McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK


November 11, 2012

McAlester veteran, Dr. Thurman Shuller, a World War II hero



Shuller was commended by Putman as a “jealous guardian of rights and privileges of combat crew personnel.”
A confession
Shuller said he fought for the mental well-being of his crew in a report to his commanding officer after working with fliers who “faced endless bombing missions and faced the fear of never surviving the theater of war.’”
“The losses were terribly high,” Shuller said. 
As flight surgeon, Shuller said he learned quickly that for some pilots, the flight surgeon may be the “only one who will really listen” He said one of the pilots confided in him about his fear of flying. “Being new to the situation, I just fluffed it off and didn’t respond to that confession sufficiently,” Shuller recalled. He said the next day on a high-altitude mission, the pilot ran into another plane in the formation and both planes went down out of control. Twenty crewmen were killed. 
“To this day, I still grieve over the mistake,” Shuller said.
In March of 1943, Shuller wrote a report called Combat Expectancy of Fliers to his commanding officer requesting there be a maximum of number of 20 operational missions. He said in the letter that fliers suffered “unbearable casualties in personnel and planes, yet at the same time realizing their effort hadn’t done one thing to further the war effort. 
“The fliers were actually saying among themselves that the only apparent hope of survival in the theatre of war is either to become a prisoner of war or to get ‘the jitters’ and be removed from combat,” Shuller’s letter states.
 In the report. He described the incredible number of losses the crew had faced. 
“In this group we have lost 20 of the original 35 combat crews in addition to several replacement crews, yet very few had seen as many as 15 missions,” he said. 

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA
NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show'

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.