World War II Experiences
"Timeless Voices" Oral History Project

Interview with

Philip H. Stahlman, 398th Bomb Group Pilot
601st Squadron, Eighth Air Force

Interviewer: Randy Stange

Interview conducted at the
398th Bomb Group Annual Reunion
The Radisson Hotel, Covington, KY., September 12, 2003


The 398th has been interviewing its members as part of the Timeless Voices of Aviation project. More information about the project and a current list of video interviews can be found at 398th Timeless Voices Interviews. In addition to the video interviews, some of the interviews have been transcribed to text.

A Note from Elaine Stahlman Jurs:
My dad died in December 2005. He was a founding member of the 398th Bomb Group Association. A photo of the B-17 aircraft flown on his last mission with the DeLancey crew is in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. It illustrates how much damage a Flying Fortress could sustain and still successfully fly. After you read my dad's interview, you may wish to try the link at the end to read more about one of his missions, including some of the photos.

Elaine Stahlman Jurs


Interview with

Philip H. Stahlman, 398th Bomb Group Pilot
601st Squadron, Eighth Air Force

Q: Interviewer, Randy Stange
PHS: 398th Pilot, Philip Harrison Stahlman

Q: Phil, for the record, will you state your name?
PHS: Phil Stahlman.

Q: Phil, where were you born and raised?
PHS: Sligo, Pennsylvania and raised in Western Pennsylvania until I went into the service.

Q: Did you have any brothers and sisters?
PHS: I am one of six, the oldest of six, and I have four sisters and one brother.

Q: Did any of your siblings serve in the Air Force?
PHS: No, my brother was in the Korean fracas, in the Army. None of my sisters were in the service.

Q: What did your parents do for a living?
PHS: My dad was a high school teacher and principal all his life. My mother was a homemaker. She never worked outside the house.

Q: What do you remember of the years leading up to the War?
PHS: Well, it was the Depression. You wouldn’t know about that (laughs). School teachers didn’t make much money back where we were in small town schools. My dad had to scrimp and scrounge. Every summer he’d work extra jobs to make a go of it. He did a great job. Small town, rural area. I spent my summers on my grandmother’s farm. I enjoyed it. We were poor but I guess that we really didn’t know that. I graduated from high school in 1939, and went into the service in May of 1942.

Q: What did you do in between, anything particular?
PHS: I had a series of jobs. I worked on a dairy farm one summer. I worked in a highway construction job part of another year. My last job was in an oil supply company in Franklin, PA until I went in the service. An assortment of jobs, none of which paid very well.

Q: Did you ever have an interest in aviation prior to joining the service?
PHS: Funny thing, I didn’t, no. I really just wasn’t that tuned into it.

Q: What were your memories of Pearl Harbor? What did you do about it and what were you doing?
PHS: It was a Sunday, and I don’t remember what I was doing when we heard about it. I think my memory was disbelief, couldn’t believe that something like that would happen.

Q: Did you enlist, or were you drafted?
PHS: I enlisted to beat the draft. I could see it coming, and I wanted to have some say in what branch of the service when I enlisted. I specified the Air Corps and that’s what I got. I would have been drafted in another couple of months.

Q: A lot of the guys said they heard about the Air Corps by ads and by promoters who came through. Is that how you found out, or just somebody who told you?
PHS: As I recall, other guys in my home town had already gone into service, some of them went into the Air Force. And the one a year older than me was already a pilot and so we kind of looked up to him. That had something to do with my decision.

Q: Where did the Army send you first?
PHS: The classification center was in New Cumberland, PA near Harrisburg. Then they sent me for basic training down to Miami Beach, Florida, of all things. Never having been south of Washington D.C., I thought that this was quite an adventure.

Q: So you and your parents had never traveled prior to World War II?
PHS: No, not very far away, no.

Q: After basic, where did you go?
PHS: They sent me to LaGuardia Airport in New York, at the Academy of Aeronautics, where they proceeded to train me in aircraft mechanics. I was going to be a mechanic.

Q: What did you think of the training and accommodations?
PHS: We stayed in civilian apartment houses up there nearby. We were living with civilians all around us. It wasn’t bad. Pretty good living. We marched down there to the academy which is right outside of LaGuardia Airport. It was taken over by the Air Force for training. We’d spend the whole day down there, including our meals, physical training and class work. And we would go back after the day was over to the apartments.

Q: Did you graduate from mechanics school?
PHS: I did. Although before the course was over I decided that what I really wanted to do was fly instead of fix airplanes. So I applied for the Aviation Cadets and in the meantime was accepted and I went on and finished the course and graduated.

Q: Did your mechanics training help you at all?
PHS: I think it did. Whenever we were going through flight training, I had a working knowledge of the parts and the mechanics of the airplane basically and I think it helped me some in my class work and so on.

Q: Where did you go for you flight training?
PHS: San Antonio for pre-flight and then the primary flying school was in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and the basic was in Coffeyville, Kansas. We spent about two months in each place. And advanced, they sent me to twin-engine advanced training and that was in Altus, Oklahoma. That’s when you got a clue to the fact that you probably weren’t going to get to be a fighter pilot, when they sent you to twin-engine advanced school. Most everybody wanted to be a hot-shot fighter pilot.

Q: Do you remember any of your instructors?
PHS: Yeah.

Q: Ever keep in contact with them?
PHS: No. The primary instructors, they were civilians. This guy was… I even remember their names, Edmond Livingston. He was a “stick knocker.” If he didn’t like what you were doing….you know, it was dual controls, and I was sitting in front of him. And he would knock the stick…of course they were tied together, and he would hit me on the inside of the knees with it. He was constantly doing that if he didn’t think you were doing something right. As a result, I wound up with bandages on the inside of my knees before it was over. I can remember that (laughs).

Q: Where did you go for your crew assignment?
PHS: They sent me to Salt Lake City, where they put the crews together.

Q: Right.
PHS: I spent Christmas there, of 1943, and then sent us by train to Rapid City once the crews were put together for our crew training.

Q: Were you part of an original training crew then with the 398th?
PHS: No, they had been in existence quite a while before that. I guess they started out in Blythe, California, as I remember, and moved to Washington. So, no, I wasn’t part of that. [In fact, Phil was one of the original crews from Rapid City; crew #37.]

Q: I assume your crew trained in Rapid City until you were deployed?
PHS: Yeah. Of course, it was wintertime, and you know how the weather gets in that area. So we had one massive snowstorm halfway through training, delayed us by a week or more. It took about a week to shovel out the airport so they could even use it. It was very heavy, a blizzard type of thing, several feet of snow. That kind of screwed things up for a little while.

Q: Did you ferry your plane to England or were you on a troop ship?
PHS: No, we flew our own airplanes over. Prestwick, Scotland, and then after a day or two there down to our base.

Q: By Maine and Greenland or did you fly up to Labrador?
PHS: No, Gander, Newfoundland. See we staged in Grand Island, Nebraska, and then we flew to Bangor, Maine, and spent the night there I think, and then flew to Gander and spent a little time there, and then flew on to Prestwick, Scotland.

Q: What were your first impressions of Station 131?
PHS: I don’t know. Not having any prior knowledge of the bases over there, I guess we didn’t know what to expect. I don’t remember any specific impressions or being impressed one way or the other. It had been a fighter base before we took it over and it was well established. The Nissen huts were something new.

Q: How was the food there?
PHS: Typical Army chow I guess, what can you say? I think we had a little better food probably than the enlisted ranks had, although I…

Q: How many missions did you fly?
PHS: Thirty.

Q: What was your first mission like?
PHS: It was somewhere in Northern France not far from Paris. I can remember we saw Paris from the air. We were bombing some kind of bridge installation. When the Germans were slowly being pushed across France. I believe it was sometime in May 1944. I don’t remember the exact date.

Q: You flew all your missions with your original crew?
PHS: No, once in a while they put a co-pilot who had some missions under his belt with a new crew for the first mission. It was felt that if you had some experience and you might be of help to them. I flew several of those, three or four that I can remember. So they weren’t all with my original crew. [Phil’s original crew included the following: Hollis Dalton, pilot; Phil Stahlman, co-pilot; William Schwan, navigator; John McAllister, bombardier; Harold Kanable, ball turret gunner; Joseph Bigda, top turret gunner; Gene Johnson, radio operator; Cova Baker, engineer-waist gunner; Alfred Alves, waist gunner; and William Durst, tail gunner.]

Q: Can you tell us about any memorable experiences you that you had?
PHS: I think I know what you have in mind. The most memorable of course, was my last mission, when we got our nose blown off over Cologne. We had a couple before that. I remember we were flying lead ship one time, so I was replaced in the co-pilot seat by, I believe, Willis Frasier who was an operations officer …and they had me flying tail gunner as an observer. It was one of the most terrifying things I ever experienced. You could see fine what was going on behind you, but you had no idea what was going on up front. And during that mission a shell went through number 3 engine, and I didn’t find out until later, but luckily did not explode, and they of course had to shut down the engine. Other than that, there wasn’t anything…

Q: And no casualties on any of them up until your last mission?
PHS: No, we saw some fellow airplanes in the formation shot out of the sky. The flak was very, very scary of course. You knew you had to fly through it, there it was right out ahead of you and you couldn’t deviate or anything so you just grit your teeth and went on about it.

Q: What happened on your last mission?
PHS: This was October 15, 1944 and I was flying with Larry DeLancey. My own crew had all finished up their missions and some of them had even gone home I guess. I had spent some time in the hospital because of nasal problems and blockages that grounded me. I went a long time before I got that last mission in, and I was getting kind of frustrated. So they put me with DeLancey and they had only had seven missions under their belt. It was to Cologne, a relatively short mission, not too far into Germany. We had just finished dropping our bombs on target and were turning off when this thing hit us in the nose. I still have very vivid memories of what happened there. We figured we’d had it, but we got to looking around, and we still had four good engines. The most critical thing was the loss of oxygen. We had to get down. We were at about 27,000 feet or thereabouts. We’d have passed out in a very short time. So we had to just leave the formation, get down to a lower altitude as quickly as possible, and head back for home. That was the most critical thing.

Q: Or you would have passed out in about three minutes.
PHS: Oh, yeah. At that altitude you didn’t have long. And of course, we were always afraid of the German fighters, once we were on our own, because we would have been easy pickings. But none showed up! So, we lucked out all around I guess you could say.

Q: Now, what happened to the navigator and the bombardier?
PHS: Well, the bombardier, he was the togglier, [George Abbott] who was, I believe…they had several substitute crew members on that day. I think he was subbing for the regular bombardier. And at least one other crew member was a substitute that day, as well as myself. The co-pilot was sick and that’s why they got me on. He never knew what hit him, the togglier. He was just kind of had bent up from his bombsite restoring things when hit. And the navigator, [Ray LeDoux] who was behind him, amazingly enough, was knocked back into the hatch, momentarily stunned, and he didn’t have a scratch on him! Which, still seems like a miracle today, but he came up later and stood between the seats and helped navigate us back to our base. All his charts were gone. Everything had blown out of that area that was loose. And he did a good job.

Q: I understand the controls weren’t too badly damaged.
PHS: No they weren’t. And we had no airspeed indicator, we had no hydraulics, and a lot of other things were missing. The instrument panel was all askew, and you just didn’t know what airspeed you had, you were just flying by the feel. They describe it as the old seat of the pants type of thing. But we had the power and that was what saved us. It took a lot of power to keep that thing going. With that blast of air coming through there the streamlining was all gone.

Q: Even though you were at a lower altitude, it must have been pretty cold too.
PHS: Oh, yeah. At that altitude it’s usually somewhere around 25 below zero, or 30 below, I don’t know exactly what it was. But it was summertime, well, it was fall actually.

Q: So how long did it take you to get back to the base?
PHS: I don’t really remember. Probably not more than about an hour, but it seemed like half a whole day, because we were so anxious to get back in friendly territory before something happened. So, once we got down to 10,000 feet and were flying out over the Dutch coast, they were shooting at us with small arms fire down there, but luckily they didn’t hit us. And the weather was good back in England too, which was a big help too, not having any navigational aids any longer.

Q: So, I’m assuming it took both you and DeLancey to control the plane.
PHS: It was pretty much of a two-man job, because that thing was…it was a different ballgame, flying something like that.

Q: How did you land?
PHS: No problem. As I mentioned, we had no airspeed indicator, so once again we were just…And luckily that airplane is electrical pretty much, so the flaps worked electrically and the landing gear worked electrically…

Q: And the controls were manual…
PHS: And you didn’t need the hydraulics for that. The only thing that the hydraulics did was the brakes and the cowl flaps. So that wouldn’t work and we had no brakes. So we knew we were going to have a little trouble getting stopped at the end of the runway. So we just rolled off the end of the runway into the mud and stopped. That was about the size of it. And I think we all got out and kissed the ground. [The other crew members on this mission included: Ben Ruckel, engineer-turret gunner; Wendell Reed, radio operator; Al Abro, ball turret gunner; Russell Lachman, waist gunner; and Herbert Guild, tailgunner. The name of the B-17 airplane on this mission was “Lovely Julie.”]

Q: I understand DeLancey’s flight surgeon [Dr. Robert Sweet] pried DeLancey’s hands from the wheel and helped him out.
PHS: Well, it was pretty traumatic, and of course he was the pilot in command and he had the whole responsibility and I have to say he did a great job. As Allen [Ostrom] pointed out in his report of this, years ago, Col. [Frank P.] Hunter was going to come and interview us, and the flight surgeon said, “No, Col. Hunter, you’d better leave them alone for awhile, because they need to get their thoughts back in order.” So he didn’t, not right away anyway.

Q: George Hilliard said there was a reporter there also, and the flight surgeon told him to go to…
PHS: Probably so. I don’t recall that incident.

Q: And the other thing is, George and everybody else who was there, described this strange whistling sound they could hear for miles…
PHS: Everybody said the same thing. They said they could hear the airplane coming long before they could see it. It was like a banshee screaming. I’ve heard different descriptions of it. Of course from the inside of the airplane we weren’t really conscious of that. That air going through all that jagged metal and back out through the airplane made a pretty weird sound. I even talked to a couple of civilians years later. They had been in a nearby pub when they heard it. I think Ralph Ambrose might have been one of them. I talked to several of them during a various visits and they all said, “Oh, what a sound!”

Q: From there, that was your last mission. So where did you go from Nuthampstead?
PHS: Well, after phasing me out of the base, they sent me up to Stone, a replacement depot, where they processed you to be shipped back. I eventually went to Liverpool and came back on a ship across the North Atlantic to New York. By that time it was well into November. My original crew was all gone by that time. They had all come back home.

Q: What did you do during leave while you were over there?
PHS: About half way through, they gave us a seven-day rest leave. Some of us went up to Scotland, to Edinburgh. And that was nice. In Edinburgh there were no military targets, so it hadn’t been bombed and you hardly knew the war was going on. It was nice and quiet. We could do what we wanted. It was a welcome break from the base. Otherwise, if we’d get a 24 or 48 hour pass, we went to London quite often. And I had a cousin that was stationed at Polebrook at the 351st as a gunner. He was also from Western Pennsylvania, and we used to visit back and forth between the bases. So I went to see him occasionally when we were both not flying. Went to London and did some other visiting around different towns, cathedrals and such.

Q: How about the USO tours? Did you get to see any of those USO shows at the base?
PHS: Well the one that I remember the most, a very fond memory, of is Glenn Miller’s Air Force band coming to our base. And they played in a hanger. And from two or three other bases around they brought people in because they couldn’t go to every one. The hanger was filled with people. And that was just a little bit of back home, hearing that music. He wasn’t there himself, this was before he was killed, but he was off doing some other business. Ray McKinley, the drummer, was running the band. Other than that I don’t recall having many shows come to the base. In fact, that’s the only one I recall.

Q: When you got home I assume they gave you a leave before you were discharged.
PHS: Yeah, they gave me a leave at home. And then they sent me to Atlantic City where they took over hotels for R&R, and my wife came down there and joined me for a few days. We had already been married. We were married in Rapid City while we were training. Eventually they sent me to Columbus, Mississippi. They were going to make an instructor out of me. Of course, the Japanese war was even winding down by then. They didn’t really know what to do with a lot of us. Then they sent me out to Lubbock, Texas where they were going to make me an instrument instructor. I had had a full course of instrument flying under the hood of an AT-6. I had always wanted to fly an AT-6 and never got to until then, and then all they let me do was fly under the hood! Never got to do anything else. By the time they sent me back to Columbus they were fixing to close the base there. So they sent me down to Homestead, Florida. The base was run as a training base for C-54 pilots, the air transport command. I didn’t do much flying there, but from there they sent me to Charleston, South Carolina which was the same type of a base and then they phased me out of the service. I was discharged on October the 8th, 1945.

Q: What are your thoughts on dropping the atomic bomb and the end of hostilities in the Pacific?
PHS: My thoughts have never wavered on that. I felt that Truman made the right decision. There have been a lot of naysayers on that one. When you consider how many millions of casualties there might have been had they had to invade Japan. The Japanese being very fanatical, they were going to defend their homeland with everything they had and it would have been a real bloody mess. You’ll never hear me criticizing Harry Truman for that one.

Q: What did you do when you were discharged? Did you go back to school?
PHS: Well, eventually I took a little schooling. But I wanted to fly for the airlines, so I started making the rounds of the airlines in New York. And they all had waiting lists by that time. A lot of people had been discharged from the Air Force and the Navy. And a lot of them made a beeline to the airlines. And I couldn’t find any airlines that were actually hiring at that time. So I went to work for Eastern Air Lines on the ground, figuring eventually that I could work my way into pilot school. And that’s what happened eventually. I had to go and get my civilian instrument rating. They wouldn’t recognize the military one. So I took a course of instrument flying at a little airport across from LaGuardia called Flushing airport. Twenty hours of instrument flying on a Piper Pacer and some ground school work and some Link Trainer work. That’s the only thing I ever took on the G.I. Bill of Rights. I think the total bill for the whole thing was about $600. Shortly after that Eastern hired me. And I flew for them for 30 years.

Q: What aircraft did you fly with Eastern?
PHS: I started out on a DC-3 and flew one trip on a DC-4, and then flew quite a bit on the Constellation, as Co-Pilot. Oh, the Martin 404 came before that, then the Constellation, and the Lockheed Electra Prop-Jet, and up through the DC-8. About that time I checked out as Captain. Started back down at the bottom again and worked my way up. The Martin, and the Constellation Captain and then the Lockheed Electra Prop-Jet Captain and then the 727 which I flew for 11 years and wound up on the Airbus A300.

Q: Any particular favorite plane?
PHS: Well, the 727 was my favorite up until then. Once I got familiar with that A300 it was a beautiful airplane, so those last two were great. The 727 was just a wonderful airplane. I loved flying that.

Q: Any exciting or humorous events during your flying civilian?
PHS: Not too many. The one that stands out was when I was flying the A300 shortly before I retired. It was a twin-engine airplane as you know, and we had taken off from Kennedy going to Miami, a nice, sunny day, and ingested a large Canada goose in number one engine. Waterfowl loved the areas around the airports where there’s a lot of water. And that engine just completely tore itself up as a result of that big bird. We had to shut down and came back in and landed on the one engine. And other than that most of my flights were pretty routine. I didn’t have too many hairy experiences.

Q: That’s good. By the way, were you awarded any medals during the war?
PHS: Well, we all got air medals and clusters and I think we all got a DFC after having completed so many missions and they gave me a cluster on my DFC as a result of the trip with DeLancey. And then the European Theatre, the usual stuff, you know.

Q: I’m assuming you stayed in touch with your family when you were over there. I was wondering about their thoughts when they saw the pictures of the plane you were in?
PHS: I was going to keep it a secret and not tell anybody about it at that time, but somebody sent home a copy of the Stars and Stripes to the little town where I lived, which only had 400 people in it. And there was a picture of that airplane and a small write-up with my name in there, so someone showed it to my mother. So they let the cat out of the bag. I didn’t think anybody knew about it until I came back home, and I found out that wasn’t the case. I guess it was pretty incredible story to them.

Q: Did you keep in touch with your original crew members or the crew members that you flew that mission with?
PHS: The original crew, we did. And we had a crew reunion, not until 1975 in Louisville, Kentucky, and eight of us showed up with their wives. That was very nice. None of us had seen one another from the time we had broke up in England until that time. Out of the ten, we started out with ten, as you may have heard, then they dropped it to nine. The one man died in an army hospital back in the states after an operation of some kind. And our bombardier, John McAllister, we never could find him, never found a trace of him. Finally, George Hilliard, who was pretty good at looking up people, came across his name; found out that he had actually been trained as a pilot when he got back. He stayed in the Air Force, but was already dead by the time we got the information. So we never did see him. There were eight of us there at that reunion in Louisville, all with our spouses. That was the first time. We started, some of us, to get together at the reunions in years hence.

Q: How about the crew members who were with you on the DeLancey mission?
PHS: I think there are about two of those left besides myself. I think the navigator is still with us, I can’t think of his name. And Ben Ruckell, the flight engineer, is still with us. The tail gunner, Herbert Guild, I understand he’s in a nursing home in the Fort Lauderdale area of Florida. I have corresponded with him by mail. I have seen the other guys once or twice at the reunions. Larry DeLancey used to come to the reunions faithfully, until he developed cancer. He didn’t want anybody to know about it, so he wouldn’t correspond with anybody. A lot of us wrote to him, trying to keep in touch, but never got an answer. Finally we heard that he had passed away.

Q: Any other veteran’s organizations you belong to?
PHS: I belong to the American Legion. That’s the only one. I get mailings from a lot of them, looking for help. You know there’s so many of them.

Q: How about the 8th Air Force Historical Society?
PHS: I belong to that, yes. I do indeed.

Q: I know that’s how my father found out about the 398th, starting up the reunions, and whatnot.
PHS: We started going to the Eighth Air Force reunions. And they were huge. They’d have as many as 2000 people at those things. We went to the one in St. Louis, was the first one we went to. No, that’s not true. The year before that, in 1976, was our first time back to England. Once again, that was the whole 8th Air Force went over. And then they divided up into groups. And they furnished a guide to take them back to the air base. There were only six of us in the 398th. And there’s only two of us left today. Lou Stoffer and myself. The other four were Jim Crouch, whose widow [Dorothy Crouch] you see all the time, Barry Hill, who has been dead for a number of years, and Col. Braddock, who was a ground administrative officer, and Bill Jones, who was a maintenance man. They are all gone. Just Lou and I are left. We enjoyed that. A guide showed us around the old base and we met some of the people. And that’s how the whole thing got started. Then, the next year we went to the reunion in St. Louis, once again the whole 8th Air Force. And the 398th had a little cadre there. They had their own organizational meeting. I don’t know; your dad might have been at that meeting. Do you recall?

Q: He was at Rapid City. He’d been to a couple of 8th Air Force reunions and I remember the one in L.A. because he came out and stayed with me and visited with me, and unfortunately I worked late and couldn’t get there. He said the largest group there was the 398th. And that was, I believe, the year before Rapid City.
PHS: We didn’t make that one. But the St. Louis one, that’s where I met people like George Hilliard, Harry Gray, and I guess Bill Comstock. We had our own meeting there and formed our own organization. From then on we tried to go to almost all of them. We missed a few.

Q: I know my dad talked a little bit about the war but not really much. Not until I went to the Norwegian national jamboree with the Scouts in 1968. And as part of it we went to Gilwell Park in England and we visited Mattingly and the chapel had just been completed and I took a lot of pictures. I also took pictures in Cambridge. When Dad was going through the pictures, he stared at this one, and he goes, “I know this place, this is near my old base.” He said, “We used to go punting there.” And then he started talking a little more about his experiences.
PHS: We’ve been on at least five trips to England with the group. I enjoyed every one of them. The one where they dedicated the memorial, was your dad at that one?

Q: Yeah.
PHS: Were you with him?

Q: No. Not at the memorial.
PHS: That was the one where the big windstorm came up and blew everything down, and rain. The thing that impressed me at that one was all these English people were there, and through that whole storm not one of them moved a muscle. They all stayed there and got soaked. Of course, some of them were dressed for it. The tent blew down. We had all our lunches there. They were destroyed. Somehow, I’ll never know how they did it, these English people came up with lunch for everybody in another hour or so. Where they got them from, I don’t know. I’ll always remember that. We went into the pub after the rain storm, and the steam was coming off of everybody’s clothes. You couldn’t buy a drink in there. Every time you went to buy a drink, an Englishman was interjecting himself and saying, “Oh no, this is on me.” A memorable experience.

Q: Well, if there’s nothing else you can think of Phil, thank you for your time. Thank you for your sacrifice.
PHS: It’s been a pleasure. 


See also:
  1. Dalton's Crew - 601st Squadron - February 1944
  2. It Was a Fortress Coming Home by Allen Ostrom
  3. Delancey's Crew - 601st Squadron - 15 November 1944
  4. 398th Mission: 15 October 1944 to Cologne, Germany
  5. 1st Lt. Philip H. Stahlman, Jr.: Award of Oak Leaf Cluster to Distinguished Flying Cross for 15 October 1944, awarded 2 December 1944
  6. Return to 398th Timeless Voices Interviews to view and listen to the interview.


  1. Lt. Philip H. Stahlman was the Co-Pilot on Hollis L. Dalton's 601st Squadron crew.
  2. Transcription by Elaine Stahlman Jurs, daughter of  Lt. Philip H. Stahlman, Co-Pilot, 601st Squadron in October 2007.
  3. The transcription was obtained from a video file.
  4. Punctuation, grammar and minor word changes may have been made to improve readability.
  5. Additional information may be shown in brackets [ ].