On 01 July 1941 Werner registered for the draft. He was listed as 5' 8", and weighed 142 pounds. He had blue eyes, brown hair and had a light complexion.
On 26 August 1941 Werner entered the service as a Private in the Air Corps from Lubbock, Texas (Service Number 18 036 976). He had two years of high school education, was single, without dependents and his civilian occupation was listed as: "Semiskilled welders and flame cutters".
We have Flight Officer Birkelbach listed on the 437th TCG Special Orders #195, dated 27 December 1943. These were the orders generated at Pope Field (Fort Bragg, NC) for the first phase of movement by air and by rail of the 437th personnel to their eventual overseas deployment.
We have him listed on orders as participating on one 437th flight: Mission DETROIT on 06 June 1944; he was a Flight Officer, Service Number T-060 894. There is a mini-biography of Werner in the book: "World War II Glider Pilots", published in 1991, by the Turner Publishing Company. That bio indicates he also participated in the Market-Garden operation in Holland in September 1944 (The 'Bridge Too Far').
He was listed in Frank Guild's book: 'Journey to the Far Shore' as a 1949 member of the 84th TCS; he was a member of the 437th TCG Association, was listed on their rosters from 1972 until 2004 and attended several reunions.
In the 437th TCG Association newsletter of October 1981, Werner and his wife are identified as recently visiting Holland, France and England
Units served with
Constituted as the 437th Troop Carrier Group on 15 April 1943, it was activated on 01 May 1943 in Dunnellon, FL. They trained with C-46 and C-47 aircraft for duty overseas with the Ninth Air Force. They moved to England during January and February of...
Military site : airfield
Planned as an RAF operational training station, Ramsbury was allocated while under construction to the Eighth Air Force as a transport base. Built during 1942, it had eventually three concrete runways, 28 pan and 24 loop hardstandings, and two T2...
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