Dallas resident John “Lucky” Luckadoo flew 25 missions as a B-17 bomber pilot in the U.S. Eighth Air Force as part of the legendary “Bloody Hundredth” 100th Bombardment Group during World War II. Now, the venerated veteran is working to establish a day honoring Americans who stayed home and supported the military.
“Home Front Heroes Day” would honor family members and other Americans who kept the country going during war times, according to a news release from Presbyterian Village North.
“There are numerous holidays, special days and events honoring veterans, but there are none acknowledging the people on the home front who do their duty, too, and I hope to change that,” Luckadoo said. “During my time in the service, the people back home made tremendous sacrifices which boosted our morale.”
Luckadoo is a resident of the retirement community Presbyterian Village North, at 8600 Skyline Drive.
He hosted his own Home Front Heroes celebration at the village earlier this month. The Franklin Middle School ROTC Honor Guard presented the colors for attendees and District 10 Councilman Adam McGough read a proclamation from the Mayor and City Council. The Presbyterian Village North Singers performed “God Bless America” and attendees shared memories of their own Home Front Heroes.
One resident remembers her 10-year-old classmate saving a soldier’s beet crop while he was overseas. Another resident worked as a nurse’s aid at a local hospital while also working on her family farm.
“For more than 50 years, I couldn’t talk about the war. I wanted to forget it. No one who goes to war comes back the same,” Luckadoo said. “But I got an invitation to speak at an event, and my late wife encouraged me to talk. Now I have this last mission to make Home Front Heroes Day a holiday, and I also want to construct a memorial to The Bloody Hundredth here in Dallas. I don’t know if I’ll live long enough to see it all happen, but I’m going to do what I can while I can.”