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Tales from the Field - April 2016

by Mark A.R. Koloc, Sr., LTC, U.S. Army (Ret)

1943 White M16A2

The M16A2 in Africa when I found it.

The M16A2 in Africa when I found it.

My”Tale from the Field” is my favorite find: A 1943 White Motors M16A2 MGMC discovered in the Horn of Africa in December of 2005. I saw it sitting in the sands and bramble bushes outside a WWII Italian Airfield site that is now a French Air Force Base.

Very much intact, the half-track still had the Maxson Quad mount sitting to the side and oil still in the crankcase. I was able to borrow a heavy duty wrecker and recover it for eventual shipment back to the U.S.

I shipped the “African Queen” at a very reasonable cost by container ship to Norfolk Va., in December 2006. The shipping company in Africa even accepted a personal check for payment!

From Norfolk, the “Queen” was shipped to River Falls, Wisc, after clearing customs. She and I both arrived home on April 1, 2007. I had the Africa Queen running and driving by the 4th of July that same year—a real testament to her excellent American craftsmanship and materials after sitting in the desert 50+ years.

This is a view of preservation progress, taken in July 2007.

This is a view of preservation progress, taken in July 2007.

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