Friday, September 29, 2006

Librarian help reunite WWII buddies

Here's a feel good library story. :)

They hadn't seen each other since 1945, but last week Earl DeCamp and George Afentul were buddies once again.

DeCamp, who lives in Coulee Dam, served with Afentul in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II in the Pacific from 1944-46.

They met at Hedland Field in Hawaii, a couple of airplane mechanics directing crews working on C-54 transports. After the war ended, they each received different assignments, eventually losing track of each other.

Four years ago, when DeCamp was living in Oklahoma, a friend told him librarians, with their computers, could find anybody nowadays.

"I believe it," DeCamp said in an interview at The Star, Afentul at his side.

An Oklahoma librarian found a number for Afentul's brother in Canton, Ohio. DeCamp called and convinced him to give him a number for George, whose birthday happened to be the next day when DeCamp made the call.

Now over 80, Afentul made the trip to visit DeCamp Sept. 14. He had gotten out of the military in 1946, joined the Navy as a Seabee in 1968 and eventually had two sons, one of whom he named after DeCamp. He now lives in Vero Beach, Fla.

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