- Mr. Jerry Whiting
wrote me: in 1965 an American soldier of 485th BG went
Italy as a guest of a family known in Venosa during the war.
- Lieutenant Sy
Weinstein was the 485th Bomb Groupís photographic
- He was in charge of installing and maintaining the large
aerial cameras mounted in the B-24 bombers.
- He had to train
its personnel, supervising the laboratory that processed the photos
used for bomb damage assessment and aerial reconnaissance.
- Sometimes he was in
bombing missions, in order to be sure that
the crewmen responsible for
operating the cameras aboard were properly trained.
- One of his jobs was
to record the images of crashed aircraft in order to understand what
contributed to the planeís loss.
- In his travels to the crash
sites, which could be as much as 60 miles away, Sy Weinstein took
pictures of the Italian countryside and its people. Sy
Weinstein, during the war, was sent to the Southern France after the
invasion, and later documented the horror of Dachau concentration
camp in Germany.
- He deserved a medal,
because he entered a mine-field, in order to rescue wounded people
by the blast of mines, saving them.
his time in Soutern Italy, Sy developed a deep love for the people
After the war, he read Christ Stopped at Eboli, Carlo
Leviís book about his exile in this poor but yet very beautiful
area, and Sy recognized many of his own experiences and feelings. Sy
continued to revisit this region throughout his life, spending time
with the family of Dr. Morlino, who he had come to know during the
Weinstein, Reconnaissance and Recollection Military and
Civilian Photographs from World War II, Bnai Zion Hoouse, New
York, 26.10.2003-12.12.2003; National Museum of American Jewish
Military History, Washington D.C., 4.3.2004.
Whiting asks me: can we find the Morlino family in Venosa,
where in 1965 Sy Weinstein was
At this point, Renato
Mancino consults the
registrars office, and people with
the same last name in the nearby towns of Acerenza and Forenza.
Nothing. The search is
Even with the photos sent from
U.S.A. something still doesn't add up. The landscape in one
of the photos shows a particular profile of mountains, impossible
to see from Venosa.
This landscape guides
to search the site of Sy Weinsteinís stay in Basilicata: 20 miles from
the Venosa airfield... Near Monticchio, on
At last, with my
friend Giuseppe Scarpino and his son Emilio, we find the same country home of
the Morlinos, today a pleasant
bed and breakfast.
To the current owner,
Mario Di Lucchio, maybe I appear as a strange character while
I wander all around the building, the same
seen in several of the photos of 1944.
me the telephone number of the Morlino family of Potenza (not from
Venosa, as we thought) in order to call them.
Whiting will supply this address to Gerry Weinstein, son of Sy.
found, mission accomplished.
- Photo Sy Weinstein, 1944