Auction aimed at Whitcomb home

Staff Reports

A benefit auction to raise funds for the restoration of former Indiana Gov. Edgar Whitcomb’s home is 10 a.m. Saturday in the Hayden Historical Museum pavilion, 6715 W. County Road 20S.

Whitcomb, who grew up in the Jennings County town of Hayden, was elected Indiana’s 43rd governor in 1968.

During World War II, Whitcomb served as a navigator for B-17 bombers. He was one of the many U.S. soldiers captured by the Japanese and held as a prisoner of war on the island of Corregidor. His second escape attempt was successful and he returned to the U.S. in 1943. After the war, Whitcomb became active in politics and served as Indiana secretary of state before he was elected governor.

The Friends of Ed Whitcomb committee was formed with the purpose of having a monument erected to honor and recognize the achievements of his life. The monument was finished and placed in the yard of his boyhood home at Hayden and was dedicated in 2014 with a special ceremony.

During that ceremony, the Hayden Historical Museum was given the deed to the Whitcomb home. Plans are underway to restore the house back to the way it looked in December 1943 when Whitcomb returned home after he was missing in action.

More historical, collectible and memorabilia are needed, particularly military-related. Call 812-522-8327 to arrange.

People also can provide financial support for the project. Checks should be designated for the Friends of Ed Whitcomb Fund and made to: Jennings County Community Foundation, c/o Hayden Historical Museum, P.O. Box 58, Hayden, IN 47245, or brought to the auction on Oct. 31.