Central Illinois World War II Stories

WILL - Central Illinois World War II Stories - November 16, 2007

Oral History Interview: Harry Reed of Danville

During World War II, Harry Reed was a flight engineer on a plane that was the equivalent of today’s Air Force II. His plane carrying Secret Service members flew about 20 minutes in front of the plane carrying the President and landed in time to give the Secret Service people adequate time to secure the area for the President and other dignitaries. His assignments included flying Eleanor Roosevelt after FDR died (The President’s body was moved by train). Reed’s plane flew the President and others to vital meetings at places like Yalta and Pottsdam, as well as making a flight to South America that gave the U.S. options for a possible new way to reach Japan by air. The plane also broke the round trip speed record to Paris. Harry Reed will tell you that is proud that he was able to serve his country and that he sees himself as being very lucky to have gotten the assignments he did.


WILL - Central Illinois World War II Stories - September 26, 2007

Yukiko Okinaga Llewellyn, Champaign

Yuki Llewellyn spent three years during World War II interned at the Manzanar Assembly Center in California. Llewellyn and her 23-year-old single mother were evacuated from Little Tokyo in Los Angeles, to Manzanar in Lone Pine, Calif. The now famous 1942 National Archives photo, taken by Clem Albers and showing Yuki sitting on a suitcase in the train station, became representative of that period. A retired assistant dean of students at the University of Illinois, Llewellyn returned to Manzanar last fall for the first time since she and her mother left it in October 1945 with $25 and a pair of government-issued bus tickets. Producer Denise La Grassa talks to Llewellyn about living in Block 2 inside the internment camp where she shared a 20 x 20 room with her mother and another family.