David C. Hanson
U. S. Army Air Forces
WWII US Military
Dates of Service: 09/27/1943 - 03/08/1946
B-29 Remote Control Turret repairman, 56th Air Engineers Squadron, 31st Service Group

He was born at home near Shreveport, one of three children of Sidney Mason Hanson and Effie Wray Curtis Hanson. His father, a railroad employee, quit his job when he learned he had to work on Sunday, and turned to farming just as the Depression began. "It was hard times and we usually had a meal of just maybe one vegetable," David recalls. Gravy supplemented the family fare. David, who helped on the farm, was only eleven when his father died. The family, who had lived in about six places during David's young life, moved again, this time into Shreveport and took up residence with an aunt. "I got a paper route, and I guess I wasn't a farm boy any longer," he says. He also worked in his uncle's grocery store, located on Missouri Avenue in the Queensborough neighborhood. He recalls prices of some of the store's items, such as ten to thirteen cents for a loaf of bread, seventy-five cents a pound for round steak, and a nickel for a candy bar. Meanwhile, his mother was employed as a seamstress at a dry cleaning plant. While attending Fair Park High School, David worked for a company selling supplies to newspapers and printing shops. With his earnings he bought a 1936 Chevrolet for $165. David entered active duty in October of 1943, and took basic training at Camp Beauregard in Alexandria, Louisiana. "The main thing I remember about basic was my fight with the doctors to be able to stay in the service," he says. "My blood pressure was way up there and I thought maybe I'd be sent back home and I didn't like that." He remained in service, however, and went on to other duty stations including one in Norman, Oklahoma, where he trained in the remote control turret system of a B-29. In January of 1945, as a sergeant the 156th Engineers, he shipped out from Fort Lewis near Seattle, Washington, on a thirty-day voyage to Guam. Meanwhile, his mother had joined the Women's Army Corps (WACs), serving much of her time as a chauffeur for officers at Barksdale Field in Bossier City, Louisiana, and at Fort Myers, Florida. David returned to the States in March of 1946 and was discharged in San Antonio. "I just wanted to get back to work and have a little money in my pocket and maybe buy another car to replace that '36 Chevrolet," he recalls. He returned to his pre-war job with the paper company, and also ran a photography studio in Carthage, Texas. On May 2, 1947, he married Martha Petit. (They would have four children, six grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.) In 1948 he began working at the U.S. Post Office, where he retired in 1988.