Stan F. Stanley
Technical Sergeant Stan F. Stanley
Award: Honoring Our Veterans
World War II veteran Stan F. Stanley was born September 27, 1919 in Ambridge, Pennsylvania. He grew up in Liverpool, New York, and graduated from Syracuse Vocational High in 1937.
In 1942, at the age of 22, Stan was drafted into the United States Army Air Force.He completed his basic training in Atlantic City and his flight training in Pueblo, Colorado. His tours of duty consisted of European theater and bombing raids on Berlin. Stan, a radio operator on a B24 bomber, completed 10 missions before tragedy struck.
On the 11th mission, on March 8, 1944 over Berlin, Stan’s B24 bomber was hit by enemy fire. The pilot was killed and the co-pilot seriously injured when the plane crashed in the province of Friesland, in German-occupied Holland. German troops would not give up search for the B24’ s crew, who had been taken into hiding by the Dutch. Miraculously, Stan evaded being captured by moving place to place for the next 14 harrowing months. He remained in hiding until the Canadian liberation of Holland. Sadly, six of his fellow crew members had been captured and sent to German POW camps.
Stan held the position of Technical Sergeant when he was discharged from the military on September 27, 1945. For his courageous actions, Stan received an Air Medal and 3 Oak Leaf Cluster in 1944. The details of the B24 crash and the rescue of him and the other U.S. airmen are documented by the Missing Airmen Memorial Foundation in Leeuwarden, Netherlands. Upon returning to Syracuse, Stan began a successful career working for the U.S. Postal Service for 33 years. He retired in 1976 as Postmaster of Chittenango, New York. Stan currently resides in Fayetteville with his wife, Dorothy, of 62 years. They have three sons, Richard, Donald and James, and one grandson, Michael.
Technical Sergeant Stan Stanley’s experience during World War II is a remarkable story of survival and triumph. He deserves to be inducted into the New York State Senate Veteran’s Hall of Fame.