Robert W. Helvig

Robert W. Helvig, son of Mrs. L. M. Helvig of Second Crossing, has been promoted to Sergeant. He is serving with the 38th Bomb Squadron in the Southwest Pacific.

Eau Claire Man Follows Big Bombers Closer to Japan
A 7TH AAF BASE IN THE MARIANAS—Sergeant Robert W. Helvig, of Second Crossing, Eau Claire, Wisconsin, an Airplane Instrument Specialist with a 7th Army Air Forces Liberator Bomb Group known as the "Atoll Busters," has traveled 3200 miles closer to Japan since his organization began operations against the Japanese just a year ago.

Since last October, Sergeant Helvig has progressed from the Ellice Islands to the Gilberts, to the Marshalls and on to the Marianas, servicing heavy bombers that have raided every important enemy target from the Gilberts to the Bonins.

As Instrument Specialist, it is Sergeant. Helvig's job to check and keep in perfect condition all instruments in the 7th Army Air Forces 30-ton bombers. He has worked under blackout conditions, through air raids, on desert hot coral airstrips, and through tropical storms. Many times he has toiled the clock around to keep the bombers flying on schedules.

His planes have been flying consistently the  longest regularly scheduled bombing missions in this theatre. Every mechanism in every plane must be meticulously checked prior to a mission.

Sergeant Helvig and other members of the group recently were commended by the group Commanding Officer, Colonel Edwin Miller. "Without your unflinching efforts and hard work, our progress could never have been made," Colonel Miller said.

Sergeant Helvig, the son of Mrs. Louisa Helvig of Eau Claire, was a teacher in Eau Claire Public Schools. He entered the Army in May 1942 and has been in the Central Pacific area for a year.