Orville Moderow Oral History
Orville Moderow was born on September 13, 1921 in Wheatland, North Dakota. Orville was drafted in the Air Force in 1942. Moderow was stationed in the Pacific with the 5th Air Force 460th Fighter Squadron. After the war he graduated from University of North Dakota, Grand Forks. Moderow married Phyllis Jacobsen in 1947 and had one son – Mark. Moderow owned and operated Moderow’s Paint for 31 years and retired in 1985. He passed away on March 18, 1999 and buried at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.
In an interview conducted on June 26, 1989, Orville Moderow described his time in the Air Force during the World War II. Starting off as a payroll clerk, he eventually became a pilot. He recounted his experiences to train as a pilot. After training, Moderow was stationed in the Pacific flying both P-47s and P-51s. In the Pacific theater, he participated in the campaign to take back the Philippines, and eventually moved to Okinawa and flew missions over Japan. He also flew several missions over China. Orville mentioned his squadron, the Black Rams, and how they were spoke of on the radio by Tokyo Rose. He talked of his downtime during the war and what it was like to fly combat missions. Moderow discussed his feeling about the Japanese during the war. After World War II, Moderow recounted how he stayed in the Reserves and was almost sent to fight during the Korean War.
Interview by David Overy
St. Cloud State University, "Orville Moderow Oral History" (1989). World War II Veterans. 28.