World War II ended almost 70 years ago. There are several men in the Tennessee Valley who fought in that war, and made it home to tell their story.
Chattanooga's Don Womack joined the Air Force in 1943. He flew in 22 combat missions over Germany and Austria in September of 44.
"I tell people that I wasn't really afraid but one time, and that was from the time I left the states until I got back," Womack said. "It was scary it really was."
During those missions the B-24 bomber he was in was never attacked from the air, but took a lot of anti aircraft fire or flak from the ground. On one mission while flying over the target it was his job to take a picture of the bomb run.
"I got out and was on my knees over the camera as the bomb run started," Womack said. "A piece of flak hit me in the side and it threw me up against the side of the ship. It turned me sideways. They tell me i lost quite a bit of blood."
The pilot turned back, and flew Womack to their base in Italy. He was wounded, and was in the hospital for weeks.
"I got back to the base, but I hadn't been put back on flying status," Womack told us. They left that morning, and i went out to watch the plane leave. I went back that afternoon to watch it come back in, and they didn't come back in. They went down."
The man who flew in Don Womack's place bailed out over Germany, and was taken prisoner. The rest of his crew stayed in the plane a while longer.
"They decided they could get over the Alps," Womack said. "They bailed out over Yugoslavia, and worked their way back. I flew with them again."
Don Womack got out of the Air Force and didn't see or talk to the men in his crew again for decades. His squadron held a reunion every year, but Don didn't go.
"They were going back to Italy in 1984, and I decided to go back with them," Womack said.
He stayed in contact with six members of his crew for the rest of their lives. Don is the only one left. At this years reunion there were only nine men from squadron who made it. Next year they'll hold their last one.
"It's sad, but that's part of life," Womack says.By Josh Roe