space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* Country Cousin
space
space
Sports Shorts
* Michigan DNR Funds Fight Invasive Species
* Area Wrestlers Bring Home 9 State Medals
* GIRLS BASKETBALL WIAA TOURNAMENT - Peshtigo Falls In Regional Final
* M&O BOYS BASKETBALL - Crivitz Beats Peshtigo In Overtime
* 11 Area Wrestlers Head To State

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

Memories of War

Something I had forgotten these 65 years popped back into my memory recently, and deserves mention in the Old Timer column. I was the right age to get involved in World War II and since the Navy, my first choice, wouldn’t take me, the US Army was the inevitable choice. I had 17 weeks of basic training at Fort Bragg, NC, a month of idleness, then rode to England on LST 49, (Landing Ship-Tank) getting to a camp at Barry, Wales about Feb. 1, 1944. I was a Field Artillery Replacement, and knew by then what I needed to know about the operation of a 105mm howitzer.

I landed in Normandy, France on June 12, 1944, and became a crewman on Section 4, Battery B, 42nd Battalion, Fourth Infantry Division. We went through the hedgerow country in Normandy, then took Cherborg, a port city in western France, then on to Paris and north to the German frontier.

We fired maybe 8,000 rounds of 105 shells up to then.

The Field Artillery has to have “eyes” as they are usually a couple of miles back of the front lines. A forward observer section provides the eyes, and must be right up there with the front line infantry.

We had to take turns for this hazardous job, and I was up there in the hedgerow country in Normandy for three days, at a place called Mortain for three days, where my Forward Observer Lieutenant got two bullets through his lungs, and the final time inside Germany, in the Huertgen Forest.

Not much hoopla was put out by Huertgen, as it was not a spectacular victory like the “Battle of the Bulge” about a month later, but a slow, bloody, multi-casualty mutual slaughter with the Germans, with the dense forest and lack of roads canceled our advantage in air power and tanks, and our side kept pouring in fresh Infantry divisions all in vain. My 12th Infantry Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division arrived there in the night time on Nov. 6, and I and my partner, named Smith, spent most of our time in a roofed shelter, as artillery and mortar shells were landing night and day all over the place.

Dead American soldiers were collected and put in rows here and there in the forest, along with a few, not many German dead. In a fixed infantry situation, your own dead far outnumber those of the enemy.

On the 4th morning of Nov. 10, our Battalion staged an attack, which broke down immediately when our infantry ran into a minefield called a shu-mine field, which blew off one foot, bringing our attack to a complete halt. About that time the Germans started an attack of their own, and we went back to our starting point, the dugout where the Company Commander hung out. Our crew went in for the shelter, but we soon heard the Germans coming, and somebody said, “We got to get out of here.” My Lieutenant gave me a push, as I was nearest the door, so I went out and began to move toward the “rear.” I took a wrong turn, and soon found myself alone.

I jumped into a German foxhole. Theirs were maintained with the earth scattered, so they were not visible from the air. I heard a lot of mortars exploding, then someone shouting in a foreign language. They were approaching my hole, and I dropped my pistol belt with the German P-38 I had captured in July and jumped out with my hands up. They were in a V-formation, and one guy tightened up on his trigger, but didn’t fire. The German noncom had me sit down on a stump, and asked me, “Vere are your Komerads!” I answered him, “All kaput,” which meant “All finished.”

Then it happened, the unexpected act of humanity on the part of a German Lieutenant, who came along. He looked down at me in my dirty, unshaven condition, and said very clearly, “For you der var is ofter.”

I was then marched through the woods to the German Company Command post in a dugout, then to the Battalion Headquarters a couple of hundred yards back. For me, the war was not quite over, but I was to survive.


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
03-04-2015Sports
Michigan DNR Funds Fight Invasive Species

03-04-2015Sports
Area Wrestlers Bring Home 9 State Medals

03-04-2015Sports
GIRLS BASKETBALL WIAA TOURNAMENT - Peshtigo Falls In Regional Final

03-04-2015Sports
M&O BOYS BASKETBALL - Crivitz Beats Peshtigo In Overtime

03-04-2015Perspectives
Country Cousin

03-04-2015Perspectives
From our readers

03-04-2015Perspectives
Tales from the old-timer

03-04-2015Obituaries
Norman Smith

03-04-2015Obituaries
William E. Henes

03-04-2015Obituaries
Robert E. Heinz

03-04-2015Obituaries
Kathryn J. Froelich

03-04-2015Obituaries
George W. Frank

03-04-2015Obituaries
Thomas Christensen

03-04-2015Obituaries
Vincent Aman

03-04-2015Obituaries
Josephine O. Wiltzius

03-04-2015Obituaries
Gary S. Tanguay

03-04-2015Obituaries
Thomas R. Stevens

03-04-2015Obituaries
Caroline C. Stansfield

03-04-2015Obituaries
Patrick J. Recla

03-04-2015Obituaries
Guy E. Provo

03-04-2015Obituaries
Henry F. Pecor

03-04-2015Obituaries
Benjamin J. Johnston

03-04-2015Obituaries
Ellen M. Olson

03-04-2015Obituaries
Connie M. Ohlfs

03-04-2015Obituaries
Alice Mueller

03-04-2015Obituaries
Paul A. Lidwin

03-04-2015Obituaries
Donald A. Lange

03-04-2015Obituaries
Gertrude LaLonde

03-04-2015Obituaries
Frances Kwiatkowski

03-04-2015Obituaries
Anita R. Johnson

03-04-2015Obituaries
Martin P. Hischke

03-04-2015Obituaries
Clarence Castonia

03-04-2015Community - Wausaukee
Card Party at Wagner Mar. 7

03-04-2015Community - Wausaukee
Legion Post 66 Meeting Mar. 7

03-04-2015Community - Wausaukee
Winners in SC Card Parties

03-04-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Watch Group Wine and Beer Tasting Nov. 7

03-04-2015Community - Crivitz
Free Meals at Crivitz Church

03-04-2015Community - Crivitz
T/Stephenson Board Holds Special Meeting

03-04-2015Community - Crivitz
LNRB Meets Mar. 12

03-04-2015Community - Crivitz
Loomis Legion Post, Unit Meetings Mar. 4

03-04-2015Community - Coleman
Coleman Sells Land to New Store Owner

03-04-2015Community - Coleman
Library Trunk Show March 19

03-04-2015Community - Coleman
New Church In Pound Opens Easter Weekend

03-04-2015Community - Coleman
Photo Collection at Library Apr. 14

03-04-2015News
Battle Ready at Holy Family

03-04-2015News
Seek Crafters for Spring Show

03-04-2015News
World Prayer Day March 7

03-04-2015News
KC Breakfast Here March 8

03-04-2015Front Page
Honor Barbara Johnston On Her 100th Birthday By Mary Ann Kulberg Wadsworth

03-04-2015Front Page
Colburn Back On Council, City To Appeal DWD Rule

03-04-2015Front Page
Prisoner Board Cost Oconto County $304,000 In 2014

03-04-2015Front Page
Marinette Council Denies Request to Vacate Alley

03-04-2015Front Page
Pound May Have Buyer For Land In TIF District

02-25-2015Sports
11 Area Wrestlers Head To State

02-25-2015Sports
Buccaneer Men Win WCC State Tourney

02-25-2015Sports
Niagara Finishes Season With Win In Wausaukee

02-25-2015Sports
Rangers Capture Conference Crown

02-25-2015Perspectives
Country Cousin

02-25-2015Perspectives
From our readers

02-25-2015Perspectives
Tales from the old-timer

02-25-2015Obituaries
Betty J. Zabel

02-25-2015
Lawrence F. Seefeldt

02-25-2015Obituaries
Dr. Fred J. Schuette

02-25-2015Obituaries
Anne E. Martin        

02-25-2015Obituaries
Mary Ellen Herrild

02-25-2015Obituaries
John E. Hansen

02-25-2015Obituaries
John W. Golla

02-25-2015Obituaries
Michael L. Franklin

02-25-2015Obituaries
Melvin H. Dettman

02-25-2015Obituaries
Raymond L. Berg

02-25-2015Obituaries
Donald Bell

02-25-2015Obituaries
Robert L. Ward

02-25-2015Obituaries
Emil Steier

02-25-2015Obituaries
Glenn K. Smoot

02-25-2015Obituaries
Helen M. Shevy

02-25-2015Obituaries
John E. Schroeder

02-25-2015Obituaries
Walter Schaal

02-25-2015Obituaries
James L. Perry

02-25-2015Obituaries
Darleen J. Neuens

02-25-2015Obituaries
Mary Lerich

02-25-2015Obituaries
Olga Kopatz

02-25-2015Obituaries
Violet D. Hinkfus

02-25-2015Obituaries
Sally A. Frank

02-25-2015Obituaries
Marge E. Frank

02-25-2015Obituaries
Tammy L. Finendale

02-25-2015Obituaries
Donald W. Edlebeck

02-25-2015Obituaries
Violet I. Dodd

02-25-2015Obituaries
Robert Bizjak

02-25-2015Obituaries
Frances Kwiatkowski

02-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Blood Drive Gets 51 Units

02-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Lions Bowling Tourney Dates

02-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Order Roses from Wausaukee Lions

02-25-2015Community - Wausaukee
Luncheon Speaker at Presbyterian Church

02-25-2015Community - Crivitz
Hunter Education Class Starts Mar. 31

02-25-2015Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Water Rate Phone Hearing Mar. 25

02-25-2015Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Blood Drive March 5

02-25-2015Community - Crivitz
Orientation for Badger Staters

02-25-2015Community - Coleman
Senior Club To Meet March 2

02-25-2015Community - Coleman
Middle School Students of Month

02-25-2015Community - Coleman
Coleman Village Board March 2

02-25-2015News
Oconto Church Fish Fry Feb. 27

02-25-2015News
Hunter Education Class Starts Mar. 31

02-25-2015News
Men’s Wild Game Dinner March 7

02-25-2015News
MCC Athletic Club Fish Fries

02-25-2015Front Page
PRESENT CHECK

02-25-2015Front Page
County Board Favors First Step To Ending Airport Partnership

02-25-2015Front Page
Oconto Co. Board Salutes Retiring Finance Director

02-25-2015Front Page
Sheriff: Prisons Full, State Will Ask Counties to Help

02-25-2015Front Page
City Still Seeks Sponsors For Ball Field Name Rights

02-19-2015Sports
9 Cougar Wrestlers Qualify For Saturday Sectional

02-19-2015Sports
Rangers Remain On Top Of M&O

02-19-2015Sports
Peshtigo Flawless in M&O

02-19-2015Sports
Deadlines to Remove Ice Fishing Shelters

02-19-2015Perspectives
Country Cousin

02-19-2015Perspectives
From our readers

02-19-2015Perspectives
Tales from the old-timer

02-19-2015Obituaries
Charles M. Zinther 

02-19-2015Obituaries
Lawrence L. Walli, Jr.

02-19-2015Obituaries
Jeffrey D. Teske

02-19-2015Obituaries
Donna M. Sopkowicz

02-19-2015Obituaries
Gerhardt Rusch

02-19-2015Obituaries
Lois Rehn

02-19-2015Obituaries
Carol Prestin

02-19-2015Obituaries
Harris J. Hubert

02-19-2015Obituaries
Mary J. Grandaw

02-19-2015Obituaries
Larry J. Goral, Sr.

02-19-2015Obituaries
Norita A. Gifford

02-19-2015Obituaries
Melvin L. Brunette

02-19-2015Obituaries
Deborah L. Wilde

02-19-2015Obituaries
Rosemary A. Sutek

02-19-2015Obituaries
Gary E. Limberg

02-19-2015Obituaries
Laurie A. Kinziger

02-19-2015Obituaries
Rosemary Johnston

02-19-2015Obituaries
Charles H. Jessel Sr.

02-19-2015Obituaries
Robert Heckel

02-19-2015Obituaries
Helena Hanysz

02-19-2015Obituaries
June R. Gering

02-19-2015Obituaries
Roger O. Durocher

02-19-2015Obituaries
Doris M. Durocher

02-19-2015Obituaries
Brooke Kay Benoit

02-19-2015Obituaries
Ronald R. Bajczyk

02-19-2015News
Moose Lodge Sets Feb. 21 Fundraiser

02-19-2015News
Lions Members Selling Roses

02-19-2015News
Goodman Fire Dept. Dinner is Feb. 21

02-19-2015News
Antique Show at Moose Lodge Apr. 11

02-19-2015Community - Wausaukee
Lions Bowling Tourney Dates

02-19-2015Community - Wausaukee
Silver Cliff Auxiliary To Offer Scholarships

02-19-2015Community - Wausaukee
Wagner Buys Tender Truck, Seek Recycling Center Help

02-19-2015Community - Wausaukee
Town Buys Tractor, Action on Road Bans

02-19-2015Community - Crivitz
Hunter Education Class To Start


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Do you agree with the Governors proposed budget cuts to the UW system?
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
© 2000-2015
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites