Aleksey Maresyev, a pilot who was shot down in Nazi territory, lost the use of his legs, crawled for eighteen days before returning to Soviet territory. His legs were then amputated. Nevertheless, within a year he was flying again on prosthetic legs.
Lydia Litvyak was the Jewish Soviet fighter ace. During WWII she claimed 14 kills, trained 45 pilots, and shot down an ace who wouldn’t believe a woman beat him until she described the fight. She went missing on a flight Just before she was to receive the award “Hero of the Soviet Union”.
Fuzzy dice hanging on a rear view mirror is a good luck charm with the origins based on WWII pilots keeping gambling trinkets in their air planes. A lot of car and sub culture trends is spawned from this, including hot rod flames, shark mouths, pin up girls, etc.
During WWII, J. Hunter Reinburg wanted to make ice cream for his men while stationed on a tropical island in the Pacific. He put the ingredients in a can mounted on the underside of his plane and would fly to 25,000 feet where the air temperature was -30 degrees Fahrenheit.
As a sign of appreciation, 49 box cars were sent from France to the US in 1949. Each car of the “Merci Train” contained personal items. This was a “thank you” gesture from French people to Americans, for donating supplies and food after WW2. Each state got one car. Some states even kept them in a local museum.
A British Navy Stoker managed to escape from a sinking submarine and get to the surface over a 100 feet up. He then swam five miles to land.
During WWII, a Nazi spy stationed in New York tried to turn himself into the FBI. The FBI didn’t believe him. The FBI finally listened when he showed up at FBI headquarters and offered proof that he really was a Nazi spy. He was imprisoned for 6 years and deported to Germany.
Gilbert Seltzer, a WW2 veteran, lead a secret platoon of men within a unit dubbed the ‘Ghost Army’. Made up of artists, creatives & engineers, their job was creating deception about the enemy. From inflatable tanks to scripted bar conversations, this unit’s work led to big US wins.
The US military was already using UAV drone technology in WWII. The primary manufacturer at that time, Radioplane Company, had a drone assembler named Norma Jeane Dougherty, who eventually changed her name to Marilyn Monroe.
When France was occupied by the Germans in 1940, Citroen was forced to produce vehicles for the Nazis. They chose to move the fill line on their oil dipsticks lower, causing the trucks to seize under stress from low oil.