Streaming Media


Oral History interview of Francisco Silva. Interview conducted by Ford, Frank at Silva Residence.


1:35 Life on Madeira Island, Portugal; 3:15 Living under the Salazar dictatorship in Portugal; 5:00 Life in the United States before military service; 7:55 Experiences in the Civilian Conservation Corps; 12:25 Draft Experience; 13:45 Volunteers to be reconnaissance photographer; 14:25 Refuses R and R; 16:20 Coming home; 17:05 Joins 'Victory at Sea' film crew during Korean War; 17:50 Experiences with the natives of New Guinea during the war; 19:15 Relations with the natives of New Guinea; 20:50 Biac, New Guinea Bob Hope show gets attacked; 21:40 Description of Japanese soldiers; 22:15 Reactions to malaria pills; 23:15 Typical day in the 400th Bombardment Group; 23:50 The Red Cross; 24:30 Description of crew duties on a B-24; 25:35 Problems with extra fuel tanks in the B-24; 26:25 Outlook on World War Two; 26:45 Experiences in the South Pacific during World War Two; 27:50 Hurricane in the Philippines; 28:10 The roles of Sea Bees and runways; 29:00 Guarding aircraft during the war; 30:10 Liberation of the Philippines and the return of MacArther; 31:40 The truth about combat; 32:50 Experiences in a Marine Boot Camp; 33:50 Thoughts on Japanese soldier tactics; 34:10 Kamikaze attacks and the Japanese mindset; 36:40 Japanese surrender; 37:05 Thoughts on the Atomic Bomb and Tokyo Rose; 39:25 Problems with readjustment back into civilian life; 42:05 Reflections on Military Service; 42:55 Decision to move to Florida and the retirement years; 45:05 Changes in Florida between World War Two and the Present; 46:35 Reflections on life in the United States.

Date of Birth


Place of Birth

Taunton (Mass.)




White - Hispanic

Home State


War or Conflict

World War II



Begin/End date of Service - 1st



Entrance into Service


Branch of Service

U.S. Army

Highest Rank

Technical Sergeant; TSgt

Prisoner of War


Service Related Injury



China; New Guinea; Western Pacific, Southern Philippines; Luzon Campaigns


Air Medal; Good Conduct Medal; Philippine Liberation Medal; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal


Aerial Reconnaissance and Tail Gunner


Flew 61 Combat Missions. Lived in Portugal from 1923 to 1940. Moved to the United States and enlisted not knowing a word of English. More medal details: Philippine Liberation Medal with 1 Bronze Star.

City of Birth


Country of Birth

United States


Ford, Frank

Interview Date


Location of Interview

Silva Residence


Silva, Francisco R.; World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives; United States. Army

Collection Description

Contains logs, audio and video recordings of interviews with Central Florida's veterans as part of a history class project for the students at the University of Central Florida (UCF). The UCF Community Veterans History Project(CVHP) started in fall 2010. It collects, preserves, and makes accessible to the public the experiences of Central Florida's veterans so that future generations will better understand the realities of conflict. It is a collaborative endeavor supported by multiple departments and offices at UCF. The veterans' histories are archived and made digitally available through the UCF library and selected materials are contributed to the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress.

Contributor Affiliation / Organization

RICHES; University of Central Florida


Ford, Frank

Length of Interview

50 Minutes


Department of History, University of Central Florida


Video; MovingImage


All rights are held by the respective holding institution. This material is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. For permission to reproduce and/or for copyright information contact Special Collections and University Archives, University of Central Florida Libraries, (407) 823-2576.


University of Central Florida Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives

Contributing Project

UCF Community Veterans History Project

Document Type