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Baynham grew up during the Great Depression but doesn't recall life being too bad. After graduating from high school he entered a national youth organization which paid 15 cents per hour toward his tuition at a junior college in Texarkana. During that time, he also worked at a Safeway where he earned about 17 dollars per week for about 80 hours of work. After passing the USAAF Aviation Cadet Program entrance test, he quit his job at the Safeway but went back after learning that he wouldn't be called up for six months.Baynham was 17 years old when the war broke out. During that year he had to wait before turning 18 and joining the military. He decided that flying would be better than slogging through the mud.He was called to active duty in December 1942. He went to basic training then preflight training in San Antonio, Texas. He then flew PT-19s during primary training in Coleman, Texas. During the nine weeks he was there about half of his class washed out.Basic flight training and advanced twin engine training were in Waco, Texas where he graduated after nine weeks in advanced school and was commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant.After B-24 [AnnotatorÂ’s Note: American B-24 heavy bomber] transition training he went to Salt Lake City, Utah where he got his crew assignment. He then went to Colorado Springs, Colorado for crew training.At the end of March, Baynham came down with pneumonia and was hospitalized for a couple of weeks. His crew begged the director of training to let the crew stay together which he did. In May, the crew boarded the Queen Elizabeth with 15000 other servicemen. Aboard ship, Baynham was able to see the Glen Miller Orchestra perform.The Queen Elizabeth was very fast and therefore it didn't travel in a convoy. After four days at sea the ship arrived at the Firth of Clyde. Baynham was then sent by train to Liverpool and then on to Ireland for some additional training.After training in Ireland he returned to England arriving around the 1st of June.
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