Saturday, April 12, 2014


Crashed B-17 pieces
I wouldn't be surprised if that's what the crew on the "WE HAUL JUNK" truck will label most of the "treasures" they transfer from the Ed Myers lower level recording studio/office/museum and power nap Palace to the Fairfax County Landfill.

For example the contents of this box does look as if it might be pieces...well ...of anything...from an old rusty tractor  to a Martian spacecraft.  But what it actually contains is two strips of metal from a US Army B-17 that was shot down by the Germans in 1944.

However, this is one treasure I'm going to make sure is preserved, and not allowed to go to the Grim Trucker. 

50 cal shell from B-17
A friend of mine and I stumbled upon an audio tape made by an American B-17 crewman who was one of two men who survived a crash over enemy territory near Belgium. Albert Macuch was his name, and he made an audio tape for his grand kid's school project describing his ordeal in detail some 50 years after the event. His daughter found it tucked away in a drawer after Macuch passed away, but was unable to play it.  She asked my friend if he would listen to it and let her know what was on it.

Not only did he listen to it, he brought it over to my home recording studio and with a little bit of editing and lots of sound effects, we tuned the tape into a radio drama.

Thanks to the internet and a lot of luck we made contact with a man in Belgium, William Liket (hopefully I spelled his name right} who lived near where Macuch's plane crashed and was kind enough to send us a picture of the downed plane as well as a few pieces of the wreckage. He also sent me an original watercolor painting of the event by a local artist named Liket Pieter.

Macuch's crashed B-17
The only two survivors of the crash were Albert Macuch, who was the tail gunner, and the pilot, Frank Schick. Macuch was the most badly injured and was unable to move. Schick was able to walk, so he went searching for help.  Unfortunately, he was captured by the Germans whereas Macuch was later rescued by Belgium partisans.

Next time you have 25 minutes to kill, you might want to take a listen to THE ALBERT MACUCH STORY.

The only reward my friend and I received was the pleasure of producing a very good story
Painting by Liket Pieter
that honors a few of our many heroes; those men and women who fought and won our freedom in WW2.
It was also gratifying to know that we spread the word of their heroics to a few more people.

We received a nice note from Albert Macuch's daughter Helen;

"My father's story has been passed along to many states, and throughout Europe. Now his story along with his picture is on display at the Remember 39-45 Museum in Belgium. Many thanks to you for producing his story, and I will always have my Father's voice to listen to. God Bless."

And this one from his nephew:

Albert Macuch
"This story is by and about my Uncle Al, he passed away shortly after taping this. Most of us in the family never heard this whole story. It was too difficult for him to talk about."
E.D. Olver

We also got a nice note from Frank Schick III, the pilot's son:

This was recounted by my mother Lucile.

'When Frank's plane was shot down, he was initially declared KIA. His family in Chicago
Macuch (standing 2nd from  L) Schick knelling 2nd from L)
received a telegram from the War Dept. declaring that he was considered KIA. Due to a misspelling of his surname, Shick vs Schick, no one ever corrected his status from KIA to POW. Upon his release from the POW camp
at the end of the war, Frank was originally weighed in stones so that his loss of weight wouldn't appear
too severe. When he was discharged from the Army, he let himself into his house using a key that he kept attached to his dog tags and stood there. His mother couldn't believe her eyes'

Frank J. Schick III