Honoring World War II vets on Veterans Day

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Photo of Julian MarDock from “Legendary Locals of Oak Cliff,” by Alan C. Elliott, Patricia K. Sumney and Gayla Brooks, Arcadia Publishing, 2013

Wednesday, Nov. 11, is Veterans Day, and this year, we celebrate 70 years since the end of World War II on Sept. 2, 1945.

The annual Veterans Day parade starts at City Hall at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday.

We profiled three World War II veterans in the November Advocate, and we recently came across the story of another vet from that era with a connection to Oak Cliff. The details come from the 2013 book from Arcadia Publishing, “Legendary Locals of Oak Cliff.”

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Julian MarDock was one of the first Chinese American pilots ever to enter combat training. He flew more than 100 missions in Europe during World War II, including one on Dec. 25, 1944, during the Battle of the Bulge.

MarDock was born to Chinese immigrant parents in Tyler in 1918. He was an Eagle Scout, and he attended Tyler Junior College and the University of Texas at Austin before joining the Army Air Corps at the start of the war. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and six battle stars, among other medals, during the war, and he met J. Frank Dobie and Madame Chiang Kai-shek.

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After the war, he married his college sweetheart, Ruth Wilhelm, and attended Cornell Medical School on the GI Bill, graduating in 1954. He did post-graduate work under Dr. Michael DeBakey and Dr. Denton Cooley before moving to Dallas.

MarDock, who died in 2006, set up a medical practice on Beckley near Overton, and he and Ruth raised five children in Oak Cliff. All five graduated from Kimball High School and the University of Texas at Austin. Two of his children are now doctors, and one is a dentist.

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