Harvey Benton Stovall, born December 11th in 1899 in Youngstown, Ohio. His father was a lawyer, and his grandfather was a law counsel to President U.S. Grant. Harvey joined the army in 1916 and learned to fly, and arrived in France just in time for the war to be over in October of 1918.
Harvey married in 1921 to his high school sweetheart and a son was born, and was named Michael Andrew Stovall. He finished his enlistment and in 1923 he went to Ohio State University and gained a degree in law.
Jobs for lawyers in 1927 were few and his father was not well and was forced to sell his portion of the law firm in Columbus, Ohio. Harvey was worried in how he would support his family, he re-entered the Army and was commissioned a 1st Lieutenant in 1928. He started flying again, he reported to Langley to start test flying the Soviet aircraft ANT-5. Harvey's C.O. was Lieutenant Colonel Ed Britt. He and Britt would become great friends over the years to come. After four years of flying and two crashes, Harvey resigned his commission as Captain, and went back to Columbus in 1932 at his wife's insistence.
Harvey started a law firm with his law class mate and they called it Stovall and Stokes. Over the next nine years the law firm would become one of the most respected firms along the Great Lakes. Harvey was at Brigadier General Britt's home at West Point when Pearl Harbor was attacked. Harvey's life was boring and he was financially secure. With General Britt's endorsement to the General of the Army Harvey was re-commissioned as a Major, and would be assigned as Air Wing Adjutant to commanding officers, at 44, he was two old to fly and compete with the young pilots of the day.
By the summer of 1942; he was in England as part of Lieutenant General Pritchard's staff. That fall he was assigned as adjutant to the C.O. at the 918th Bombardment Group in Archbury, he would become very close to Colonel Keith Davenport over the next six months. He would see the hole in the dike getting bigger and bigger, but was hushed up when he offered his counsel to the Colonel.
Soon he would become acquainted with General Savage and admire him, never dreaming that the General someday would relieve Keith as C.O. at the 918th. But it happened, and the roll of thunder could be heard for miles at Archbury on that cold rainy day, the day Savage took over the 918th Bomb Group. Over the next year, Harvey would become very attached to Frank Savage and morn his loss for the rest of his life. Harvey would respect Colonel Joe Gallagher and also become his good friend until the war's end. Harvey would loose his son in the air war over Europe, and would fly five combat missions in a B-17 to avenge that death.
After the war Harvey re-signed his commission (again!), however he kept his officer status in the Army Reserves. Joe, Kieth and himself would attend many reunions over the next two decades when the 918th alumni would gather to pay tribute to those who survived and the remainder who were still on that last mission. He would serve in Korea with a fighter squadron, as the ground executive officer at the age of 52.
Harvey continued to practice law in Columbus until 1964, when he retired. He would teach law classes at Ohio State until his death in 1967. His wife and he adopted a boy in 1954; this boy would enter West Point in 1970 and graduate first in his class of 1974 and would become a Major General now commanding a division with the United States Army in the Persian Gulf.