William (Bill) Norberg was born November 13, 1922 in Lemington, Wisconsin. The circumstances in Bill’s early life were difficult; his mother was diagnosed with tuberculosis when he was quite young, and when she was sent to a sanitarium Bill’s father was forced to break up the large family. Bill and a brother were sent to a children’s home, where they grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression – and greater deprivation than most. Bill was working in a woolen mill by the time the European War started, and hoping for more excitement and opportunity in his life Bill opted to join the US Navy in February 1941, about ten months before the attack on Pearl Harbor. Once the US was in the war, Bill was stationed on the USS Enterprise, one of the big aircraft carriers in the Pacific Fleet. It so happened that they were on their way to Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 – the day of the Japanese attack. Bill saw the aftermath of the attack, and he remembers well the feelings that gripped the crew when they arrived in Pearl Harbor the next day. The Enterprise took part in the Doolittle Raid just a little later, giving themselves and all Americans a morale boost. From there, the Enterprise was present in many of the key battles of the Pacific War, on its way to becoming the most decorated ship of the war. Bill saw action at Midway, the Battle of the Eastern Solomons, and eventually at Iwo Jima, where the Enterprise was hit by a kamikaze and knocked out of the war. The men returned home at that point, and the atomic bombs and VJ Day followed soonafter. Like millions of other soldiers, Bill found his way into the rhythms of postwar American life at that time; he married and raised a family and left 1941-45 behind. Crestwood students were fortunate to zoom with Bill Norberg in June 2022.
Click next video below to keep watching