Written By: Ted B Markley
Nostalgia is a natural reflex. Certainly there is much for the Crane Military Complex to be proud of in its muted 75th Anniversary celebration. Recently published, The World War II History of NAD Crane by Tony Haag and Peggy Julian portrays much to admire. It portrays rural Hoosiers mentored by military experts striving to create a national defense treasure. Selfless service and anxiety for the nation were obvious throughout the account.
Seventy-five years ago the United States was not at war, but it was getting ready. Preparation extended well beyond the nascent industrial base reflected in the construction of an ammunition production facility in southern Indiana. It included the largest mobilization of military force in the nation’s history. During World War II, 16.1 million citizens served in uniform. The following is an account on one Mid-Westerner’s service reconstructed from public records, private papers/photos, and family interviews. Until recently even the family of Staff Sargent Thaubald was not aware of the extent of his service.