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"I've been taught that name-calling is one thing, but what you are is another." (Video Interview, 10:23)

   Bobby J. Wallace
Collection image
Bobby Wallace [detail from video]
War: World War, 1939-1945
Branch: Navy
Service Location: Pacific Theater
Rank: Boatswain's Mate
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The chance not only to serve his country but also to help his cash-strapped family propelled Bobby Wallace into service with the Navy during World War II. And he served for twenty years, mindful that he always had to prove himself, not just as a Navy man, but as a black man.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (8 clips)
» Part 1 
Download: video (54 min.)
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»AAHM: Pioneers
 Video (Interview Excerpts) (8 items)
Family's financial circumstances forced him to join the service; basic training; racism pushing some recruits over the edge. (02:40) Racist Marines having the tables turned when they were wounded in combat; fighting more than one enemy in WWII. (02:45) Heeding advice from Marines about Japanese tricks. (01:40)
How pride in proving their detractors wrong spurred on black troops." (01:04) Having his V-mail to his parents censored during WWII. (00:39) 30-day shore leave during the war; getting ready for the invasion of Japan; celebrating the end of the war; hardships aboard ship. (07:56)
WWII didn't end segregation or racism. (03:00) His old-school moral values; appreciating the sacrifices made by servicemen he fought with; getting a perspective on life in America by seeing other countries. (02:50) 

Home » Bobby J. Wallace
  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
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