|Damon Rarey, the author of this site, passed away on December 15, 2002.|
An online memorial has come together in his honor.
This past summer  the EAA Museum in Oshkosh WI mounted a magnificent exhibit of Captain George Rarey's original artwork. The exhibit has been extended and will run through April of 2003 [note: it has now become a permanent installation at EAA].
You can email Damon's wife, Linda, at firstname.lastname@example.orgIn 1942 my father, George Rarey, a young cartoonist and commercial artist, was drafted into the Army Air Corps. He flew a P-47 before he drove a car. During his service he kept a cartoon journal of the daily life of the fighter pilots. A few weeks after D-Day he was killed in combat over France.
His journals are a part of his legacy to me - one that I want to share with others through this web page. Browse through his drawings and words. Their joyful spirit dwarfs the background landscape of war.
George Rarey didn't care much for his first name and was known exclusively as "Rarey." (My mother thought Rarey was his first name until they had had several dates.) The exception to this was his fellow pilots. Because he was a few years older than most of the pilots - a ripe old 25 - in the Air Corps he was known as "Dad."
The drawings on this web site have explanatory text contributed by surviving members of the 379th Fighter Squadron, excerpts from Rarey's letters to his bride (my mother), Betty Lou, as well as from my mother's memoirs.
"Dad" Rarey's Sketchbook JournalsWhat's New
379th Fighter Squadron
The latest additions to the site.
Last updated on April 5, 2001
Cadet LifeRarey was drafted in January, 1942, and got his wings within a year.
379th Journal, Volume IThe squadron moved to Mitchell Field on Long Island to wait for embarkation. Then one night they boarded the Queen Elizabeth, bound for England.
379th Journal, Volume IIAt Wormingford airfield near Colchester, England, it took two months for P-47's to be delivered. There was plenty of time for drawing pictures.
379th Journal, Volume IIIWhen the airplanes came, they were pressed into service - dive-bombing and escorting B-17s and B-24s into Germany and occupied Europe.
379th Journal, Volume IVThe group was moved to Headcorn, England - not an improvement. Nissen huts were replaced by tents and lots of rain and mud. Missions continued.
379th Journal, Volume VFrom D-Day to Rarey's death at the end of June.
Nose Art and Pilot PortraitsRarey painted insignias on the cowlings of the squadron's P-47 Thunderbolts. These are a few of his watercolor renderings of the insignias, each with a portrait of the pilot.
Artwork, Objects and PhotographsA few treats of wartime art, old snapshots and assorted artifacts.
Laughter and Tears is a privately published, deluxe, first-edition volume of Captain Rarey's wartime artwork. Click here for details (also available are limited edition prints of a few of Rarey's drawings).
Hard-cover Book of Rarey's Art
My daughter, Ondine Rarey, has made an hour-long documentary called Fools and Heroes about her grandfather, George Rarey - and her maternal grandfather, Bob Harvey, who was also an artist in Greenwich Village, and who became a conscientious objector during World War II.
"Fools and Heroes"
My Alum Falls site is an original web comic set in small-town Ohio in the 1950's, featuring the life, loves, and occasionally risque adventures of 15-year-old John Snavely.
To See Some of my Work
Email Rarey's widow, Betty Lou, at BettyLouKratoville@email.msn.com
This site had its debut on April 11, 1995.
(c) Damon Rarey, 1995-2002