A Terre Haute native, Lieutenant Roger Withers was a pilot of a B-17 Flying Fortress during World War II when it was shot down and captured by the Germans on May 28, 1944. Three of the bomber’s 10-member crew were killed when the plane was strafed with flak over northern Europe; two others were badly injured upon impact of the crash landing near Meertensdijk, Holland. Along with the remaining survivors, Withers was captured by the Germans and issued identifying paperwork and a POW dog tag. He remained as a prisoner of war in the prison camp for the duration of the war. During his time there, Withers would carefully open empty cigarette packets, then use the blank backside of the paper packaging to write his original poetry.