Paul Grisham - Mickey Strand - Veterans Series

Mickey Strand - Veterans Series

The Veterans Portrait Series

Mickey is a retired Navy Photographers Mate, Chief Petty Officer, and was the Leading Chief of the Navy's elite Combat Camera Group Pacific. Mickey's current focus is the Veterans Portrait Series, which documents veterans' stories of service. He is focused on our Worlds' Greatest Generation. The veterans of World War II. 

Mickey interviews each Veteran, collecting and writing their service stories, archiving these notable historic figures and their stories for generations to come. Mickey has collected and displayed images and stories from over 100 warriors that at one point, signed the dotted line when our country needed their sacrifice of service most.  Mickey continues to collect Veterans from all services for the Veterans Portrait Series. In 2019 this body of work was displayed at the Palm Beach Photographic Centre Museum from Nov 11, 2019 — to March 1, 2020.

Mickey and the project were in the national spotlight, featured on the Sunday Today Show with Harry Smith Today Show Link to YouTube.  See the Google 360 Virtual walk through from the Palm Beach Museum Exhibit. Enjoy, and thank you for your help with this project. In 2022 Mickey has photographed over 25 more WW2 Veterans and will be hosting a print show in San Diego in November with an open house on Veterans Day.

Featured Veteran

Edward Targaczewski
US Army
PFC
World War 2

Edward Targaczewski, PFC, born in January 1925, served as an Infantry soldier with the 3rd Battalion, 317th Infantry regiment, 80th Blue Ridge Infantry Division during WW2. 

 Ed, who grew up in Allegheny, PA, enlisted into the army after completing two years of High School on 13 March 1943 at Ft Meade, Maryland. Ed trained with his unit, moved to Scotland, and was deployed into Europe on the 5th of Aug 1944, landing on Utah Beach as the Work Horse of Pattons 3rd Army.

 Ed volunteered as a driver for an M4(105) VVSS Sherman 105mm Howitzer tank because nobody else wanted to drive the tank. The M4(105) was armed with a 105 mm howitzer designed to fire powerful high explosive HE artillery rounds His unit was deployed in a six-tank platoon and provided fire support and smoke to assist the lead tanks. It was not designed to take on enemy tanks. It was an artillery gun fitted inside a tank turret. The M4 had a five-man crew: commander, gunner, loader, driver, co-driver/machine gunner.
See Full story in the WW2 Veterans Page 
 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Where can I donate?

I have created a way to accept donations to grow the project, use the WWII Veterans Portrait Series
  Go Fund Me.

Where are you located?

I live in the San Diego area but have traveled to many locations to interview and photograph Veterans.


How Long is an Appointment?

Appointments usually last 1 hour. But please free up time for Mickey to set up lights and cameras, hold the interview, and take some photographs for the project.

Do you accept reservations?

Yes is the simple answer to the question.  Each appointment is set up as an individual session. Group sessions have been set up when I visited a senior living facility or many of the California Veterans Homes.

Paul Grisham was born on Aug 12, 1929, and enlisted in the US Navy in September 1948 at age 19. He served in the Navy for 25 years, retiring as a Lieutenant, Limited Duty Officer (LDO) as a meteorologist. Paul’s service included both the Korean and Vietnam wars. After graduating from Douglas Arizona High School, Paul enlisted and attended Bootcamp in September of 1948 at NTC San Diego. He attended Airman Training School for six weeks in Memphis, TN, and then Aerographer’s Mate (AG) A School at Naval Support Activity, Lakehurst, NJ, for six months. Here he learned to prepare weather maps, take weather readings, and make forecasts that might affect the fleet. He graduated as an AG3 Petty Officer 3rd class and reported to the Fleet Weather facility in the federal building in downtown San Francisco. After six months, the office moved to Naval Air Station Alameda, where he served for one more year until the Korean War began. He transferred in 1951 to Fleet Weather Central, Guam, where he was promoted to AG2 during the 18-month tour. He ended his current service in Aug 1952. After two years, Paul received an associate’s degree in Whittier, CA, and worked. In Sep 1957, Paul decided he missed the Navy and re-enlisted. He had been out long enough to convert back to an Airman AGAN – E3, losing two promotions. Paul reported to Naval Station Yokosuka, Japan, for a three-year tour. A reduction in force took him to the USS Bennington, CV-20, an Essex Class aircraft carrier. He was promoted to AG1 by the end of this tour. AG1 Grisham then reported to NAF Monterey, where he learned to be a local forecaster for the air station. He then attended B school at Enlisted Forecaster School in Lakehurst, NJ, for six months. After graduation, he reported to Fleet Weather Central, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In 1965, Paul was selected forChief Petty Officer and LDO and transferred to the eight-week OCS. After completion, he was transferred to NAS Alameda, CA, as the installation weather officer. In 1968, he reported to “Operation Deep Freeze” in McMurdo Station, Antarctica, for 13 months. LT Grisham then transferred to the weather office onboard Naval Air Station North Island. During this tour, he was selected as one of the first LDOs to attend the Naval Post-Graduate School in Monterey, CA, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering Science and a Master’s Degree in Meteorology. He then reported as the ship’s weather officer aboard the USS Hancock, CV-19. He served aboard during “Operation Frequent Wind,” the evacuation of Saigon. Paul retired from active service in 1977 as an LT assigned to Fleet Weather Central Monterey, the first computerized weather center in the Navy.
Paul Grisham - Mickey Strand - Veterans Series
Paul Grisham was born on Aug 12, 1929, and enlisted in the US Navy in September 1948 at age 19. He served in the Navy for 25 years, retiring as a Lieutenant, Limited Duty Officer (LDO) as a meteorologist. Paul’s service included both the Korean and Vietnam wars. After graduating from Douglas Arizona High School, Paul enlisted and attended Bootcamp in September of 1948 at NTC San Diego. He attended Airman Training School for six weeks in Memphis, TN, and then Aerographer’s Mate (AG) A School at Naval Support Activity, Lakehurst, NJ, for six months. Here he learned to prepare weather maps, take weather readings, and make forecasts that might affect the fleet. He graduated as an AG3 Petty Officer 3rd class and reported to the Fleet Weather facility in the federal building in downtown San Francisco. After six months, the office moved to Naval Air Station Alameda, where he served for one more year until the Korean War began. He transferred in 1951 to Fleet Weather Central, Guam, where he was promoted to AG2 during the 18-month tour. He ended his current service in Aug 1952. After two years, Paul received an associate’s degree in Whittier, CA, and worked. In Sep 1957, Paul decided he missed the Navy and re-enlisted. He had been out long enough to convert back to an Airman AGAN – E3, losing two promotions. Paul reported to Naval Station Yokosuka, Japan, for a three-year tour. A reduction in force took him to the USS Bennington, CV-20, an Essex Class aircraft carrier. He was promoted to AG1 by the end of this tour. AG1 Grisham then reported to NAF Monterey, where he learned to be a local forecaster for the air station. He then attended B school at Enlisted Forecaster School in Lakehurst, NJ, for six months. After graduation, he reported to Fleet Weather Central, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In 1965, Paul was selected forChief Petty Officer and LDO and transferred to the eight-week OCS. After completion, he was transferred to NAS Alameda, CA, as the installation weather officer. In 1968, he reported to “Operation Deep Freeze” in McMurdo Station, Antarctica, for 13 months. LT Grisham then transferred to the weather office onboard Naval Air Station North Island. During this tour, he was selected as one of the first LDOs to attend the Naval Post-Graduate School in Monterey, CA, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering Science and a Master’s Degree in Meteorology. He then reported as the ship’s weather officer aboard the USS Hancock, CV-19. He served aboard during “Operation Frequent Wind,” the evacuation of Saigon. Paul retired from active service in 1977 as an LT assigned to Fleet Weather Central Monterey, the first computerized weather center in the Navy.