World War II 20th Division Air Force Patch

Welcome to the Sgt "Mike T"
WWII Airplane Nose Art Collection

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Michael William Tymoszczuk

Mike was only son of Mary and William Tymoszczuk who were immigrants from the Ukraine.  He had three sisters and they all lived with him in Cleveland.  Mike was fascinated with photography and even at the age of 13 he had his own make shift photo lab in the basement of his home. Mike graduated from Lincoln High School in 1942 and went to Miami University for a couple years.  Deciding college was not for him and not having enough money to finish, Mike headed back to Cleveland and worked for a while.  Mike tried to join the Navy with a friend of his but was denied because of “flat feet.”  Soon after that, he was drafted into the Army at the age of 21.  He was ordered to report for induction in the Army on April 6th, 1943 at 9:00 am

Left for basic training on April 13, 1943

Assigned to the Headquarters of the 400th Armored Field Artillery Battalion at Fort Knox, KY where he went through basic training

He was quickly promoted to Sergeant on July 5, 1943. There he was trained as a Forward Observer in the 400th Armored Tank Division.

While in the 400th, Mike decided to request a transfer to the air force for pilot training.  (Fortunately for Mike, the Forward Observers before and after him were all killed in action, as he found out while in the Air Force.) His application was accepted and he was ordered to report to Bowman Field.

Reported to Bowman Field on November 18, 1944 at 8:00 am for his “Examination For Appointment as an Aviation Cadet.”

Placed in a casual company on January 6, 1944 at Goodman Field, Fort Knox, KY

He was qualified for pre-aviation cadet basic training and reported to Jefferson Barracks, Missouri on January 15, 1944.

During basic training, Mike’s interest in photography became well known.  Although he wanted to be a pilot, he was ruled ineligible for flight training because of physical limitations.  However, his talent and love for photography did not go unrecognized.  He was transferred to the newly formed 35th Photo Unit based in Salinas, Kansas. 

In Kansas he was trained to take and develop film as part of the 20th Air Force division, 21st bomber group.. From Kansas they took a train to Seattle, Washington and from there headed to Guam.  Prior to Mike’s arrival, the Seabeas had cleared part of the forest to begin the operation.  Upon arrival on Guam, Mike and his fellow soldiers slept in 4 man tents while the Photo Lab was being built.  Mike and others then set up the equipment and got it operational.  Little did Mike know what his contribution would be in the military strike against Japan.  Mike, and the rest of the personnel on Guam, saw the pictures unfold before their very eyes as history revealed itself in the development trays, presses and through lenses of their cameras.

About This Site

While on Guam Mike took & developed pictures of everything from airplane nose art, recon photos, to local villagers farming and island landscape.  With all kinds of pictures, it should give the viewer a good insight into the times and character of our soldiers overseas. There are hundreds if not thousands of pictures including the negatives for each.  This website and others to follow, will begin to categorize his artwork, which I have chosen to call “The Sergeant Mike T Collection”.  The first site "ww2planenoseart" will be strictly for photos taken of plane nose art that I have the original negatives to. The prints from these original negatives will be used to help fund the development cost of the next site which will be considerabley more eloborated.

This site is dedicated to my father, Mike Tymoszczuk and all the other soldiers that earned our freedom.  Sincerely, William Michael Tymoszczuk…thanks Dad.

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