WWII Veteran remembers South Pacific, preps for Honor Flight - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

WWII Veteran remembers South Pacific, preps for Honor Flight

LAUREL, MS (WDAM) -

Douglas Saget was a Navy airman for three and a half years during World War II. He enlisted, was stationed in the South Pacific and given the role of aviation mechanic.

"I was supposed to be an aviation machinist, supposed to take care of the airplanes," said Saget, sitting in his Laurel home. "But overseas, when we first got over there, we didn't have anything to take care of them with. No tools no nothing."

Unofficially, Saget became a rear seat gunner - facing backwards in a two-seater plane and dispatched daily to guard Allied ships from the sky, scouting for enemy submarines.

"It was boring most of the time, to go out there and circle around a ship for four is not very entertaining," said Saget with a laugh.

If the day-to-day seemed mundane, Saget's squadron - composed of about 60 men - was credited with spotting and sinking two enemy submarines. The squadron also lost two men when a plane malfunctioned and went down in the jungle.

"Of course we hated to lose a plane and the men, that hurt pretty bad, but after a couple months or something, we got over it pretty good," said Saget.

"They were 19-year-old men, and at 19 you do a lot of things," says Doug's son Don Saget. "But they did one great thing for us didn't they?"

"It was no park," says Doug. "I have some good memories and bad memories, but over time, it kind of faded away."

For his service 67 years ago, Doug Saget will be recognized Tuesday with an invitation to ride on the Mississippi Gulf Coast Honor Flight. He will fly with his son Don and 94 other WWII veterans to Washington D.C. to tour the monuments and war memorials the nation's capitol is famous for.

"Just looking forward to the trip," said Don. "I think it's going to be a great honor for me to be around these kind of people.

Copyright 2012 WDAM. All rights reserved.

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