Wednesday, July 10, 2013 1:00 AM
In early July 1943, Brigadier General H.B. Lewis of the War Department, performing one of his sadder duties, wrote to Mr. and Mrs. George Terrell Bounds of the Bloomo community in southeast Neshoba County, to express his sympathy and offer condolences to the bereaved parents over the loss of their son, First Lieutenant Carson Wiley Bounds.
Another purpose of General Lewis' letter was to announce the medals military officials planned to award posthumously to the Army Air Corps' fighter pilot.
The official announcement stated: "I have the honor to inform you that, by the direction of the President, the Purple Heart has been awarded posthumously, to your son, First Lieutenant Carson W. Bounds, Air Corps, who made the supreme sacrifice in defense of his country, January 30, 1943. The Purple Heart [was] originally established by General George Washington at Newburgh, [New York], August 17, 1782, during the War of the Revolution.
"The decoration was revived by the War Department on February 22, 1922, the two-hundredth anniversary of General Washington's birth, thus paying respect to his memory and recognizing his military achievement. As evidence of the Nation's recognition of military merit and courage, this award is made to honor the memory of a brave soldier who died as a result of enemy action.
"A certificate pertaining to the Purple Heart has been forwarded under separate cover. In addition to the Purple Heart, an Air Medal with two Oak-leaf Clusters, which indicate a second and third award of the same decoration, has been awarded posthumously, by the Commanding General, Twelfth Air Force, to your son, Lieutenant Bounds, Air Corps, for meritorious achievement."
On Sunday afternoon, November 14, 1943, Army Air Corps officers at the Bloomo High School Auditorium, presented an Air Medal (with two oak leaf clusters) and a Purple Heart Medal to the parents of another Neshoba County hero, First Lieutenant Carson W. Bounds.
Hundreds of miles to the east at Hunter Field, Savannah, Georgia, Corporal James "Jim" Othell Bounds, younger brother of the fallen flyer, also paid homage to their father and mother, George and Nettie Bounds.
The Air Corps enlisted man penned the following tribute: "As I sit and write of days of yore, It makes my heart grow sick and sore, To think of the times when we children seven, Played and acted like imps, and you dear Mother and Dad, treated and worshiped us as angels from heaven.
"When we in our school days, Would often want to prank and play, And not want to go to school that day. You dear Mother, would firmly say, 'Get dressed, get your books and be on your way.'
"And you dear Dad, would go to work, Your duties as father, you never did shrink, You taught us truthfulness, honesty and the right side. To see us like, love and grow, Was untold joy to you, I know, And to uphold that greatness in family pride.
"And as the time passed on and we into adults grew, And one by one from the family withdrew, Until no longer were there seven, But to us home is still our heaven.
A home that we love and adore, That love that extends from shore to shore. No longer is the food that you prepare, For nine, for only four are there, The places where we sat are vacant now, And share-croppers fill our place at the plow, But in our mind we are spiritually there, And our beloved home with you we share.
"And dear Mother and Dad we realize now, That you made us what you are, And may God grant that someway or somehow, We can make those sacrifices worthwhile.
Civil War Veterans
Parker, Daniel - Private; enlisted April 24, 1861, at Philadelphia, Mississippi, in Company D, 11th Mississippi Infantry Regiment; age sixty-seven; planter; oldest soldier to serve in the 11th Mississippi Infantry Regiment.
Sick with measles at Camp Bee, near Manassas Junction, Virginia, July 1861; Muster Roll, July-August, 1861: "Discharged by order of Gen. [Joseph E.] Johnston, with a disability - phthisis incipient [early stages of tuberculosis/consumption]," July 30, 1861.
Received final pay of $57.93, consisting of salary, clothing allowance, and subsistence ($0.15 for each twenty miles of travel), September 7, 1861; may have died at Camp Bee, but did not outlive the war.
Described as five feet seven inches tall, dark complexion, grey hair and blue eyes.
World War II Veterans
Bounds, James Othell* - Private to Sergeant; enlisted on February 24, 1943 at Camp Shelby, Mississippi, in the United States Army; age 20; civil service clerk; nick-named "Jim;" served and trained in the American Theatre of Operations with the Army Air Corps.
Was inducted into service 25 days after the death of his older brother, Carson Wiley Bounds, in combat over Northern Africa, January 30, 1943.
Stationed as a supply technician at the 302nd Base Unit (Hunter Field, Savannah, Georgia), August 1943 to August 1944.
Served also in the Asiatic-Pacific Theatre of Operations with the 577th Air Materiel Squadron of the 337th Air Supply Command, April 1945 to February 1946.
Participated in the battle on Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands, April 1945 to May 1945.
Awarded the American Campaign Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victor Medal.
Discharged at Camp Shelby, March 13, 1946, demobilization.
Described as five feet four and one-half inches tall, weighing 121 pounds, with sandy/brown hair and brown eyes.
*Carson Wiley Bounds and James Othell Bounds were brothers.
Philadelphia-Neshoba County Historical Museum
Steven H. Stubbs, Curator
303 Water Avenue South Philadelphia, Mississippi 39350 (601) 656-1284
10 a.m. - 3 p.m.;
Monday thru Friday