock, TX.

On March 21, 1945 we new as Crew 15 with 23 other crews of the Soda Squadron to North Field Guam as part of the 39th Bomb Group, 314th Wing of the 2Oth Air Force, North Field was home to the 39th Bomb Group, as we were returning to Guam from our 13th combat mission we received the announcement of intent to surrender August 13, 1945!

I was discharged at Ft. Logan in Denver on November 5, 1945 and returned to the farm i operate today. In March 1949 I married Berene McConnell, a lumberyard employee at Lyons, CO. Children, Rosamond and Floyd live on and help with the farm. Floyd and his wife, Jill, have two children. Megan has just completed her first year at CSU, and Patrick will graduate from Fairview High in Boulder in 2001. Our daughter, Rosamond, has 25 years experience with computers and shares her parents' interest in family history. She has especially enjoyed exchanging visits with members of Crew 15 over the past 45 years. Floyd is a fireman and master operator and repairmen on the farm. He graduated from Colorado Aero Tech, received his pilot's license and did a stint in the Air National Guard.

I had two brothers and a sister in the service at the same time as I. My youngest brother and father remained home farming the land. At home I am referred to as "Drake".


William Sullivan passed away 13 October 2002
Internment is at Mountain View Memorial Park in Boulder
Source: William Carlyle "Sully" Sullivan - Airplane Commander in an updated provided by Benjamin Piteo
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This page created 21 March 2001/Updated 27 October 2002
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