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Tom Bebout
137 articles

1/48 Monogram C-47

August 20, 2015 · in Aviation · · 14 · 2.4K

Built this kit several years ago and it was my first try at a multi-engine aircraft, after years of absence from this hobby. Built it to honor my dad who made 21 jumps from this type during the war. It's no show stopper but he was proud to receive it. I got it back yesterday as he was buried with full military honors along with a bagpipe playing Amazing Grace, one of his wishes.

Dad served with HQ Company, 1st Bn, 501st PIR, 101st Airborne Division. His decorations include the Parachute Badge with two Bronze Stars, Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, Combat Infantry Badge, Purple Heart, European-Africa-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with two Arrowheads and four Battle Stars, American Theater Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal, WWII Victory Medal,Occupation Medal and Presidential Unit Citation with Oak Leaf Cluster.

His foreign awards include the French Gold Liberty Medal, French Croix de Guerre with Palm, Belgian Croix de Guerre, Belgian Fourragere, and Netherlands Orange Lanyard.

In 2004 he along with 99 other D-Day vets were invited back to France to note the 60th Anniversary of D-Day. They were all made nights of the French Court and awarded the Legion of Honor. He was very humble about receiving that award as he never considered himself a hero. He often told people who called him one that the real hero's " were the boys we left behind. They got a cross over their heads, I got to come home. I'll remember them as long as I live."

Dad saved a bottle of Eagle Rare 101 bourbon so we could drink a toast to him at his grave. We five sons, family as well as vets raised a toast and bid him farewell. He may not have considered himself a hero but he was to me. We were very lucky to have him as a father.

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14 responses

  1. Your Dad is an American hero...that is all.

  2. Tom, my condolences.
    Real heroes just go about their lives, saying little about their combat experiences or awards, except among their peers.
    All of us, whether we know it , or not, are in their debt.
    This is a nice tribute, thank you for it.

  3. You've composed a fitting remembrance, Tom...and be sure to protect that model...IT can't be replaced, either.

  4. Tom,
    Condolences to you and your family. My sincere "thank you" goes to your father and all those that served. We're it not for them, we all would not be on this site building models. Because of men like your father we, and our children owe each of them our unending debt.

  5. 🙂 ... Greetings ... 🙂 :

    A very touching tribute. I do trust a more detailed display case will be made.

    Disgracefully, I don't see or feel the notion of the sacrifices made in the past in this generation, it is all like a FOG ( much like Jodi Arias ), they don't value freedom and it's cost. I had a friend who's daughter ( at that time was like 12 ) was eager to go too the beach the next day. She called it BEACH DAY (MEMORIAL DAY). When I asked her what was in observance she and her brother had no clue, but for sure it was BEACH DAY! To make things worse, we had just seen Pearl Harbor ... 🙁 ... that did not even ring a bell in their noggin.

  6. I do a lot of interviews with WW2 vets for my writing. I've never met one who considered himself a hero, no matter what amazing story he had just told me. And I have never heard one not say that the "real heroes" were the ones who didn't come home.

    For anyone who wonders whether or not Tom's dad was in fact a hero regardless of his own personal judgement, go here:

    Great model, Tom (even if it was horrid it would be wonderful, given it's "job", but it is in fact wonderful). BTW , for those who think raised panel detail is "wrong," the raised panel detail on the Monogram kit creates a far more realistic recreation of the 1:1 C-47s I have been around than in any other kit.

  7. Hello Tom...Hand salute for your Dad and his service to our country. My condolences on his passing and my gratitude to him and all who have served to help preserve freedom. Nice job on the C-47 and a beautiful gesture on your part to build it for him. Well done sir.

  8. Most of my sentiments have already been expressed above. Thanks for sharing!

  9. A fine tribute to a fine man Tom.As he said , many never came back.
    Our condolences to you and your family Tom.

  10. Thanks for all the kind comments. He was a great dad, was very lucky to have for 93 years. I'll miss him.

  11. Tom, what a great tribute to your dad! My condolences go out to your family. Your father sounds like a true hero to me, but I'm sure he didn't see it that way. He would probably say he was just doing his job; just as mine did. My dad was a combat vet in WWII as well, serving in the 87th Infantry Division. Unfortunately, we didn't get to keep him that long. He passed away at 55.

    I know how proud he must've been to receive that C-47 from you. Beautiful work, but an even more beautiful sentiment. May he rest in peace and his memory live on forever.

    We had a C-47 spend a few days out at the Cameron airport some years back. It had put down out there with some sort of engine trouble. A crew came in and got it running. I walked around it one afternoon and was sort of surprised at the size. It was larger in person than I had imagined.

  12. wonderful tribute to a hell of a man...i salute you both...i've often read that even men who won the congressional cherished their combat infantryman badge above all the others

  13. My condolences on your loss Tom, but you obviously loved him and your model is a great tribute – I'm glad he got to enjoy it.

  14. The Greatest Generation, pass in dad served in Europe in the Air Corps as a crew chief, he seldom spoke about his experiences. Perhaps his greatest "achievement" was living dirt poor through an economic depression of the 1930's and helping to build up post war America into the highest standard of living we enjoy even today. He did confide in me that he was amazed he survived a war and owning his own home as a great accomplishment. Most youngsters take freedom and prosperity for granted these days and disregard the accomplishments of the men that were willing to gave it their all.

    Tom, I'm guessing your dad was one such man, standing up to the bullies of the world and leaving that world a better place to live in. My condolences to you and family, your model is a great sign of respect to your father's memory.

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