space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* Country Cousin
space
space
Sports Shorts
* 2 Crivitz Youth Compete in PPK at Green Bay Dec. 4
* Area Girls' Basketball
* Area Boys' Basketball
* MHSAA State Championship
* Coach Motkowski Ready to Unleash "Dogs in '16-൙

space
Peshtigo Fire
space
e-Edition
Now Available
For more information
click here
dot
THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
space
dot
space

Tales from the old-timer

Remembering Mortain

In the European Theater in World War II the American and British forces invaded Normandy in France on June 6,1944. I had been in England for about 3 months as a combat replacement in Field Artillery, and we had been having some road marches and occasional training, but knew we would soon be on our way to Normandy. On June 12, I disembarked from a Landing Ship on Utah Beach as a 4th Infantry Division Field Artillery replacement. I waded ashore with my comrades on June 12 and after a night of noisy rest I was taken by truck to my outfit, Battery B 42nd Field Artillery Battalion of the 4th Infantry Division. We were equipped with M-7 self propelled tanks with 105 mm. howitzers and fired numerous missions night and day in the hedgerow country in Normandy. Our forward observers, who called in the fire missions by radio got combat fatigue after a couple of weeks, so us cannoneers were sent up to replace them by turns.

By about July we broke out of the hedgerow country, which had held our infantry advances to a couple of hedgerows daily with lots of casualties, and we had the Germans on the run as we made faster progress. I spent about 3 days with the Forward Observer in July up with the infantry near St. Lo, and my second term was in early August at a place called Mortain two.

Mortain was well-named, as Hitler had launched an attack with 5 crack armored divisions ordered to drive the Americans back to the beachead, and the word Mort is Latin for ‘’death and it was a tough experience.

Even after 68 years, I sometimes think about those experiences when I can’t sleep at night. We moved up with the Infantry and the 4th Division was ordered to attack the Germans, jumping off at about 8 AM. Our troops were running across a sunken road one at a time, and as I watched, a German machine gunner fired a burst at each man as he jogged across. Sure enough, one of them got a bullet through his lung, and toppled over on the sunken road. I was behind a hedgerow, relatively safe, and dragged him behind the hedgerow. I took his compress bandage and covered the hole. but I heard a suckling sound and rolled him over. The hole in his back was bigger than the one in front, so I took my own compress bandage and plugged that one up. He had his nickname Blacky written in ink on the back of his fatigue jack. My Lieutenant was scanning toward the machine gun with a pair of binoculars, and a burst put two bullets through his lung, and down he went. Bullets hit hard, and knock the victims right over. My friend patched up the Lieutenant’s holes up. I dashed across the sunken road to the aid station about 100 yards to the rear and told them about our two wounded guys.

I returned and we waited, but no litter bearers came, so I dashed across the sunken road a second time. When I got to the aid station there was a guy lying on a stretcher with his stomach laid open by shrapnel, and he kept saying over and over, Help me, Jesus; Help me Jesus! Nobody tended to him, as they were busy with other guys.

I went back to my place, running back over the sunken road so fast the gunner didn’t even fire at me. Finally the aid men came and crossed the road to get our two wounded guys. The Germans did not fire at them and they worked slowly to carry them to the aid station. The Germans observed the Geneva Convention and did not fire at the aid men helping the wounded guys. The convention is a dead letter now, and even the U.S. tortures captives.

After some time we started the attack and went single file along a hedgerow toward the Germans, behind another hedgerow about 100 yards away. The machine gunner opened up on us, and we hit the deck. I laid on my stomach and watched the bullets hit the hedgerow behind me. Apparently the gunner couldn’t depress his gun enough to get me, as he knew what the radio on my back was for. My buddy jumped up and ran behind the hedgerow we had started from, but I waited a good 10 minutes in the hot sun before making my dash.

After I got to the relative safety of the hedgerow I watched some bumblebees buzzing from flower to flower. In a field next to ours. I saw some artillery shells knocking over grazing cows. The surviving cows milled around a little while, then resumed grazing among their dead herdmates.

We had the same situation as the cattle, and there were quite a few dead men lying on the ground in our area.

I was glad when our relief men arrived and we could go back to the battery where we lived and worked a mile or two back. They had been bombed the night before by German planes and were not interested in my story about the narrow escape at Mortain.


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
11-30-2016Obituaries
Brielle R. Beres

11-30-2016Obituaries
Melvin J. Blohowiak

11-30-2016Obituaries
Sharon A. Bogner 

11-30-2016Obituaries
Robert Chaltry

11-30-2016Obituaries
Shirley G. Collins

11-30-2016Obituaries
Carol Jean Downing

11-30-2016Obituaries
Katherine L. Duaime

11-30-2016Obituaries
Orven L. Fabry

11-30-2016Obituaries
James Haban

11-30-2016Obituaries
Leonard Jarosz

11-30-2016Obituaries
Robert Magnin

11-30-2016Obituaries
Lela M. McTrusty

11-30-2016Obituaries
Richard E. Neely

11-30-2016Community - Coleman
Village Board Meets Dec. 5

11-30-2016Obituaries
Myra I. Orlando

11-30-2016Community - Coleman
Youth Wrestling Sign Up Dec. 1st

11-30-2016Obituaries
Bernadine M. Pietrek

11-30-2016Obituaries
Elaine H. Rathjen

11-30-2016Community - Coleman
Free Health Event at Coleman PK Fit

11-30-2016Obituaries
James L. Stillman

11-30-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman SHINE Bazaar, Craft Sale on Dec. 3rd

11-30-2016Obituaries
Sonia L. Stephanie

11-30-2016Obituaries
Linda Wolff

11-30-2016Community - Crivitz
Violin Lessons, Bowl New Area Classes

11-30-2016Community - Crivitz
Honored for 70 Years in Catholic Financial

11-30-2016Front Page
21 Volunteers Become Advocates for Children

11-30-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wagner Fire Department Sportsman Raffle Winners

11-30-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee School Earns 3 Stars on Report Cards

11-30-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Students Grades 4-6 in Chess Club

11-30-2016Front Page
Judge Halts Dec. 1 Start Of Overtime/Salary Rule

11-30-2016Front Page
Wisconsin Presidential Recount Is Underway

11-30-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Blood Drive is Dec. 5th

11-30-2016Front Page
Lectures, Tours Offered On Proposed Back Forty Mine

11-30-2016Front Page
Gala Parade, Many Events for Christmas in Marinette Dec. 3

11-30-2016Obituaries
Virginia E. Wilson

11-30-2016Obituaries
Stephen J. Wallace

11-30-2016Obituaries
Gail G. Van Caster

11-30-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

11-30-2016Perspectives
From My Window

11-30-2016Sports
2 Crivitz Youth Compete in PPK at Green Bay Dec. 4

11-30-2016Sports
Area Girls' Basketball

11-30-2016Sports
Area Boys' Basketball

11-30-2016Sports
MHSAA State Championship

11-22-2016Front Page
Sentinel Structures Trucks Oversized Load of Arches

11-22-2016Front Page
Peshtigo School Board Views Tentative New Building Plans

11-22-2016Front Page
Grover Voters Okay Levy Hike For New Fire Truck

11-22-2016Front Page
Coleman Earns Highest DPI Report Card Rating

11-22-2016Front Page
Wausaukee Residents Urged To Attend Nov. 30 Hearing

11-22-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman SHINE Bazaar, Craft Sale on Dec. 3rd

11-22-2016Community - Coleman
Santa Claus at Village Pound Lights Parade

11-22-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Trinity Church Advent Meal, Services

11-22-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Youth Wrestling Sign Up

11-22-2016Community - Crivitz
Church Sponsors Christmas in the Village of Bethlehem

11-22-2016Community - Crivitz
Crivitz 2nd Graders Thank Veterans

11-22-2016Community - Crivitz
Howard Members Join Crivitz VFW Memorial

11-22-2016Community - Crivitz
Loomis Historical Christmas Pot Luck

11-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Students Win Legion Auxiliary National Award

11-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Booster Club Wine, Beer Testing Feb. 11

11-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Town of Wausaukee Levy is $445,957.40

11-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Library Cookie Walk Dec. 3rd

11-22-2016Obituaries
Doris M. Zimmerman

11-22-2016Obituaries
Eugene Trepanier

11-22-2016Obituaries
Patricia L. Thomas

11-22-2016Obituaries
Floyd F. Suennen

11-22-2016Obituaries
Irene D. Strzyzykowski

11-22-2016Obituaries
Evelyn C. Quarnstrom

11-22-2016Obituaries
Harry J. Ruff

11-22-2016Obituaries
Jerry L. Popp

11-22-2016Obituaries
Austin Kubiak

11-22-2016Obituaries
Jane M. Janes

11-22-2016Obituaries
James Haban

11-22-2016Obituaries
Ralph E. Bancroft

11-22-2016Obituaries
Dona J. Van Hoff

11-22-2016Obituaries
David A. McClain

11-22-2016Obituaries
Nick Vidas

11-22-2016Obituaries
Agnes Kowalski

11-22-2016Obituaries
Elsabea J. Oldham

11-22-2016Obituaries
Kenneth W. Westcott

11-22-2016Obituaries
Orville J. Renier

11-22-2016Obituaries
Raymond H. Rakers

11-22-2016Obituaries
The Rev. em. Reginald E. Pope

11-22-2016Obituaries
Albert P. Mineau

11-22-2016Obituaries
Elaine A. Marquardt

11-22-2016Obituaries
Elizabeth J. Lownik

11-22-2016Obituaries
Betty A. LaCount

11-22-2016Obituaries
Doris I. Kriegl

11-22-2016Obituaries
Angeline H. Johnston 

11-22-2016Obituaries
Barbara A. Erickson

11-22-2016Obituaries
Carol M. Bushmaker 

11-22-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

11-22-2016Perspectives
From our readers

11-22-2016Perspectives
From My Window

11-22-2016Sports
Coach Motkowski Ready to Unleash "Dogs in '16-൙

11-22-2016Sports
M&O Basketball - Area Teams Start Season with Wins

11-22-2016Sports
Young Marines Hold On in Season Opener

11-22-2016Sports
MSHAA Semifinal - Maroons To Face Grand Rapids West In State Final

11-16-2016Obituaries
Rosemary A. Stowick

11-16-2016Obituaries
Deanie A. Simerl

11-16-2016Obituaries
Sam Schomer

11-16-2016Obituaries
Patricia J. Roland  

11-16-2016Obituaries
Robert Race

11-16-2016Obituaries
Melvin A. Olson

11-16-2016Obituaries
Norman F. Lueskow

11-16-2016Obituaries
Betty J. Krull

11-16-2016Obituaries
Margaret M. Kirschbaum

11-16-2016Obituaries
William E. Keller Jr.

11-16-2016Obituaries
Hollister Jansen

11-16-2016Obituaries
Ione Herrmann

11-16-2016Obituaries
Pat Cletus Courchaine

11-16-2016Obituaries
Sandra J. Beekman

11-16-2016Obituaries
Lowell White

11-16-2016Obituaries
Genevieve J. Adamczyk

11-16-2016Obituaries
Shirley M. Walters

11-16-2016Obituaries
Charles H. Antholt

11-16-2016Obituaries
Eleanor E. Peterson

11-16-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Church Pie, Bake Sale

11-16-2016Obituaries
Autumn L. La Londe

11-16-2016Obituaries
Michael C. Kinard

11-16-2016Community - Wausaukee
Klaver's Lawn Care Hired by Athelstane Town Board

11-16-2016Obituaries
Jan DeGayner

11-16-2016Community - Wausaukee
Christmas for Kids Gift Distribution

11-16-2016Community - Wausaukee
Athelstane Craft Fair on Nov. 19

11-16-2016Front Page
Town of Peshtigo Settles Mercury Asssessment

11-16-2016Obituaries
Robert F. Biemeret, Sr.

11-16-2016Front Page
BELLIN OPEN HOUSE

11-16-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

11-16-2016Community - Crivitz
Free Thanksgiving Dinner at Crivitz

11-16-2016Community - Crivitz
Loomis Legion Fun Day Was Big Success

11-16-2016Community - Crivitz
Loomis Historical Pot Luck Dec. 1

11-16-2016Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Students Top in Studies, Athletics

11-16-2016Community - Coleman
Woman's Club Meets at PK Fit in Coleman

11-16-2016Community - Coleman
Thanksgiving Recess For Coleman School

11-16-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Youth Wrestling Sign Up

11-16-2016Perspectives
From our readers

11-16-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Library Mini Auction

11-16-2016Perspectives
From My Window

11-16-2016Sports
Salewski/Christensen Headline First Team Griders

11-16-2016Front Page
Ask City To Consider Vacating Green Street

11-16-2016Sports
Suring's Stegeman Reigns Supreme as Volleyball MVP

11-16-2016Front Page
Peshtigo Police Chief FitzGerald Is Settling In

11-16-2016Sports
MSHAA Playoffs - Menominee Moves onto State Semis With Dominating Win Over Reed City

11-16-2016Sports
WIAA to Crown State Football Champions

11-16-2016Front Page
Coleman School Board Discusses Building Upgrade Referendum

11-09-2016Community - Coleman
Thanksgiving Dinner at Pound Church

11-09-2016Community - Coleman
Equity Bean Bag League To Meet

11-09-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Students Score Best in Area on 2016 State Assessment

11-09-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman-Pound Restaurants To Honor Area Veterans

11-09-2016Community - Crivitz
Woman's Club Holiday Auction, Boutique Nov. 10

11-09-2016Community - Crivitz
Free Community Thanksgiving Dinner

11-09-2016Community - Crivitz
Female Self-Defense Crivitz Clinic Nov. 12th


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Do you think that a recount is necessary?
space Yes
No
Undecided
space
TO VOTE CLICK
YES, NO or UNDECIDED

Suggest a Question
space .
space
FRONT
space
.
space
CLASSIFIEDS
space
.
space
COMMUNITY
space
.
space
GUEST BOOK
space
.
space
NEWS
space
.
space
OBITS
space
.
space
PERSPECTIVES
space
.
space
SPORTS
space
.
space
SUBSCRIBE
space
.
space
.
space
PESHTIGO FIRE
space
.
space
CUSTOM PRINTING
space
.
space
TIMES' SAVER
space
.
space
Click for Peshtigo, Wisconsin Forecast
FORECAST
space
Quick...
News or Ad Search
Enter News key words.
Enter Ad key words.



Peshtigo Times
841 Maple St
PO Box 187
Peshtigo, WI 54157
Phone: 715-582-4541
Email:
News@
PeshtigoTimes.com

space
Fax: 715-582-4662
© 2000-2016
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites