Making History Project
"Preserving Veterans' Stories"
501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization

Veterans Oral History Interviews

Veteran Oral History Interview: Vietnam War Veteran Norman Gaddis

US Army Air Force/USAF Pilot and POW

Veteran Oral History Interview of Norman Gaddis

Veteran oral history interview for Vietnam War Veteran Norman Gaddis is now available.

Patrick Russell conducted this interview on June 5, 2014, at Omaha Beach, Normandy, France during the celebrations for the 70th Anniversary of the D-Day Invasion. This was a challenging interview to handle in that it was conducted in the public spaces of the Visitor Center at Omaha Beach. Since it was not a controlled environment, you will hear background noises of other visitors. However, when given the opportunity to conduct an interview, you do what you can do.

Norman Gaddis is an American pilot who was born in Tennessee. Norman served in the U.S. Army Air Force during World War II from 1942-1945. Norman received his final pilot training just before the end of World War II and as a result, he flew no combat missions during the war. After World War II, Norman was recalled as a pilot for the U.S. Air Force in 1949 and he ended up providing fighter escort for the supplies being delivered during the Berlin airlift. In 1967, Norman was shot down over Hanoi and became a POW for the entire duration of the Vietnam War. Norman Gaddis was released as a POW in 1973 and eventually retired from the Air Force in 1976 as a Brigadier General.

During this short interview, Norman discusses the details for how he was shot down in Vietnam and the cruel treatment and torture he received as a POW. Altogether, Norman spent 1004 days in solitary confinement and a total of 2,124 days as a prisoner of war in Vietnam.

 

2017 Reunion for 508 P.I.R.

508 PIRVeteran Reunions

The Making History Project will be attending another Veteran reunion, the 2017 Reunion of the 508 Parachute Infantry Regiment. The Making History Project is attending the reunion to support members of the “Greatest Generation” and provide encouragement to active duty paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne. This will be another occasion to visit with old friends, make new friends, and hopefully conduct a few more oral history interviews.

Fort Bragg

The 2017 Reunion for the 508 Parachute Infantry Regiment will take place this year on October 19, 2017, through October 21, 2017. The Reunion is being hosted in Fayetteville, North Carolina, the home of Fort Bragg and the 82nd Airborne. This year represents the 75th Anniversary of the activation of the 508 P.I.R.

Fury from the Sky

FuryActive duty soldiers of the 508 P.I.R. will participate once again this year with the past generations of paratroopers from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and other conflicts. As a special treat, the group will spend a day touring Fort Bragg and the 82nd Airborne Museum. For more information on the Reunion, to join the Family & Friends of the 508 P.I.R., or to purchase tickets for the Reunion, please visit the 2017 508 P.I.R. Reunion page.

Project Update

Project UpdateNew Website Content

As a project update, MHP remains busy adding new features to our website. Some of our most recent updates include a new “About” page where you can learn how the Making History Project got started and what we do.

Also recently added was the “Corporate/Non-Profit Documents” page where visitors can review our corporate formation papers, Board meeting minutes, resolutions, and the non-profit status from the IRS.

Likewise, “Links” was added to share relevant resources for history, oral history, and Veterans. Our link directory just started but will be updated regularly with additional resources. Feel free to suggest any new links you feel may be helpful.

Finally, our official “Mission Statement” has been posted online for all to see. The Mission Statement is our stated purpose and why we do what we do.

Tactical Plan

For the foreseeable future, our only goal is to dedicate as much time as possible to complete the editing of all our existing Veteran oral history interviews so we can share them on the website. Currently, our Veteran Oral History Interviews that are online are but a fraction of the Veterans we have interviewed. Once finished, we will be sending those interviews off to the Veterans as well as the archives for preservation purposes.

Stay tuned for further updates down the road…