A North High graduate and World War II veteran, Corporal Bob Rogers really wanted to join the Army Air Corps.
His destiny however was the U.S. Army where he would earn two purple hearts.
Bob Rogers was in the middle of going to school at Wichita University when he realized that every time he tried to meet up with his friends, they would be away serving in the military.
So Bob says he thought maybe he should do his part too.
Bob graduated basic training and went to Officer Candidate School.
Soon after the army would send him to England and later on to Normandy, France.
There it wasn’t long before bob got hit in the back with a piece of shrapnel.
He says the army put a band-aid on it.
It was his next injury that would be more life threatening.
“It entered up here they took one piece out, broke my jaw, I had to talk like this for three months or more,” explains Bob.
Bob got hit in the head with more shrapnel.
But he would again recover and head back to France.
“Here I was right on the front lines again,” says Bob.
Looking back Bob says he didn’t realize at the time the danger he was in.
“When you’re young you’re just dumb, I was,” says Bob. “You’re young and dumb and you’re not trying to do anything spectacular. I was just happy.”
He served overseas for about two years.
When he discharged the war was over.
“When you go into the army during war time you better enjoy it or not and that’s what I did. I didn’t really enjoy it, that’s not what I mean but I always enjoyed my life,” says Bob.
After the war Bob met his future wife.
They married in June of 1953.
“I’m so glad I did, those were the best years of my life,” says Bob.
After finishing school in geology, Bob worked with a geological survey company looking for oil.
He would go on to introduce Kansas to Shasta soda pop as a salesman.
For years Bob served on the Kansas Honor Flight Committee, helping fund veterans trips to Washington, D.C. and even going a few times himself.
“It’s more camaraderie than anything else, you talk to these guys where were you,” says Bob.
Looking back, Bob says he realizes that throughout his life he was always cared for.
“I think God took care of me,” reflects Bob.