​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program

​​​Monday, October 23, 2023

YouTube lecture & slide presentations:

Battle of Nomonhan - Part 1 & Part 2

by John Shively, 2023

"Nomonhan, The Antecedents of World War II - Part 1":  https://youtu.be/cW2TYkdD_9k

Featured program:

"Our Service Our Stories, Indiana Veterans Recall Their World War II Experiences," Volume 3

Two guest speakers:

1. Ron May, author of "Our Service Our Stories" highlighted the stories of Indiana Veterans whom he had interviewed and written about in his latest book. 

2. World War II Marine William A. Branic gave a summary of his service in the Pacific during WWII.

WWII Roundtable Dinner Program

​​Monday, April 24, 2023

"Finding a monument for fallen WWII Soldier
​Pvt. Robert J. Whalen" 

Guest speaker: Catherine Whalen Purdy, Pvt. Robert J. Whalen's niece

..."How a family in Indiana discovered the final story of "Pvt. Robert J. Whalen, who was the only American soldier killed in action on August 29, 1944, during the liberation of Vailly-sur-Aisne in northern France."...

Combat chronicle

"The (34th) division participated in six major Army campaigns in North Africa and Italy. The division is credited with amassing 517 days of front-line combat, second only to the 654 days of fighting by the 32nd Infantry Division. One or more 34th Division units were engaged in actual combat for 611 days."

Featured Program: ​​

"He Never Complained:
​Stories of an Everyday Man"

Guest dinner speakers:​ 

David and Evan Humphrey

The speakers shared the story of their family member, the late Pvt. George Humphrey, who served in the 36th Infantry Division in North Africa, Italy and France and who was a recipient of numerous medals.

​​​WWII Roundtable January Dinner Program

​​​Monday, January 22, 2024

"My Experience in WWII"

by Corporal Ira W. Rhodes, U.S. Army, 34th Division, 5th Army​​


Steven Hogan, WWII Roundtable Board Member

Walter Stitt receiving his WWII Roundtable Recognition Award certificate from Kathryn Lerch, Vice President of the Indianapolis WWII Roundtable - Ernie Pyle Chapter. 

Featured Program

​​WWII Roundtable November Dinner Program

​​​Monday, November 27, 2023

​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program - Monday, June 26, 2023

(L-R) Kathryn Lerch, VP WWII RT Exec. Board and 

Ronald P. May, US Navy Reserve, author

(L - R:) WWII Roundtable member (and WWII veteran) Bob Begeman shown with our guest speaker, Sgt. Major Robert Brown,
​U.S. Marine Corps, Feb. 27, 2023.

​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program

​​​Monday, September 25, 2023

Norden bombsight

​​​"Nomonhan, The Antecedents of World War II - Part 2":  https://youtu.be/Wwb6XgeWcoE

All comments and constructive criticism welcome.
John Shively


PFC Walter Stitt

​​​​Featured Program

"2nd Battalion,7th Cavalry & la Drang Valley" 

Guest speaker: Bud Alley, U.S. Army Vietnam War Veteran and author of "The Ghost of the Green Grass"​​

​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program  - Monday, August 28, 2023

"Your European Correspondent 

Alma De Luce 1939-1941"

Speaker: Kathryn Lerch, Editor
and WWII Roundtable Board Vice President

Ron Darrah

34th Infantry Division photos and quotations credits: Wikipedia

"History of Lukas-Harold, WWII and Beyond"

Presenters: Karl Kleinbub & Steve Hogan, WWII Roundtable Members

​​​Four WWII veterans & members of WWII Roundtable are shown posing with Walter Stitt (center), our guest speaker at our November 27, 2023 dinner meeting.

​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program - Monday, July 24, 2023

WWII Story of Holocaust Survivor Jack Bronicki 

Speaker: Laurie Freeman, Daughter of Jack Bronicki 

"He escaped a concentration camp and joined a resistance group."*

​*Read more in January newsletter by ​Kathryn Lerch, WWIIRT Jan. 2024 Newsletter

Julie Freeman

Red Bull

34th Infantry Division, U.S. Army

"The 34th Infantry Division...was the first American division deployed to Europe in World War II, where it fought with great distinction in the Italian Campaign."

WWII Roundtable Dinner Program - Monday, March 27, 2023

William A. Branic, WWII Marine

​Northside Events & Social Club (formerly "Knights of Columbus")

2100 E 71st Street, Indianapolis, Indiana​​

​Doors open - 5 PM. Dinner - 6 PM. Program - 7 PM.

Where History and Heroes  Meet

"The First Composite Air Strike Force & Lebanon in 1958 "

by WWII Roundtable member Ron Darrah, Participant in Operation DOUBLE TROUBLE

(More in our September & October 2023 Newsletter, page 2, Preview of Our Fall Programs.)

​​Merry Christmas & Blessed Holidays to all!

​​​​Featured Program

​​​​​WWII Roundtable February Dinner Program

​​​Monday, February 26, 2024

​​​"Secretary of War Stimson, Lt Gen Clark and Maj Gen Ryder reviewing 34th division soldiers, 1944"

No Dinner Meeting in December!

​​​"PFC Walter Stitt in Action Across France & Battle of the Bulge"

WWII Veteran PFC Walter Stitt, 33rd Armored Regt., 3rd Armored Division

Speaker: Walter Stitt

WWII Roundtable Dinner Program​​​ - Monday, February 27, 2023

​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program - Monday, May 22, 2023

Lukas-Harold Corporation ("Naval Ordnance Plant")

Ira W. Rhodes, age 98

Corporal, U.S. Army,

WWII Veteran

Featured Program

"Red Bull"

34th Infantry Division mascot image

The newest book from the Park Tudor Legacy Initiative Project

"...A great read about Europe as it descends into war and chaos...The letters of Alma De Luce concerning her travels with her correspondent husband, Dan, in the days preceding the outbreak of World War II...Great detail descriptions...The voyage on the SS Normandie to Europe...The escape from Calcutta to the U.S. on the USS President Madison...And the caique escape from Athens in 1941..."

Dean Armstrong, retired airline pilot who leads WW2 tours to Normandy and the Pacific.

Kathryn W. Lerch, editor and Legacy Initiative Project coordinator

Featured Program:

"Lt. John G. Wallace & Guadalcanal" 
Hosted by:
John Shively,

WWII Roundtable member & WWII Pacific historian

Guest Speaker: CDR Jack Wallace, USNR (Ret),

son of Lt. John G. Wallace, U.S. Navy

Jack gave a slide presentation about his father’s experiences on the USS San Francisco during the WWII battle of Guadalcanal. Jack reported on enemy and friendly strategies and attacks and their wins and losses during their battles.

WWII Roundtable Dinner Program​​​ - Monday, January 23, 2023

Featured Program


"Corporal Don Graves, USMC, Ret. was a flamethrower operator who fought on Iwo Jima in World War II. The aver- age life expectancy of a flamethrower on the battlefield was less than ten minutes." More in July & August 2023 Newsletter article, Page 2 by Kathryn Lerch. 

Credit: From information in the "March - April 2024 Newsletter", by Kathryn Lerch, page 4.

​​​​​​Loader and gunner in the Sherman tanks
  1. Two Purple Hearts, wounded twice in battles across France and Belgium into Germany
  2. Enlisted in the Army in 1942
  3. In training at Camp Polk, one year+
  4. Arrived on June 6, 1944, D-Day – the Allied invasion of France and in Normandy a few weeks after D-Day

Source: Cindy Holbrook, University Communications Staff, Wittenberg University, Springfield, Ohio, Nov. 11, 2022. 


Featured Program:

"Eva Kor & the CANDLES Museum" 

Guest speaker: Alex Kor, Vice-President of Community Engagement

Alex is the son of Michael and Eva Kor. Both parents were Holocaust survivors. 

Eva Kor was founder of the CANDLES Museum in Terre Haute, Indiana.

"The Red Bull in the Winter Line of Pantano, Italy – 29 Nov. to 3 Dec. 1943."

​​​​​​​​WWII Roundtable Dinner Program 

Monday, March 25, 2024​​

Featured Program

Featured program:

“History in Your Own Backyard”
Sergeant Major Robert Brown, born in Rushville, IN in 1927, enlisted in March 1945; he intended to go into the Merchant Marines, but by accident became a Marine. Post-WW2, he was a drill instructor in Korea as well as in Vietnam!

Guest speaker:

​Sgt. Major Robert Brown, US Marine Corps
with interviewer, Karl Kleinbub (not shown here)

Story of “Don Graves and the Battle of Iwo Jima”—honoring a living veteran

Presenter: Steve Hogan, WWII Roundtable Member 

Battle of Nomonhan

"This is the first of a two part lecture series on the battle of "Nomonhan, The Antecedents of World War II". This first lecture is about the battle of Nomonhan that took place on the Mongolian Steppe in the summer of 1939 that was consequential for both the war in Europe and the looming war in the Pacific.

The second part of this lecture will be about the behind the scenes diplomacy, primarily between the Soviet Union and Germany but also with England and France leading up to the outbreak of the Pacific war and the attack on Pearl Harbor, that was influenced, in part, by the outcome of the battle at Nomonhan.​"

by John Shively

Featured Program