John R. Bone of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania wanted to join the Navy and serve in World War II, but his flat feet kept him out of the water — until they carried him to the sky, as a member of the Army Air Corps. Flying throughout the US on training missions, John was a B-17 flight technician. He kept those great big warbirds in the air. It was critical duty and a lot more dangerous than we think. During the war years, thousands of men and women of the Army Air Corps lost their lives while flying training missions.
In June 2011, The Social Voice Project conducted a series of audio interviews with veterans living at Lighthouse Pointe independent living community in O’Hara Township, Allegheny County. Resident Emily Drake, herself a WW II veteran (WAC), assisted in the production of the interviews. The Lighthouse Pointe series captures the experiences of eight WW II veterans and one Korean War veteran. Interviewer: Kevin Farkas.
KEYWORDS: AERO ENGINEER; ALLEGHENY LUDLUM; AMARILLO, TX; ARMY AIR CORPS; BOEING B-17 (FLYING FORTRESS); CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS (CCC); DRAFT EXEMPTION; FLAT FEET; FT DIX, NJ; KESSLER FIELD, MS; KEY FIELD, MS; LOCKBOURNE AIR BASE; NEW ORLEANS; NIAGARA FALLS, NY; O’CONNOR, DONALD (ENTERTAINER); OTT, BILL; ROONEY, MICKEY (ENTERTAINER); SLIGO, PA; US AIR FORCE; WASHINGTON, PA
Listen to John Bone’s complete audio interview, hosted by Kevin Farkas. An archival version of this interview is available upon request for research and educational purposes.
John R. Bone, 92, formerly of Allegheny Township, died Monday, May 6, 2013, in Good Samaritan Hospice Unit at Concordia Lutheran Ministries, Jefferson Township. Born Nov. 5, 1920, in Reynoldsville, he was a son of the late John and Lilly (Barraclough) Bone. Prior to his retirement in 1983, he was employed as a scheduler by West Leechburg Works of Allegheny Ludlum Steel Corp. with 43 years of service. He was a World War II veteran, having served in the Army Air Corps.
He was a member of Holy Innocents Anglican Church, Leechburg, where he was a lay reader and Sunday school teacher. He was a life member and past exalted ruler of the Apollo Elks. Mr. Bone also served in the Civilian Conservation Corps from 1938-1939. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Harriet E. (Kline) Bone, on Nov. 4, 2005; three brothers, Howard Bone, Charles W. Bone and James Roland Bone, who died in infancy; and a sister, Ila Jean McCormick. Survivors include two sons, Jeffrey R. Bone (Judy), of Bel Air, Md., and Roger A. Bone (Kimberly), of Paoli; two daughters, Debra E. Bone, of Blawnox, and Dyan L. Bone, of Flagstaff, Ariz.; four grandchildren, Jason, Leslie and Christopher Bone and Samantha Pinelli; and a sister, Carole Schantz (Edward), of Hyde Park.