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Fargo Air Museum Highlights Local WWII History

June 14, 2023 16:06 | Anonymous

By Ryan Thayer, Fargo Air Museum Executive Director/CEO 

The Fargo Air Museum is thrilled to share some local history right from our Collections Manager, Max Sabin from the archives!

The featured artifact is a U.S. Navy-issued flight log book that belonged to Fargo, ND, native Grant Herreid. Herried flew the Grumman F6F in the Pacific Theater during the closing days of World War II and kept track of all of his missions in this logbook. It was issued to him on April 7, 1945. Many of the missions he flew were Combat Air Patrols (CAPs) over Japanese-held territory. Although most are uneventful, several of his log entries note the spotting and/or destruction of Japanese aircraft in combat. The most interesting logbook entry comes on August 13, 1945, when his flight intercepted and destroyed two Japanese aircraft. In his logbook, Herreid mentions that the second kill was the “[...] last aircraft shot down during the war.” Although this is unfortunately untrue, it is still an incredible piece of World War II history, made even more special in the fact that a North Dakota native was seeing action that late in the war.

Grant Freeman Herreid was born May 14, 1917, in Fargo. In 1927, the family moved to Moorhead, MN, and Grant graduated from Moorhead High School in about 1935. He attended Moorhead State Teachers College for one year, and then attended and graduated from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, ND. Grant taught music in public schools in Twin Falls, ID. Following his discharge from the Navy after World War II, Grant and his wife Ruth made their home in Moorhead. After a brief time when Grant worked for a local bank, he joined the staff of Fargo Glass and Paint. He became their general manager, and worked there until his retirement in 1980. Grant served as a city alderman in Moorhead, from 1948 to 1949, and again from 1950 to 1951. He died on Sept. 14, 2004 at MeritCare Hospital South, in Fargo.

The Grumman F6F Hellcat was an American carrier-based fighter aircraft of World War II. Designed to replace the earlier F4F Wildcat and to counter the Japanese Mitsubishi A6M Zero, it was the United States Navy’s dominant fighter in the second half of the Pacific War. In gaining that role, it prevailed over its faster competitor, the Vought F4U Corsair, which initially had problems with visibility and carrier landings.

We are very thankful for all our sponsors, donors, friends, staff, our Board of Directors and the community. And a special thanks to the North Dakota Aeronautics Commission for grant support to allow us to continually expand our education programs! We could not have a special place like the Fargo Air Museum without your support. So on behalf of the staff at the Fargo Air Museum, thank you and include a stop at the Fargo Air Museum this summer!


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