Live Event and Book Sale Dates
Boxted Airfield Museum - Sept 4th and 5th 2021.
Sept 19th, 2021 - Reno Air Races
Sept 26th - California Captiol Airshow
Larry visited Boxted Airfield Museum on the 4th and 5th of September for their 21st year celebration!
I sold and autographed copies of
A Crew Chiefs View. I had been invited there as a guest due to my father being stationed there as part of the 354th Fighter Group.
My Trip to Boxted
By Larry Wood
I last explained that my father Lawrence had revisited The Boxted Airfield in 1994 during his 354th FG reunion tour commemorating 50 years since the invasion of France by the Allies. I’m sure his memories were sharpened then while touring that area of Colchester, Boxted and the farmland that was once the Airfield.
I arrived there by car Sept. 1st. on a cool and cloudy day with my hosts Richard and Ann Turner. Richard is the curator and administrator of The Airfield’s Museum. We drove on country lanes and farmers access roads to reach many of the original airfield’s remaining structures. Most of the dirt access roads were the same ones bombers and fighters taxied on prior to missions in 1942, only now with the hard pavement and markings removed. Traveling throughout the farm we would find many vintage WWII buildings. New owners had partially remodeled many keeping only the sturdy concrete end walls while adding new structure and roofing in between. Many small corrugated ‘Nissen huts’ dot the area. Two of which were relocated and reconditioned to become The Boxted Airfield Museum. One massive, original, extra-wide all black corrugated hanger stood out among some smaller buildings. Explained to me, it was the original indoor aircraft gunnery hanger for cannon and machine gun testing and training. The B-26 Marauder bombers had up to ten machine guns. The P-47 Thunderbolt fighter/bomber had eight machine guns, and the P-51 Mustang fighters had six machine guns. For all flight crews training for exact hits with armament was constant and imperative to the allied war effort.
Larry H. Wood
My father arrived there in November 1943. One of his statements remained “it was a cold winter in Colchester, the base at Boxted was nice”. He would stay very busy there. In May, 1944 the 354th moved to Leshenden to prepare for the June 6th, D-Day invasion.
Now my presence there is real, as his presence was real in 1944. Now it’s September 2021 at Boxted and I felt the feeling of comfort in the temperatures. The air was sweet from green grasses, farm fields, towering trees, hedge lined roadways and a moist breeze. I was nearly 10.000 miles from my birthplace in California and yet I felt at home here. Maybe an extended home, like a long summer visiting your grandparents farm in Iowa or an extended camping trip in the seclusion of the high Sierra mountains. Both of which I’ve experienced with my father as child. I believe as an adult I’ve now visited with him in place he called home for seven months in 1944. Thanks dad, you and your pals did good. Our freedom is real.