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James Reed collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 98.0694

Scope and Contents

This collection relates to James Reed who served with the U.S. Army Air Corps 1st Fighter Control Squadron during World War II in the Pacific Theater. The collection includes an oral history interview transcript of Reed and comrade Chester Driest where they discussed their experiences in the Pacific Theater. Both served as radio operators that directed Army Air Force planes with ground based radar. The men also recount a few experiences before deployment and experiences in local indigenous populations they encounterd on the islands.


  • April 30, 1998
  • Event: 1941-1949


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to all researchers.

Biographical / Historical

James Reed was born August 25, 1922 in Oklahoma City, OK. He was the son of William and Lela (Turner). He served in the U.S. Army during World War II having attained the rank of technical sergeant. Reed enlisted on January 3, 1942, at Oklahoma City, OK and was discharged on November 11, 1945, at Ft. Macarthur, CA. After the war, Reed worked at Purolator in Fayetteville, N.C., for three and a half years. He also lived in Jamestown, NY and retired from the management department of Blackstone Corporation, Jamestown, where he worked for 30 years. He was also a member of the Gowanda American Legion Post 409. Reed passed away on November 2, 2012, at the Lutheran Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Jamestown, N.Y. Reed was married to Dori M. Hill Reed

Chester Driest was born in Detroit, MI on June 18, 1920. He passed away on March 24, 1999 in Inverness, FL. He is buried at Florida National Cemetery, Bushnell, FL.

Reed and Driest served together with the 1st Fighter Control Squadron in the Army Air Corps in the South Pacific. In the interview transcript, Reed and Driest discuss their experiences as radar operators in the Army Air Corps during World War II. The unit was stationed in the South Pacific in Australia, New Guinea, Wadke Island, and finally the Philippines. The transcript also contains an account of the unit being torpedoed on the way to Australia from the US.


1 folders

1 items (Type 38 Japanese Rifle)

Language of Materials


Custodial History

Transferred from the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience to FSU Libraries Special Collections & Archives in July 2022.

James Reed collection
Eric Siskind
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the FSU Special Collections & Archives Repository

116 Honors Way
PO Box 3062047
Tallahassee FL 32306-2047 US