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Leon Johnston was the fourth child in a family of five who struggled through the deprivation of the depression. He remembers his service in the Army Air Force during WWII. In the 1930's, Leon helped support the family, who had an absent father, by delivering laundry in a toy wagon for his mother to launder. After high school, Leon trained in aircraft sheet metal work and aircraft repair at McClellan Air Force Base. He joined the Army Air Force in 1942. At age 22, he found himself as flight engineer flying "gas cans" over the Himalayas in the China-Burma-India theatre where his adventures began. His Army career led to work for the Flying Tiger Line as a civilian. He lives in Philomath, Oregon, today.