I really want to help you connect with your families history but you need to meet me half way. Family stories are always interesting but they need to be taken with a grain of salt. In many cases veterans were not completely aware of the facts surrounding their service or they have a difficult time describing arcane military matters to their family.
I'll give you some pointers to help you search and decipher what you find on the Internet. But please do some of your own research and feel free to post what you find and ask further questions. Unless your grandfather was really interesting I'm not likely to even attempt to dig-up what might be available.
My grandfather was wounded France Sept. 8, 44 and Luxembourg Jan. 22, 45. He was shot in the thigh and took shrapnel in his calf.
The 11th Infantry Regiment (shortened to 11th Infantry) was part of the 5th Infantry Division (ID). These wound dates and geographic locations are strong proof that your grandfather was with the 5th ID and not the 1st ID. In September '44 and January '45 the 1st ID was in Belgium.
Things to keep in mind. Omaha Beach from June to October (ish), served as the debarkation point of many US divisions in Europe. So many veterans landed on Omaha (or Utah) beaches but only a few assaulted those beaches on June 6, 1944.
After VE Day many soldiers were shifted around to other divisions. First in preparation for the invasion of Japan, so low-point soldiers were sent to divisions slated for that operation. After VJ Day high-point soldiers were sent to divisions going home for deactivation. It's uncertain why your father has a 1st ID patch. It might not have been his jacket. Soldiers lose things and others pick them up, it happens. If it was his jacket then it would be helpful to know what shoulder the patch was on, left shoulder is his current assignment, right shoulder would be a unit he served with in combat.
Hope that helps, feel free to ask questions to clarify.
My grandpa's DD214 form (we have both the original tiny card version and a paper version) list him as 11th Infantry Company F
By 1942 he was a Sergeant
, and by 1945 a Staff Sergeant
. We don't have anything left besides his medical records, most of his service records were destroyed in the 1973 fire.
His specialty is listed as a "Squad Leader
"". I got it wrong in the past. My grandpa still had his uniform--My mother used to wear the shirt when she was a teenager and it was tight on her (that's how skinny he was). But after my grandparent's split up, my grandmother cut it up the back and discarded it.
He served from July 18th 1939 to March 1946.
From 1939 to February 27th 1944 he was in the Panama Canal at Fort Kobbe in the "EM PC Dept Service Unit 2145
". On a transfer paper from July 1943, it says "QM Det
" after his name and army serial number.
In a paper from November 1943, when he attempted to be transferred to the Paratrooper training school in Fort Benning, he was: "QMC Sec. S.C.U. 1927
" It also lists him as "2nd. Ind". He wrote that he had first enlisted for the CAC but "because of my knowledge of Army Administration work", he transferred to a Service Unit. He was ultimately rejected for Paratrooper school as there was no vacancies. At the time of his request to be transferred, he was (on leave?) at the Presidio of San Francisco.
His commandant in 1943 (at the Presidio of San Francisco) was "Edward M. Feeney" 1st Lt, Infantry, Ass't Adjutant.
In February 1944, just before being sent to Europe, he was in Camp Kilmer, NJ. There he was hospitalized for an illness. On the hospital record, his Regmt/Arm/Service is listed as "RS-321-AAA
." I am not sure what that means, anyone want to help me with that?
He was first sent to Europe in February 1944 and his record has him in the Rhineland and Northern France Campaigns
. He was involved in some action which include two gruesome stories. He was shot on January 23rd 1945 by a sniper in Luxembourg and was in and out of the hospital for over a year for surgeries and was finally discharged as disabled in March 1946 from Halloran Hospital
in Staten Island, NY. He lived the rest of his life in Brooklyn, NY, where he was born and died in 1975 age 55.
Also we know he was fond of the USO while in the Army, having been at USO Events in 1941 and 1942. In 1942 he met Jinx Falkenberg there--Perhaps someone can place a date as to when exactly she was there. We know he got a book from the YCMA Department of the Armed Services entitled "Why America Fights" by Sherwood Eddy in 1941 or 1942.
He was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars from at least 1957 to 1958 and was a member of the American Legion in at least 1958. He also oddly got an army guide to Germany in 1952 despite having left the Army in 1946. He worked at the 1964-1965 World's Fair as a Security Guard and did other work such as a painter, etc, being a member of a union for such in the late 1950s. He was an employee of the US Post Office from around 1957-1967 and also worked as a security guard for a company called M.R.A Associates, Inc.
I am trying basically to retrace his steps and maybe find anyone who served with him or might have known him in his army years and perhaps after.
Some of his doctors and surgeons (while hospitalized from '45 to '46):
Rhonald A. Whiteneck (1st Lieutenant, MC)
James L. Camp (1st Lt., MC)
Stanley E. Potter (Capt, MC)
Michael Raab (Capt, MC)
Other names associated with his hospital stay:
Foley D. Woods (1st Lt. MAC, Ass't Post Pers. Adj)
Col. O.H. Stanley
Harry Zubkoff Capt. MAC. Adj
S.B.T ENNER, 1st Lt. MAC
Capt. Aleu (or Capt. M Aleu or Captain A.Leu)--hard to tell, handwritten
Associated with his dental records in the military:
Captain S. Karp, DC.
The following is a list of men whose transfers were requested along with my grandpa in July 1943 while in Panama:
SPECIAL ORDERS HEADQUARTERS PANAMA CANAL DEPARTMENT QUARRY HEIGHTS CZ, 25 JULY 1943
Cpl. Harold G Welch HQ & HQ Dept
Cpl. Clyde Pinson QM DET
Sgt. John Mikita QM Det
Sgt. John R. Mignoli QM Det
Tech 4th Grade Delton W. Stanley QM Det
Tech 4th Grade Linwood J. Stugis QM Det
Post ENGR Utilities Det:
Sgt. Hershel R. Bowling
Tech 5th Grade Charles L. Lipker
Cpl. Neal Dingess
333D STA Hosp:
Pvt Robert S Buffington
EM PC Dept Service Unit 2145 Fort Kobbe CZ (This is where my grandpa was in Panam at least in '43):
MSgt Norman D. Carroll QM Det
MSgt Frank W. Shavel QM Det
Tech 5th Gr. Shirley Graves Hq & Hq Det
Pfc Jerome V. Call Jr Hq & Hq Det
This transfer was by the command of Lt. General Brett
C of S
Hugh J. Deeney
Edited by Ryan112390, 21 December 2011 - 05:08 AM.