Morris Albert Cannon
by Elliot Morris Cannon
(Paso Robles, California)
Morris A. (Moe) Cannon was my Father. I decided on this Fathers Day to look up more information on my Dad's war experience. He was part of the HALPRO mission that was originally supposed to bomb Japan out of an airstrip in China. By the time his group was trained and ready to go, the Japanese had over run the airstrip they were to use and the Brits. had their hands full in North Africa, so Dad's group the 376th was sent to Bengazi. Dad's plane commanded by C.O. Brown was shot down while bombing the Italian fleet. My Father was the only survivor of his crew. Dad swam in the Med. over three hours, was picked up by an Italian freighter and handed over to the Germans. He then spent 34 months as a POW in Germany in various stalags. All of Dad's crew was thought to have perished when the crew went down. Moe survived the POW camps, came home, got married and had two children, my Sister and I.
I served in the US Air Force from 1966 to 1970 and served as an In Flight Refueling Systems Technician. My last year of service was spent as a Staff Sergeant in the 4252nd Strategic Wing at Kadena Air Base on Okinawa. The 4252 was designated as a temporary group. A few months after I arrived, it was designated as a permanent wing and was designated the 376th Strategic Wing. My Father and I served in the same outfit one generation apart. Enclosed is the only picture available of my Dad's crew. My Father is in the bottom row, left side with his hand on his cheek. The pilot C.O. Brown in top row on the far right. The pilot's Mother Lettie Brown was a close family friend until her death at age 93. I have also enclosed a picture of the patch my Father wore and I wore.