Oakley Ragland - Radio operator
Oakley Ragland was born March 1, 1923, in Fort Screven in Georgia, a son to Oakley Ragland Sr and his wife Maria.
His parents divorced after some years and she remarried Clarence H. Wetherbee in Thompson, North Grosvenor Dale in Connecticut. Oakley has two half-brothers; Kenneth and Arthur.
Oakley Ragland grew up in North Grosvenor Dale. He attended 4 years at Tourtelotte High School, worked as a newspaper boy and later as a worker in a textile factory at Grosvenor Dale Company. Then he started to study at De Forest Institute for Radio and Communications in Chicago.
He registered with the Army Air Corps November 25, 1941, in Hartford, CT. He was trained in radio technology at the 93rd School Squadron in Scott Field, Illinois and shooting in Kingman, Arizona and got his wings in November 1942. He left the USA in April 1943.
Oakley got married September 12, 1943, to Rosalie Juanita Burgess from Wellesville, Missouri. Later she lived in St Louis, MO.
He survived initially but died shortly after the crash. He is buried in Malmö, Sweden.
Oakley flew 32 missions before he died. He earned the Distinguished Flying Cross while serving with the 8th Air Force for "many high altitude bombardment missions over enemy territory", other awards included the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters.
Oakley Ragland and his father Oakley Ragland Sr
The wedding photo with Juanita Burgess and Oakley Ragland
Copyright all seven photos: © Ragland relatives