In 1940 Thomas worked at a gas station in Hazelwood, Pennsylvania, owned by Frank Sargo. There was a softball field next to the gas station, where in 1941 he met his future wife Helen_Ann_Blaha, who was playing short stop in the game.
On Dec 20 1941 Thomas Hinshaw, Jr., enlisted at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as a private in the Army Air Corps. He declared he had four years of high school, was single, without dependents, and employed as a "gas and oil man". He was recorded as 66" tall, 130 lbs.
During World War II Thomas served in China and India Burma as a Technical Sargent at Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron 301st Air Depot Group, where his group was involved with the building of the Burma Road. He received the
He had a Driver and Mechanics Badge and was a Pistol Marksman.
Thomas received an Honorable Discharge from the Army of the United States on January 5 1946, at Camp Atterbury, Indiana. Thomas also enlisted in the U.S. Army Standby Reserve on March 10, 1949, and served until October 5, 1952.
After being discharged, he worked at Fikes Bus Company in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, until it closed in 1962. The family then moved to Newark, California in 1962. Thomas found employment with Peterbilt Motors Co. in 1963, where he worked as a journeyman mechanic/tester. He retired from Peterbilt in 1979.
Thomas was a 36 year veteran of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.
Thomas Vestal Hinshaw died Aug 1 1999, Pleasanton Convalescent Hospital, Pleasanton, Alameda County, California; age 82. Medical: Thomas died from cancer.
Tom was cremated and was given a Military funeral. He is buried Section C-17 Site 11, San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery, 32053 West McCabe Road, Santa Nella Village, Merced County, California.
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