Lieutenant Colonel John E. Feldman was born in Lamar, Colorado on February 8, 1909. He joined the Colorado National Guard as a private in September 1933, and in August 1938 he was commissioned as an infantry second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve.
In recognition of his mechanical ingenuity during summer training camp, he was recommended for active duty with the Ordnance Department, and in February of 1942 was ordered to active duty at the Ordnance Training Center, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland.
He was promptly appointed Assistant Director of Bomb Disposal, and was subsequently assigned to Hawaii in 1942 to organize and implement schools to train air raid wardens and bomb reconnaissance agents. Upon completion of his tour in Hawaii, he returned to Aberdeen Proving Ground where he was assigned to the technical and experimental section. On this assignment, he developed a portable steam generator for discharging the German electric fuze. Next, he prepared an injection mixture that jammed most mechanical fuzes. He also developed the self-tapping needle and two-part thermosetting resin for high pressure injection of fuzes, which was part of a kit used worldwide by bomb disposal units.
As a captain, he and other bomb disposal officers went to Europe in 1943 where they established an American Bomb Disposal Headquarters in London. Still continuing his experimental activities, he produced the “flit-gun”, a 5-pound device which replaced hundreds of pounds of neutralization equipment used by the British. His unit assisted the British in reconstructing the V-1 rocket bomb from fragments and recovering the fuzes from the first unexploded buzz bomb.
His countless contributions to the bomb disposal field are reflected in the many awards and citations he received from the United States and Great Britain for his prompt and fearless performance of any task regardless of the hazards involved.