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Boggs, Roy Melvern

Document Type

Oral History

Date of Interview



Roy Melvern "Mel" Boggs was born on 28 August 1918 in Des Moines, Iowa. His parents died when he was aged five, so Mel spent his youth with a variety of relatives in the Des Moines area. Mel graduated from Des Moines East High in 1936, spent 1936-41 as a plumber apprentice, and was working as a plumber when he decided in early 1943 to volunteer for the US Army Air Corps. At this time Mel was married (1939; wife Aileen Frazier Boggs) and had one child. During the remainder of 1943 and early 1944 Mel completed Basic Training and several levels of pilot training, finally earning his wings at Ellington Field, Texas. After crew training in B-24 Liberator bombers in Tucson, Arizona, in July 1944 Mel's crew was shipped to Europe and stationed at Shipdahm, England. As airplane captain, Mel completed twenty-nine combat missions before V-E Day in May 1945. With the end of the European war Mel was transferred stateside and scheduled to be an instructor for B-29 pilots, but the end of the Pacific war in August 1945 made this unnecessary. He was discharged in November 1945 with the rank of captain. Mel worked as a plumber before starting his own plumbing contracting business in 1968; he kept this business until retiring in 1995. At the time of this interview (2002) Aileen and Mel Boggs lived in Woodbury, Minnesota.


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Mel Boggs - Transcript.pdf (708 kB)
PDF Transcript of Interview with Mel Boggs