1929, After a fire destroyed the family home, the Daniels family moved first to Madison, Wisconsin and then to Windsor, Wisconsin about 11 miles north, northeast of Madison.
1938, May 25, John graduated from Windsor State Graded School.
1941,The kids living in Windsor went to high school in the neighboring town of DeForest. Here's John wearing the number 28, as a member of the De Forest, High School 1941 championship football team.
1942, John graduated from De Forest High School with honors.
1942, John attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison.
Staff Sergeant 2539th Army Air Force Base Unit - Fosterfield, Texas
John Daniels had originally intended to enter flight school training and become a pilot, however, he was surrounded by friends who persuaded him to remain with them as become tail gunner specialists.
John Daniels arrived at his overseas assignment on September 10, 1944. For the next 6 months he served in the 15th Air Force, 304th Bomber Wing, 459th Bomber Group, 756th Bomber Squadron based at Giulia Field in Cerignola, Italy.
The 304th Bomber Wing was comprised of 454th, 455th, 456th, and 459th Bomber Groups. The 304th engaged primarily in strategic bombardment targeting oil refineries, munitions and aircraft factories, industrial areas, airfields, and communications centers. All groups flew B24 Liberators with tail markings that included a distinctive diamond on the top portion of the vertical stabilizer and a color or pattern on the bottom as seen in the illustration below.
In addition to the tail markings there were sharks teeth painted in the lower nose of the aircraft.
12/17/1944: Daniels Worried About 4 Motors - Odertal, Germany Mission
15th AAF In Italy: When two engines of a B-24 Liberator are shot out on a bombing mission, there is good reason for worrying about getting back to the home base, but when four go out, it usually means that it is too late for worrying. S/Sgt. John S Daniels, 20, a tail gunner from Windsor, Wis. did not have much time for anything when all of the engines of his B-24 Liberator cut out suddenly over the Adriatic on returning from a mission to the vital Nazi oil refineries at Odertal, Germany. The big bomber had dropped its bombs on the target and had reached the Adriatic on its return journey, "Meanwhile, I was listening to Xavier Cugat play "Take It Easy" and calmly doing likewise back in the tail," said Sgt. Daniels. "Suddenly I noticed that our engines had cut out and we were going down towards the water. Believe me, I wasted no time in getting out of the turret, grabbing my chute as I left. But before I put it on, we had already started to climb. As the engines caught on, the water looked so near, I though I could reach down and touch the waves. Getting a whiff of smoke on the command deck, I glanced out and noticed that No. 2 engine was trailing smoke with flames. The pilot quickly feathered that prop and lucky for us the fire went out soon afterwards and had only burned away one side of the engine nacelle." Finally, the bomber reached its base and landed only a few minutes late.
March 11, 1945: John departed Italy for the United States. He was credited with 52 Missions while he served in the 15th Air Force. Official records indicate he participated in attacks in Rome - Arno, the North Apennines, Southern France and the Rhineland.
AIR METAL with 2 Silver & 4 Bronze Clusters
GOOD CONDUCT METAL
EAME METAL (EUROPEAN-AFRICAN-MIDDLE EASTERN) with 3 Bronze Stars,
PRESIDENTIAL UNIT CITATION
John S. Daniels attended the University of Wisconsin - Madison and Palmer Chiropractic School in Davenport, Iowa after the war and practiced in Racine, Wisconsin until 1994.
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