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Virgil & Bobbie Marco
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February 17, 2002

Dear Richard,

Thank you for your letter of February 9.

I am sorry to hear of Phil Solomon's stroke. My health is not very good at this time. I'm 78 and being treated for the same thing that finally got Mike, prostate and bone cancer. The VA has recently accepted my application for treatment and I am finding out that the service is not good, but "beggars can't be choosy".

I am also sorry to hear that I still don't have your story correct and that it is more fiction than truth, I had made one more "home made " booklet to send to Chester Hincewicz, however, I was waiting to hear from you before mailing it. Now it is on HOLD. If someone will send me the true story, I will be glad to make the necessary changes.

This is the first time I have heard that you were flying lead crew with no other crews forming behind you. I'm surprised that you were not attacked sooner flying alone. This is very confusing to rne since I was not there. Maybe I should just leave it to fiction and this is why Mike thought he was flying "Tail End Charley" and wrote that in his POW story. Also, Pavelka apparently does not want to talk to anyone about being shot down. I don't know of anyone who has been successful in talking to or corresponding with him. You are the only one who seems to be interested in your story being correct.

When my plane was flying in formation, ME109s attacked us at 1:00 o'clock high. When our plane was out of formation and flying alone at about 1,500 ft., one or two FW190s attacked us from the rear. We could not survive the two attacks that followed.

Thanks again for your interest in the story and your critique of what I have written.

Virgil Marco