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Raymond R Schumacher at Bears team practice

Raymond Richard Schumacher (15 Apr 1924 Chicago - 04 Nov 1973 Oak Lawn,IL) served in the Army Air Force during World War II, played as a for the Chicago Bears after the war, and later worked as civil engineer for the City of Chicago.

History[edit | edit source]

Early Life

Born in Chicago, Raymond R. Schumacher attended Tilden Technical High School, studying engineering, and was awarded the Purdue Club's 1942 Noble E. Kizer MVP Award[1] in football. He then attended Purdue University.

World War II

He was first inducted February 17, 1943 into the US Army and went to basic training in North Carolina, where his bunkmate was Charles Clark. Others in his group included Wally Kokockis (Cicero Kid), Sgt. Nelphi, Sgt.(Porky) Thorton, Charles Clark, Jack Sather from Berkeley CA, Jimmie Spallus from Wisconsin, and Ray Shaw. All then went on to Janesville Wisconsin for flight training.

Ray Schumacher later was based at:

  • Hondo Texas for navigator training, and served as an instructor afterwards
  • Miami
  • Macdill Air Force Base in Tampa about 7/43
  • Lincoln, Nebraska where he trained navigators until mid-1945
  • Victorville, Ca.
  • Tinian

Early in his training he accepted an Argus camera as payment for a debt, and used it to take hundreds of photos of US Army training camps and around the Pacific theater, including the atomic bomb waiting on the runway on Tinian. Near the end of the war B-29 crews did not always have exclusive use of a plane but rotated with another crew; his plane assigned while stationed on Tinian was known to have nose art of a lady and a name, but the number is unknown. He flew in the formation over the treaty signing on the Missouri, was finally stationed in Tokyo until January 1946, and officially released March 17, 1946.

Final rank: First Lieutenant, Navigator, 20th AF, 313th Bomb Wing, 504th Bomb Group (Circle-E). Service: 17 February 1943 - 17 March 1946, #02068876


Harold and Ray Schumacher with George Halas

Ray was All-City in Chicago, winning the Kizer all-city award in December 1942 as a co-captain of the Tilden Tech Blue Devils.[2] He then played one year at Purdue before enlisting in the Army Air Force, subsequently playing for the Hondo Air Field team in Hondo, TX. Upon returning home, George Halas signed both Raymond and his brother Harold to the Chicago Bears at the same time, announcing signing 26 July 1946.[3] Training at the Bears' summer training camp at St. Joseph college, Collegeville, Indiana began 06 Aug 1946. He first played for the Bears' farm team the Akron Bears, who playing against the Chicago Bears 17 Sep 1946 in an exhibition game in Akron's Rubber bowl. In early 1947, Akron left the AFL, leaving Newark as the Chicago Bears’ primary farm team; Newark then moved to Bloomfield, New Jersey, and became the Cardinals. As a Chicago Bear he played in the 2 Aug 1947 College Football All-America Team vs Chicago Bears which set the record attendance (105,840) for American football. He went on to play two seasons as fullback before retiring with knee and other injuries. There had been some friction between Halas and Ray as well; Ray owned a garage with his brothers, and Halas did not like his players to have "outside" jobs.

A grandson of his brother Harold, Jerry Schumacher, was also signed by the Bears as a middle linebacker reserve in 2004.

Professional Life

Ray spent most of the rest of his life as a civil engineer for the City of Chicago, responsible for planning on the Deep Tunnel Project and others in the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago. He also owned and operated Parkview Lanes Bowling Alley with two of his brothers, as well as a small farm in Pepin County Wisconsin.

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "NEW HONORS FOR BOB KELLY AND RAY SCHUMACHER (December 23, 1942)". http://archives.chicagotribune.com/1942/12/23/page/18/article/new-honors-for-bob-kelly-and-ray-schumacher. 
  2. "Tilden Happy Over Victory; Taft Plans for Next Year". Chicago Daily Tribune. 22 Nov 1942. 
  3. "Chicago Tribune". Chicago Tribune. 27 July 1946. 

External links[edit | edit source]

Good friend to fellow 504th bomb group AAF U.S. Air Corp Service Person: Name: Rayford Harold Trammell Sr. Alternate Name: Harold Date of Birth: Oct 28, 1921 Enlisted to Service: July 7, 1941 Place of Birth: Hollis, OK Place of Death: Oklahoma City, OK Date of Death: May 21, 1961 While working at Tinker Air Force Base In Midwest City Oklahoma, he also had a small Dairy Farm until his death run by himself, his sons, daughters and wife. Raymond Schumacher was mentioned at times with great kindness and dearness by Harold's wife and himself. Truly united for the cause of our country's freedom. Wife: Beatrice died November 16, 1999 Picture donation agreeable of group in Tinian if upload link can be found.

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