The Cub

Vol. 53, No. 3, Apr., 1997

 

 

President's View

At long last Spring is here and Summer on its way. Your president is now proud to announce that he has successfully moved to Cape Coral, Florida. I am hoping to set up a group for the 1997 December 16 Mini-Re-union in Fort Myers or Cape Coral. Any person in this area please call or write to me. My new address is:

Major H. Hill

524 SW 43rd Terrace Cape Coral, FL 33914 Tele: 941-945-4087

(This address also appears on the inside-front cover of this Cub magazine)

Due to this move some intended Asso-ciation projects had to be left undone. Hopefully they can be worked on in the future. Also an unexpected health problem added to all the confusion. ttilill

-14 i

ayl

President Major H. Hill 1996-1997

106th Infantry Division Association

"B" Company, 424th Infantry Regiment

The Nashville Reunion Chairman John O. Gilliland reports that things are going well. Registrations have been good for the initial months, the sale of Afghans is excellent (better get your order in). Please register for the reunion ahead of time.

One of my projects was to monitor and encourage the signing up of new members and/or urging those who may have dropped out to rejoin. John Kline, editor, tells me that there are over 40 new members signed on since the last report in the February CUB. His Web site has produced a number of new members, aroused interest of relatives of former 106th veterans, as well as from World War II historians, and some overseas servicemen.

I want to thank you all for your patience. Tieing up loose ends in Chicago and moving to Florida used up a lot of my time and energy. I appreciate all the help and guidance you have given me.

I hope to be more positive in my final report which will appear in the August CUB. You are a "Great Group" and I mri proud to be associated with all of you.

See you in Nashville....

Major

 

 

 

The CUB of the Golden Lion

" Its Spring Again ... "

Spring is the time of year when the earth begins to come alive again after hibernating through the long winter months. Trees and shrubs burst forth with blooms and new growth. For most of us, in the 106th, Spring brings back memories of over a half-century ago. It marks the time when those of us who had been POWs and those who had contin-ued in combat could begin to look forward to the possibility that life was no longer measured for us in hours and days which someone other than ourselves controlled (I speaki of our enemies and not God who is always in final control.

Fifty-two years ago yesterday (this was written on April 14th) marks the date on which many of us were liberated-and May 8th marks the date on which our part of World War II ended. It w. like the earth waking up from a long Winter's nap. A time when we could once again breath easily knowing that we.would again have the opportunity to see friends and loved ones. Like the earth renewing itself in Spring, we were waking from the bad dream that was combat and imprisonment.

Even though too many of us, who enjoyed that renewal Fifty-two years ago are no longer around to celebrate with us - still we rejoice in the many extra years and experiences which all of us who survived those months have had. For all of us God had something further for us to do. When I look at the work which so many of us have done, I realize that our survival was not for nothing. We also, have enjoyed seeing the 106th image changed from that of cowards who just quit to that of being recognized for the important part which we played in messing up the German time-table because we held out for those three days.

David also had his share of trials and tribulations. From Psalm 140 I quote the words of David, "Rescue me, 0 Lord, from evil men; protect us from men of violence, who devise evil plans in their hearts and stir up war every day. 0 Sovereign Lord, my strong deliverer, who shields my head in the day of battle — do not grant the wicked their, ... (Ps. 140:1,2,7,8a)

Yes, its Spring again, a time when we remember that Spring so long ago when as survivors of battle and prison we burst forth into a new life. Blooming, in our own ways, as do the plants and trees and animals each year.

Our Heavenly Father, we thank you anew for all the blessings You have bestowed upon us, starting with our survival those many years ago and continuing through our present. We ask Your continuing oversight of our lives and those of our friends and loved ones. AMEN.

Rev. Ewell C Black Jr., Chaplain

Order of the Golden lion 1995

'A' Company, 422nd Int Reg

212 Ridge S, Bishop,Ile, SC 29010

803.84-6861

 

 

 

The CUB of the Golden Lion

From West Burlington, Iowa....

Many of you have surely seen the superb "American Experience" show about the Bat-tle of the Bulge on PBS-TV or your VCRs.

It is narrated by David McCullough, who earned praise for his biography of Harry Truman. The film, sub-titled -World War ll's Deadliest Battle," is the best I have seen about action in the ETO. It's even better than the combat movies I saw at the museum in Bastogne, which lacked commentary and interviews.

I showed our video tape to Joe Swetye, who also served in the 422nd, when he dropped by for a visit last year. Some of the scenes were almost too vivid, we agreed. One brief segment looks much like what happened on Dec. 19, 1944, as there were tree bursts in the woods near Schoenberg when I joined others to jump onto trucks to flee the attack. Was a cameraman nearby?

I put our VCR on "pause" when the tape showed hundreds of guys from our ranks on a road in the Ardennes, apparently from German movies taken just after we were nabbed. That episode h. been riveted in a lot of minds for nearly 53 years.

Joe and I had problems remembering certain details, naturally enough. Yet other events, names and places are . clear to me as things I saw and did a few weeks ago.

My duty up front was brief. But I was there long enough, as you were, to be killed or maimed. I couldn't let-myself forget the major event of my life, experienced at age 19, while later cranking out stories about 4-H exhibits, sewer bond elections, etc., as a reporter. It seemed mandatory to write about my role as a spear carrier in the biggest, most important battle the US Anny ever fought.

It is amazing to me how some of us, sharing the same b.ic experience, remem-

Dan Bled "A" Co., 422nd Infantry

108 Leffler Street, West Burlington, IA 52655

Tele: (319) 752-5708

ber things differently. I remember getting food from the Red Cross, while some guys who ate out of the same parcels don't recall doing so. I don't recall seeing our platoon sergeant up front and will always think he chickened out. Maybe someone else recalls him doing a heroic deed.

It is more understandable for us to dis-agree on names, dates and places after so many years. "I didn't have a notebook or recorder," I've explained. I'm still not sure what day the sun reappeared and our bomb-ers saturated the towns between Prum and Limburg with their "eggs." Dec. 23, 1944, perhaps, or the next day. Maybe it was Christ-mas Day. It was the only present we got.

The tough thing for me is trying to separate what really happened from things I have dreamed or imagined during the post-war years. In writings, I have passed along some things I've been told since 1944-45. I didn't see everything that hap-pened to all of us and couldn't remember it if I had.

Carlos Weber, a sergeant I've talked to many times in recent years, told me a Ger-man-speaking non-com from Company A, 422nd, overheard an argument between

 

3

 


 

From West Burlington, Iowa....

two Gerrnan officers just after we were captured. One of them wanted to gun us down, the other didn't. This happened 20 or so miles from Malmedy, where more than 100 of our troops were slain. "That," Carlos reminded "is how close you came to meeting your maker."

I heard also, from another source, that a medic I knew was "blown to bits" by an artillery round. But I never saw his name on a Company A casualty list.

I'll watch the video about the Bulge again, looking for myself in that rag-tag column of POWs headed toward the Rhine and, eventu- ally, to assorted miseries inside Germany.

"The boxcar ride was the worst of if' I joked to a Navy vet a while back. "We were inside it five days and nights, hardly able to see a thing and with nothing 0 can recall) to eat"

It was an odd experience, I related, to be out of the loop that long from the Com-pany A rumor mill. In normal times some-one was always dropping in the barracks or mess hall with "inside dope" that eventu-ally took legs as a full-fledged runior.

Remember the latrine-o-grams? Dan Bied

Bombers

Birds above us westward, boring tunnels in the blue, with brains of joyful pilot and nerves of happy Cri2W.

Mission accomplished, homeward, less their deadly eggs — earthbound, we plod east-ward on weary, aching legs.

They'll bathe and dine in England; warm and dry they'll sleep. Likely we'll walk all day (the mud is ankle deep).

No envy from the Infantry; such envy long since past. Each does as he is bidden when the dies of war are cast.

BEFORE THE VETERANS DIE

boolc of poenu page 28 - $8 ppd by: Dale R. Carver SiNer Star recipient 424th Headquarters A&P Platoon Leader 742 Druid Circle Baton Rouge, LA 70808

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The CUB of the Golden Lion

Front & Center

The 106th Infantry Division Home Page that I installed on the World Wide Web 3 April 1996, still continues to draw interest.

Nearly 9,500 visitors have viewed my Home Page, as of mid-May. Many new members, relatives and interested historians have been contacted through this media.

COMING UP IN FUTURE CUBS

Time and space dictate the placement of feature arrticles in The CUB. Recent issues have had some very interesting and well re-ceived stories. Stories that should be heard, or read.. Stories that need to be saved for history. Interest sparks interest, so I have been blessed with several feature articles for issues to come. This CUB contains an intereresting story on the 589th Field Artillery holding the line at Baraque de Fraiture (Parker's Crossroads). The men who were there gave me tremendous help with their personal recollections of that battle. I thank them for that. I cannot print each per-sonal history in it's entirety because of space limitations. I chose to use excerpts from each to give an overall view. Like all battles, most of the vets were not aware of what was going on outside their immediate area. By using bits and pieces of each man's story, I hope that a overall view of that most important contribution to the 106th Infantry Division history is better understood. 'Their ac-tions saved many lives.

August 1997 CUB: Dick Sparks has pre-pared a well written story of the 423rd l&R Platoon that deserves your attention. He did an excellent job in publishing the article.

November 1997 CUB: I have Col. Puett's PUET7"S WAR, 423rd Infantry Regi-ment, 2d Battalion in The Ardennes Battle. In connection with that story Brig Gen Oliver Patton (USA Ret) has furnished important supplemental information. I hope to use.

February 1998 CUB: Featuring informa-tion on the 424th Combat Infantry Regiment from various "After Battle Reports." If you 424th vets have any personal stories you would like to see in print. please forward them to me for consideration. J. Kline

John Kline, 423/M, editor, The CUB

5401 U. I47th St. West, Apple Valley, MN 55124

6124234837 e-mail: jpk@mm.com

Home Page: http://www.mm.com/user/jpk

My apologies for the late arrival of this CUB magazine. I lost about two and one-half weeks with a terrible cold. I couldn't shake it, when I did I was lacking energy and had a hard time focusing on the business at hand. Hope to be more timely in August.

Thanks for all the cooperation, stories, etc that I have received. J. Kline

MEMORIAL FUND DONORS

Through 96/97 Treasurer's Report # 48

Aurebach. Sidney,

Memory of Larry Nelson     25

Branum, Alfred P.

Brown, Inring          10

Chura, Elizabeth

Davis, John R          25

Helmich. Lestar A    15

Holtzmuller, J. Don 50

Jones, Thomas E     10

Northern California Group

in memory of Clarence Epling       110

Risberg, Duane        15

Young, Damon        10

Tire CUB of the Golden Lion         5

Front & Center

"Surprise Package"

by Earl Parker, 423/E

1701 Earthstone Dr.

Valparaiso, IN 46383

E-Mail esp@nlia.net

John, two years ago, the local newspapers solicited short items on What Do You Remem-ber About The Day WWII Ended in Europe . Having a rather unusual story to tell, I prepared the following account which w. printed by both the (Gary, IN) Post Tribune and The (Valparaiso, IN) Vidette-Times. My experience of war closely parallels your own; stateside training, brief period in England, Southampton, LeHavre, St. V ith, The Schnee Eifel, Von Rundstedt's Dec.16 attack, Dec. 19 captivity, forced marches, stalags, libera-tion by the Russian Army, escape thru the lines to rejoin US forcwest,4th la Div) on May 7, '45, and evacuawentto Halle, Ger-many the same evening which placed me as stated below on May 8, 1945.

SURPRISE PACKAGE

"Fifty years ago, on May 8, 1945, I stood at the edge of the tarmac of the Hermann Goering Aircraft School in Halle, Germany. How I came to be at that point at that time is another story so let's just say that on the last day of World War Two in Europe, I was exploring a monument to the Nazi war effort on the day that the "Thousand Year Reich" ended. Directly overhead and not more than five hundred feet above me, the sound of two P-47 Thunderbolts close on the tail of an ME-109 commanded my attention as the fighters shep-herded the Messerschmidt to a landing. When the ME-109 w. on the runway and obviously not going to offer any resistance, the P-47's quickly disappeared in search of further ac-tivity. The German pilot taxied his once feared and very nimble little pursuit ship across the expanse of the airfield and rolled to a stop within a dozen feet of where I stood in the morning sunshine. It had been a long winter and now, lacking the sound of distant artillery that had been vvith me for months, my attention w. focused on the enemy aircraft immediately before me. I can still see in my minds eye the distinctive shape of that plane, it's camouflage paint and Luftwaffe mark-s smell the hot exhaust and hear the tiny

On page 9 of the February1997 CUB! asked for help in locating the the names of the above fatnily. I received a very nice letter from Frank A. Monaco, 423/1-1Q explaining that it was he and his family. Joan his wife of 54 years is on his left; Lower left, number two son Bob, a cor-porate pilot flying out of Hanscon Air Base, Bedford, Mass. In front ofJoan, son Bill, who was killed in a tragic accident while on a Kayak Expedition in the Appalachians on 3/21/87, ten days after the photo was taken. Our condo-lences to the Monaco's.

I also lemncd that Frank, a S/Sgt in 423/HQ was in Stalag 8-A, Gorlim Germany, like my-self. We were marching buddies on that long 415 mile march back vvest, but didn't knovv it. Apparently we vvent in separate directions after we reached Duderstad (known as the Hell Hole). Again my apologies Frank, for losing the original letter, months ago. J. Kline, editor .......

OLD CUBS, Memorabilia

I receive requests for copies °fold CUI3s often. I appreciate those of you that have sent me your old ones.

While sad. because of a death, it is nice to receive CUBs and memorabilia from one of de-ceased members family, for you know that he had given instructions to his survivors to pass along his treasured boowithUBs and service connected trinkets. You all know that the final repository for all the items collected by the historian is Carlisle I3arracks World War II Individual History Mu-seum. You can request that your "War Diary" be placed there.

 

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Front & Center

sounds made as the engine cooled. If you have ever been close to a military pursuit ship or seen pictures of the cockpit in any of those birds you will be aware of the extremely close quarters of that work station. The shoulders of the pilot span the side to side distance, the instrument panel is just the right position for his visual scan and finger touch.

The Plexiglas canopy barely clears his head to give a maximum field of view with minimal head movement. And there, in the middle of it all, the control stick juts upward to occupy it's very necessary range of movement between the pilot's upper legs. In a word, "tight".

The fighter stood there for perhaps a minute while the pilot took stock of his situation. For him, the war was over and he had survived. Now he was on the ground at Reichmarshall Goering's "Flug Schule" but as a prisoner or at least an internee of the Allied Forces that had totally destroyed his nations ability to fight. The end had come and he had avoided surren-der to the enemy in the east. He was safely in the west and confidently in the hands of the American Army where he could anticipate treatment as a valiant participant in a misguided social effort. For him, it was a time of new beginning. With some difficulty in the cramped space, he pushed back the canopy and a young woman got up from his lap.

John, this is a true story. As an ex-Aviation Cadet it w. a most interesting adventure and one that could never have been staged. -

7th Armored - similar actions by the Germans ( to the Bulge) at Overloon and Meijel, Holland

by Wesley Johnston. Associate

231 Market Place #113

San Ramon, CA 94583

E-mail: 1NWJohnston@aol com

Home Page: http://members aol.com/dadswar

(Editor's Note -Wesley, an E-mail friend, is the son of a deceased 7th Armored veteran. He has a great "Home Page" on the World Wde Wed, which is literally a complete history of the 7th Armored Division, as well as the Battle of the Bulge... J. Kline)

John, 1 received, as an Associate Member, my first copy of The CUB - Thanks.

I've been reading about the battles at Overloon and Meijel (Oct-Nov 1944) and now Metz (Sep 1944), teaming more about my Dad's 38 AIB and the 7th Armored before he joined.. And finding why he was needed as a replacement: they really got mauled badly at both places.

In fact, what happened to the 7th Armored at Meijel was a surprisingly similar precursor of what happened to the 106th, 28th and 99th Infantry Divisions in December 1944. Thc weather was abysmally wet, and the 7th A, mored was moved into a supposed rest area in southern Holland, near Meijel. The area was considered safe because of the terrain (sound familiar?) Because it was Peel Marshes, a very swampy area, made even more so by the rains. No one thought the Germans would launch a counter-attack there (familiar again?) Since it was such bad weather and bad terrain, which is precisely where and why they (the Germans) did launch a strong counter-attack, with the 7th Armored (only) bearing the brunt.

It was only a couple of weeks later, after the 15th Scottish Division took over their posi-tions, that the 7th Armored finally got a com-plete refitting for the first time in two months. That's when my Dad came into the 38 AIB of

the 7th A nnored. -rni ARMORED MORNING REPORTS

Dr. Norman Lichtenfeld, Associate - son of Seymour, 422/1- collecting WWII weapons.

Norman Lichtenfeld

609 Shenandoah Rd. West

Mobile AL 36608

E-mail msdm15a@prockgy corn

John, There are a lot of weapons out there, many not authentic. I wonder if any of the 106th veterans, who wonder what will become of their "prized possesions" would like to find a "good home" for them. I am interested. I would certainly pay for anything that would be offered and acceptable. All I can say is, they would be cared for by a son of thc 422nd Infantry veteran. Have enjoyed our many e-mail contacts. Dad's (Seymour Lichtenfeld 422/1) E-mail ad-dress is: sylichtenfeld@prodigy.com

 

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Front & Center

AFGHANS Moving fast..

John O. Gilliland, Chairman of the Nash-ville Reunion wrote:

"Response to our Afghan has been tre-mendous. In our original ad we failed to state that the Afghans were on hand, ready for shipment. It would be wise to order now before the stock is gone. This 50" by 65" Pre-washed Cotton machine washable Af-ghan has been well received. (see pages 21-22 in the February CUB for explanations). Send your order now. $46.50 to be delivered at the Nashville Reunion, or $53.00 to be delivered to your address in the U.S.A. It features his-torical and battlefield landmarks: Ft Jackson, SC; POW Camp; Battle of the Bulge; St. Vith memorial; Camp Atterbury Memorial; Major Unit Designations; The Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe Campaigns. A beautiful gift of World War II history and remem-brance. Offered exclusively by your Associa-tion."

Mail your money to:

The Golden Lion's Afghan

c/o John O. Gilliland

605 Northside Drive

Enterprise, AL 36330-1024

Tele: 334-347-7730

A recent letter received from one of our prominent members:

"Thank you for the Golden Lions Afghan, which arrived Saturday. The design does re-call so many events and places. The work-manship is excellent.

It is to be a Valentine present to Mother. She will be pleased. Thank you for your time to make this project worthwhile."

French and Belgian Awards 589th FAB ??

John Rain, 589th FAB inquires - "John, In the Apr-May-Jun 1996 CUB, Col. Thomas Kelly mentioned that the 589th FAB was awarded the French and Belgian Croix de Guirre for the defense at Baraque de Fraiture. Do you have any info?"

The only orders I can find show that the 589th only received the belgian FOUR-RAGERE for that action. Members, any input write the editor.. J. Kline

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Alvin Lukashok

300 East 74th St

New York, NY 10021 writes:

"I had the privilege of being part of 424/H from the days at Camp Atterbury through our days along the Rhine. I am sure many of us remember that many suffrered from acute bouts of dysentery. I recovered but not en-tirely and as the years have gone by the con-dition worsened. In 1987 my conditions was diagnosed as Ilieeitus or Crohn's Disease. The origin is not known but symptolis are similar to acute insult to the digestive system that many of us suffered right after Christmas 1944. When I told this story to my doctor he asked how many men suffered from this In-flammatory Bowel Disease. He asked that I inquire of my comrades.

I would appreciate any feed-back that I an get, either from the 424th men or any other I 06th veteran.

Signed Alvin Lukoshk (see address above)

(Editor's Note - Alvin, while you think your request might be unusual, I think it is not. One of the Presumptive Disease's under the EX-POW rules is "Irritable Bowel Syndrome." A few minutes with a good Medical Dictionary will explain this condition. I am sure many of the over 7,000 POWs from the 106th, as well as those like you vvho had to rough it in the field have been affected by it. Had liberation been a couple of weeks later, I don't think I would have been here to interact with all you fine 106th vets. Dysentery had taken it's great toll on me as well as just about every other soldier in the long columns marching back from the Polish border. It was prevalent in all the camps as well.

I suggest that any veteran or ex-pow who has such symptons contact the Service Coor-dinator at the nearest Veteran's Administra-tion Facility. I can speak only as to the Ex-POW program - it is a presumptive cause and compensable.

As to non-POVVs, I can't answer, but any person affected and can prove service con-nection should inquire through his Service Coordinator at the nearest VAMC.

J. Kline. editor..

8        The CUB o f the Golden Lion

Jack Sulser - on the World War ll Memorial...

Proposed anist's rendering of ttie World War II Memonal,

subject to formal design review and approval.

As THE CUB reported earlier, then-Asso-ciation President Dick Rigatti and I attended President Clinton's dedication of the site of the future World War II Memorial on Veterans' Day 1995, which culminated four years of commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of our biggest war. When 1 read a couple of months ago that a design had been selected, I wrote to the American Battle Monuments Com-mission (which oversees the project) and asked for further information, which I received re-cently. Our members might be interested. The winning design by Friedrich St. Florian, a professional architect in Providence, ELI., announced by President Clinton on Janu-ary 17, 1997, was one of six finalists from about 400 preliminary designs submitted, which ,,vere subjected to a rigorous evaluation by an architect-engineer board, a design jury, and finally by the Commission itself. Teaming with St. Florian in completing the design are Hartman-Cox Architects and Van Sweden & Associates, both of Washington, D.C. The fi-nal design must be approved by the Commis-sion of Fine Arts, the National Capital Planning Commission, and the Secretary of Interior. This process is expected to take 18 to 24 months. In addition, before the construction permit can be issued, which by law (contribut-

ing the 7 4 acre cite nf public land at the east

end of the Reflecting Pool between the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument) must be obtained not later than May 2000, $100 million must be raised through donations from individuals, corporations and founda-tions, plus 10% for perpetual maintenance. When completed, the Memorial and mainte-nance fund will be tumed over by the Commis-sion to the National Park Service.

The winning design provides a spacious plaza, lowered 14 feet below the surface of the surrounding ground, with a Rainbow Pool at the center. On either side of the Pool are curv-ing colonnad. of 25 columns, each 40 feet tall. Behind the colonnades are 49 foot high, curved walls of smooth stone. Behind the stone walls will be earthen berms, which will be covered with white roses. An artist's rendering of the proposed Memorial is attached. Tax-deductible donations may be sent to: World War II Memorial Fund

P.O. Box 96766

Washington, D.C. 20090-4992.

Multi-year pledges of annual donations are welcome.

Sincerely, Jack Sulser

The CU B of the Golden Lion        9

" Bulge Reenactment: Fort lndiantown Gap, PA..."

Dick Rigatti. Past-President in barracks at Fort Indiantown Gap. Battle of the Bulge Reenactment

with two sons. Dick len. Mark right

Bulge Reenactment

by Richard L. Rigatti, 423/13, Past-President

A contingent of eleven 106th veterans and two sons drove from pittsburgh to Fort lndiantown Gap to witness, with 150 other veterans, a reenactment of The Battle of the Bulge, on the invitation from the Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge.

We were quartered, for two nights, in barracks (had to bring our own linens) and served a breakfast and dinner, as well as ob-serving the reenactment, for the grand total of $30.00.

There were 1,000 reenactors who filrnish all their uniform's and equipment. At a great cost, the Pittsburgh contingent imported authentic Belgium "Fog" for for the event.

We visited both the GI and German barracks for lectures on weapons and battle criteria. A contingent of 101 st Airborne in-sisted that we autograph their book The Bat-tle of the Bulge.

We were entertained at the banquet with authentic Bavarian music. VBOB President Stan Wojtusik (a 106th vet and Association member), who is serving his second term as president of VBOB, pre-sided at the banquet and gave certificates of appreciation to all of the reenactors. We were not aware of, but discovered that this reenactment is conducted yearly and all at-tendees want to attend future events.

There were four barracks filled with memorabilia of World War II on display that was for sale. •••

Joseph Maloney, 424/11Q furnished a letter and two photos describing the "Reen-actment." Ile wrote. in part:

"We were witness to the "Reenactment" of The Battle of the Bulge. It was cold and rainy. There were many WWII vehicles pre-sant, a couple Sherrnan tanks, half tracks. trucks and German VW's.

"Included from the Pittsburgh 106th con-tingent were Dick Rigatti. 423/B; Pete Yan-chik, 423/A; Frank Lapato, 422/11Q, Ed I him inski. 424/F; Howard Lowenberg, 423/E; Francis Langham. 422/L and myself, Joe Ma-loney, 424/11().

"I have included a picture of Pete Yan-chik and 1 at onc of the Reenactmant Mal-medy-St Vith signposts, as well a a second photo from the Ardennes (1944) showing two other 424th men."

 

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Bulge Reenactment: Fort Indiantown Gap, PA..."

Dick Rigatti

at

St. Vith

MaIrrecty

road sign

Fort Indiantown Gap

7,?=;"nrc;::

contingent

bussed in from

Pittsburgh

Looks iust

like the Ardennes

doesn't it?

American troops

Fort Indiantown Gap

Reenactors

Brrtish

Reenactors

Note the British

Bronn gun.

 

 

 

The CUB of the Golden Lion

" Bulge Reenactment: Fort lndiantown Gap, PA..."

Reenactment road sign pointing out directions to St Vith and Malmedy

Pete Va... 423/A

io the right of sign

Reenactors

in background

Another looks rear

photo

The -Real Thing •

Location

Manha, Belgium

Ar.nnes Offensive

Left Joe Maloney, Right. Jn Tuck-Bobtail, repa.9 lines around Manhay.

Belgium

The soldier in middle is not identified. J. says, 'I left most of my clothing when we pulled out. I am weanng the Regimental Signal Officers coat, and a tankets hat It was fun having Buck with us - he spoke fl.nt

German.

D.      

riding shotgun        

on VVW1I Jeep       

Jeep and 30 .1 light

es.rtTilmaaerf7luOn.000    

inveustrTneontxoner         

12      The CUB gfthe Golden Lion

" Bulge Reenactment: Fort Indiantown Gap, PA..."

Dick at the

road sign

Fort Indiantown Gap

Battle of the

Bulge Reenactment.

Posing with one of the reenactor's wife who. is dre.ed as a German Nurse. German soldier reenactor in background.

erimeerlan refs r with authentic German Jeep and cycle

Wermacht and Panzer Officer reenadors. One is a New York banker, the other a history teacher from Indiana.

 

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" Bulge Reenactment: Fort Indiantown Gap, PA..."

Reenactors dress.

as German soldiers

Reenactors as German soldiers The light machine gun is a German MG-34. Beautifully made Today's rnarket price as a WVVII souvenir 63500 It was the forerunner of the German MG.42. which which gained the name ',fillers Saw ' The MG42 is still around as MG3 and is still an

e era rpose sustain. fire weapon MG3 is r=ringernigrenthani Paun MG42 rebarrelled for 7.62mm NATO instead of 7 92mm Cyclic rate is about 1200rdsrmin Deliverable in the squad automatscmode is around 300-400rdsrmin, in a tripod mount 600-90Ordsimin The

Bundeswehr. Dutch. and Danes use the MG3

Ed Huminski, 424/F with a reenactor

posing as General Patton

14      'Me CU B (Ohe Golden Lion

Preface to Parker's Crossroads Story - 589th FAB

A letter from Lieutenant General James M. Gavin USA (Ret), formerly Commander 82nd Airborne Division,

to Major Arthur C. Parker,

former Commander, 589th Field Artillery Battalion

Cambridge, MA 02140 July 2, 1980

Major Arthur C. Parker Leeds, Alabama 35905

Dear Major Parker,

Through correspondence with Henry D. Healan, M Company, 423rd Infantry, I have learned of your whereabouts. It is a little late for me to be writing you about The Battle of the Bulge, but I have been totally unaware of your whereabouts all these years.

In The Battle of the Bulge, I w. commanding the 82nd Airborne Division and we were originally given the front from Trois Ponts to Vielsalm, including Thier Dumont. We got into very heavy fighting when the 1st regiment of the First SS Panzers Division broke through the Engineer's front and occupied Stoumont. We then had the remainder of the Division at Trois Ponts. At the same time, in twenty-four hours, it became apparent that the Germans were bypassing us, moving to the west, turning north when the opportunity presented itself. The 7th Armored and part of the 28th Infantry Division and a few of the 106th came through our lines.

I w. in the town of Fraiture, one mile northeast, the afternoon you made your great stand at the crossroads. I had sent a Company from the 325th under Captain Woodruff, to the crossroads to help hold it, so I started over in that direction myself. The fire was so intense, however, that there was no way of getting there without crawling through the woods, and it was still some distance away. I decided that I had better get more help, so I sent to the extreme left flank of the division for the 2nd Battalion of the 504th, where it had the 1st SS Regiment of the First Panzer Division bottled. In doing so, we uncovered the Germans and during the night of Christm. Eve they slipped through the 505th Parachute Infantry. Nevertheless, I got the 2nd Battalion of the 504th to backup the crossroads, come what may. That stand your defenders made at the crossroads was one of the greatest actions of the war.

It gave us at least a twenty-four hour respite, so I thank you and all the brave soldiers who were under your command for that.

With best Regards signed James M. Gavin

 

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Parker's Crossroads: "The Alamo Defense... "

Parker's Crossroads (Baraque de Fraiture) - 1945

Sketch furnished by Associate Member Col. Nicholas Andreachhio, USA Armor (Ret)

Artist unknown

by Sergeant First Class Richard Raymond III USA (Ret)

The tactical situation may require a rigid defense of a fixed position. Such a defense, if voluntarily adopted, requires the highest de-gree of tactical skill and leadership

Us Army Field Service Regulation 1939 In the forested hills of eastem Belgium stands the tiny hamlet of Baraque de Fraiture at the intersection of two good highways. To see this little clutch of buildings, one would hardly think that the red tide of war had ever washed over them. Yet this now-peaceful crossroads was the scene of fierce combat, one ofthe most heroic that ever graced the annals of American arms. For in the winter of 1944, a skeleton head-quarters and a bobtailed, three-gun battery of light howitzers the forlorn remnant of a once potent 589th Field Artillery Battalion, chugged wearily up to the junction under the command of Major Arthur C. Parker III. The battalion's mission was to organize and de-fend the crossroads when a great wave of Nazi armor and infantry had cracked the Allied front, reaching northwestward to-ward the crossings of the Meuse River and the vital port of Antwerp. A dangerous split between the British and American arrnies was a real possibility.

For three 105-mm howitzers to hold the out-post line is not a conventional assipment for a divisional battery and deserves explanation. They represented all that was left of a I 2-gun battalion in direct support to the 4Md Infantry, a regiment of the 106th "Golden Lions" Infantry Division. Their misfortune was to have been at the point of a great enemy offensive le. than one week after arriving from training camps in England The Golden Lions had moved directly into foxholes and trenches vacated by the veteran 2d Infantry Division. "man-for man and gun for gun," as the orders put it. The relief went smoothly enough, but the division com-mander. Major General Alan W. Jones, was concemed about the exposed positions of his regiments and the extreme length of the line they were to occupy- nearly 22 miles. Higher headquarters had called it a "Ghost Front" with little or no enemy activity, but Jones and his staff at once set about making the lines the lines more secure. He had hoped to have a period of gradual workouts against the formi-dable "West Wall" before serious operations

 

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Parker's Crossroads: "The Alamo Defense... "

began in the spring. But on 16 December, Hitler's tanks rolled, and the Battle of the Bulge was on.

In a three-day nightmare, Jones' green division W. swamped and broken by powerful armor and infantry thrusts, and two of his three line regi-ments were surrounded and forced to surrender. The remainder felt lucky to be able to pull back to more defensible positions around St.Vith. During the withdrawal, the 589th Field Artillery was ambushed and cut off, and most ofthe battalion, including its commander, was captured. Only a handful from Headquarters Battery and the first three howitzers of A Battery escaped. These were the guns that Major Parker, formerly battalion S3 but then acting commander, I.d into position around Baraque de Fraiture. But he meant to make a fight of it. Parker had elected to conduct an "Alamo Defense." Alamo Defense

The Alamo Defense deserves serious study as an option for the commander of a force facing a greatly superior enemy, given a vital defensive mission and meager resources to sus-tain it. Though the historical precedent is obvi-ous, this tactic is defined here as the rigid defense of a key position carried out to the utter destruction of the command with the objective of forcing the enemy to expend significant amounts of men, material and especially time, thereby enabling other friendly forces to re-group and fight elsewhere to better advantage. It's an act of gritty self-sacrifice.

This defense requires the utmost in leader-ship and tactical skills It also demands rare moral courage and dazzling salesmanship to persuade other units and individuals to stay and join an underdog team- qualities Major Parker had in abundance.

The classic example of the Alamo Defense is the heroic stand in 480 BC of Leonidas and his 300 Spartans against the Persian hosts. (In truth the fight at the Alamo might, with perfect justice, be called "Thermopylae Defense," but here it seems more appropriate to relate to American military tradition.)

There are four critical elements in the Alamo Defense. First, the chosen terrain is one on which the enemy can't readily bypass or push through the defending force. Second, this type of defense is assumed voluntarily when less drastic courses of action are available. Next, combat is maintained to the bitter end-no break-out or fighting withdrawal (except, perhaps, for a few who escape during the final collapse). Last, the correctness to make the decision to make the Alamo Defense is confirmed by the outcome: other friendly forces used the time well and fought on to victory. For only the mystic, sublime faith in the righmess of their cause and the hope that their deaths will not go unavenged can infuse most rational soldiers with the spirit to carry such a black business to its conclusion.

At Thermopylae, the Spartans held a narrow cliff-side road and were immoveable by the huge masses of Persians. Only when a Greek traitor informed King Darius of the existence of a goat path around the little army did a flanking column succeed in getting behind them. Per-fectly sure of their fate, Leonidas and his men permitted their allies to withdraw and then fought to the last man.

In contrast to the rough terrain at Ther-mopy lea, the Texans little fortress at the Alamo represented a psychological roadblock. Santa Anna, who boasted of being the "Napo-leon of the West," could not, for his very pride's sake, simply march around San Anto-nio and press on toward his true objective, Sam Houston's ragged army.

Houston, coolly logical, had ordered Colo-nel William Travis to abandon the Alamo and blow up the magazine. The post was militarily indefensible, and to allow a whole battalion of splendid fighters to be trapped and destroyed was folly. Travis ignored the order, answering Santa Anna's call to surrender with a cannon shot. His men stood defiant to the end, inflicting fearful losses on Santa Anna's best troops. Houston gained two precious weeks to dis-cipline and train his army, and when he faced the Mexican dictator at San Jacinto, the Alamo ghosts marched with him. Travis had been right after all, and at the sight of the vengefill Texans waving knives and hatchets and shrieking "Re-member the Alamo," the Mexican army dis-solved into a mob of terror-stricken fugitives. Parker's Crossroads

Major Parker's little band was a mixed force. In addition to his own 589th Artillery, he found or was sent some half tracks with .50 caliber

 

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Parker's Crossroads: "The Alamo Defense... 11

quad mounts, a few armored Field Artillery observers, a tank destroyer platoon, one para-chute infantry rifle squad, a cavalry reconnais-sance section and later one glider borne rifle company - in all - less than 300 soldiers. He clearly realiml (as his higher head-quarters did not) that he stood on critical terrain. Baraque de Fraiture stands at the crossing- of the main north-south road from Bastogne through Houffalize to Liege, with a good paved road westward from V ielsalm through La Roche. Moreover, the Liege road was the exact boundary between the flank divisions of two corps, neither one able to hold the road in strength. Loss of the junction would permit the Germans to move either of three directions to flank or penetrate the First Army line. It could mean disaster.

Thus at about 1600 hours on 20 December, Parker's force went into position, following what he considered to be competent orders from a higher authority to organize a strong point and fire on approaching enemy forces. Initial supplies of rations, fuel and ammunition had been drawn al Vielsahn. Parker's force was ready for action. So fiar, so good I3ut alter several successful fire missions, Parker was ordered to displace north-wan:1 to Bra. In all fairness, the jwiction's impor-tance also was initially overlooked by both the 3d Annoyed and 82d Airbccne Divisices sharing that boundary. Only later, after much arlion did it gain its tactical title of "Parker's Crossroads." The Major's decision to ignore the order, or more subtly, to delay until execution became impossible-lifts this action into the ranks of intre-pidity above and beyond the call of duty. He seems to have reached the decision alone. Captain Arthur C. Brown third ranking officer at the scene and the only firing battery commander to have escaped the earlier battalion ambush, wrote, "Ma-jor Parker, was oniered to withdraw from this untenable position, but he delayed doing so be-cause he probably sensed the importance dividing up the enemy at this point Further, he did not want to leave the people from other outfits there by themselves (hedid notgivemea vote!). h wasn't long before we reached the tine ofno Mum, as we becane surrounded. "My Longesi Week,"(unpublished). Parker knew that a powerful enemy armored and mechanized Infantry force lay four mil. west at Samree, for he had laid observed fire on it that morning. More armor nois. were ap-proaching up the road from the south, and his supply route through Regne to Vielsalm, some I 1 miles east, was bare of support traffic. They were at the end of a very long limb.

The terrain around the crossroads is decep-tively flat though it stands on one of the highest elevations in the Ardennes, with broad, open fields of fire in alm.t all direc-tions. But two large stands of evergreen woods afford easily infiltrated, concealed

I 8      The CUB of the Golden Lion

Parker's Crossroads: "The Alamo Defense... "

routes of approach nearly down to the junction. Once an enemy cut the road north to Manhay, only four miles to the rear, the crossroads be-came a trap. Escape on foot through snow would have been extremely difficult and by vehicle on the road an impossibility. Parker meant to stay.

On the other hand, the deep snow and trees tended to canalize enemy movements and the howitzers were laid for direct fire down the three roads: the roads to Samree, Houffalize and Viel-salm. Captain Brown had rejoined the battalion at Vielsalm and was put in charge of the guns. The perimeter was dug in, howitzers and machine guns emplaced, mines laid in the road and observers and outposts linked to battalion headquarters in a stone barn about 100 meters from the junction. Not satisfied with this, Parker had gone to Fraiture another hamlet about a mile northeast, to request help from the glider men holding the right (western) flank of the 82d Airbome's thin line.

He w. given one fifle company and none too soon. The enemy were already feeling out his position and were quite aware of its basic weak-ness. During the next two days, two company-sized attacks were repulsed with loss. while the Germans built up their fuel and forces.

By sunrise on 23 December, parties of Volksgrenadiers had worked around both flanks and threatened the lifeline from Manhay. In the pre-dawn darkness, an enemy patrol was hit by quad-50s, its officer and an NCO taken prisoner. They were from the 2d SS Panzer Divi-sion just coming up fnxn Houffalize, scouting, for an attack position. During, the previous day's hasty attacks, Major Parker was wounded by mortar shell fragments, lost consciousness and was evacuated. Major Elliott Goldstein - the original battalion ex-ecutive officer but actually junior to Parker - took command.

Goldstein proved himself . able in holding the position as Parker had been in selecting it. Until the final, coordinated attack of two rifle battalions supported by tanks and preceded by a fierce artillery preparation, the Germans never managed to breach the perimeter. As the official Army history stat., "Drasti-cally outnumbered and unable to compensate for weakness by maneuver, the defenders of the Baraque de Fraiture crossroads had succumbed, like so many small forces at other crossroads in the Arrlermes" (Hugh M. Cole, Ardennes: Battle of the Bulge, US Army in World War 11, Euro-pean Theater of Operations, 1965).

The Alamo Defense had been a splendid success, holding firm for two days against ele-ments of an armored division whose two mechanized regiments had to make a deliberate attack on a weak patchwork force in a few stone buildings. The overstretched 82nd Airbome Division stretched some more, swung back and covered the gap. The 3rd Armored Division was given time to form another tank-infantry delaying

 

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Parker's Crossroads: "The Alamo Defense... "

force just south of Manhay.

If more proof of the Alamo's Defense's success is needed, it lies in the fact that, though German armor took Manhay's cross-roads after a bitter fight, they got no further north. Although the 2d SS Panzer Division still held Grandmenil and Manhay on the morning of the 26 December, it had lost much of its bite and dash. The 4th Panzergrenadiers had lost heavily', particular in officers, during the fight for Baraque de Fraiture (Cole). With elements of the 75th Infantry Division solidly in place before them the frustrated Germans turned west again in a futile lunge for the Muese crossings they never came close to reaching.

The 589th was effectively destroyed. A few officers and men fought or slipped through to ffiendly lin., but the guns, tank destroyers, ar-mored cars and AA half-tracks were lost. Of the 116-man glider company, only 44 rejoined their parent company. But in June 1945, the battered 106th Infantry Division w. monstitutod, and Parker retumed to command the new 589th. Conclusion:

To a professional readership, this account demands some conclusions.

First, that there will be more such actions in the future, and this one should be studied as a classic example. After the Nazi surrender, Allied interrogators learned from defeated com-manders that the prime reason for the German armored mass failing to come forward as planned was .... the initial American defense had been more tenacious than anticipated; complete and rapid rupture of the defensive positions had not been achieved (Cole). And the official history adds....... not only did the Germans fail to comprehend the de-gree of initiative that training and tradition have placed in the hands of American corps and army commanders, they also misunder-stood the American doctrine, largely unwrit-ten but universally accepted, that major formations having no pre-battle relationship, may under fluid conditions, unite on the field after the battle is joined: (Cole).

Nowhere is this principle more perfectly il-lustrated than at Parker's Crossroads, where small units instinctively coalesced into an effec- tive fighting force under a superlative leader. Second, the concept is current doctrine. FM 100-5 Operations (May 1986) states, "Whenever an unintentional encirclement oc-curs, the encircled commander must under-stand the mission and the higher commander's intent and concept of operation clearly ... he must judge whether the next higher commander wants the force to break out or to defend the position .... if it cannot break- out, the senior commander must con-tinue to defend, while planning for and assist-ing in linkup with a relieving force." Both Parker and Goldstein demonstrated a perfect understanding of these principles as laid down in Field Service Regulations.

Third, both senior and subordinate command-els, aware of the possibilities, should plan for the worst. The key issue is the voluntary assumption of a last-ditch stand, even agaitut ordets. Only the most urgent and vital consideratiats would justify this-if the junior comm ander surv ves, he might face court-martial and disgrace.

Nevertheless having made the decision the Alamo force commander must carry it through. lie h. committed himself and his men to vic-tory or death, probably the latter-and he must lead by personal example. A little band of strong men, resolved to die with sword in hand can be an extremely thorny twig to grasp, and an enemy trying to meet a tight schedule may well hesitate. All the better for the Alamo force-it's just what they want.

And the higher commander should prepare himself for the loss of valuable combat power, perhaps one-third of his command, if his junior commander decides on an Alamo Defense. Both should ensure that no neglect or omission of support will suggest this des-perate action and, with prudent foresight, avoid the necessity. But if it comes to the pinch, do it for the cause.

Fourth, it appears that Parker and his men went largely unrewarded for their valor. Parker received a Silver Star, Goldstein a Bronze Star with "V" device and several NCOs and soldiers got individual decora-tions. The French government granted the battalion a Croix de Guerre with Silver Gilt Star, but no unit decoration was authorized

 

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Parker's Crossroads: "The Alamo Defense... "

from their own government. For a Medal of Honor performance by Parker that seems a bit thin. Lapse of time and current regulations prohibit any further mark of recognition for an action that may very well have saved two divi-sions.

Filth, we may speculate that somewhere in today's Army walks another "Major Parker" perhaps wearing a lieutenant's bar or Sergeants stripes. If it were possible the Army should find that man and cherish him, for one day it will need him very badly Down some cold, perilous road he will see a great adversity rolling toward him. Then he will become "Major Parker" and fight like a barnfid wild cats.

But now the Major's battle is over, and he sleeps among warriors. And in a grassy plot near the crossine, of the two Belgian highways stands a carved granite boulder that proclaims it "Parker 's Crossroad,- where Major Arthur C. Parker II "breathed spirit" into his GI's and all acquitted themselves most honorably against enormous odds.

Finally, one does think that, had Leonidas of Sparta had a "Major Parker" to hold that fatal footpath, the Persians never would have turned his flank at Thennopylea.

Sergeant First Class (Retired) Richard Raymond III won Second Place in the US Field Artillery Assoc.- tion's 1993 History Writing Contest with this article He's a 1954 graduate of the US Naval Academy at Annapolis and served in the Marine Corps, discharged as a First Lieutenant in 1960. Eight years later, Ser-geant First Class Raymond served with National Guard Field Artillery units in Connedicut, North Carolina and Virginia.

His expenenoe with Field Artillery includes serving as Fire Direction Center (FDC) Chief, A Battery, 1st Bat-talion, 113th Field Artillery, High Point. North Carolina, and Battalion FDC Chief. 1st Battalion, 111th Field Artillery, Norfolk, Virginia.

His last assignment was as the Brigade Intelligence Sergeant. 2d Brigade, 29th Infantry Division (Light) in Bowling Green, Virginia, before he retired from the Army in 1990. He has published military history arti-cles in Soldsers and Army magazines and won the US Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) "Fourth Estate" award for military journalism in 1983.

Thanks to the FIELD ARTILLERY BULLETIN, USA-FAS, Fort Sill, OK and the US FIELD ARTILLERY ASSOCIATION for their permission to reprint this story... J. Kline, editor

L/R Harold Kuizema. 589th FAB. Wireman, Battery B; Cpl. John Schaffner, Battery B, 589th FAB, Survey

Team, Forward Scout: Sgt. Charlie Jacelon, Battery A, 589th FAB. Forward Observer (furnished photo)

Cpl John Gatens. Battery A, Section Chief,/Gunner. Section 1, Parker's Crossroads

See their comments about Parker's Crossroads on following pages.

 

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

Baraque de Fraiture, Belgium, known to us as "Parker's Crossroads.

(Comments by the editor: To gather information for this story, I was assisted by eight 589th Field Artillery Battery veterans. They contributed nearly 50 pages of personal history, plus 29 pages of the 589th FAB "After Action Report." and 50 pages of Captain Brown's Diary. Much mom than I could use in an article for "The CUB.° Some furnished concise tran-scripts based on chronological order Some gave general comments about the battle and what they personally experienced, without reference to timeline, I compiled what I could on a time-line order, with the balance as separate personal resumes.

This subject probably could have been presented better had been writing a book, rather than a quarterly publication. However, I think all the following facts are important enough to preserve for history in The CUB, and that is the reason I chose to compile this story of the 589th Field Artillery stand at Baraque de Fraiture (Parker's Crossroads).

Thanks to the following 589th FAB veterans for contributions of personal history..

•         AltOrd, Barney M.. Sgt. Section Chief,

Section No. 2, Battery A.

•         Galen, John. Cpl. Section Chief-Gunner,

Section Battery A Goldstein, Elliott, Major, Officer in command after Major Parker w. wounded.

Jacelon, Charles F., Sergeant, Forward

Observer, under Lt. Crowley, Battery A

•         Kuizema, I farold J., PFC, Battery B. Wireman

•         Miedema, Eldon E., Battery A, Prime Mover

•         Pierson Randolph, Forward Observer

•         Schaffner, John R.. Cpl.Battery B,

Survey Team -acted as perimeter Scout, Ground Observer. Infantryman.

19 December 1944

JOHN SCHAFFNER On 19 Dec 1944 in the afternoon what was remaining of the 589th FAB arrived at the crossroads at Baraque de Fraiture to establish some kind of blocking force against the Gerrnan advance. There were approximately 100 men and three 105mm how-itzers to set up the defense at this time.

The weather was cold wet and foggy with some snow already on the ground. Visibility was variable, clearing from maybe fifty yards to two or three hundred on occasion.

I didn't know who was in charge of the rag-tag group that I was with until I saw Major

 

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

Elliot Goldstein out in the open, verbally bom-basting the enemy (where ever they were) with all the curse words he could think of and at the top of his booming voice. 1 thought at the moment that he won't be around too long if there arc any Germans out there to hear him. Apparently there were none, he drew no fire. I was taking cover behind the rear wheel of one of our trucks at the time and felt rather naked. The three howitzers were ordered into posi-tion to defend the crossroad and 1 was told to go out "there" and dig in and look for an attack from "that" direction, still having no idea of the situation. Most of the night we spent in the foxhole. All was quiet on the front line. When I was relieved during the night to get some rest (tried to find a dry place in the stone barn to lay down. The floor w. deep in muck, but the hay rack on the wall w. full of dry hay so I accepted that as a good place to sleep. Pushing the cows aside I climbed into the hay. I guess that the cows just didn't understand, because they kept pulling the hay out from under me until I be-came the next course on their menu. Anyway it wasn't long until 1 w. outside in another hole in the ground.

RANDOLPH C. PIERSON (12/19/44): What a way to spend my 21st birthday! We are headed north to fight Panzers again! That's GREAT! Major Arthur C. Parker, now com-manding, received orders to split the reduced Battalion into two elements: One element to move west and establish a defensive road block at a village I never heard of, and the second element to move north to the crossroads located at Baraque de Fraiture, Belgium, to repel an expected Panzer attack.

I was assigned to the advance party of the second element and arrived at Baraque de Frai-ture about 1400 hours. My responsibility was to help establish the Command Post, Fire Di-rection Center, Message Center, and a local communications network.

To order an already beat-up Artillery unit to fight Panzers was stupid! We were not trained as Infantry nor Tank Destroyers. What were we supposed to do?

I could not comprehend why Panzers would attack here. Before we arrived there w. noth-ing to attack but three or four empty buildings and a few milk cows. Why would the German army fight for this bleak, windswept, cold, snow-covered, open spot in the Ardennes For-est? This terrain is worth nothing!

We had not seen our Commanding Officer, Lt. Col. T. Paine Kelly, in three days now. This bothered me! What had happened to him? (As we all know, ftom Kelly's recent CUB story, he had gotten separated in the Ardennes., and eventually captured.. Editor)

HAROLD J. KU1ZEMA (12/19/44): - There was snow on the ground, it w. cold and so foggy it was impossible to see more than 100 feet. Soon the order came to "MOVE TO THE CROSSROADS" (BARAQUE DE FRAI-TURE). We took over some of the larger family homes there. The home we took over had an attached barn with cows and hay to feed the cows. The elderly gentleman whose home we took over had taken the time to milk the cows before he left. As he left, he offered me some milk (which 1 refused), I'm not sure why since that was the last time we saw fresh milk for some time. The picture of him walking off with his little pushcart with his belongings is still vivid in my mind. This house was later used as a Command Post.. We all found a variety of places to sleep in this house. There was always someone who pulled guard. My memory would say we were on guard two hours and then off for four hours. I don't recall sleeping much there. My buddy BERNARD STROHMIER remembers sleeping on the hay. The cows kept eating and so by morning, Bernie was wedged in the trough that the cows had eaten from. 20 December 1944

JOHN SCHAFFNER: The weather re-mained miserable, cold wet and foggy with a little more snow for good measure. If the enemy was around he was keeping it a secret. The day went very slowly. (This kind of time is usually spent getting your hole just a bit deeper, you never know how deep is going to be deep enough.) Now and then one of our guys would pop off a few rounds at something, real or imagined.

We were joined by some AAA people with a towed trailer mounted with four .50 cal MG's and a 37mm cannon. I thought at the time, I'd hate to be in front of that thing when it went off. (I only saw the one unit then but the books

 

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

reporting the action mention that there were four of these units there from the 203rd AAA, 7th Arrnored Division.) This weapon was posi-tioned to fire directly down the road to Houf-falize. Frank Aspinwall also reports that we were joined by a platoon of the 87th Recon Squadron. Later in the evening, Captain Brown sent me with another "B" Battery G.I. Ken Sewell to a foxhole in the ditch at the side of the road to Houffalize, about a couple hundred yards out from the crossroads (hard to remember ex-actly). We were the outpost and had a field telephone hookup to Captain A.C. Brown's CP. Captain Brown told us to just sit tight and report any movement we observed. There was a "daisy chain" of mines strung across the road a few yards ahead of our position to stop any vehicles. The darkness w. made even deeper by the thick fog that night, with a silence to match. Now and then a pine tree would drop some snow or make a noise. I think my eyelids and ears were set on "Full Open".

There we sat in this hole in the ground just waiting and watching, until about midnight when we could hear strange noises in the fog. It was very dark and our visibility was ex-tremely limited but we were able to discern what was making the strange noise as about a dozen Germans came into view on bicycles. They stopped in the road when they came on the mines. Being unaware of our presence, not 10 yards away, they stood there in front of us in the middle of the road- probably talking over what to do next. We could hear the language was not English and they were wearing "square" helmets. Sewell and I were in big trouble. This was a first for us to be this close to the enemy. Thinking that there was too many for us to take on with a carbines I took the telephone and whispered our situation to Cap-tain Brown. His orders were to " Keep your head down and when you hear me fire my .45 the first time we will sweep the road with the AAA quad 50's. When that stops I'll fire my .45 again and then we will hold fire while you two come out of your hole and return to the CP. Make it quick!" And that's the way it happened. That German patrol never knew what hit them. On hearing the .45 the second time Ken and I left our hole and keeping low, ran back toward our perimeter. I was running so hard that my helmet bounced off my head and went rolling out into the darkness. I thought, "to hell with it" and never slowed down to retrieve it. I lost sight of Ken and honestly don t remember ever see-ing him again. I heard many years later that he w. captured along with Bemard Strohm ier and others after the Germans took the crossroads. By calling out the password "Coleman" I got safely past our perimeter defense and was then shot at (and missed) by somebody at the howitzer position as I approached it. After a blast of good old American obscenities they allowed me through and I reported to Captain Brown. (The official book ways that there was an eighty man patrol from the 560th Volks Grenadier Division and the 2nd Panzer Division out there that night. Maybe the rest were back in the fog somewhere). RANDOLPH C. PIERSON (12/20/44): It is cold, almost 20 degrees below freezing. The north wind is brisk. 1 w. glad I got to spent the night in the security of the root cellar under the stone Command Post building. During the night, and early this morning, Major Paricer had persuaded stragglers to stand and fight With us. They were; - One light tank and crew from the 87th Recon Squadron; Four, 3 inch, high-velocity anti-tank guns and crews from the 643rd Tank Destroyer Battalion, and Four anti-aircraft half-tracks from the 203rd AA Bn., 3 mounting Quad-Fiflys, one mounting a 37mm AA gun.

We received our first fire mission at approxi-mately 1500 hours, enemy infantry entering Samree, Belgium. This is strange, our defenses are facing east and north, Samree is to our west. We successfully completed the mission with the report, "Cease Fire, enemy infantry with-drawing from Samree". Where in the HELL is the enemy? Another typical situation. No one knows anything. SNAFU!

Our second activity occurred about 2300 hours. Enemy infantry reported approaching our positions from the east. Alerted the Quad-Fifty half-track covering that sector. They de-livered devastating fire, which I watched from the road in front of the CP. It was beautiful, looked like four lines of giant fire flies chasing each other. I could not relate this beautiful sight to the carriage being created on the enemy end. A combat patrol is dispatched to "mop up"

24      The cuB of the Golden Llon

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

enemy survivors. The patrol found only one wounded German, many dead bodies, and scat-tered, mangled bicycles.

The main question is, what was this patrol doing? Why is it here? We could only guess. The wounded man died without speaking. We will never know.

HAROLD J. KUIZEMA (12/20/44): Weather conditions were the same - COLD, SNOWY, AND FOGGY. Today we positioned ourselves around the house. My buddies were busy laying land mines across the road. Others had set up the machine guns. We placed our trucks which were weapon carriers, and used them for hiding or defense. We lay right under-neath the trucks. That day the GERMANS made their first attack. I fired my carbine from behind a truck wheel. Many Germans were wounded and would call out, "COMRADE, COMRADE." One dead German soldier that lay approximately 50 feet from us was a very young soldier - perhaps a sixteen year old. Major Parker wanted us to round up those who had been taken prisoner. He asked me to ac-company him with the prisoners as we directed them to the C.P. for interrogation.

-

21 December 1944

JOHN SCHAFFNER: I was sent forward to have a look around and found several dead German soldiers in the snow. I was not at all comfortable with that and was happy to have not found any live ones. The enemy had appar-ently pulled back after we had cut down their advance group the night before.

All that day was spent digging and improv-ing our defensive perimeter. We were given some "warming time" off and on inside the stone building being used as a CP. At one point I was detailed to guard two German prisoners that were brought in. I never learned the cir-cumstances of their capture. One, an officer, spoke good English and warned us that the German Army was coming through us and would kill anyone in the way and push the rest into the English Channel, so we could save everybody a lot of trouble by surrendering to him right then and there.

At one point a Sherman tank came along and was set up in front of our CP and fired a few rounds across the field and into the forest at some distant soldiers running from tree to tree for cover.

From German Army Nchwes This photo was taken 22 January 1.5 at Parker's Crossroads

One of the butldings near the Crossroads In front a Jeep. behind it an M8 Armored Scout Car wrth 37mm

Cannon In front of the two German soidters, an M4 Tank The road, looiung beyond the M4 the road

leads north to Manhay Photo furnished by Hans \Mier, a friend from the Netherlands

Tire CUB of the Golden Lion         25

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

That night after the initial attack, I recall being in my foxhole waiting for the Germans to come at us again. The realization came to me that I w. involved in a real risky business. The area was lighted by the flames of a store of fuel drums buming throughout most of the rest of the night and reflecting eerily on the snow covered ground. The only sounds were that of the fire and the crying for help from the wounded enemy who were laying out there just out of view. I stayed in the foxhole all night and never did discover what finally happened to them, apparently their people abandoned them. Later I heard that one of our medics went out and checked on them and did what he could. Over the years I continue to feel some respon-sibility for their fate, since it w. me who called for the fire on them when they first approached the crossroads. Responsible: yes. sorry: no. It was them or rne.

A lot of things go through your mind when you think that it is your time to die and I can clearly remember laying in that cold hole in the ground that could shortly be my grave thinking that I had not even experienced being "in love" yet. I definitely did not want to die in this strange place. I prayed to God, Jesus and every other deity that I could think of, for help. In later years I heard the expression that, "there were no atheists in foxholes". You can believe that. RANDOLPH C. PIERSON (12/21/44): Major Parker looks bad, really tired. He hasn't had much rest or sleep in five days. We all are getting fatigued. It shows in the eyes. At 0530 hours, our first serious attack began. About two platoons of enemy infantry in the forest east of the perimeter, supported by light mortar fire, seemed to be testing our defense capability. By daylight, howitur and heavy automatic weapons fire had forced the enemy to with-draw. Only a single mortar continues to deliver interdiction fire into our positions.

About 0800 hours, Major Parker dispatched the light Recon tank to find and neutralize the mortar position. In a short time the tank re-turned to the CP. The non-com tank com-mander reported to the Major thc mortar had been neutralized. He then produced 5 German "Soldiers Books" to idantify the enemy unit attacking us and as proof of his kill.

This second fire fight proved to the enemy that we were here, and planning to stay. So far, so good. No American casualties!

At 2000 hours the Major asked me to man an observation post for the remainder of the night. He expected an enemy build-up during the night and needed a forward observer to adjust harassing fire. The walk to the OP was dark and frightening. The OP I manned was 800 or 900 yards east of our perimeter. I was alone except for my EE8A field telephone, my .45 caliber pistol, and my freshly-sharpened boot knife. I wished I was back at the CP.

HAROLD J. KUIZEMA (12/21-22/44):

FOG, SNOW, and COLD persisted. The next few days we were busy trying to dig our fox holes as deep and we could. We dug them around the house. Weather conditions being what they were, the ground did not cooperate with our efforts very easily. There were two of us in each foxhole and we lined them with an army blanket. Sad, but true, I do not remember who I shared my foxhole with. We were mainly concerned with surviving at that time. One of us was always on guard and so it was not a very social time. Keeping alert was crucial to sur-vival. The feeling were ones of constant fear. Prior to my army experience I was firmly estab-lished in my belief in God. I cannot say I thought about that a great deal. We were kept very busy with an attack occurring twice every day -one attack in the morning and another in the afternoon. The truck just behind us ( a half track with a machine gun mounted on it ) w. intermittently spraying the area with machine gun fire to flush out any snipers who might be in the area. Fulfilling our duties, surviving and keeping warm were high priority. I know the prayers of my family and church followed me. 22 December 1944

JOHN SCHAFFNER( 12/22/44): Very early, in the dark, the next moming 22nd Dec, the Gerrnans attacked again and we were sub-jected to small arms and mortar fire off and on all day. At one point mortar rounds were land-ing real close to my hole and I was feeling very exposed with no helmet to crawl into. I could hear the rnortar fragments smacking into the ground around my foxhole. Most of the rounds were falling farther in toward the buildings. I

26      77se CUB of the Golden Lion

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

saw one hit the roof of Captain Brown's CP. It must have been during this time that Major Parker was wounded by a fragment. I'm not sure about that. I didn't witness it. There was a G.I. in a foxhole next to mine who would not fire his weapon. When I called to him to fire he just looked at me. I didn't know him and don't know his fate either, I could not understand why he was not willing to help himself (and the rest of us). I have read since that this is not an unusual occurrence. There are always a certain number who will not sqeeze that trigger, even when their life is threatened.

Late in the afternoon several tanks were heard approaching our position. Thankfully they were ours. They rolled out in thc open and fired their big guns into the German positions and I thought, no problem now with all this help the day is saved. It got quiet again. And then the tanks left. Looked like we would be hung out to dry but it did stop the enemy attack for a while. Thanks, tankers. Too bad you couldn't stay for dinner.

After dark I was moved in closer to the CP and dug another hole along with a G.I. named Randy Pierson. One of our guys made a run from hole to hole tossing everybody something to eat. I caught a box of"wet-or-dry" cereal and ate it dry. The two of us spent the night in the hole. One of us would sleep an hour and the other keep watch and then we would alternate. This was the only kind of rest that anybody got. We had dug our hole reasonable deep and then further fortified it with some fence rails that we crisscrossed in front of it. I was sure that we would be attacked that night. I had 30 rounds of carbine ammunition remaining and a knife that I placed on the ground where 1 could reach it. I prayed that it would not be necessary. It got very cold that night and the enemy did not attack. Another very long night.

At the time the weather was our worst enemy but then in the moming things changed and weather took second place.

RANDOLPH C. PIERSON (12/22/44): The most horrifying time of my life started at 0230 hours when I detected vehicles moving some 2,000 yards east of me. We fired a heavy artillery concentration into what seemed to be an infantry assembly area. This fire mission caused both vehicles and infantry to move in my direction.

To counter this movement, we fired 4 or 5 more concentrations, each one "walking" about 400 yards closer to me. Finally my OP area was crawling with enemy infantry, moving furi-ously to stay ahead of the exploding shells. To my dismay, this "walking" barrage was soon delivering ground-shaking tree bursts directly over my head. 1 was not detected by the preoc-cupied enemy infantry as theY passed me, but my EE8A was blown to bits. I lost contact with Battalion headquarters!

Direct tire from our 105mm howitzers, the 3-inch anti-tank guns, coupled with automatic weapons and small arrns fire caused the Ger-man infantry to withdraw about one hour later. It was still dark. This time the enemy infantry passed over my position while in retreat. Fortu-nately, I, again, was not detected.

Later, when I felt somewhat secure, I decided to try to return to the perimeter without getting killed. As I was about to leave my hole, I heard a noise. Then a German helmet fell into the hole, followed by a sweaty-smelling, heavy-breathing body. With my adrenaline flowing, I frantically stabbed and sliced until there w. no movement. Exhausted, I remained under the warm, bleeding body for quite some time.

Desperation finally drove me to work my way back to our perimeter. I thanked God that I was not shot by, either friend or foe during the journey. My arrival at the perimeter w. about 0600 hours, only minutes before the start of the sec-ond German attack. This attack lasted almost one hour and I was pressed into service as an ammunition handler for a .50 caliber machine gun position. Another unnerving experience! Upon my arrival at the CP at about 0800 hours, I was warmly greeted. The guys thought their barrage or the enemy had killed me. When they noticed my bloody uniform, they thought I had been wounded. Reports from the perime-ter advised Major Parker the perimeter w. secure, but we had sustained WIAs.

At 1155 hours, Major Parker received per-mission from Division to disengage and with-draw the 589th troops to Manhay to draw new supplies from the 3rd Annored Division. The Major declined to leave, although the scarcity of

 

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Paricer's Crossroads ..."

Spring 1944 - On the Artillery Range at Camp Atterbury

Front/Center T/4 Randolph C. Pierson - 589th FA Bn Fire Direction Center VCO, Clockwise 1./R, T/4 Ruona 580th FAB

Survey Sergeant and members of his crew. Pvt Slack, Pvt Fienberg and Pvt Kaufman.

ammunition concerned him. During the after-noon, Major Parker sustained serious wounds, shell fragments in the chest. That night, over his objections, he w. evacuated in a half-track. 23 December 1944

JOHN SCHAFFNER: It seems that the Germans had come closer each time our pe-rimeter got smaller, and were ready to end it. The fog would roll in and out giving us limited visibility. I would fire at anything I saw moving around in range of my hole. This weather was tough on use but 1 think it was to our advantage from a defensive point of view. I m sure our enemy was not able to determine exactly what he had to overcome to take the crossroads. Whenever he came into view we would drive him back into the fog. Our ammunition was running out. I had one clip of carbine rounds and could find no more. Word had come around that when the ammo ran out and the Germans came it would be every man for himself to escape if you could otherwise a surrender was prudent. We were apparently surrounded but the Germans were taking the easiest route, the hard surface roads. That left the fields open. Late afternoon, probably after 1600 the final assault came. Mortars, small arms and fire from tanks. I was in the stone building, sitting on the floor with my back to the wall. Harold Kuizema was with me. This room must have been a kitchen at one time because I recall a wood buming cook stove and a G.I. who I didn't know trying to heat something at it. Something big hit that wall and exploded it right over our heads into the room. It must have hit high or it would have gotten the both of Use. As it was it filled the room with debris and dust. That was all the motivation we needed to leave there. To wait for another one never crossed my mind. We (Harold and me) went to the front door. They were coming and we were going. It was that simple. Some of our people were going to the cellar. I didn't like that idea. So once out-side, I crawled to the road and the ditch. There were some cattle milling about on the road, and much smoke so I got up and ran through the cattle to the ditch on the far side and once again dropped down to avoid the German fire. On this

 

28

 


 

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

side of the road was a snow covered fields very open, but it was "away" from the attack so that's the direction that I took. Not far into the field Harold went down. As I got to him I saw two G.I.'s approaching from the other direction. It was apparent that Harold was not going any farther on his own so between the three of us we moved him the remaining distance to the shelter of the woods and into the company of a patrol of infantrymen from the 82nd AB Div. When we reached the shelter of the woods and I looked back at the crossroads the whole sky seemed to be lighted by the flames front the burning building and vehicles. Our wounded man was evacuated and I received permission to tag along with these 82nd AB Div G.I.'s which I did until late sometime the next day (24th) when I was able to locate some 106th Division people. There were some vehicles from the 589th with this group that were not with us at Parker's Crossroads and one was loaded with duffel bags - mine was with them. Another miracle, clean underwear and socks. RANDOLPH C. PIERSON: (12/23/44): The first round of the pre-dawn German Artil-lery preparation landed at 0430 hours. It w. from a German 88mm gun. The enemy had moved artillery within range of the crossroads. We had no capability to return fire. We could only hunker down, curse, and wait for the in-evitable. Automatic arms fire was coming from the north and south flanks of the perimeter for the first time. The Gerrnan infantry had moved through the forest in an effort to flank us. This forced a corresponding change in our defense lines and weapons emplacements. This turned out to be a determined attack. It lasted until about 0945 hours, almost 5 hours. Five hours under direct fire is an eternity in close combat! We took casualties, both KlAs and WIAs! Why do we continue to fight? Why do the guys in the other units continue to fight? They are getting killed too! It doesn't make sense! It's like everyone has a death wish. We all know what the outcome will be, yet we don't quit! At 1600 hours the third attack of the day started. The Artillery preparation was more vi-cious and gut wrenching than before. This expe-rience is impossible for me to describe. It affects people differently. Some break and run, only to

be cut down by shell fragments or small arms fire. Others, like nte, dig in and mentally try to block out the mayhem which surrounds us. Advance elements of the 2nd and 9th SS Panzer Divisions were using armor to exert tremendous pressure on our defenses from both the south and east. Our heavy weapons were their prime targets. They are losing Panzers, but we are losing the battle of attrition.

The entire top floor of the CP building had been shot away by the time darkness fell. Only a fragment of the sturdy stone east wall still stands. Several of us took refuge in the undam-aged root cellar.

By 1700 hours, enemy infantry probes were coming fast and furious from all points of the compass. We were finally surrounded - COM-PLETELY surrounded! It is the beginning of the end.About 2 hours after the final attack started, Captain George Huxel, the only re-maining officer, entered the root cellar. His message is brief and to the point: - We can no longer deny the enemy access to the crossroads. We have more than fulfilled our mission. We must now make a decision, based on 3 choices: I. Stay, fight, and die, and accomplish nothing; 2. Lay down our arms, and wait to be captured or killed; 3. Risk death or capture by trying to withdraw and fight another day. He advised us he could not make the decision for us, each man must make his own.

When asked what he was going to do, he advised us he would try to make his was through the enemy lines at dusk. Then move northward hoping to reacfi the territory occu-pied by the 82nd Airborne Division.

The Captain then offered to lead anyone who wished to follow, however, there were no tak-ers. He concluded, "It has been an honor to serve with you. I hope we will all survive and serve together again". He then left.

This information triggered much discussion among the eight or nine GIs in the cellar. There is no consensus of opinion. 'The top floor of the building is on fire. I made my decision; I gath-ered my gear and left. The trip across the open ground, stumbling, falling, and being exposed to enemy fire was another nightmare. The four hundred yards from the CP to the tree line of the forest seemed like miles. Without any idea

 

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

what awaited me in the distant tree line, I con-tinued to crouch and run, deterrnined to reach cover. Winded and wounded I finally made it! In the dense forest, under the cover of night, I turned in the direction I thought was north. Limping from the pain of White Phosphorous burns and struggling against the deep snow, I fought my way deeper into the forest. I never once looked back!

HAROLD J. KUIZEMA (12/23/44): Somehow that afternoon a piece of stray shrapnel from one of the shells hit my thumb while I w. in my foxhole. The wound was jagged and bleed-ing, but comparatively minor. I went to the C.P. for FIRST AID and there saw men with faces blown off and pulling teeth out of their mouths. I also observed a German prisoner being interrogated by one of our officers (he w. using one of our group as an interpreter). While in the C.P. a group from the 82nd Airborne joined our group. They had come on foot and their eagerness to get into battle impressed me. "Where are the bazookas?", they said. They were "gung ho" to get into action. Action came in the form of some direct hits to the house - A FIRE STARTED! I ran out of the house and started across the nearby field. I was flat on my stomach trying to get under a fence when I was wounded in my left thigh by a nearby shell that exploded. My left leg was numb. I tried crawl-ing beyond the fence, but realized I would need help. A medic nearby gave me some First Aid using my First Aid kit. Dusk w. upon us and night was drawing near. John Schaffner, 589th Battery B 106th Division came to my aid. lie and another person I do not know helped me across the field into a wooded arca - it seemed like miles. While in the woods we met up with some troops from the 82nd Airborne who met us with 30 caliber machine guns. They halted us and we shouted "AMERICAN". They then di-rected us to the aid station. There a jeep was ready to take other wounded on stretchers out to a FIELD HOSPITAL and since I could sit up they got me in the front seat and included me in their load. HAROLD J. KUIZEMA (12/25/44): The FIELD HOSPITAL was like a large garage. We were lined up on the floor and the only treat-ment 1 received for two days was a dressing change for my wounds. The wounded were cared for according to the severity of their inju-ries. Many were much more seriously injured than I was. The Germans as well as Americans were cared for here. Some staff found it very difficult to care for the Germans. It w. an unusual Christmas for all of us.

HAROLD J. KUIZEMA (12/26/44): From the FIELD HOSPITAL 1 w. transferred to a CASTLE that was converted into a hospital in Leige, Belgium. Next was a train ride to a newly set up hospital in Paris, France where I stayed for one week. My next stop was a hospital in England. The ambulance that transported me to the Paris Airport went by the EIFEL TOWER and I was able to see it from a window in the ambulance. I was transported by a C-47 to the hospital where I stayed for four months for treatment for my leg wound as well as a bad case of frozen feet.

EPILOUGE

RANDOLPH C. PIEFtSON:

Two days after leaving the crossroads, the I was "captured," asleep in a hay stack, by an intelligence patrol of the 82nd Airborne Divi-sion. At that time American troops in this arca were very paranoid about German saboteurs, dressed in American uniforms, infiltrating their lines. I was suspected of being a German spy and hospitalized for burns and frost bite in a medical facility for German POWs. Sub-sequent investigation proved him to be an American T/4 from the 589th FA Bn.

Early in January, 1945, he was released to the 106th Infantry Division and then assigned as an enlisted man Forward Observer for XVIII Airborne Corps Artillery in the 592nd FA Bat-talion. On 24 January 1945, me and two close friends, T/4 Delbert Miller and Sergeant Barney Alford, from the 589th, traveled to Stavelot, Belgium to receive direct promotions to Second Lieutenant.

As an officer, the 1 returned, in late January I 945, to serve as an Artillery Forward Observer with the same Parachute Infantry Regiment (82nd Airborne) that had "captured" me in the haystack after I left the Crossroads.

In April, 1945, I rejoined the 106th Infantry Division which was being reformed in France. In June, 1945, whcn the 106th Division w.

 

30

 


 

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

returned to the States, I transferred to the 9th FA Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division and served with that unit until June, 1946 in the European Army of Occupation.

BARNEY ALFORD: Resume'

I was at "Parker's Crossroads" with my gun crew from the beginning to the very end. My gun was covering the road to Houffalize and we took part in the skirrnishes and the final battle. We were ordered to man our gun constantly and to be ready to fire at any enemy units that came into our field of fire. As you klnow there was there was only ocassional intense action and we were involved in it all.

I happen to be one who came out of it and make my way back to our line of defense in the 82nd Airborne area. I was able to do this due to several things that took place during the last day of the battle. When it became apparent that we were going to be overrun by the enemy, Captain Brown came by our gun and told us we would be on our own, but to hold as long as possible. We did hold, but it became very obvious that it was be killed or captured. I urged my gun crew to follow me. Some did and a few stayed. During the final barrage the cnemy was fir-ing smoke shells (maybe phosphorous) that produced smoke mixed with the fog. Taking advantage of this cover and protective cover such as equipment, farm sheds, and road ditches I was able to cross two roads and make my way into the forest. On the way we passed some buildings where some of the men decided to take cover. I never sawe any of them again. As I made my way through the woods I ran into other Gi's that knew where the 82nd Airborne lines were. When we got close enough to be challenged, we were, but they seemed to know we we American and didn't give us a hard time. After being questioned by an officer, he asked what he could do for us. We all asked for food. He said he could take care of that, and led us to the rear arca where we saw a big "GI gargbage can" on a stove - it was full oc C rations. We all said this was the best C ration that we had ever eaten. After we ate they led us to a barn filled with soft hay and told us to get some rest as we would be moving out early the next morning. The officer said we would be fighting with them until Headquarters got things straightened out, then we would be as-signed to other units.

The sleep we got that night was the best we had for many days. We were told the next morning that we had slept through a barrage that had lasted for hours. We guessed that we had been softening up the enemy to move for-ward the next morning. We did move out with the 82nd and stayed with them for a few days. The confusion associated with the last days at "Parker's Crossroads" and the intensity of the firing, the dense smoke and fog really had a lasting impression on all of us. Since we were surrounded we hardly knew which direction the enemy would come from. 1 still do not know how any of us came out of that battle alive. I know I must have had a guardian angel that protected me and led me the to my safety. The sad fact is that many did not make it.

For those of us that did make it, we were able to gain pleasure in helping pinch off the Bulge. We then helped kill Hitler's dream.

Later, 1 was acalled to a ceremony, during a lull in the fighting, and received a battlefield commission, Second Lieutenant and a "Silver Star." I did not think I did anything to deserve it. I was just doing what we were taught to do. During the commissioning ceremony, T/4 Randy Pierson and T/4 Delbert Miller received battlefield commisions to 2nd Lt. ,(These two men also received the "Star" awards, recom-mended as Silver, but graded down to "Bronze" for reasons unknown. Pierson sent me a copy of his award - it shows "Silver" inked out and changed to Bronze. You all deserved more than that.. .I. Kline)

ELDON MIEDEMA: Resume'

The battle at Parker's Crossroads was very confusing. The weather was cold and foggy. It was difficult to tell what w. happening. I w. disturbed by Major Goldstein because he kept shooting offa German machine pistol. I thought he should not have used it for it could have gotten us killed by our own men, but it didn't. I helped shoot up a Gerrnan bicycle patrol one night. They were all killed, except for a German medic. I took him prisoner and was repri-manded by Lt. Jefferson.

1 shot two Germans that were in the back of my prime mover going through the barracks

 

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

Eldon E. Miedma, Battery A Prime Mover Driver

with family June, Felicia and David.

bags. 1 remember Major Goldstein taking Jim English (1 helped carry him to the half-track) and other wounded Americans, along with two German Prisoners of War on the half-track. I never saw Major Goldstein after that. (Eldon, read Major Goldstein's accounting, excerpts from several letters I received from him, which appear below... editor)

As the Germans closed in an 82nd Airborne paratrooper and I went into a barn to release livestock and then jumped out a window to head out. I went in the wrong direction and ran into the Germans. 1 w. taken prisoner. (Not. from Eldon's POW affidavit.. edi-tor) - After being taken prisoner, I, along with 12-14 other Americans were marched all night and questioned by German officers. The next day we were marched to Houffalize.... The af-fidavit continues explaining his march to Priim, Gerolvein, eventually ended up at Stalag I 2-A, Limburg. In late March as the Americans were advancing on Limburg the camp was evacu-ated Eldon escaped and hid out in the woods near Weilburg, where he was liberated by the 2nd Infantry Division. He states, "I escaped from the Germans with a fellow POW, Bill Cody, but he was recaptured when he went to a stream to get a drink of water. We worked three days to get a can of peas open. I sure vvould like to know what happened to him."

CHARLES F. JACELON: Resume'

Excerpts from his "How Parker's Cross Roads Happened" December 5 through December 23, 1944. (/ will pick up starting with 19 December to coincide with the others... editor) For the next couple of nights we traveled with an AAA group, which was heading for France. After that Ma-jor Parker reported to division head-quarters, in Vielsalm. He was told to bring the battalion to Vielsalm the next day. We returned to the battalion on the road between Salmchateau and the crossroads at Baraque Fraiture. We proceeded to the crossroads - past the crossroads, a few hundred yards, to a large open field on the left, west side of the road We bivouacked there. (This is the road to Samree).

Early the next morning we started out for Vielsalm. 1 was driving the lead jeep with Ma-jor Parker in the passenger seat, as we entered the point where the two roads actually cross. A 21/4 ton army truck came speeding toward us from the direction of Houffalize. Major Parker yelled "whoa" and 1 stopped the jeep. The Ma-jor got out and asked the driver of the truck where he was speeding to. The driver said that a German tank attack was heading our way from Houffalize. By this time Major Goldstein had walked up from his jeep which was the second vehicle, and he said "You know, we came over here to fight a war and this looks like a good place to start." Major Parker said "1 was thinking the same thing, Major (Goldstein) set up for the defense

Of this crossroad. Major Goldstein said, "I am going to ask my big friend here (a tracked vehicle with a dozer blade) to dig me some gun pits." This is the true - verbatim -conversation that led to the story of Parker's Crossroads, ask Major Goldstein.

1 believe that initially Major Parker entered the building that became Capt. Beans C.P. the building had a bar, and while Major Parker was doing his planning and map work by flashlight, someone handed him a bottle of beer that had been found in the basement. Major Parker

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"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

drank half, then handed it to me, saying, "Here driver, I want you to have some of this." A young woman resident rushed in to get some-thing from a drawer or cabinet and Major ParIcer said to her "You do not have to leave, we will protect you." her reply was, "Boche come, I go." and she left.

The guns were emplaced. and a sentry. John Schaffner, in a foxhole, was in front of the howitzer and the quad local machine guns in a turret on a half track. In the middle of the night the sentry reported that a German patrol on bicycles was examining the "daisy chain", a string of antitank mines tied together in a line so that it could be pulled into place across a road in front of the lead enerny vehicle. At that time the Howitzer and the quad-mounted 50 .1. guns fired blindly, and when the volley ended our sentry ran back to the command post. When the mist and the night lifted we found dead and wounded Germans.

I did not know of Major Parkers's wounding, or of the death of the Sergeant reportedly con-versing with Capt. Bean. 1 remember a G.I. truck on fire speeding through the crossroads from Samree toward Vielsalm. 1 remember that on the evening of Dec. 22, Major Goldstein told me to take a forward observer sergeant to his unit in Manhay about ten miles away we had a pleasant ride, found Manhay completely de-serted. and as we returned to the crossroads the German tanks (which overran our position the next day) were blasting an Arnerican tank that was bombed out in the first action a month or two before. When the German tanks stopped firing 1 drove to the crossroad, turned left and drove the hundred yards or so to the C.P. and turned into the yard. That night there was spo-radic firing around the perimeter, and during the 23rd we fired carbines and rifles which was all we had left at the tanks and soldiers too far away to be hit.

Late in the afternoon the tanks moved across the field between the Vielsalm and Houffalize roads. As our C.P. startcd to burn down around us I could see no alternative to surrender, so with several others we walked past the head of the tank column into captivity.

JOHN GATENS: Resume'

(John in his resume' leads. us from the action in the Belgian border by explaining some un-explained facts. As in all history there are some mistakes. I am sure there would be some in any story related 53 years after the fact. Out of respect for John Gatens I will include his ex-planation which nicely leads into the Parker's Crossroads action - Thanks John... editor) The main theme in all the stories about "Parker's Crossroads" has been about the "three Howitz,ers." I feel by now that everyone knows that there are actually four Howitzer's to a firing battery. In the article "The Incredible Valor of Eric Wood," Section Chief, Sgt. Scan-napico's Section No. 3 is mentioned in the Saturday Evening article. It is unfortunate that he was KIA.. Also Section Chief Sgt. Barney Alford's, Section No. 2 is mentioned. In our own history "St Vith: LION in the WAY," page 188, Section Chief Sgt. Johnnie B. Jordan"s Section No. 4 is mentioned in the Saturday Everting Post article. There are also other refer-ences to these sections. Nowhere, including the story about Parker's Crossroads is the name of the Section Chief named for Section I. For the record I would like to get into the record Section Chief Sgt. George Shook, and Gunner Cpl. John Gatens, and tell you my story about Section No. I . In the story "The Incredible Valor of Eric Wood," it states that Section No. 4, which in reality was Section No. 1, was the only piece in the entire Battalion which could reach the on-coming tanks. In a direct fire situation of a 105mm Howitzer, the gunner like me, has complete control of the firing, because it is he that has to set all elevations and traversing actions. In the case of the tank mentioned in that story I had traversed and set elevation to my satisfaction. I missed on the first shot. Sgt. Shook, standing behind me, hollered I was a little high. 1 lowered the elevation and gave the command to fire. It was a direct hit. We fired another round for effect and scratched one Ger-man tank. Truly a deed that warranted recogni-tion for the No. I Section.

When march orders were given by Lt. Eric Wood, Jr, Sgt. Shook was no where to be found. This left me as second in command with a double duty as Section Chief and Gunner.

 

33

 


 

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

Now to Parker's Crossroads, where we ended up on Lt. Eric Wood's march order. Unfortunately he disappeared - that story has been well publicized. We ended up at the Cross-roads without and officer in command of my section. Another error that has been com-pounded over the years is the placement of Section No I gun site at the Crossroads. In "St. Vith: LION in the WAY," page 185, it shows my gun in the comer of the crossroads of the "TO REGNE" "TO HOUFFALIZE" quadrant pointing toward the Manhay/Samree quadrant. The error is that my gun was actually directly across the road, in the corner of the Man-hay/Samree quadrant, with the Howitzer facing towards the Regne/Houffalize quadrant, ex-actly across the road frorn the tank and the two buildings. That tank (3rd Armored), shown in front. of the buildings, came to that point the second day we were there. We were happy to see a tank in our area. As they pulled up one of the crew jumped out, walked to the comer and looked down the road towards Regne. He sud-denly hit the ground with a bullet hole in his head, put there by a German sniper. Unfortunately he was wearing only the soft tanker's hat. We fired a few rounds into the woods along the Regne road and never heard anymore from that direction. Major Parker visited my position at least three times. He was always in good spirits and giving encouragement. He would leave saying, "Don't worry, we will be leaving here soon." Little did we know that he had ignored the order to displace northward toward Bra, as described in the story, The Alamo Defense. Loss of this crossroads junction would have given the Ger-mans freedom to move in all directions, to flank or penetrate the First Army line.

The most unusual fire mission I received was from Major Parker. At the time I had no idea what he was doing. The story "The Alamo De-fense" explains that Major Parker knew a pow-erful enemy Armored Infantry force lay four miles west of Samree. Major Parker told me to tum my Howitzer around, approximately 180 degrees. That was done with difficulty since we were dug in. In that direction there was a house. He gave me the elevation and then said, "I want you to come as close to the peak of that house as you can, without hitting it, and we will fire."

I looked through the sight, as well as the tube, and asked my No. I man to confirm, which he did. I told Major Parker we were ready at which time he gave the order to fire. We fired four rounds. There is another accounting of this action on page 186 of "St. Vith: LION in the WAY." We also had a few encountets we acted as Infantrymen. Captain Brown (another coura-geous man and great leader) cautioned us that there was a group of Germans on bicycles near a "daisy chain" of anti-tank mines that had been placed on the road. He told us when the order to fire was given that we should fire down the road. Boy, when those quad mounted 50's opened up, so did we. The roar was deafening. The order was given to stop, then all night long you could hear men in pain, calling for help. As much as I knew that they were the enemy, 1 had to feel sorry for them.

Around mid-afternoon on 23 December, we started to receive an artillery barrage. It was light at first, then got heavier. Captain Brown warned of an Infantry attack after it lifted. With that order I ran across the street to the building where the crew were trying to get warm. Before I got to the door the shells were falling all around us. The house w. hit and burning. The shelling stopped . The German infantry were all around and a G.erntan tank had it's gun stuck through the door. A German officer ordered us out or the tank would fire. That was the end forme and the collapse of a great stand known as "Parker's Crossroads."

Sgt. Scannapico section No. 3 was dead, Sgt Barney Alford (later to become a Lt) and Sgt. Jordan section No. 4 escaped and were able to give their accounting of the battle. Section No. I was captured and was not able to give their accounting. So we became to be the "three guns" in any and all articles. This is my story as I lived and remembered it. I hope it is of interest to those that may read it.

ELLIOTT GOLDSTEIN

Excerpts from letters:

(Major Goldstein assumed command ofthe group at Baraque de Fraiture after Major Parker was seriously wounded. MJune 1996, through the urging of Col Kelly, 589th FAB CO, he joined the 10611; Infantry Division Association. Inspired by Kelly's story that appeared in The CUB, he has the urge to

34      The CUB o f the Golden Lion

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

Another view of the Crossroads

reconstruct the actions at "Parker's Crossroads." I karned of his interest and sent him a copy of "The Alamo Defense" story which now appears. az this issue of the CUB maga:are. When he found that I had solicited individual stories from the men (who belong to the Association) of the 589th, he asked that I fOrward him copies. so that he could refresh his memory. In the meantime he has received individual resumes' from the men. While he did not prepare a resume' for himselfsuch as you have just read, I am going to recite some comments from his letters because I feel they are pertinent to the facts re-vealed in the preceding stories from the men of the 589th. They follow below ... editor)

GOLDSTEIN:

As to the story "The Alamo Defense:

" l don't believe we elected to make an "Alamo Defense." I am indebted to Charlie Jacelon for making available his diary. He says the decision was made in an exchange between Major Arthur Parker and me." We never had 300 soldiers at the same time. Reinforcement came at different times and left at other times.

am not sure we recognized where we stood in the "Big Picture." Our orders were to set up a road block to protect the Division's supply lines. According to the "After Action Report" the 325th Glider Infantry was late in arriving to relieve us. When they finally went forward of our line to die in, they took heavy fire and were driven back. We waited for them to reorganize and take positions. They did not accomplish this until after dark. We waited until the next day to leave. At that time it w. not possible.

Additional points: We had great difficulty in maintaining radio and telephone communi-cation. It was for that reason that both Major Parker and I had to go back to the nearest headquarters to go over our position and get orders. Similarly, Captains Brown and Huxel had to go direct to the guns to give orders. As to failure to recopize what we accom-plished, we received no commendations for our action after the battle. The only comment I recall receiving from Division Artillery was it was disgraceful that we had not blown our guns. I was able to get the Silver Star for Major Parker, writing the recommendation myself. We didn't get a lot of support in getting deco-rations for the many others who deserved them. To sum it up I think the concept that we determined to set up an "Alamo Defense" is overstated. We selected to set up a road block, and circumstances beyond our control kept us there. As I look back on it, I'm amazed at the determination and courage shown by the entire group. After all we were trained as artillerymen, and we had to fight as infantry. I would guess that you could say we had on-tile-job training.

The CUB qt. the Golden Lion        35

"The Men of the 589th FAB: at Parker's Crossroads ..."

(I agree with Major Goldstein, but want to point out that "The Alamo Defense" was writ-tenfor a Fort Sill, Field Artillery School writing contest, and that the concept did add flavor to a story, that would have fallen flat if written as. an "Afier Action Report." In its sense it followed the battle, but added some some interest to attract the reader's attention. The 589th did fight "like a barnful of cats" and it was a thorn in the side of the German 2nd SS Parrer Division. I give credos to both the Majors, Parker and Goldstein and their men, as well as the author of "The Alamo Dcfense" At leas? it was his story that excited this editor and brought all these pages. to the attention of the readers 106th Infantry Divi-sion Association's CUB magecine..

In a February 1997 letter to Goldstein and the seven 589th FAB men who supplied me with information I stated, "The 106th doesn't have many groups, like ,vours, that participated in similar actions. Most of us were put on ice so fast that we had no opportunity. The legend of Baroque de Fraiture is strong and makes authors want to give credit to a group of men who stood "Tall" in the chaos of those dark days." ... J. Kline)

Goldstein relates in a March 1997 letter: "First of all and for a preface as to what follows, 23 December 1944 was one of the saddest days of my life. My attempts to bring reinforcements to Parker's Crossroads and my inability to get back was a heartbreaking failure on my part.

Now, and as I reviewed it then, I had no choice but to take the actions I did. We had been told, based on prisoner interrogation, that we would be attacked on the evening of December 23. That morning we took the measures neces-sary for our defense shifting troops to the south and east, moving the tank destroyer towed guns inside the perimeter and making preparations for the armored force (82nd Airbome - editor's note) to enter the position.

We had no telephone or radio communica-tions with any other unit. I don't remember with whom I discussed the necessity of leaving to request help and for coordination with the ar-mored force. After doing so, at 13:00 hours I left for Colonel Richardson's C.P. in the direc-tion of Manhay. I do not recall the discussions at his headquarters, but I have a recollection that at the conclusion, two men, at least one of whom was an officer, was directed to return with me to Parker's Crossroads. I do not recall who from the 589th accompinied me on this mission. As we approached the Crossroads, we were fired on by a tank. We dived into the woods on our left and attempted to get to the Crossroads throught the woods. At that time, which was, according to the after action report, at 15:20 hours, an enemy barrage commenced. Shells were ex-ploding in the trees above us, we had difficulty getting through the woods. When we got in view of the Crossroads, the garrison was surrnunded, and we were unable to proceed further."

(In support of Major Goldstein's explanation I sub-mit to the readers, part of letter written by General Gavin, 82nd Airborne Division to Major Parker in 1980:... editor)

Quoting Gen. Gavin:

I was in the town of Fraiture (one mile northeast of Baroque de Fraiture) the ciliernoon you made your great stand at the crossroads.

"I had sent a Companyfrom the 325th under Captain Woodruff to the crossroads to help hold it, so I started over in that direction myself. Thefire was so intense, however, that there was no way of gelling there without crawling through the woods, and it was still some dis-tance away.

"I decided that I had better get more help, so I sent to the extreme lef t flank of the divisionfor the 2nd Battalion of the 504th, where it had the 1st SS Regiment of the First Panzer Division bottled In doing so, we uncovered the Germans and during the night of Christmas Eve they slipped through the 505th Parachute Infantry. "Nevertheless, I got the 2nd Battalion of the 504th to backup the crossroads, come what may. "That stand your defenders made at the crossroads was one of the greatest actions of the war."

"It gave us at least a twenty-four hour res-pite, so I thank you and all the brave soldiers. who were under your command for that."

With best Regards, signed Jame. (M. Gavin 1.ieutentant General, USA (Ret)

 

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The .-Iquitania in November, 1944, only weeks after carrying elements of the 106th infantry 1)ivision.

(Photo aourtay of the Imperial War Museum, London)

THE UNFORGETTABLE AQUITANM

Ask any group of 106th Infantry Division veterans about their most memorable wartime experiences and eventually you'rc bound to hear about the legendary ocean liner Aquitania. This remarkable ship, famous for hcr luxurious transatlantic crossings during the years just prior to World War II, delivered thousands of American troops safely to Europe and back again. Among her many voyages was onc in October, 1944 carrying most of the mcn from two regiments of the 106th Infantry "Golden Lion" Division. She delivered thcm to Greenock, Scotland only six weeks before they saw action in the Battle of the Bulge.

Thc division's advance parties had been had ferried across the Atlantic two wecks before aboard the Queen Elizabeth; another large group had sailed nine days later. Then, on Friday. October 20, 1944 the 422nd Infantry Regiment and most of the 424th -

by Bill Buchcr, Jr., Associate Member

under strict orders to proceed with the greatest secrecy - were told to climb into large trucks and leave Camp Myles Standish near Taunton, Massachusetts to travel a circuitous route to the Port of Ncw York. Under thc cover of darkness that same evening they began boarding the huge ocean liner for their own transatlantic voyage.

Waiting in long lines along the docksidc, they stood nervously on thc brink of action in Europe. The big ship before them evoked a mixture of awe. excitement and foreboding in the men, many of whom had never even seen the ocean before - let alone crossed it. Though her name had been painted over to confu. hcr enemi., the men i mmediately recognized awl r destination; thc ship's immense size .d four rakish funnels marked her unmistakably as the famous Cunard liner Aquitania.

 

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THE UNFORGETTABLE AQUITANIA

The ocean liner Aquitania had originally been d.igned by her British builders to be one of the most luxurious ships ever built. Her spacious interiors were graced with mahogany wood paneling and intricate interior design details that, in their time, placed her among the finest vessels in the world. The irony of the fact that she once carried the rich and famous was not lost on the G.I.'s, who joked about what it must have been like to be a "guest" aboard the luxury liner years before.

The Aquitania's "glory days" had begun before many of those aboard her had been born. Launched at Glasgow, Scotland on the Firth of Clyde, she had sailed on her maiden voyage on May 30, 1914, more than thirty years before she met the Golden Lions at the Port of New York. Originally equipped with coal-fired steam turbin. - the most modern propulsion of the day - the Aquitania was a larger but somewhat slower version of the Lusitania, the famous ship whose sinking by a German U-boat in 1915 contributed to the entry of the United Stat. into World War I.

She was the last of only fourteen four-funnelled liners ever constructed, and unlike some of her contemporari. all of her funnels were working exhausts. The Aquitania vvas al. the first liner to have a gyro compass and the first to be equipped with special "anti-rolling" tanks to stabilize her in rough seas. She had six spacious decks, and her large hull was divided into ten watertight bulkheads to be sealed off in the event of catastrophic damage under the waterline.

Thc Aquitania was immense in size even by ocean liner standards, stretching some 901 feet long and 97 feet wide at her widest point. Though her British builders had also intended her to be the largest ship in the world she was eclipsed by the Imperator, to whose bow the ship's German builders had fastened a colossal gilded bronze eagle for the sole purpose of stealing the honor. Each of the Aquitania's four immense propellers weighed an awesome 17 1/2 tons..

It was said that the captain of the ship measured how thick the fog was by counting how many of the ship's four funnels were visible from the bridge. A "two-funncl fog" was cause for the ship's officers and crew, which numbered around 950 initially, to break out their rabbits' feet.

She had only completed three transatlantic voyag. when the first World War broke out in August of

The Aquitania as a hospital ship at Southampton during the first World War.

(Photo courtesy oldie Imperial War Museum, London)

38

 

 


 

 

The CUB of the Golden Lion

THE UNFORGET7'ABLE AQUITANIA

Elements of the 106th Infantry Division board the Aquitania, October 21, 1944.

1914. With the onset of hostilities thc Aquitania had been converted first to an armed merchant cruiser and then, more sensibly', to a troop transport to the Dardanelles. During the rest of World War I she had served variously as a hospital ship in the Mediterranean and as a troop transport bringing Amcrican troops to France and back.

The Aquitania was refitted again as a passenger ship after the war's end in 1919, after which shc began a long period of superlative transatlantic service on the Southampton to Ncw York routc carrying well-heeled travelers in first class and European emigrants eager to settle in America in her "steerage" class accommodations.

The Cunard Line continued to improve thc big ship to keep her competitive with hcr rivals. In 1920 her boilers were converted to oil-firing, allowing hcr to be refueled more easily and reducing her crew by almost a third. Although safety rattier than speed was the hallmark of Cunard service. the Aqustania was fitted with newly designed propellers in 1936, an improvement which increased tlie average speed of her crossings to 24 knots and placed her among the fastest ocean liners then in existence.

By November of 1939 the Aquitania had been pressed into service as a troop transport again, giving her the distinction of being the only great liner to serve in both world wars.

As the nien of the Golden Lion Division boarded the Aquaania, it was hard not to notice that her dark hull and famous bright whitc superstructure had been repainted a uniform shade of battleship grey. Her rambling decks, once the scene of carefree fun, were stripped of anything not expressly necessary to her wartime duties. Large guns were mounted on her fore and aft dccks, where affluent guests once had played decksidc games and couples had enjoyed the romance of sea travel. Nothing left aboard the ship went unused; even the luxury liner's large swimming pool had been drained and converted to a storage area for food and supplies for the voyage.

The CU B 0,1 the Golden Lion      39

THE UNFORGETTABLE AQUITANIA

As on many of her wartime trips. the Aquitania was to carry some five or six times her normal peacetime passenger load of 2,200 passengers. Thc G.I.'s and their gear were packed into bunks stacketl six-high in every nook and cranny of the ship. Since the number of passengers well exceeded the liner's lifeboat capacity, every passenger was issued a floatation vest in case of attack. It was scant reassurance for being adrift in mid-ocean, but better than nothing at all.

Lite in the morning on October 21, 1944 the Aquitania backcd out of her dock in the Port of New York and pointed her huge bow toward the open sea and Greenock, Scotland. Though it had been only four months sincc the D-day invasion and German U-boats were known to be patrolling the North Atlantic, the excitement among the men was electric. This was international travel, after all, courtes-^,' of thc U.S. government!

It was emotional moment for

many of the G.I.'s jammed at the Aquiiania's rails whcn thc big ship pulled out of the New York harbor. To many of thc mcn, the Statue of Liberty, an awesome sight in thc morning light, scemed to lift her torch in solemn tribute to the American servicemen and women on their way to battle. Many wondered to themselves if this might be the last time they would ever see "the great lady."

Any jubilation that the G.I.'s felt upon getting underway, however, quickly gave way to seasickness oncc the ship reached top speed in the opcn sea. "We had a brief religious service," Milton Weiner (424/M) writes. "The Rabbi said he expected all of us to be at each daily service no matter how sea-sick we might be. The next service thc Ftabbi attended was when we were docking at the Firth of Clyde, Scotland."

Likc other troop-carrying ocean liners in wartime, the Aquitania travelled alone. Though shc was fast enough to outrun U-boats which tried to follow hcr, there was nothing to prevent a chan. encounter with the enemy but her constantly varied course and the vast open seas.

Though speed and secrecy were the best defenses against marauding U-boats, tlic heaving motion of the speeding ship turncd many strong stomachs. As if that weren't enough, the seasickness of the men was compounded by the "Limey" food which didn't agree with American stomachs and thc zig-zag cour. of the ship as it avoided crossing paths with enemy submarines.

"They tried to keep us moving." recalls Jim Rupert (424/AT). "When one group was sleeping on the bunks anothcr was up on deck doing deck-mopping details or waiting in line for the next meal." Meals were served twice each day and took hours to rotate all the men through the linc. Hershey bars helped many make it through the trip, which lasted eight long days.

At 901 feet long and 97 feet wide, the Aquitania rank.1 among the largest OCeall liners ever built.

 

40

 


 

THE UNFORGETTABLE AQUITANIA

Thc North Atlantic can be cruel in October, but in 1944 it was kind to the Golden Lions. All in all the trip was fairly uneventful. cxccpt on thc day. when an errant freighter crossed her path. In wartime any unfamiliar vessel is a threat: a shot from one of

Aquitania's    .nnon across thc

freighter's      bow    COIWi nccd   the

freighter's cvtain to keep his distance rather than challenge thc huge occan liner.

A few days later two Allied escort ships materialized out of the mist. and English flying boats flew out to greet the big ship as it approached the coast of Scotland. Thc grateful passengers disembarked at the deep water port of Greenock, Scotland on October 28th, .d boarded trains headed south for thc midlands of England.

The Aquitania continued hcr troop-carrying services throughout the rest of the war. successfully avoiding German U-boats prowling thc open seas from Ncw York to Great Britain and from Australia to Egypt. She compiled a flawless record of wartime t roop-carrying service.

Upon the close of thc war the Aquaania was partially refitted and again traversed the North Atlantic, first carrying war brides and thcn emigrants to Canada from Southampton. England. By December of 1949, however, it was clear that she had become hopelessly obsolete in the fiercely competitive transatlantic market of the day. She was withdrawn from service and hcr exceptional career came to end.

On February 21. 1950 the Aquitania docked at Faslanc, Scotland for the last timc before being brokcn up for scrap. The mighty occan liner had logged nearly 3 million niiles and nearly 600 Atlantic crossings over a 35 year period. carrying morc than 1.2 million passengers safely through two World Wars and the interval in between. Thc last of thc four-funnelled Atlantic Ocean liners (in fact, the oniy onc to last as long as the beginning of World War II), the Aquitania was considered by many to bc onc of the most beautiful ships ever built.

Today. the legendary Clydebank shipyard in Scotland where thc Aquitania was built is silent. All that rcmains of thc ways that launched the Lusitania, the Aquitania and thc three great Queens are a few nistcd derricks amid a wasteland of coarsc black sand. The deserted shipyards recall the times when shipbuilding companies competed with each other to build the largest ship in the world. and each new launch was a cause for national celebration.

Thc typical "cruise" ship you might takc to thc Bahamas or Alaska is only about half the size of the Aquaania and her colossal cousins. Thc cra of the great transatlantic ocean liners is over, replaced by a new age of transcontinental air travel. In the hearts and minds of many American men and women, it was an era that was inextricably entwined with the years of World War II.

For many Golden Lions thc trip aboard the Aquitania was the first of two or morc transatlantic crossings, but for some it would be thcir last. For thc lucky ones who returned the great ship had left an indelible impression. an experience that would last a lifetime. Whether they remember her with a sense of pridc or feelings of queasiness. few of those who made that trip will ever forget the remarkable Aquitania.

Would you like to see a CUB article about one of the big ships that you travelled aboard during World War 11? Drop a line to Bill Bucher, Jr., 430 Bob White Run, Sali.s.buty, NC 28147 or leave a message at (7041 633-2769.

 

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New Members ...

                             

AHLSEN, MERLE 592/C                        reality. When the news broke in the CUB, several 423/CN veterans contacted the fam-ily. A very heartwarming experience.

610 NORTH 4TTI ST.                             The original e-mail contact w. made by Robert (Rob) Bethea, Captain Manning's great-nephew, from Kuwait. Robert (Rob) has since moved back to the States and is working at Disney World in their computer department.

L'ANSE, MI 49946 Hugh Fisher, 589/Medics, my neighbor showed me a c,opy of the February CUB article, AMBUSH. I knew all the men men-tioned in the article and it brought back a lot of memories. I w. with 592/C for about 33 months. 1 w. a T-5 File Clerk. When we got overseas I did a lot of different things, wher-ever I was needed. I spent a lot of time with the gun sections and on the phones relaying information from the forward observers to the guns.                      Robert Bethea, Florence Bethea and her son Charles all joined as Life Associate members.

                              BOCCHINO, DOMINIC T. 422JK

                              48 MOUNTAIN AVENUE

                              COI,D SPRING, NY 10516

                              914-265-2436

BARREDO, ANTHONY 424/D                          

55 HIGH STFtEET                      

WINSTED, CT 06098                             

203-329-8988                            

                              CARTWRIGHT, WILLIAM S. 423/L

                              48 MEADOWBROOK RD YAKIMA, WA 98903

1 was in the 3rd Platoon, 81mm Mortars in the Bulge.                    

BENFORADO, JOSEPH A. 423/AT                             

PO BOX 19331                           

RALEIGH, NC 27619                             

919-783-0375 Joseph was brought to us through an e-mail contact with Dave Benforado, of Woodbury, Minnesota. Joseph is his cousin. Ni. to see you aboard Joseph. Hope you knew some of the men in the roster that I sent to Dave.... J. Kline                             

                              CHOP, ADOLPH 423/1

                              SUMMERDALE APTS 65-R

                              ENOLA, PA 17025 Served as Sergeant. Was injured near Rad-scheid on 16 December 1944 by German shrapnel in the abdominal area, received lim-ited medical help there, but was sent to Eng-land for five weeks. He was reurned to combat at Karlsruhe, Germany in the Engi-neers, Co E, 359th Regiment and at VE Day w. sent to Fort Dix for discharge. He re-turned to the Pennsylvania Police and was later in Security for Presidents. including President Eisenhower..

BETHEA, MRS WILLIAM S. (Florence) LIFE-ASSOCIATE                           

PO BOX 248                     

LA1TA, SC 29565 Mrs Bethea, Florence, is Captain James L. Manning's sister. Captain Manning was KIA at Bleialf, He was CO of the 423rd Cannon Company.                      

The cover of the February CUB was dedi-cated to Captain Manning, along with a story by Charles Bethea, Florence's son.                     

Because of contact with John Kline through the Internet e-mail, Florence and Charles, with his wife, went to Belgium on Thanks-giving Day to visit Captain Manning's grave at Henri-Chapelle. It w. the first visit by the family to the grave site. A sad, but a wonder-ful story, because of the way it became a                   

                              DAVIS, JOHN R. 423/K

                              7 RUE AGAR

                              75016 PARIS FRANCE Pete House contacted Davis. In return he received a membership application. John re-plied, "I was a re-tread. I had been commis-sioned as an Ordnance Officer in 1942. My first assignment was with a maintenance company. We started v^ith raw recruits and went thwith a full training program, wind-ing up with three phases of Tennessee ma-neuvers in early 1944.

                             

 

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New Members ...

"In early 1945 a call went out for volunteers for the Infantry. I volunteered and was ac-cepted.

"After the war I got into the international freight business. An offer came up and 1 moved to Europe. This was in 1956.1 made a good living and stayed. 1 retired from business and am now kept busy by running the Benjamin Franklin Post of the VFW, here in Paris. I am happy I finally made contact with the Association. I am giving serious thought of attending the Nashville Reunion. Don't be surprised if I show up. Thanks for contacting me, Pete."

DILTZ, RICHARD S. 422JHCI 1BN

3731 HICKORY RIDGE cr

MARIETTA. GA 30066

770-971-8132

EPLING, ELAINE ASSOCIATE

8013 LA RIVIERA DRIVE

SACRAMENTO. CA 95826

916-381-3829

ESPOSITO, TEO D. 422/E

5468 Frrz AVE

PORTAGE. IN 46368

219-7624667 I was a Platoon Sergeant in Co. E, 422nd Regiment I joined the 106th shortly before they shipped out. Just enough time to fire on the range. Had a groin infection and was laid up in the hospital for a while. Didn't get to know too many guys. I was influenced to join by John Kline and Dan Bied. I was in the Army Spe-cializ.ed Training Program, deactivated, finally ending up with the 106th. I relate to a lot of POW story's being in Stalags XII-A 29 Dec 1944; IV-B 6 Jan 1945;111-B;111-A I Feb1945; Liberated 22 April 1945 by the Russians..

FRUMKIN, ALBERT 590/C

98-501 KOAUKA LOOP #1307

AlEA. HI 96701

808488-7655

E-mail: zef595a@prodigy.com

Aloha Mr. Collins, I cannot express how

nice it was to receive your letter. The fire in St. Louis really did a number on me. The people who are trying to ressurect my records seem to find it easier to make up stuff than believe me. I was a Corporal in Charley Bat-tery of the 590th FAB from the time they left Camp Atterbury. We went overseas on the Manhattan (formerly the ILL De France). I was captured 2 I Dec 1944 and taken to Stalag IV-B where I remained until released by the Russians On 28 April 1945. I then hitched a ride and walked across the Elbe River to the American lines. We were all flown to Camp Lucky Strike and came home on the Wake-field to Boston Harbor. They gave us the summer to recuperate and then to R&R at Ashville, NC. I then went back to Fort Bragg and was discharged there. I had some prob-lems as the result of being a POW. I eventu-ally went into the government after studying to be a designer. I stayed I 0 years at the Naval Ord Lab. Then transferred to the computer field which was just getting started. Stayed in the government for the next 18 years in dif-ferent positions, retiring in 1978 at the age of 55. My last position was The Technical Staff of the Computer Center of the Naval Re-search Lab in Washington, D.C. Moved to Hawaii because we could not stand the cold weather. I am commander of the Hawaii Chapter of the American Ex-Prisoners of War; Volunteer Director of the Retired Ac-tivities Office at Pearl Harbor. I take care of the Navy, Marine and Coast Guard am I am not a retiree. 1 am Vice-Commander of the Oahu Veterans Council, an organization of all veterans groups in the State of Hawaii. My wife and I have three children, seven grand-children. We celebrated our 50 anniversary in August 1996.

FUNK, ALFRED 423/CN

139 CINDY DRIVE

WILLIAMSVILLE. NY 14221

Ray Vaughn, 423/CN wrote, "Sherod, in

recent correspondence Pete House inquired

as to why Sergeant Funk was not a member

of the Association. I had invited Funk, but

 

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New Members ...

since his wife was ill I can understand why he didn't reply. I want him to be a member so please accept his membership fees from me."

GABLE, WILLIAM A. 422JE

6222 ASPEN AVE

CINCINNATI. OH 45224-1902

513-541-0169 On his application to Pete House, Gable asks if any person has any information on "Peter losso" his service buddy. I can not find any reference to losso... J. Kline, editor.

HAGMAN, LARRY ASSOCIATE

9950 SULPHUR MOUNTAIN RD

OJAI CA 93023 Membership by Pete House.

HAMPTON, BENIE P. 422/H

138 W. REVERE CIRCLE

OAK RIDGE. TN 37830-8521 Immediately on return from POW camp, I was married, almost 52 years now. We have one son who is a professor at Kentucky Chris-tian College in Grayson, Kentucky. There are two grandchildren we enjoy.

After 31 years service with Union Carbide Nuclear Corp/Martin Marietta Engineering, Defense Contractors as a Physical Testing Inspector I retired 10 years ago. We have enjoyed retirement with golf, travel, Church and volunteer work.

HOUSEMAN, DON M. 423/D

3708 CARUTI1 BLVD

DALLAS, TX 75225-5103

214-3614288

e-Mail address: Dmhousemangaol.com Editor's Note - Another e-mail inspired mem-bership. In February Don found the 106th through my Web Site on the Internet. We have had many interesting exchanges of information via e-mail. Don was a Platoon Leader in D Company, 423rd Regiment. In skimming through the numerous e- mail letters he says he would like to locate his Platoon Sergeant, Robert Stringer. His personal diary is very inter-esting. I think the best way to present Don is by clipping some of the e-mail letters and display-ing them here.

22 Mar 1997 e-mail from Don - John, back

on Feb 19th I contacted you after I acciden-tally found you on the Internet. I had punched in "I 06th Infantry" never expecting to find anything. You e-mailed me a bunch of info, but I never really got to study it because just the next day I was hit with a gall bladder attack, spent 11 days in the hospital, then went on a couple of trips after recovering. This morning I got back to the 106th, and I am overwhelmed with what you have done. Incredibly interesting. I have downloaded everything and read it all.

It's amazing how close our paths have been.

# I After I got back, I got married, had three kids within 3 years (twins), and had very little interest in the 106th. (Later had 2 more kids and now 13 grandchildren). I took the Cub for several years but never made any of the conventions. I wasn't at all proud of being a Golden Lion because I didn't see we had much to be proud of- despite Cedric Foster's broadcasts and the book Lion in the Way. However, I read a lot of books on the Bulge trying to figure it out, because I have always wondered if we relieved the 2nd Division in order to sacrifice a green division to suck the Germans in and then cut them off. Also I have wondered whether Cavender and Descheneux should have surrendered. What is your opinion after all your studies? I think the 2nd Division might have fought their way out.

#2 My business career was insurance. I joined my dad in his fire and casualty agency in Dallas, and we specialized among other things, same as you, in construction insur-ance and surety bonds. My dad had a bad heart attack in the early fifties and I pretty much ran it after that. In 1971 I merged with Marsh & McLennan and ran Dallas plus an office we bought in Fort Worth until 1981 when I retired to look after my own invest-ments and enjoy life.

#3 I got interested in computers through one of sons and have owned them all starting with the original Apple, then a Tandy and since then IBM types.

 

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New Members ...

#4 I decided a couple of years ago to write about my experiences in WWII. This was occasioned partly by the 50th anniversary hype and partly by my inability to find out anything much about my grandfather's Civil War experiences. I was wishing he had writ-ten something - and then I go to thinking that in 50 years no one would know anything about mine. Your diary is much, much better than mine, and I have thoroughly cnjoyed reading it. I have downloaded it so that I can easily get copies for future reference.

#5 I also went back to the Ardennes. In 1970 1 found what I think is the very pill box which had been my platoon headquarters. It had been blown up but the remnants were still there. Also went to Limburg and Montabaur where 1 had been in prison. Stalag 12A is gone but the Catholic monastery at Montabaur is still there. (See my diary). I wish I had known about you prior to your 1995 trip back, because I sure would have gone. I wanted to go with Chas MacDonald when he took a group but it conflicted with a vacation - then he died before taking another one. A friend of mine went with him twice and said the trips were fabulous.

I can't thank you enough for all you are doing for the 106th. I am rejoining the Asso-ciation as a life member and ordering Passes in Review. 1 can't make the convention this year because we arc already signed up for a vacation at that time, but I will come in '98 when you're in charge.

My 2 fingers are wearing out so 1 will quit. Best regards Don llouseman

JEWELL, JAMES

ASSOCIATE

E 3803 27T11 AVE

SPOKANE. WA 99223

James is the coordinator for Oral History

WWII at Eastern University of Washington.

He would like the story of your war experi-

ences. He has collected a few 106th veterans

history through our e-tnail Internet friends

and asked that I put the geneml membership

on notice. Your personal history is important.

Unfortunately most personal history is not conserved when the veterans dies. There are several centers in the USA trying to conserve the personal history of World War II veter-ans. No matter how small you think your experiences may have been in relating World War II history, you should send it, in what-ever form you have to: Jatnes Jewell, E 3803 27th Ave, Spokane, WA 99223.

JONES, THOMAS E. ASSOCIATE

813 EMBERLAKE DR

NASI1V11.1.E,        37214-4005

615-871-4602 (Editor's Note We have an in- Thomas is a Motorcycle Sergeant with the Nashville Police. If we need help we .11 him... J. Kline. editor) I le wrote. My uncle was in 424/D - James Blythe. I am a Sergeant in the Metro-Nash-ville Police Department, age 45 years. 1 am a Major in the U.S. Army Active Reserve. I am acquainted with 106th members, Kermit (Lee) Steele and Marion (Mike) Ray, both from 424/D. I look forward to seeing you at the Nashville Reunion."

KEARNS, JOHN F. 423IK

43136 DONLEY

STERLING 11EIGHTS. M148314-3519 I received information about the 106th In-fantry Division Association from Mr. Frank Gombotz, who was originally in 422/HQ 1Bn. He and I are both members of the 34th Int' Div Association.

My time with the 106th was from March 1943 through Oct 1943, K Co, 423rd Infan-try. From there I shipped to Africa and Italy. Joined the 34th In(' Div and stayed with it to the war's end.

I entered service from Port Huron, Mich. on 18 March 1943. Along with 150 other men we all ended up in the 106th at Fort Jackson. My brother-in-law was in the 422nd Infantry. He also ended up in the 34th Inf Div.

KINNEY, EARL E. 424/B

I 205 M Street

Franklin, NE 68939

I took my Basic Training at Fort McClellan,

Alabama. At Christmas 1944 1 was one of the

//t, Ct in the Golden Lion  45

New Members ...

replacements for 424/B. I was a Squad Leader, 4th Platoon. We were then used to clean up after the big outfits made their pincer movements. Later was a German Prisoner of War Guard at Bredelsheim, Camp A-7. I left Bredelsheim and carne to the U.S. arriving August 15, 1945. After 30 days loeave I was transferred to Algona, IA, Pris-oner of War Camp. Was there for a week and then was transferred to a POW Camp at Greely, CO being stationed at Johnstown, CO at a Branch Camp. In February 1946 I had to have an appendectimy, almost died. I spent from February to July '46 at Fort Warrens, Wyoming. I was discharged in July. A friend who was in the 83rd gave me the book Si. Vith: A Lion in the Way. I don't know where he got it.

I started out as a farmer in 1947, farming I 0 years here in Nebraska. Sold out in 1957 and moved to Twin Falls, Idaho. Worked 10 years in the Wood Work Shop of the School District. In 1967 we moved to Irving Texas where I worked for a Caterpillar Dealer for 20 years. Wound up being their Building and Grounds Superintendant. Retired here to Franklin, Nebraska in September 1986.1 love Nebraska since it was my Home State.

KIRKPATRICK, PAUL E 424/C

2612 SIIOEMAKER ST

BIRMINGHAM. AL 35235

205-853-0626 I did not know the 106th Infantry Division Association existed until, by chance, I saw an article in the Birmingham News that Veter-ans of the battle of the bulge were meeting at a local restaurant. That is how I learned of the Association. Thanks to some of the local members, Judge Walter bridges, F.G. Bynum and Dave Lacey for inviting me to join. I am very excited and thrilled, after 54 years, to again become a part of the famous 106th Infantry Division. I reported to active duty on 6 March 1943 at Fort McPherson in Atlanta, Georgia. I was issued my clothing and equipment at McPherson.

After a few days we shipped to Fort Jack-

son, South Carolina. Arriving there around 15 March 1943. At the time we did not know we were the very first troops training in the newly formed 106th Infantry Division. I was assigned to C Company, I st Battalion, 424th Infantry, located on "Tank Hill" so named because of the water tank.

After six months of very rigid training we were combat ready and many of us in the division were shipped overseas as replace-ments. I landed in Casablanca, North Africa on 15 October 1943. Making my way across North Africa, Oran, Tunis, Algiers, Tunisia and finally Bezerte. All of this under the command of the American 5th Army.

landed in Naples, Italy 13 December 1943. I was assigned to the 384th Port Bat-talion. Participating in the invasion of Anzio. Leghorn, Civitvecchia and Southern France, all operating from the Port of Naples. I landed back in the States on 3 December, 1945 and was discharged 8 December 1945. I never had a furlough during all of my service in the Army. Upon being discharged I returned home to nty native Haleyville, Alabama. Af-ter being out of military service for a while I was ready to find a job and begin a lifetime career. I was employed by the Louisville and Nashville Railroad working in the Signal De-partment for 38 yea. and retired in 1985 as a System Signal Construction Foreman cov-ering 13 southeastern states. My wife, Goldie Daniel Kirkpatrick and I have been married 49 years. We raised three children, one daughter and two sons. We have seven grand-children. We have enjoyed retirement for the past I I-I /2 years.

(Editor's Note - Paul in a later letter asked, "My Platoon Sergeant at Fort Jackson 424/C was Honaker. I believe he was from West Virginia. In the CUB of the Golden Lion: page 145 the French Government honors 106th Personnel, there is a Lt Robert L. Honaker. I wonder if by chance this could be the one and same." I wrote you and said I c,ould not find Honaker on the 424th Regiment rolls. It is possible that he was wounded and in the hospital in January when the 424th Regiment orders were cut. There are many names missing from the 424th orders. I

46      Tire CUB of the Golden Lion

New Members ...

am happy to say he does not appear on the KIA list I have, nor in the listings of the 106th still buried in Belgium. Maybe one of the 424/C veterans could answer that. I sent you a list of the 424/C vets that are c,urrently members of the Association. Maybe they will see your name in this New Member section and respond. A little letter, duplicated, to the 424/C members could also bring an answer Hopefully your question will be answered... J. Kline, editor)

KRAJEWSK1, HENRY V. 424/L

15 N1CPIIERSON PI,

JERSEY CITY, NJ 07030

201-653-7378

Retired 1986 from NJ Transit as Superin-tendent of Maintenance after 34 years. (Henry joined as a LIFE MEMBER).

LANG, E. RUSSELL 423/1

47 PLEASANT RIDGE DR

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY 12603

914-462-1954

E-mail address: Russlangsr@ aol.com Married to Lillian E. Both of us were from Ton-ington, CT. Three children, Laura, Cyn-thia, & Russell

Retired from IBM in 1987 after serving 35 years in engineering, manufacturing manage-ment, and marketing support staff operations. Currently active in volunteer programs teaching local history and nature to school groups, and as an activist in the preservation of local historic sites.

Joined the 106th division in Camp Atter-bury, IN. when the ASTP program at Auburn University closed down. Assigned to Co. I • 423rd Infantry -Sergeant. Mortar squad leader.

Dec. 1.5. 1944 Regiment stationed in Schnee Eifel near Brandscheid. Germany. Dec. 17, 1944 Regiment attempted breakout of encirclement near Schoenberg, all vehicles, armor, artillery, and supplies destroyed by. heavy artillery and rocket fire. units were scat-tered in adjacent woodlands.

Dec 19, 1944 Regiment surrenders, ammo and supplies exhausted. Next eight days were spent in forced marches, and in railroad box cars.

Dec. 27 1944 Stalag XIIA near Limburg,

Gerrnany Jan. 4 1945 Loaded on box cars for trip to a Non-Com camp.

Jan. 6 1945 Stalag IIIA near Furstenberg, Germany.

Jan. 31 1945 forced march from stalag, Russians were advancing toward camp.

Feb. 7 1945 Stalag II1B near Luckenwalde, Germany.

Apr. 22 1945 Russians liberate camp.

May 7 1945 Escaped from Russians and returned to 30th Div. lines on the Red Ball express. (Russians would not let 30th divi-sion take us out of the camp!)

May ? 1945 Arrived in Camp Lucky Strike and later returned to Nor-fork, Va. on an Army troop ship. After a 90 day furlough, 1 spent two weeks at the Lake Placid Club and then was assigned to Camp Flood Texas for cadre duty until 1 w. discharged in Novem-ber.

LARSON, KENNETH L. 423/K

200 NO. COMMONWEALTI I AVE

LOS ANGELES, CA 90(XI4

213-383-7034 Sherod Collins Treasurer "The Cub of the Gold-en Lion" 448 Monroe Trace Kennesaw, Georgia 30144

Dear Mr. Collins: I had read Captain Mac-Donald's book called A TIME FOR TRUM-PETS and also Gerald Astor's book A BLOOD-DIMMED TIDE: THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE BY THE MEN WHO FOUGHT IT, and also oxford University his-torian Mar-tin Gilbert's 1995 book called THE DAY THE WAR ENDED: MAY 8, 1945.

I wrote to Colonel Alan Jones, Jr., and he sent me a copy of your journal. I wish to join your association. During World War II in Europe.

I was an Infantry rifleman with Company K of the 423 Regiment of the American 106 "Golden Lion" Division, in the Battle of the Bulge, that started on December 16, 1944. My basic training was at Camp Shelby, Mis-sissippi, and I joined the "Golden Lion- divi-sion at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, in August,

 

47

 


 

New Members ...

1944. I turned 19 on August 22, 1944. During the Battle of the Bulge, I was wounded and captured by the German Army and spent my POW time at Stalag 11-B about 40 miles north of Hanover, Germany.

We were freed by the British Army on about April 28, 1945. This was near where Anne Frank was a captive and passed away in March, 1945.

Honorable Discharge Fort Ord, California, December 5, 1945.

During the battle, I talked to Major Desobry in the railroad station area of Andernach, Germany, about December 19, 1944, and read about him in MacDonald's 1984 book. I wrote to Desobry in Texas, and he recalled our 1944 conversation.

Yours very truly,former member of the American 106th Golden Lion- Infantry Di-vision. Serial 39215610. 423 Regiment, Company K. Kenneth Lloyd Larson

MANNERS, JOSEPH P. 422/1

9741 SW Intl TERRACE

MIAMI. El. 33174-2910

305-552-6935

MILITARY:

U.S. Army 1942 - 1945; European Theatre, 1944 -1945 (POW) Captured 19 December 1944; marched an "trained" to Stalag IX-B, Bad Orb, Germany, arriving 25 December. I was a PFC-Radio Operator when captured. Liberated 2 April, 1945.

EDUCATION:

UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, Wharton school 1942 and 1946 - 1947. VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY, while with the United States Army 1943 - 1944.; LASALLE COLLEGE, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 1948 - 1949, A.B. Degree. UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI LAW SCHOOL, 1951 - 1954. L.L.B. Degree (Cum Laude).

ACTIVITIES AND HONORS:

ALPHA SIGMA PHI SOCIAL FRATER-NITY, University of Pennsylvania, Univer-sity of Miami, President, 1953 - 1954. PHI DELTA PHI

LEGAL SOCIETY:

Member. MIAMI LAW QUARTERLY, Editor- in-chief, 1954. "THE LAWYER", Annual Yearbook,

Editor-in-Chief, 1954. "BARRISTER", Law School Newspaper, Editor, 1954. OMI-CRON DELTA KAPPA, Honorary society, Vice-President, 1954.

IRON ARROW HONORARY SOCIETY, Member, 1954.

ALPHA SIGMA UPSILON, Interfrater-nity Honorary Society, Member, 1954. ROGER SERINO MEMORIAL AWARD, Runner-up, 1954.

DEANIS CERTIFICATE OF MERIT, 1954 During 1960 and/or 1970 while in private practice was a Member of the National Board of the Leukemia Society of America; a Mem-ber and officer of the Local Chapter (Dade County, Florida) of the Leukemia Society of America; a Special Counsel to the Dade County Grand Jury on several occasions; Member of the City of Miami Pension and Retirement Board; Member of the Local Chapter of the March of Dimes.

LEGAL EXPERIENCE:

Former Assistant Attorney General, State of Florida, June 1954 - January 1956. Former Assistant United States Attorney, Northern District of Florida, February 1956 - June 1958.

Former Special Assistant to the Attorney General of the United Stat., June 1958 - June 1959, as part of the Attorney General's Special Group on Organized crime, in charge of the Southem Region of the United Stat..

Private practice, June 1959 - June 1980. While in private practice, appointed General Counsel of the International Association of; Machinists and Aerospace WorIcers in June 1980, until I retired in 1989.

MARINO, JOSEPH 423IG

1675 YORK AVE #4M

NEW YORK. NY 10128 I would like to join the Association. I was with the Division from the beginning in Fort Jackson.

 

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New Members ...

                                                           

MEYERS- 99th la Div, BILL ASSOCIATE                                         RUSSELL, CARLTON D. 422/D

                                                  2100 BLOSSOM ST APT 1005     

                                                  COI.UMBIA, SC 29205 Frank Trautman, 422/D signed on Carlton as a member. Carlton was with Trautman in Stalag IX- B, Bad Orb. He, Carlton, was a inember in the early days of the Association, but there were no 422/D veterans in the As-sociation at that time. There are over two dozen 422/D members currently.

l'O BOX 99                                                     

MARION, KS 66861 (Editor's Note -As a matter of courtesy, in the exchange of information, I have entered Bill Meyer as an Associate member. He is editor of the 99th Infantry Division News Letter We have exchanged information via e-mail for some time. The 99th Inf Div Assoc is very active and is kept informed through Meyer's excellent bul-letin. Bill has been in the Newspaper publishing business for years. He is cooperative and very knowledgeable about the "goings on" of the 1944- 45 days in the Ardennes. Thanks Bill, for your cooperation in forwarding me your news-letter... J. Kline, editor)                                                         

                                                  SAGO, ELIZABETH A. ASSOCIATE        

                                                  l'O BOX 442 

                                                  SCOTTSVILLE, VA 24590  

                                                  804-286-2290        

                                                  E-mail Address: eannsgaol.com My dad was in the 333rd Battalion of the 84th Infantry Division. He fought in the Bat-tle of the Bulge and earned the Bronze Star. He died 12/31/71. My husband and I traveled to Belgium in November 1996 to see all the battle sites. I found John Kline's 106th Infan-try Division Web Pages on the Internet. I was glad to find some person that could give me some information. I wish to become an As-sociate member, I enjoyed the CUB maga-zine that John sent me.  

                                                  (Editor's Note: - Ann, it was nice to see your Associate membership come through. Thanks for all the compliments on The CUB and the Web Site contents. It has been an interesting time with over 8,000 visitors to the site since 3 April 1996. I have learned more than I have given out. It is always a pleasure to help others find their way on the net, and to give whatever information I have on the BULGE. See you on-line....J. Kline, editor)

PAETSCHKE, CHARLES E                                                   

423/HQ 2BN                                                  

26 IRON FORGE EAST                                                        

POMPTON LAKES. NJ 07442-1745                                                          

201-835-4291 (Editor's Note - Charles, you ask if we ever see Colonel Joseph Puett. Yes, he has been very active in the Association and is the oldest sur-viving Staff Officer in our Association. I have a story from him, which I hope to print in the November CUB magazine. It is about the action of his battalion in the days of December 1944 through the surrender of the two regiments on the Schneifel. Colonel Puett is 90 years of age. Last time I saw him he looker very good and active...J. Kline, editor                                                   

          PRICE, AL ASSOCIATE                                             

3732 EAST 58TI I                                                     

'MESA, OK 74135                                                     

918-742-1462 Mr. Price is preparing a book on the Battle of the Bulge. He is seeking information on the 106th Inf Division activities. He states that he was in our area, in Belgiurn for about 3.5 months out-side St. Vith, as a jeep driver for the 2nd Division Ammunition Officer. He has a questionnaire in connection with personal activities. If you would like to help him gather information, please write and ask for the questionnaire                                                 

                                                  STEWART, WILLIAM E. 81ST ENG/A     

                                                  2304 CHEMIN RD   

                                                  l'ETERSBURG, VA 23805  

                                                  757-723-3477        

                                                  E-mail address: I was a career soldier 1943 - 1968, retired in 1968 at Fort Lee, VA, USA Quartermaster School as an instructor in grade of Sergeant First Class      

                                                  Entered the Civil Service at the US Army Quartermaster School, 1969.       

                                                  Earned a BS Degree in 1977. Served as a         

          REID, NW 424/M                                           

          3811 CANTERBURY RD #703 BALTIMORE. MD 21218                                                 

                                                           

 

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New Members ...

                                       

          Military Analyst in the Directorate of Com-bat Developments, Grade GSI2 until my re-tirement in 1986. My hobbies are; Poetry - I authored a book of poetry entitled Reflec-tions Writing - Salt Water fishing Reading                              WELLS, DR. WALTER L 106 SIG

                                        40 MERIAM ST

                                        LEXINGTON, MA 02173

                                        E-mail address: popswell@aol.com (Editor's Note - Another new member from my Web Pages on the Internet. Nice to see your membership come through Dr. Wells. I hope you find some of the 106 Signal that you remem-ber. Thanks also to your wife Majorie for joining as an Auxiliary member.... J. Kline, editor)

TYLER, JOE BOB 423/M                                

2609 SAN SIMEON DRIVE WICHITA FALLS, TX 763084722                                

Joe Bob,                                    

Nice to see you back in the fold. Wondered what happened to you. As. you see ftom the list that I sent you, Time is taking its Toll. In 1993 we had 43 M Company members in the Association. We are now down to 30.                                

I have often thought over the last few years, since 1987 when I discovered the 106th In-fantry Division Association. how nice it was to have the opportunity to get re-acquainted with all of those buddies that shared the dark days of '44 and '45 with us. Again nice to see you back... John Kline... editor                                 

                                        WHIPPLE, MARY (FRADIANNI) ASSOCIATE

                                        71 PIPER BROOK AVE

                                        NEWINGTON, CT 06111 (Editor's Note -Mary is the sister of Frank Fra-dianni 589/HQ who passed away December 15, 1996. Thanks Mary for joining as an Associate member to the 106th Infantry Division Associa-tion... J. Kline, editor)

                                        WILLIAMS, AUDLEY O. 423/G

                                        1549 BARTON DRIVE

                                        SUNNYVALE, CA 94087-3920

                                        408-245-1913 Born and raised in Ontario, Canada. I enlisted in December 1942. Served as a BAR man, Was in Stalag IX-B, Bad Orb. I attended University under the GI Bill. Moved from New York state to California in 1959. Hobbies are backpacking, mountain fishing, skiing. Worked for Stanford Re-search Institute, Menlo Park, CA for the greater part of my business life.

                                        Retired in 1990

                                        (Editor's Note - Audiey came to us through my Web Page on the Internet. Audley, I lost your e-mail address - if I haven't gotten to you before you read this, please send me an e-mail at jpk@mm.com so I will have your address.)

          TRAMACK, 011VER A. 589/HQ                       

          Ilidgem2/(a)y2,g' 1.8e5e3                      

          John Thurlow wrote,                             

          "Sherod enclosed find membership fees for Oliver Tramack. I have been out of touch with him for years and found recently that he was unaware of the Association's existence.                         

          Oliver was the Communications Platoon Sergeant for Headquarters' Battery and saw plenty of action in The Battle of the Bulge. Like myself he was one of the lucky ones not captured, killed or injured. He would like to receive The CUB and any other information available."                            

                                        WILLIAMS, LUCILLE K. ASSOCIATE

                                        1433 WAGENER FRAIL RD

                                        WAGENER, SC 29164

                                        803-564-3243 My husband, Lewis B. Williams, Sr. was a member of 422/HQ. He was captured 16 December 1944 in the Battle of the Bulge. He passed away 26 December 1996. I enjoy reading the CUB and wish to continue as an Associate member.

          WALDEN, JEANNE L ASSOCIATE                    

          8111 N 19T11 AVE #1044                     

          PHOENIX, AZ 85021                             

          602-906-1994 Jeanne is the widow of Larry Walden "H" Co, 424th Infantry Regiment, Medic. VVho passed away November 1995.                     

          Jeanne, nice to see you come back as an Associate member                       

                                       

50      The CUB q/ the Golden Lion

1996 Dec 16th Mini-Reunions (late arrivals) ...

Pittsburgh, PA Area - 1996

Norma and George Vance (422/AT) 283 Dutch Lane, Pittsburgh, PA 15236 - Tele: 412-653-1724

On December 15, 1996, a group of the 106th Infantry Division Veterans with wives gathered at the Floss Steak & Sea House, Pittsburgh, PA to enjoy a noon luncheon and to commemorate the Anniversary of the battle of the Bulge.

After the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by singing the nation Anthem and God Bless America, there was a moment of silence for our departed comrades.

Thanks to Pete Yanchik for his expert photography and the Favors from Mr. and Mrs. Francis Langham and Dr. Martin and his wife Pearl. Mrs. Jean Peters (wife of David) surprised us AGAIN with a large tray of her homemade "BAKLAVA," a delicious Lebanese pastry.

In attendance were twenty four (24) members. A medley of Christmas Songs was sung by the group which added to the festive season.

Good fellowship and vvarm feeling prevailed during the meeting. Every person's participation made the get-together a successful event.

In attendance were twenty four (24) members:

Edwin & Elizabeth Huminski, 424/F

James & Dolores Jones, 423/G

Francis & Jean Langham, 422/L

Howard & Dorothy Lowenberg, 423/E

Joseph & Vivian Maloney, 424/HQ

George & Norma Vance, 422/AT

James Wiggins, 331st MED/A

Pete & Diane Yanchik, 423/A

Dr. John B. & Pearl Martin, 422/MED

David & Jean Peters, 422/K

Richard & Patricia Rigatti, 423/B

Frank Lapato, 422/HQ

John & Maxin Hophell. 422/G

 

51

 


 

1996 Dec 16th Mini-Reunions (late arrivals) ...

Nebraska Area - 1996

Dean & Della Sandahl, 3041 N. 61st St, Lincoln, NE 68507-2406 Tele: 402466-3564

We met on 16 December 1997 to observe the 52nd Anniversary of the battle of the Bulge. The meeting began with the Pledge of Allegiance, reading of a couple of Dale Carver's poems and the Invocation. We enjoyed a delicious meal. lengthy but "all too short" fellowship wondering why we hadn't done this before! We plan to recruit more GI buddies and wives next year, meeting in thc samc place. Left/Right: Flarold & Lorraine Hawkins, 423/D, Omaha; Charles & Jane Henning. 424/1. Pery, JB & Eileen Dresselhaus, 424/1, Lincoln; Leonard & Evelyn Tyser, 423/1 Wilber; and Dean & Della Sandahl, hosts. 422/13. I.incoln.

Oklahoma Area

LtCol Joseph C. Haines (US Ret), 7503 Haines Drive, El Reno, OK 73036-9599 Tele: 402-262-3867

Six of our 15 surviving Oklahoma 106th Infantry Division Association menibers and wives attended a get-together luncheon 14 December. 1996. at the Best Wcstem Astro Inn in El Reno. OK. We enjoyed a very nice lunch, and of course discussed several incidents of our"short stay" in the Ardcnncs. Clint McClure. 87 E 77th Place, So., Tulsa OK 74133 volunteered to host the 1997 mini-rcunion.

Attending and photo ID were: Joe (middle front row) & Clara Haines (hosts), El Reno, 106 Recon; Clint (left front row) & Peggy McClure. Tulsa, 423/HQ; Howard (right front row) & Betty Bryant, Coweta, 424/F; Jack (left back row) & Marianne Behling, Tulsa, 423/A; Don Herndon (middle back row) & Ms. Joan Reichert, Oklahoma City, 424/L and Alva R. (right back row) & Thelma Williams. Commerce, 424/1,

 

52

 


 

1996 Dec 16th Mini-Reunions (late arrivals) ...

Arizona Area - 1996

Herman Van De Bogart, HCR Box 2000 MSC-023, Tuscon, AZ 85736 Tele: 520-822-2296

We held our mini-reunion on 15 December at the El Parador Restaurant in downtown Tuscon. There were seventeen veterans and fourteen ladies in attendance. After reading the announcement of our reunion in the local newspaper, Yvonne Turk and her sister, Denise Bednavek, who were young girls living in Liege during the war, came in after dinner to thank the men for their part in the Battle of the Bulge

WOMEN Front Row UR: Virginia Swett; Mary Reeves; Dorothy Haney; Margert Mills and Francine Shafton

WOMEN Back Row UR; Sally Cobb; Pearl Kenndy; Andy Hoag; Eleanor Childs; Dortha Watters; Helen Van De Bogart; Bea Behr; Dorothey Hurley and Pearle Gibson

MEN Front Row UR: Emor Pretty; John Hoag; Julius Reeves; Edward Hudecek; Marion Ray and Johnny Gibson

MEM Back Row UR: Dean Childs; Glen Kennedy; Herman Van De Bogart; John Swett; Wayne Canright; Jack Watters; Dick Stamper; Morton Shaton; Mike Mills and Richard Behr

 

53

 


 

1996 Dec 16th Mini-Reunions (late arrivals) ...

South Carolina Area - 1996

Roger and Mattie Rutland (424/B), 6632 Arcadia Woods Rd.. Cokumbia, SC 29206 Tele: 803-787-6996

We held the 1996 Mini-Reunion for 106th members on 14 December at Fort Jackson. The turnout was small, but we had a great time.Many of the men brought guests. Alvin Skardon brought Newphew Hooper Skardon, Howrad Terrio brought son and wife, Ed and Ruth Terrio. The late Rueben Hay's (423/M) sisters Catherine Hay Smith and Lucille Sommerweck, Associate members from Myrtle Beach came, we enjoyed our visit with them. Craig and James Duensing, friends of ours, entertained us with music and song.

WOMEN Front Row UR: Luvelle Terrio; Mattie Rutland; Vannie M. Toy; Lucille H. Sommerweck and Betty Murphy

WOMEN Back Row UR: Jane Duensing; Ruth Terri, Carolyn Tumblin; Dot Maxwell; Alma Carawan and Catherine Hay Smith

MEN Front Row UR: Chris Carawn; Howard J. Terrio; Waid S. Toy; Alvin W. Skardon and A. Hopper Skardon

MEN Back Row UR: Craig Duensing; Ed terrio; Roger M. Rutland; Calvin Abbott; James Maxwell and John J. Murphy

54      The CUB a./ the Golden Lion

1996 Dec 16th Mini-Reunions (late arrivals) ...

Kansas Area - 1996

VVilliam and Mary Lou Stahl, 110 East 8th St., Junction City, Kansas 66441 Tele: 913-238-2861

The Kanasas group of the 106th Infantry Division Association met at Stacy's Restaurant, Junction City, on 14 December 1996. Although there are less than 15 known members residing in the State of Kansas, the six joined in the meal, round table discussion and reminiscing of our particiapation in The Battle of the Bulge and the POW experience which followed. The photo w. taken by Martin Jones of Lawrence, a retired K.U. professor. His wife Phyllis wrote a moving poem, which appeared in the AX-POW magazine. (see poem below... J. Kline, editor)

Front Row UR: Phyllis Jones; Laverne Pettus; Mary Ellen Mock; Mary Lou Stahl and Mary Ballowe. Hesse did not realiz,e wives were invited, we'll excuse him this time.

Back Row L/R: Frances Hesse, 423/D; Martin Jones, 423/G; Bill Pettus, 424/HQ 1Bn; John Mock, 422J1; William F (Bill) Stahl, 422/K and Tom Ballowe, 423/K

Snow on Roses

by Phyllis M. Jones

This morning

Nature's untimely miscue Dumped its white

on American Beauties,

red, blossoming in their prime.

Click the shutter and recall the image of winter, 1944- American prisoners of war Massacred at Malmedy,

red, spilling

into white

covering America's "Best of Show."

his poem which recently appeared in the AX-POW Bulletin was submitted by Martin Jones. 423/G. He said. 'This poem written by my wife Phyllis M. Jones. The late October snow inspired her. The snow was very wet and fell on our beautiful red roses which were blooming profusely. The poem was timely because the Malmedy Massacre occurred on December 17, 1944 in the early hours of the Batt. of the Bulge at Baugnez crossroads near Malmedy... Phyllis and I visited the site and the Ma.edy Massacre Memorial. a few years ago. it was a very moving experience.-

 

55

 


 

1996 Dec 16th Mini-Reunions (late arrivals) ...

Jacksonville, Florida Area - 1996

Pete House, 5662 Clifton Ave., Jacksonville, FL 32211 Tele: 907-724-8336

Twenty-three people gathered at the Arlington Steak and Ale Restaurant in Jacksonville on Monday. December 16. They gathered to remember the beginning of the Battle of the Bulge and to honor those who are no longer with us. Pete and Joanne House hosted the lunch. Table decorations included Christmas Mugs that could be taken home. After a minutc of silent prayers we all sat down to a great luncheon.

After the meal the participants discussed exactly what happened to our Division in the early days of the Bulge. Randolph Pierson was at Parker's Cross Roads. A prize was presented to Delbert Rediger of Winter Ilaven for tmveling thc longest distance. Wc also had a prize for the oldest in attendance but awarded it to our fine waitress.

In attendance were: Harold & Edith Blalack, Clifton & Franc. Capshaw (423/K), George & Muriel Geib (424/G), Pete & Joanne House (590/A), Paul & Dottie Lamb (423/AT), Nell Letellier, Lee & Carol Letellier. Eric Mills (422/HQ I BN), Randolph & Marion Pierson (589/HQ), Delbert & Marion Redi-ger(424/G), Josh and Mrs. Smith (422/C), Dorothy St. Pierce, Gordon Zicket(424/HQ), and Irene Sanborn. Bill L,ane (423/A) came by after lunch. It was specially nicc to have Louis Letellier's (81/C) wife, son, and son in law as he is in a nursing homc.

We found out in November that apparently no one was going to host a 16 December in Jacksonv ille so Joanne and I decided to keep the idea going. The big problem tumed out to be a location. Finally found a Steak and Ale that would take us. The room was not private and somewhat crowded. Hut, wc had a great time!

A Personal Letter to Larry Hagman from Pete House..

Mr. Larry Hagman Ojai CA 93023

Dear Mr. Hagman,

I enjoyed you the other night on Larry, King. If you arc reading this letter, you were right that everyone in Ojai knows where you live!

During World War 1 1. 1 was an Artillery' man in the 106th Infantry Division along with your father. lie w. on Brig. Gen. Leo McMahon's Division Anillery Staff. Althoug,h we didn't socialize (I was a private) I saw him often while at Fort Jackson. Your father was a highly' respected officer in the division and member of the association after the war. In 1967 he hosted the reunion in Fort Worth, in 1972. I hosted the reunion in Jackson-

//

I

villc in 1967. He was president 1961- 1962,and I was president in

1969-1970. I also saw your mother in "Peter Pan" on Broadway.

Our Association has had a rcunion every year since 1947! Our 5Ist Reunion will be held in Nashville, August 29 - Septem-ber 2, 1997. Today, many children and grandchildren of veterans of the 106th attend. There probably will be over 650 members, wives, children, and grandchildren in attendance. I know the members would like to sec the son of Ben flagman, particularly all the Artillery' men. I know I would. After all these ycars I thought you might like to attend. It should be a lot of fun, meeting the guys who served with your dad. I, along with over 7,000 men left the l)ivision around December 19, 1944 when wc were captured. Your father was able to escape and continue with the war.

Mr. Hagman, it would be a great honor to have you break bread with us this coming Labor Day. Won't you please respond? I have enclosed a Reunion Brochurc and application form for your information.

Sincerely, Pete

Photo received by Pete House

from Larry Hagman, Pete sponsored an

ASSOCIATE Membership for Larry

 

56

 


 

In Memoriam

Conner, Milton (Pappy) 592/B 2601 W Randal Mill Rd Rm 272E Arlington, 7X 76012

Robert Boesch, 592/A reported that Milton "Nippy" Conner, agc 86, passed away on 19 April 1997. He had bccn in and out of a Nursing Home several times. Pappy was a favorite of many. You may recognize him as the person who received his 1944 "Barracks Bag" from a Belgian family who found it in their hay loft after the war. Ile corresponded with this editor many times.....

DiLodovico, John, 423/E 196 Canby Cir, Spring Hill, FL 34606

John LoMonaco reported that his neighbor John DiLodovico, 423/E, died after a five ycar bout with cancer on 24 March. 1997.

Fradianni, Frank J. 589/HQ 704 Highpoint Dr, Rocky Hill, CT 58900

My records show hc survived by Rosemary, his wife. Mary, Fradianni Whipple, his sister joined the Association as an Associate member this April.

lantosca, Attileo, 422/HQ 2Bn 17A Rainbow Pond Dr., Walpole, MA 02081

Attilco died 21 December 1996. Association records show hc is survived by Helen his wife.

Moore. Sr., James B., 423/G 1313 Evergreen Dr., Minden, LA 71055

Maxine, his wife reports that hc died 22 January 1997. Hc w. held in Stalags 4-B and 8-A. A Lifc member of AX-POW and its local chapter of Bossier City where he served as Chaplain. Ile is sur-vived by M.ine, two children and three grandchildren.

Mayo, Jr. Walter L. , 423/E 1040 Warbler Place, McLean, VA 22101

Colonel Walter J. Mayo, Jr (USA Ret), age 71, died 4 December 1996 in a nursing home in Falls Church. He w. vice-president fir finance and administration of the Nuclear Energy Institute. A Bos-ton native, graduate of Boston College and the Army War College.

Ile served in the Infantry In WWII. While serving in Korea as a field artillery fonvard observer he w. capturcd by the Chinese and march north to Pyoktong. Ile was imprisoned there for three years. He later served in Germany and again in Korea. He was first posted to W.hington in 1968 . an aide to the assistant secretary of defense for atomic energy. He retired as deputy to the commanding general of the Army Test and Evaluation Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground. His honors in-cluded two Legions of Mcrit, two Bronze Starts and an Army Commendation Medal. He is survived by his wife, Virginia Cass Mayo. fivc children, a sister, two brothers and six grandchildren.

McClaran, Garland B., 423/M 2472 Lake Jackson Circle, Apopka, FL, 32703

Mary Jo. his wifc, wrote, "John, thanks for your contact and friendship to Garland, it mcant much to him. I'm moving to my daughters home. Please keep up your wonderful work with the 106th. It means so much to bc remembered." (Thanks Mary Jo. He wtu a good "Al" Company comrade. We will meet again sometime. 1 Kline)

Garland. agc 83. died 18 December 1996. Ile had been a life long resident of Palatka. Florida. He worked for 30 years as c.hier for thc freight office of CSX Railroad. Prior: Owned and operated Of-fice School Supply and Putnam County Credit Bureau.

Ile was a member of the Palatka VFW Post #3349. and had attended the llniversiiy of North Caro-lina. Ile is survived by Mary' Jo, his wife, who wrote these details, two daughters flue' and Lelia, a brother, four grandchildren, five nieces and all their families.

Owens, Henry L., 424/H 209 SE 4th St, Snow Hill, NC 28580

Gladys, his wife wrote, "To tell you Henry passed away 22 June 1996."

Nusbaum, Alfred S., 423/HQ 1218 N. Carroll Street, Hampstead, MD 21074

Dick Sparks, 423/HQ l&R Platoon. was notified by Jeane and Ernst Dansereau, Associate members, that Alfred, passed away 28 February 1997. Alfred, who celebrated his 90th birthday at the Orlando Reunion in 1996, w. the fellow that thc paramedics took to the hospital on Saturday morning. He had been in fragile health since. Alfred was Supply Sergeant for 423/HQ Company and w. a POW.

Spade, Robert L., 424/H 804 N. Jefferson St., Robinson, IL 62454

Robert, agc 72, died 30 November 1996. Survived by his wife Mary Elizabeth, one son. two sisters. one brother and two grandchildran. Was a member of VFW. American Legion, Amvcts, Masonic Lodge 250 and Sons of the American Revolution.

Rest in Peace

106th Division

-The Golden Lions -

Please note: The Px is a new service offered to the members and families of the 106th Infantry Division Assn. 20% of all profits are returned to your association. We ask for your support.

PX PRICE LIST

1. 106th Division V/2' Patch        S2.50 ea.      8. Dress Mini Medals

No shipping & handing on thls item only,          Regulation - call to order ............. S8.50 & up

2.       106th Division ALID, 4' Patch ......... S6.50 ea.  9. Full size Regulation Medals

w/clutch back         .         ............        $8.00 ea.       (from gov't contractor) ..............$20.00 & up 10 Campaign Ribbons

3.       106th Division 1' Pin of Patch ......... $3.50 ea.  Mounted. ready for wear          S1.50 & uP

. 3/S10.00    11. Bola Tle w/106th Dry. Crest .......... S16.50 ea. Belt Buckle w/106th Dtv. Crest ..... $16.50 ea. Bola & Belt set .     . S29.50 ea.

4. Assn. Ball Cap w/DIv. Patch ........ $10.00 ea. w/Scrambied Eggs ...................... $12.00 ea.     12. Bathe of the Bulge

5. VVindbreaker w/4* Patch ............. $28.50 .. S-M-L-XL (XXL & XXXL add S3.00)          Commemorative Medal Set

6. Combat Infantry Badge  (Medal & Ribbon Slide boxed) ... $28.00 ea.

Combat Medic Badge         13.     106th Div. logo Wristwatch .......... $39.50 ea.

A. Ful Size Regulation        S9.50 ea.      14. Honorable Discharge Pin

B. Dress Miniature   ......................... S7.50 ea. (Ruptured Duck)      $5.00 ea.

C. Lapel Pln   $4.50 ea.       15. Battle of the Bulge History

7. POW Medal          Book by Turner Publishing

A. FuH Size Regulation ................... $20.00 ea.          368 pages of the battle       . $52.50 ea.

B. Dress Miniature   S8.50 ea.      16. 106th Division Ucense

C. Lapel Pin or Ribbon       $3.50 ea.       Plate Frame . SIO.00 ea.

D. Enamel Hat Pin .           $3.50 ea.       17. ladles red/wfilte/blue Crystal

......... 3/$10.00      Earrings (pierced or clip) ................ $8 50 pr.

E. Bola Tie w/mini Pow Medal ..... S16.50 ea.    Ladles Crystal Flag Pins .   '$8.50 ea.

Make check payable to: The Military Shop

Mail order to: 106th Div. Quartermaster

9635 W. Peoria Ave. Peoria, AZ 8534.5

Please allow 2 to      (800) 544-9275 (for credit card orders)

4 weeks for delivery  Of (602) 979-0535 FAX 602-979-6711

Name 

Address        

City    State   Zip

QTY    ITEM

1116 =

Arizona Residents please add

7% State Sal. Tax.

Note: Credit Card

Orders - $25.00 Min.

Telephone    

PRICE

TOTAL

Credit Card #          SHIPPING & HANDUNG

0 MC 0 AMX 0 VISA 0 Discover Expires_/_/_ Signature   We have made available an 800 number and four credit card companies for your ordering conve-nience. Thank you for supporting your division association.

Dixon L. Poole, Q M.

Total

4.00

CUB

The

A quarterly publication oldie

106th Infantry Division Association, Inc

5401 U. 147th St West, Apple Valley, MN 55124

Membership fees include CUB subscription.

Association membership 05/12/97 1,641 members

President    Major Hill

Past-Pres. . .  .... Richard L. Rigatti

1st Vice—Pres         John P. Kline

2nd Vice-Pres          John A. Swett

Treasurer      Sherod Collins

Adjutant    Pete House

Historian        Sherod Collins

CUB Editor   .John P. Kline

Chaplain   Rev. Ewell C. Black, Jr. Memorials Chairman .... Dr. John G. Robb Atterbury Memorial Rep  O. Paul Merz St. Vith Mem. Rep ..... Dr. Richard Peterson Hon. Membership Chairman Gilbert Helwig Scholarship Chairman  John Gregory Resolutions Chairman . .. Alan W. Jones, Jr. Washington Liaison Officer. .. . Jack Sulser Order of the Golden Lion   Gil Helwig

Send editorial matter and photos to:

John P. Kline — CUB Editor

5401 U. 147th SI. W,ipits,13e,V81117cy. MN 55124-6637

Business matters, deaths, address changes to:

Pete House — Adjutant

5.2 Clifton Ase, Jacksonville. FL 32211

904-7244316

Memorial matters and inquiries to:

Dr John G. Robb — Memorial Chairman

238 Devon :),r4=i4c. PA 16355

Membership dues, Memorial Fund

contributions and Historical items to:

Sherod Collins — Treasurer

4. Monroe Tme;,Irin2e0s,aw. GA 301.

The Life Membership fee is payable ono tinto

only, with no annual dues thereafter.

Life Membership      $ 75.00

Life Auxiliary            S 15.00

Life Associate            $ 75.00

For those choosing to pay Annual dues, pay

by July 1 each year. (July 1 to July 1 term)

Annual Membership            $10.00

Annual Auxiliary      $ 2.00

Annual Associate      $10.00

Make checks payable to

"106th Infantry Division Association."

Board of Directors 1996 -1997

Alphabetical by year term expires.

Major H. Hill 424/B (Exec. Committer)    4 (.97) 524 SW,.42nrde anTerdrre,AkCsar.LT146F81.. 3391

 

man C. 1^Iaples, 422/K     (.97)

608 Wilkin7s2,2Qtr51.3GA 30720

 

Dr. Richard W. Peterson, 423/1    (.97)

.5 Rubenstein. Cardiff by the Sea, CA 92007

619432-1213

Edn in C. Iluminski, 424/1,         (.98)

KR 2 .x 2511.AoictltrA 15557-9223

Ahlt‘00.13:11::',ZroOTP1T,QX3r Ft. Be    ,2 '98)

703-781-3629         ivthr.  G6()

William E. Malone, 423/B  (.98)

3911 Thaekely6Lizi,e,;5121ris1;1111e, TN 37207

Thomas J. Riggs, 8Ist Eng/11Q    ('98)

6 Olive Street. Providence. RJ 02906

40142.110

John A. Swett, 423/11 (Exec. Committee)         (.98)

1.91 E Norther. Dr. Tucson. AZ 85748

520-722-6016

Levene Weigel, 422/1I        (.98)

1380 Democracy Ave . Melbourne, 1:1. 32940

407-255-6671

Nolan L Ashburn, 42A/II    (.99)

1212 Rai wive Dr; /i9tils::349F:oCollins, CO 80525

Lloyd J. Diehl, 423/II         (.99)

R3 Box 212. 365 Chapel lights Rd.. Sewell, N108,980

609-589-2030

j'hn GI:grAYsii2141/2!:. S amemo. CA 95861    '99)

916481-3353

Art Van Moorlehem, 423/B          ('99)

206 W. Dirc/029/8tr31.Ir. SD 57212

Richard J. Bras, 423/K      (.2000)

14 Porter St Quaker Hill. CT 06375

103443-1685

N,'a her G. Bridges, 424/D (.2000)

225 Laird Ave, liucytoz. AL 35023

Sh crod Collins, 423/52%°''491-‘  (.2000)

44 8 Monroe T4-,a7coce2,..enan2eolw , G A 3 0 1 44

John P.,Kline, 423/51 (Exec. (7omaimittee) 55,2f 2000)

401 U. 147ili St,r,...„,,trilf,,V, Icy. MN

E. V. Creel, 590/A   (.2001) 315 Fem Cliff AvAiTztiTierrace, FL 33617

Ltc Marion Ray US (Ret), 424/D   (2001)

i 740 Green Tree Ct Crofton. MD 21114

301-261-6741

Col. Earl Valenstein US (Het), 8Ist Eng/B          (.2001)

5737 Bar Neck Rd.. Cambridge, MD 21613

410-228-0716

Zimand, Gerald P., 422/D  (.2001)

101 Joseph Surer, Neve Hyde Parke. NY 11040

NY 516-354-1778 El. 561-732-3832

HONORARY Board Member

Col. Joseph !Matthews 422/11Q

47. Weocrn Blvd Raleigh. NC 27606 (LIFE)

919-85.851

 

 


 

Index for: Vol. 53 No. 3, APR, 1997


100th Inf. Div., 76

106th Div., 34, 36, 37, 61, 76

106th Div. QM, 76

106th Inf. Div., 1, 5, 22, 36, 37, 47, 49, 60, 67, 68, 69, 71, 73, 76, 77, 78

106th Infantry Division Association, 1, 60, 69, 71, 77, 78

106th Sig. Co., 67

203rd AAA, 28

28th Inf. Div., 15

2nd Div., 57, 66

2nd Inf. Div., 17, 40

2nd Panzer Div., 28

2nd SS PANZER, 21, 22

2nd SS Panzer Div., 22

30th Inf. Div., 62

325th Glider Inf., 44

3rd Armd., 21, 43

3rd Armd. Div., 21

3rd Inf. Div., 38

422/K, 68, 71, 78

422nd Inf., 3, 9, 47, 60

422nd Inf. Regt., 47, 55

422nd Regt., 55

423rd Inf., 5, 15, 61

423rd Regt., 57

424/A, 50

424/C, 60, 61

424/D, 53, 59, 78, 79

424/G, 73

424/L, 61, 69

424th Cbt. Inf. Regt., 5

424th Inf, 1, 60, 68

424th Inf. Regt., 1, 60, 68

424th Regt., 61

505th Prcht. Inf., 15, 46

560th Volks Grenadier Div., 28

589th FA, 5, 10, 15, 17, 18, 24, 25, 26, 28, 29, 31, 33, 34, 36, 38, 40, 43, 44, 45

589th FA BN, 5, 10, 15, 17, 18, 24, 25, 26, 28, 29, 31, 33, 34, 36, 38, 40, 43, 44, 45

589th FA BN Fire Direction Center, 33

590th FA BN, 55

592nd FA BN, 36

643rd TD BN, 28

75th Inf. Div., 22

7th Armd. Div., 8, 15

82nd Ab Div., 34

82nd Abn., 34

82nd Abn. Div., 15, 34, 36, 37, 38, 40, 45

87th Rcn.  Sqdn., 28

99th Inf. Div., 8, 65

9th SS Panzer Div., 34

A Blood-Dimmed Tide, 62

Africa, 60

Alamo, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 43, 44, 45

Alamo Defense, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 43, 44, 45

Alford, Barney, 38, 41, 43

Alford, Sgt. Barney, 37

Andernach, 63

Andernach, Germany, 63

Antwerp, 17

Anzio, 61

Aquitania, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51

Ardennes, 2, 5, 10, 12, 13, 20, 21, 26, 59, 65

Ardennes Battle, 5

Aspinwall, Frank, 28

Astor, Gerald, 62

Bad Orb, 63, 65, 67

Bad Orb, Germany, 63

Baraque De Fraiture, 5, 10, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 25, 26, 44

Baraque De Fraiture, Belgium, 25, 26

Baroque De Fraiture, 45

Barredo, Anthony, 53

Bastogne, 2, 20

Battle Of The Bulge, 8, 10, 11, 12, 15, 18, 21, 47, 62, 63, 66, 67, 68, 70, 71, 73, 76

Baugnez, 72

Beans, Capt., 40

Before The Veterans Die, 4

Behr, Richard, 70

Belgium, 12, 13, 17, 28, 36, 37, 53, 61, 65

Benforado, Joseph, 53

Bied, Dan, 4, 55

Black, Rev. Ewell C., 77

Bleialf, 53

Blythe, James, 59

Bocchino, Dominic T., 53

Books, 30

Born, 67

Bra, 20, 43

Brandscheid, 61

Brown, Capt., 20, 25, 28, 31, 38, 43, 44

Brown, Capt. Arthur C., 20

Camp Atterbury, 10, 33, 55, 62

Camp Atterbury, Indiana, 62

Camp Lucky Strike, 55, 62

Camp Myles Standish, 47

Carver, Dale, 69

Carver, Dale R., 4

Central Europe, 10

Chop, Adolph, 53

Cole, Hugh M., 21

Collins, Sherod, 62, 77

Croix De Guerre, 23

Croix De Guerre With Silver Gilt Star, 23

Crowley, Lt., 25

D Co., 423rd Regt., 57

Darius, King, 18

Div. Artillery, 44

Elbe, 55

Elliott, Maj., 21, 25

Esposito, Teo D., 55

First Army, 20, 43

Firth Of Clyde, 48, 50

Firth Of Clyde, Scotland, 50

Fort Jackson, 60, 61, 64, 71, 73

Foster, Cedric, 57

Fradianni, Frank J., 75

Fraiture, 5, 10, 15, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 25, 26, 40, 44, 45

Fraiture, Belgium, 25, 26

Frank, Mr., 60

Gatens, Cpl. John, 41

Gatens, John, 24, 41

Gavin, Gen., 45

Gavin, Gen. James M., 15

Germany, 4, 6, 53, 61, 62, 63, 75

Gilliland, John O., 1, 10

Glasgow, 48

Glasgow, Scotland, 48

Goldstein, Elliot, 25, 26

Goldstein, Elliott, 25, 44

Goldstein, Maj., 39, 40, 41, 44, 45

Goldstein, Maj. Elliott, 21

Grandmenil, 22

Greenock, 47, 49, 51

Greenock, Scotland, 47, 49, 51

Hagman, Larry, 57, 73, 74

Haines, Joseph C., 69

Halle, 6

Halle, Germany, 6

Hanover, 63

Helwig, Gil, 77

Helwig, Gilbert, 77

Herndon, Don, 69

Holland, 8

Holtzmuller, J. Don, 5

Honaker, Robert L., 61

Houffalize, 20, 21, 28, 38, 40, 41, 43

House, Pete, 54, 56, 57, 73, 74, 77

House, Pete & Joanne, 73

Houseman, Don, 57

Houseman, Don M., 57

Houston, Sam, 18

Huminski, Ed, 15

Huxel, Capt. George, 34

Imperial War Museum, 47, 48

Individual History, 7

Italy, 60, 61

Jacelon, Charles, 25

Jacelon, Charles F., 25, 40

John Schaffner, 24, 25, 26, 29, 31, 33, 36, 41

Johnston, Wesley, 8

Jones, Alan, 62

Jones, Alan W., 77

Jones, Alan W., Jr., 77

Jones, Maj. Gen. Alan W., 17

Jordan, Johnnie B., 41

Karlsruhe, 53

Karlsruhe, Germany, 53

Kelly, Col., 44

Kelly, Lt. Col. T. Paine, 26

Kennedy, Glen, 70

Kline, J., 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 24, 45, 53, 57, 59, 61, 65, 67, 71

Kline, John, 1, 5, 53, 55, 65, 67

Kline, John P., 77

Korea, 75

Kuizema, Harold, 24, 33

Kuizema, Harold J., 29, 30, 36

La Roche, 20

Lapato, Frank, 12, 68

LeHavre, 6

Leige, 36

Lichtenfeld, Dr. Norman, 8

Lichtenfeld, Seymour, 9

Liege, 20, 70

Limburg, 3, 40, 59, 62

Lion In The Way, 57, 60

Lorraine, 69

Lowenberg, Howard, 12

Luckenwalde, 62

Lucky Strike, 55, 62

Lukashok, Alvin, 10

MacDonald, 59, 63

Malmedy, 4, 13, 71

Malmedy Massacre, 71

Malone, William E., 78

Maloney, Joseph, 12

Manhay, 13, 20, 21, 22, 29, 32, 41, 43, 45

Manning, James L., 53

Marino, Joseph, 64

McMahon, Brig. Gen. Leo, 73

Memorials, 77

Merz, O. Paul, 77

Metz, 8

Meuse, 17

Meuse River, 17

Miedema, Eldon, 25, 39

Miller, Delbert, 37, 38

Monaco, 6

Monaco, Frank A., 6

Myles Standish, 47

Naples, 61

Naples, Italy, 61

Nusbaum, Alfred, 75

Nusbaum, Alfred S., 75

Order Of The Golden Lion, 77

Owens, Henry L., 75

Paris, 36, 54, 55

Paris Airport, 36

Paris, France, 36

Parker, Maj., 15, 18, 19, 21, 24, 25, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45

Parker, Maj. Arthur, 44

Parker, Maj. Arthur C., 15, 17, 24, 26

Patton, Brig Gen Oliver, 5

Patton, Gen., 15

Pearl Harbor, 55

Peterson, Dr. Richard, 77

Peterson, Richard W., 78

Pierson, Marion, 73

Pierson, Randolph, 73

Pierson, Randolph C., 26, 28, 30, 31, 33, 34

Pierson, Randy, 31, 38

Prisoner Of War, 60

Prum, 3

Puett, Col., 65

Queen Elizabeth, 47

Rain, John, 10

Ray, Marion, 70, 79

Raymond, Richard, 17, 24

Red Ball, 62

Regne, 20, 43

Reunions, 68, 69, 70, 71, 73

Rhine, 4, 10

Rhineland, 10

Richardson, Col., 45

Rigatti, Richard L., 12, 77

Riggs, Thomas J., 78

River, Elbe, 55

Riviera, 55

Robb, Dr. John G., 77

Robb, John G., 77

Russell, Carlton D., 65

Rutland, Roger M., 71

Salmchateau, 40

Samree, 20, 28, 40, 41, 43

Samree, Belgium, 28

Scannapico, Sgt., 43

Schaffner, John, 24, 25, 26, 29, 31, 33, 36, 41

Schaffner, John R., 25

Schnee Eifel, 6, 61

Schneifel, 65

Schoenberg, 2, 61

Sewell, Ken, 28

Skardon, Alvin W., 71

Southampton, 6, 48, 49, 51

Spa, 18

Spade, Robert, 76

Spade, Robert L., 76

Sparks, Dick, 5, 75

St. Vith, 10, 12, 13, 41, 43, 66, 77

Stalag 12-A, 59

Stalag 4-B, 75

Stalag 8-A, 6

Stalag III-A, 62

Stalag IV-B, 55

Stalag IX, 63, 65, 67

Stalag IX-B, 63, 67

Stalag XII-A, 55, 62

Stavelot, 37

Stavelot, Belgium, 37

Strohmier, Bernard, 26

Sulser, Jack, 11, 77

Sweden, 11

Swett, John, 70

Taunton, Mass, 47

Taunton, Massachusetts, 47

Terrio, Howard J., 71

The Battle Of The Bulge, 12, 15, 62, 67, 71

The Incredible Valor Of Eric Wood, 41

Thermopylae Defense, 18

Thurlow, John, 67

Toy, Waid S., 71

Trautman, Frank, 65

Trois Pont, 15

Trois Ponts, 15

Truman, Harry, 2

Tyler, Joe Bob, 67

Van De Bogart, 70

Van De Bogart, Herman, 70

Van Moorlehem, Art, 78

Vance, George, 68

Vielsalm, 15, 20, 40, 41

Von Rundstedt, 6

Walden, Jeanne, 68

Walden, Larry, 68

Weber, Carlos, 3

Weiner, Milton, 50

West Wall, 17

Wood, Eric, 41

Wood, Lt. Eric, 42, 43

Woodruff, Capt., 15, 45

XVIII Abn. Corps, 36

XVIII Abn. Corps Arty., 36

Yanchik, Pete, 68