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74TH FIELD ARTILLERY BATTALION WW2
* Note: The above silhouette represents a U.S. Army horse-drawn section. The illustrations were originally published in the "The Field Artillery Journal" and created by Mr H.S. Parker, son of Lt. Colonel Edwin P. Parker, FA. (Field Artillery Journal, Jan/Feb 1938, page 78). Source and permission: United States Army Fires Bulletin, Fort Sill, Oklahoma
HISTORY OF THE 74TH FIELD ARTILLERY
The Seventy Fourth Field Artillery Battalion when activated was the Second Battalion of the Eighteenth Field Artillery Regiment 75mm Gun -horse-drawn. Its parent unit was the Fifth Field Artillery Regiment. Place of activation of this battalion was Fort Bliss, Texas. Date of activation June 1, 1917 and it was first commanded by Colonel A.J. Bowley.
Shortly after activation it was ordered to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, where it served as school troops for the Field Artillery School until July 1, 1940.
As you well remember, 1940 found the world in a very unsettled condition. Italy was on the march, Germany had occupied, by force, the greater part of Europe and Japan was frantically preparing for a war with our country. Uncle Sam decided it was high time to make a few preparations of his own. In looking around for a well-trained unit, one which could be depended upon to carry out any mission, compatible with its strength and armament, he could not overlook this battalion. He also found the Seventy Sixth Field Artillery Regiment in California, which was "short" one battalion.
The decision was made to combine the two units, making a full regiment of good fighting battalions. So on June 22, 1940, he wrote a letter to the Command Field Artillery School, Fort Sill, Oklahoma, directing him to issue the necessary orders to carry out the movement. On July 9, 1940, paragraph 9, special orders number 129, Headquarters F.A.S., Fort Sill, Oklahoma, re-designated this battalion the Third Battalion, Seventy Sixth Field Artillery Regiment under command of Major Norman J. McMahon, Jr., with permanent station at Camp Clayton, (now Fort Ord) California.
Thus after 23 years' service as school troops, the Eighteenth Field Artillery Regiment was to be split for the first time.
You who were present will remember the long Officer and Non-Commissioned Officers' meeting we had in making plans for the rail movement to California; how to load horses - how many to the car - load head to tail - sand the floors of the stock cars - remove the shoes of the horses. How to load guns and caissons, limbers, reel carts, mountain and escort wagons and how to "chock" them down. Those were trying days, so we thought, and to make it more so, our friends in the Eighteenth who were remaining at Fort Sill, insisted on a series of farewell parties for both the officers and enlisted men.
The material was finally loaded and "chocked" down. All that remained to do was load the animals and move out. Our schedule called for departure from Fort Sill the following day. So, with most of the work done, we had a party at the Polo Club for the Officers and one at the Field House for the enlisted men.
The day following this party, we loaded the animals, and a more drunken herd I've never seen. Remember how they staggered up the ramps into the cars and how difficult it was to count them, once they were loaded?
Finally with the job of loading completed, the trains were made up and at 1000 hours, 9 July 1940, we departed Fort Sill for Camp Clayton, California. That moment was a thrilling one for most of us I am sure. The band playing, everyone shouting their farewells, and finally the "National Anthem"
The trip to California was rather uneventful. We detrained the animals a couple of times for exercise, feed and water. All in all it was a very pleasant trip. There was, however, one little "slip-up", the train quartermaster left a boxcar of checkable baggage on a siding at Fort Sill. It contained only the officers' and enlisted men's clothing and equipment, so it was not so very important. This was corrected by the Rock Island Railroad, by attaching it to a fast passenger train. It caught us at Los Angeles, California. My reason for saying this was relatively unimportant, as I know of one Regiment, who, upon being ordered into Federal Service at the beginning of the war, arrived with TEN PIANOS PAINTED A BRIGHT ARTILLERY RED. THE GUNS HAD BEEN LEFT BEHIND.
The Battalion arrived at Monterey, California on July 14, 1940, detrained, fed and watered the animals and marched the six miles to Camp Clayton.
If anyone had any ideas about soldiering in sunny California, amid vineyards and orange groves, they were quickly dispelled by the cold wet fog, sand dunes, and manzanita brush and tent camp. You can well see why we were pleased, when 14 days later, July 28th, we entrained at Monterey for Fort Lewis, Washington, to participate in the Fourth Army Maneuvers, arriving there July 30, 1940.
We lost only one animal on this trip - the train got off schedule and we were unable to unload animals for feed and water as scheduled. This animal we lost was so old and his teeth in such bad condition, he was unable to eat the wood siding out of the stock car and the poor thing starved to death. By the time we arrived at Fort Lewis, Washington, the surviving animals had eaten enough of the siding that they were able to get their head out of the cars and forage on the trees as the train rolled by.
The maneuver started one evening at sundown. That night we marched 48 miles during the hours of darkness. Remember how tired our "legs" were? We had almost as many saddles sores as did the horses.
The next 7 days of the maneuvers was where we got the jump on the rest of the Army. For in those seven days of 1940 we became acquainted with SPAM - morning, noon, and night, in every shape and form. The balance of the Army had to wait until they got overseas to have that wonderful experience.
This period would have wound up uneventfully had it not been for a little unique gunnery on the part of "H" Battery, (now "B" Battery) (note; when we were a full regiment there were: Headquarter, Service, Battery A, B, C, D, E, and F. and as a battalion there were Headquarter, Service, Battery A, B, and C.) The gun crews became tired of shooting blanks, they wanted to see the projectile hit the ground when fired. Since service ammunition was not permitted, they did the next best thing, put tin cans and trash in the gun barrels before firing the blanks. (Officers knew nothing of this of course). In firing the last few rounds before returning to camp, the paraffin from a blank became ignited by the powder and lay smoldering in trash or leaves, as the Battery pulled out to return to base camp.
No sooner had we arrived back at camp, tired and dirty, when the range officer reported a forest fire in "H" Battery area. It was "back to the field" for "H" Battery to fight the fire. They were placed under the direction of former state forester, Lieutenant George H. Harrington (now Major).
After three days the fire was extinguished and the Battery returned to camp for a much needed rest.
The next few days the Battalion was mainly concerned with fighting flies, grease traps and whether to "pile it or spread it". (The Battalion being horse-drawn at this time)
On August 30, 1940 the Battalion entrained for the return trip to Camp Clayton. Arriving there on September 1, 1940, we found the name of the camp had been changed to "Fort Ord" and many buildings constructed. Remember how pleased we were that we could move into barracks again?
The next four and half months were spent in training and general garrison duties.
It was about this time that Uncle Sam decided to triangularize his divisions and to split his Artillery Regiments into separate battalions. He was now firmly convinced that the United States was destined to take part in another world war. He realized he would need many more artillery battalions in order to win this war. So on January 20, 1941, we received a letter from him, dated December 16, 1940, W.D. AG File 320.2 stating that we were re-designated the Seventy Fourth Artillery Battalion, 75mm Gun, Horse-Drawn, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Norman J. McMahon, Jr. Permanent station at Fort Ord, California. We were assigned as a part of the Seventh Division Artillery.
It was at this time that we sent out our first cadre to form new battalions. We were well equipped to do this for each and every man was a specialist in three or more jobs. We began to receive our first Selective Service men (drafted) in the latter part of January, to replace those who had gone out as cadre. We did not realize it at the time but it was the beginning of a long period of cadre training. We were not destined to fight until training centers has been organized and we were no longer needed as a training battalion.
On June 16, 1941 we departed Fort Ord, by marching, for Hunter Liggett Military Reservation to participate in the IX Corps maneuvers. We had our troubles on this march also. Horses and men falling out of column because of extreme heat - Horseshoers working all night to replace the worn shoes, not to mention the ever present problem of whether to "pile it or spread it". The second night of the march we made bivouac in the Fair Grounds at King City. The wind was blowing so hard it filled our mess kits with sand, dirt, horseshoes, and old gloves, so much that to eat our beans would have ground our teeth to the quick. Some drank them; others dumped them into the garbage.
We arrived at Hunter Liggett on June 19, 1941. The Maneuvers, as far as we were concerned were very successful. We had the first opportunity to observe our new Selective Service men in the field and to say the least, were very much pleased with their work. There were no unusual occurrences during the maneuvers that I recall except the Battery Commander of Headquarters Battery was changed and Sergeant William Owens of Baker (B) Battery could not sleep for fear of snakes. His bunkmates did not help matters any by putting sticks and frogs into his sleeping bag.
At the close of the maneuvers we returned to Fort Ord, by marching. The selective service men had, had their first real taste of army life and came through in fine shape. All were well pleased and felt that the time had been well spent, besides, we had, had no SPAM served all during the maneuvers.
The next month saw the close of the Post and Division softball tournaments. Baker Battery won both the Post and Division tournaments and were presented with trophies proclaiming them the Post and Division Champions.
Sunday December 7, 1941 found the Battalion busily occupied doing nothing. Some were attending a U.S.O. show, starring Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, Judy Garland, Abbott and Costello, and Ray Noble and his orchestra. Some were getting a little "sack time" or maybe soaking up a little of that good California sunshine – THEN IT CAME. The Japs had struck at Pearl Harbor.
December 8, 1941 the Battalion moved to a bivouac camp on the Fort Ord Reservation. Replacements were received to fill us up to full strength.
On December 20, 1941, we entrained at Monterey for Phoenix, Arizona. We were assigned to the Western Defense Command and placed on duty with the Southern Land Frontier Sector. As the last car was loaded at Monterey, Lt. Col. McMahon assembled the officer personnel and announced that he had been ordered to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, and that Major Walter Webb, the Executive Officer, would assume command of the battalion.
Just as the train was about to depart the station, we received a request from the Battery Commander of Headquarters Battery to hold the train. Lo and behold, up marched half of his battery, single file, each carrying a sack of cement, obtained, we assumed, on "moonlight" requisition from some unsuspecting quartermaster. No one has yet figured just what he contemplated doing with it. Since they had no guns, it is possible they were intending to make mud pies to throw at the Japs.
After a three-hour delay and the edition of one car to transport the cement, we finally departed the station. As most of you who were present will remember, this was beyond a doubt, the most miserable move the battalion ever made. Our average speed for the 700 miles was 10 miles per hour. Westbound traffic had priority so we traveled every second-class railroad in California.
We had two rest stops en route, one in Los Angeles and the other in some deserted, long forgotten ghost town in eastern California. There was only one "chute" through which to unload the animals, some 420 in all. There were no corrals and we had to walk the animals in circles all night. When the last car had been unloaded, animals from the first car had been on the ground five hours. Reloading of the animals began immediately. The night was bitter cold; a heavy frost and a hard freeze made it more miserable. Twelve hours after unloading started, all animals were again back on the train and we moved on to Phoenix, arriving at 2300 hours, December 23, 1941. By 0800 Christmas Eve, we started the road march to Papago Park, near Phoenix, where we went into a tent camp.
To accomplish our mission it was necessary to detach Batteries A and B. Battery A was stationed at Sky Harbor Municipal Airport and Battery B at Williams Field Army Air Base some 35 miles from Phoenix. (The Battalion was not again assembled as a unit until August 21, 1944, two and a half year later).
January, February and March of 1942 were spent in training, enlivened occasionally by an "alert". We had are first and last experiences, we hope, with cacti and rattlesnakes.
Major Webb was transferred to Fort Lewis, Washington to take command of another battalion. Lt. Colonel George E. Mitchell, Jr. arrived and assumed command of the Battalion during the month of March. Major Edward L. Andrews remained as Executive Officer.
On April 18, 1942, the Battalion was relieved from duty with the Southern Land Frontier Section and ordered to California to assist in the defense of the West Coast.
On April 19, 1942, Battery B entrained at Phoenix for Eureka, California. Arriving on April 24, 1942, it joined a Battalion of the 144th Infantry in defense of the Humboldt Bay area and Navy Base at Eureka, California.
Battery C entrained April 20, 1942 and proceeded to Santa Rosa, California to take up defensive positions in that sector.
Headquarters, Headquarters Battery, Service and Battery A, entrained at Phoenix on April 20, 1942 and proceeded to San Mateo, California, with the mission of assisting in the defense of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Batteries B and C continued operating as separate batteries until May 19, 1942.
On May 20, 1942 the Battalion, less six-gun sections, assembled at Camp Heidle (Hydle) California (Drakes Bay) in a bivouac camp where it maintained tactical security, both day and night, until July 15, 1942.
On June 1, 1942 the Battalion was redesigned the Seventy Forth Field Artillery Battalion, Truck Drawn and armed with the 105mm Howitzer. We retained our 75mm Guns and continued to man them in semi-permanent emplacements along the coast extending from San Francisco to Eureka, California.
On July 1, 1942, the Battalion, less detachments, moved from Camp Heidle (Hydle) to the Marine Country Club, San Rafael, California.
HORSES TURNED IN ON JULY 27 1942
Reorganization of the Battalion was completed on July 27, 1942. Animals were shipped to Ogden Arsenal, Ogden, Utah, and to the Remount Depot at Fort Robinson, Nebraska. In spite of the fact that we did like the horses and took a great deal of pride in being the last horse-drawn unit in the U.S. Army, we realized that the horses had no place in the present war.
Battery A was issued four 75mm Guns, M2A3, four howitzers 105mm and alerted for overseas service. On August 8, 1942, they received a "gang plank" issue of eight tractors, making it an eight-gun battery, tractor-drawn. It embarked as a part of a task force for the Aleutian Islands. How they managed to train drivers, fresh from the "saddle" to tractor and truck drivers aboard ship, is a mystery.
The next few months at San Rafael were very pleasant indeed. Our training schedule was devoted to the training of gun crews for the 105mm howitzer and the training of truck drivers. Of the two jobs, the training of the drivers was the most difficult.
In the early stages of driver training, the Battalion made a number of trips to Camp Heidle (Hydle) for driver training, in connection with tactical problems. It was the training policy of the Battalion Commander to select the most difficult terrain and conditions possible for these problems. I am sure many of you will recall several amusing incidents during the period.
Following this basic training of drivers, the Battalion made several long road marches. The first of which was from San Rafael to Crescent City, California. The round trip was approximately 800 miles and was made without incident.
The second such road march was made to Yosemite National Park. On this trip, training was combined with pleasure. We remained in the park two days and everyone had the opportunity of visiting all the interesting places. Some utilized the days skiing, while others enjoyed the warmer sports down the valley.
It was early spring and a few lean and hungry bears had emerged from hibernation. The second evening we were there, I heard a commotion in the vicinity of one of the kitchens. Upon investigating, I found a large, hungry bear, making a valiant attempt to steal the next day's ration. The kitchen crew, who had retreated to the security of a truck, decided the bear was not a vicious one. Where upon they proceeded to chase him away. The bear, being somewhat out of his environment, retreated hastily to the brush. The men thinking this great sport pursued the bear a little too far. Finding himself once again in friendly brush the bear realized he was master of the situation. Turning on the men with a "blood-curdling: growl, the bear chased them back to the truck. The net results of his incident was "NO BACON FOR BREAKFAST".
The return trip to San Rafael was made without incident with one exception, Service Battery's little dog "Jeep" became of age and was sworn in as a full-fledged member of the organization.
The history of the Battalion, while in San Rafael, would be incomplete without a paragraph describing the meetings we had in the Officers' Mess. First of all, it is necessary to describe the seating arrangements at the table. The tables were arranged in the shape of a "U". The Battalion Commander being seated at the center of the "U", on the outside. To his right and left, respectively, were the officers of the battalion, in order of rank, terminating at the foot of the "U" in Warrant Officer Porter on one side and Warrant Officer Fronek on the other. By this seating arrangement the Battalion Commander could see and talk to any of the officers without much as turning his head.
Once each week, the Colonel called a meeting of all officers. Purpose of the meeting was to discuss the food which was being served and give each officer an opportunity of requesting that his favorite foods be served.
A typical mess meeting was as follows:
Lt. Col. Mitchell: "Gentlemen, we are assembled to discuss the food which has been served and to permit you to recommend any changes you wish to make".
Lt. Col. Mitchell: "Mr. Fronek" what would you like to have served at the mess?
Mr. Fronek: "Sir, I would like more vegetables served, especially more brussel sprouts"
Lt. Col. Mitchell: "I do not like brussel sprouts"
Lt. Col. Mitchell: "Mr. Porter, do you object to any food which has been served during the past week"?
Mr. Porter: "Yes, Sir, I object to so much fish."
Lt. Col. Mitchell: "I like fish."
Lt. Col. Mitchell: " Lt. Hawkins, have you anything to say about the food which has been served?"
Lt. Hawkins: "Yes, Sir, I would like eggs for breakfast and more beef for dinners."
Lt. Col. Mitchell: "I am not particularly fond of eggs and eggs, when eaten regularly, are injurious to one's health. As regards the beef, I think we are being served an adequate amount."
So on around the table, until all had had the opportunity of stating his desires. Of course as you can see, we always wound up by eating the same things, week after week, but you can't say Lt. Col. Mitchell was not democratic about it. As a matter of fact, it made little difference to the Lieutenants and Warrant Officers as to what type of food was served. The reason being that they never got anything to eat anyway. The food was served, first to the Battalion Commander, who took the choice pieces of meat or what have you. Next to take a "cut" at the food was the Executive and S-3, and so on down the line. When it arrived at the foot of the table there was very little food left, and what there was, was so cold by that time it was not particularly palatable.
During this time, Retreat Parades were very much in order. I am sure you will agree that they were enjoyed by all members of the Battalion, including the "canine" members. Remember how all the dogs in the Battalion formed a line, to the right of the "Drum and Bugle Corps" and how sweetly they harmonized with the music in "Retreat" and "To The Colors"? They were as quick to execute the command "Pass and Review" as were the troops. In fact they marched past the review stand, four abreast, in perfect alignment and exactly twenty yards in advance of the "Bugle Corps". Being very military dogs indeed, they completed the circle and formed on the right of the "music" and accompanied them in playing marches until the Battalion had passed the reviewing stand. They were particular never to break ranks until "chow call" was blown. Following "chow call", Heaven help the living, whether animal or vegetable, which was unfortunate enough to be caught between the dogs and the mess hall.
On October 15, 1942, the Battalion went to Hunter Liggett Military Reservation for a five day problem. During this problem, Lt. Bergman was assigned the duties of Assistant S-2 (Survey Officer). He worked both night and day, but never quite caught up with the Battalion in the tactical situation. In sheer desperation, he proceeded to disregard the tactical situation, and even went so far as to take complete possession of the roads and trails. The second night of the problem, he drove brazenly up to the "B" Battery gun position, with headlights shining on all four guns. Because of tactical situation and the fact that his men had spent hours camouflaging the guns, Captain Sorensen, who was Baker Battery Commander at the time, was a bit angry to say the least. Captain Sorensen yelled, "Bergman, what in the hell do you mean by coming into my gun position with your "blankety-blank lights burning?" Lt. Bergman who was not to be bothered by such trivial things replied, "I've a good reason, Captain." Captain Sorensen, not the least bit soothed by these words, asked "What is your reason?" Bergman, without so much as the blink of an eye, replied "I can't see without them" and with that, formed a "V" with this fingers, shouted " V for victory" and hurriedly drove away. In his hasty retreat, Bergman was unfortunate enough to get the wheels and drive-shaft of his vehicle tangled with Captain Sorensen's telephone lines, and pulled out over a mile of wire, not to mention practically destroying a good BD-71 switchboard which was connected to one end of that wire. Needless to say, Bergman dodged Captain Sorensen for the next few days.
Following this five-day problem, the Battalion returned to San Rafael, and somewhere along the road, Lieutenant Bergman acquired a dog. The dog was of "German Shepherd" origin and was believed by Bergman to be a pure bred. It became obvious to even the remainder of the Battalion that this was a very smart dog. Sergeant Leonard became the self-appointed trainer of the dog and succeeded in teaching him a number of very difficult "tricks". At the beginning of this training, the first thing which was taught the dog "Rex" was to "speak". Lt. Bergman was very proud of his dog's ability to understand and comply with the command "speak" and never failed to "show him off" at every opportunity. One night about 2300 hours, Bergman returned to camp accompanied by his very best girl friend. Wishing to "show the dog" before his girl, Bergman commanded "SPEAK, REX SPEAK", but Rex not being in the speaking mood at that time of night, was very adamant and refused to "speak". Bergman refused to give up, and kept repeating "SPEAK, REX" until he finally awoke Captain A. Joseph Swartzman, who was Bergmam's battery commander at the time. Swartzman, deciding that it would be impossible for him to get back to sleep until Rex had "spoken" shouted in a very loud and angry voice, "REX, FOR CHRIST'S SAKE, SAY SOMETHING". Needless to say, a very much embarrassed Bergman ceased his effort to "show the dog".
Another short story of the San Rafael days has been contributed by Private Edward Stackowski, who was at that time a member of Service Battery.
Private Austin L. Fotheringham, was at that time, undergoing the transition period between "single" and "married life". As all you married men know, that is a period during which there is never enough money to defray the necessary expenses. Private Fotheringham was no exception. It seems that he had been borrowing rather heavily from members of the Battalion and on several "paydays" found himself hard pressed to meet his obligations. One bright and sunny Tuesday morning, following a "Monday payday", Pvt Fotheringham was walking across the motor pool area. Now it so happened that some soldier had been "raking" the area, and had left a rake lying in the grass "teeth up". Pvt Fotheringham, not seeing the rake, stepped squarely on the "teeth" causing the rake handle to deal him a resounding blow on the back of his head and shoulder blades. Without breaking his stride, or as much as turning around, Pvt Fotheringham was heard to say, "I'll pay you next payday".
74TH FIELD ARTILLERY BN. BATTERY C, CHRISTMAS MENU AND ROSTER, DEC. 25th, 1942
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Lieutenant Colonel Mitchell was transferred to Alaska during the month of May 1943. Lt. Colonel George H. Davis arrived and assumed command of the Battalion on July 1, 1943.
On July 30, 1943, the Battalion, less Battery A marched to Hunter Liggett Military Reservation, California, for a one month training period and to take the AGF Artillery Firing Test.
During the month of August, we were called upon to furnish a group of artillerymen to form a provisional Cannon Company for an Infantry Regiment. As most units do, in cases of this kind, we sent them fairly good men, however we didn't cripple the Battalion by giving the best. The enlisted men had other ideas. To them, when a group was transferred out in this manner, it meant that another group of "eight-balls" were on the way out. Being a group of men who were noted for having no mercy on their fellow soldiers, these remaining with the Battalion, lined up along each side of the road, waiting for the "eight-balls" to depart. As the trucks rolled by, the farewell shouts of the men along the road were "Eight-Balls" - " Just a bunch of faking eight-balls". This was not true of course. We sent some very good men in that group, some we would have been very glad to keep.
September 1, 1943, the Battalion was relieved from the Western Defense Command and assigned to the II Armored Corps with a permanent station at Camp Roberts, California.
We satisfactorily passed the AGF Artillery Firing Test on September 5, 1943 under the II Armored Corps testing team. We were relieved from the II Armored Corps and assigned to the XVIII Corps on October 1, 1943, and served with that Corps until November 1, 1943 when we were assigned to the Fourth Army.
We remained with the Fourth Army long enough to again complete the Firing Tests and on February 1, 1944, were assigned to the III Army Corps.
Under the III Army Corps, we completed our preparations for overseas service and on February 22, 1944 entrained for Fort Sill, Oklahoma, for a short period of duty as school troops, prior to going overseas.
The Battalion made this move in two trains, Lt. Colonel Davis taking one train, I the other (Major Lansford). On all previous moves of the Battalion, it had either rained or we moved on Sunday, this was no exception. It rained during the two days of loading and was still raining on Sunday as we departed. Both trains were scheduled to go by way of Los Angeles and the first train, commanded by Lt. Colonel Davis, made it. However his was the last train to pass through Santa Maria, California for several days.
Heavy rains washed out a bridge just as his train passed over. Our train waited twelve hours for the repair crew to get the bridge back in, and when, after that time the bridge had not been repaired, we were re-routed to the north. That is why, two days after we departed, our train was seen passing back through Camp Roberts, north bound.
The equipment was well loaded, so with nothing to worry about from that source, the Officers and Enlisted men settled down in their respective cars for seven quiet days of poker playing.
The only interruption to this pleasant trip occurred in Grand Junction, Colorado.
As you know, the Battalion was very much concerned about Oklahoma being a "dry" state. Consequently, all were very anxious to "stock up" before leaving the "wet" states. So, when the Conductor informed us that there would be a 30 minute stop at Grand Junction, Captain Harrington, Captain Zumbach, Lieutenant Schulte and Lieutenant Brightman decided to buy a case of whiskey. They had no more than left the train when it pulled out.
We, on the train, separated from the Conductor by some 30 flat cars loaded with materiel, were unable to stop the train. I had a mental picture of reporting to Fort Sill with three officers, Lieutenant Ross, Lieutenant Gorwitz and myself, and trying to explain how I had lost four officers en route.
I told Lieutenant Gorwitz to work his way up to the locomotive and tell the Engineer to stop. He managed to get as far as the coal car and could go no further without endangering his life. Seeing the Engineer's arm protruding out the window, Gorwitz proceeded to "chuck" coat as it, finally succeeding in scoring a direct hit. The Engineer, being unable to hear the shouts of Lieutenant Gorwitz, feared that someone was trying to kill him and wreck the train. The battle was on. The Engineer at one end of the car, Gorwitz at the other, each throwing coal as if their lives depended upon it. Lieutenant Gorwitz admits that more than once he was compelled to retreat to the security of the next car to avoid being wounded.
Meanwhile back in Grand Junction, Captain Harrington and the others were having their own troubles. Arriving back at the station, they just couldn't believe the train had departed without them. Captain Harrington, with the case of whiskey over his shoulder, started down the track "on the double"; the other officers trotting along, single file. Every few steps Captain Harrington would say, "Major Lansford won't go away without me", " I just know he won't." Little did he know that by that time "Major Lansford" was fifteen miles down the road and traveling at the rate of sixty miles an hour, and that Lieutenant Gorwitz was committed to a life and death struggle with the Engineer, trying to stop the train. Realizing that if he was going to catch the train, by running, it would be necessary to abandon the whiskey, Harrington changed his tactics. Returning to the station, he presented the situation to the Railroad Dispatcher. The Dispatcher having handled like situations before, calmly wired ahead and had our train put on a siding. Harrington then commandeered a laundry truck, loaded the officers and whiskey aboard and started for the train.
Meanwhile back at the train, no sooner had it stopped in the siding, when the Engineer, armed with a "crowbar", came down through the train looking for Lieutenant Gorwitz. Well, just in the nick of time, we managed to get Gorwitz hidden in a compartment, and succeeded in convincing the Engineer that there was no such officer on the train.
The laundry truck finally arrived and we resumed our journey. However at each stop, it was necessary to keep Lieutenant Gorwitz hidden. The Engineer looked for him at every stop.
Upon arrival, Headquarters, Headquarters Battery and Service Battery remained at Fort Sill. Battery B was placed on detached service with the Infantry Replacement Training Center at Camp Wolters, Texas. Battery C was placed on detached service with the Infantry Replacement Training Center at Camp Fannin, Texas. All Batteries received some very valuable training at these places. Baker and Charlie Batteries firing in "close support training" over the heads of the Infantrymen. Those Batteries remaining at Fort Sill were trained in the very latest artillery methods, while serving as school troops.
During this tour of duty at Fort Sill some of the officers were required to attend an "Air Observation School" which was conducted by the 401st Field Artillery Group. Lieutenant John W. Cotton and Captain Godfrey Zumbach were the two officers who attended.
Battery A was relieved from duty in the Aleutians and rejoined the Battalion at Fort Sill, Oklahoma on April 27, 1944.
Once again we were a full Battalion, even though we were scattered over Oklahoma and Texas. The War Department was not long in giving us our "Preparation for Overseas Movement, Alert Orders" These orders specified an "Equipment Readiness Date" of 26 November 1944 and a "Personnel Readiness Date" of 10 December 1944.
Orders were then received to proceed to Camp Polk, Louisiana, by marching. We departed Fort Sill, September 1, 1944, arriving at Camp Polk, September 3, 1944 and were assigned to the XXI Corps.
Our first few weeks at Camp Polk were taken up with final phases in overseas training. At the close of this training we were again given the AGF Artillery Firing Test, successfully completing this test on 9 November 1944.
Following these tests, the Battalion worked night and day, against a deadline, to get the equipment packed and crated for overseas shipment.
An interesting sidelight on this packing was that all equipment in boxes must have three inches of packing between box and equipment. Being limited on what we were to take, it looked as though the men would have to leave their sleeping bags behind. However it was discovered that a sleeping bag made the best kind of packing for the boxes and we managed to ship all sleeping bags as packing material.
Once the equipment was packed, there remained nothing for us to do except keep physically fit. This we did by having organized athletics during the day and rough and tumble parties at night. I am unable to tell stories about the enlisted men during this period, inasmuch as they were left pretty much alone and permitted to enjoy life in their own way, coupled with the fact that they were very hesitant, for obvious reasons, to tell stories on themselves. However Captain J. (Cornerstone) Butts, came through with another story about an officer.
One Sunday afternoon, following a seven-day party, Major Lansford crawled out from under his bunk, to find his room, as well as the entire building, pretty much in shambles. The Major having a fairly clear head at this time of day, remembered his Army training, and decided he must talk to the officers about the care of government property. Hearing what he immediately recognized as a party in progress at the other end of the building, decided the time was ripe for his lecture. Upon joining the party, he decided it would not be proper to give the lecture immediately, so proceeded to have a few drinks. After his fifth drink, the Major delivered the following address:
"Gentlemen, I have decided to talk to you about the proper care of government property. It seems that many of you have not the proper sense of responsibility to see that this building, for instance, is cared for after the same manner in which you would care for your own homes. If you will take the trouble to look about you, you will find many evidences of lackadaisical care. Windows are broken, walls scratched, doors broken and shelves torn out. This must stop. I am hereby assuming the responsibility to see to it that any property or damaged, is promptly and fully paid for by the offender."
The lofty sentiment in the above speech was slightly obscured during the final sentence, due to the fact that the Major casually picked up a "dead soldier" lying on the floor and heaved it through the window, unimpeded by the window glass and screen.
On Monday morning Major Lansford purchased a window screen, the necessary nails and putty, and proceed to repair the damage.
Orders were received for the advanced detachment to depart for an overseas destination. The mission of this detachment was to act as a reception committee for the main body, which was to follow some two weeks later.
On December 4, 1944, the advance detachment, consisting of Major Erdie O. Lansford, WOJG Ralph L. Westmoreland and Technical Sergeant Manuel G. Badillo, departed Camp Polk, Louisiana, for Camp Kilmer, N. J. Authority for this move was: Letter, ASF NYPE, Brooklyn, New York, file SPPTAA 370.5 GM (CA) (No. 9230) dated November 17, 1944. The Detachment arrived at Camp Kilmer on December 6, 1944, were processed for overseas service and sailed from New York on the "Queen Mary", December 10, 1944.
The Detachment arrived in Greennock, Scotland 16 December 1944. Upon arrival was assigned to the United Kingdom Base and attached to the XXI Corps. Debarkation was complete on 18 December 1944 and the detachment entrained for Congleton, Cheshire, England, arriving there at 2330 hours the same date. It remained at Congleton until January 2, 1945 moving on that date to Camp Blackshaw Moor, Staffordshire, England, and remained there preparing for the arrival of the main body of the Battalion.
The main body, consisting of 29 Officers, 1 Warrant Officer, and 451 Enlisted men, entrained at Camp Polk, Louisiana, 14 December 1944 en route to Camp Shanks, New York, pursuant to Movement Orders, Shipment 5069-G, 14th Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, Special Troops, Fourth Army, Camp Polk, Louisiana, file AG 370.5/262 GNMC14, dated 6 December 1944. The Battalion arrived at Camp Shanks, New York, 17 December 1944. Embarked aboard the U.S.A.T. J.W. McAndrew at pier 84, NYPE 23 December 1944 with 28 Officers, 1 Warrant Officer, and 450 Enlisted men. One man was AWOL from Camp Shanks and was dropped from the rolls prior to embarkation. The Battalion sailed 26 December 1944 en route to overseas destination.
Several accounts have been given of this trip and from what I gather; it must have been a "rough" one. Lt. Col. George Davis, being an "Old Sea Dog", from a way back, gives this account of the trip.
First of all, the "J. W. McAndrew" must have been the oldest ship in the Navy. It is generally believed throughout the Battalion that it must have been, at one time, a part of the Fleet commanded by John Paul Jones. There wasn't a square corner on the ship. If it had been round as a ball, it couldn't have rolled more. On several occasions the "ship roll" was recorded at 45 degrees. Tables were torn loose from the floors and smashed against the "bulkheads". Passengers and crew ate standing for several days, subsisting chiefly on sandwiches and coffee. Over half the Battalion was suffering from "sea sickness" and some never left their bunks during the entire trip.
One night the sea became so rough that several tiers of bunks were torn down and some of the occupants were injured, luggage and equipment sliding from the wall to wall in a tangled mess. One man was seriously injured during the voyage and was transferred, upon arrival in England to the Detachments of Patients, 232 Station Hospital, APO 349A, U.S. Army.
The most tragic part of the trip was that most all the "spirits" carried in hand luggage, was broken and the Battalion arrived in England in a very "dry" state of affairs. The Battalion arrived at Swansea, Wales 7 January 1945. Debarked January 8th and entrained for Leek, Staffordshire, England, arriving at Leek 1500 hours the same date. They were met at the station by the advanced detachment and conducted to Camp Blackshaw Moor, for temporary station.
On January 11, 1945 the Battalion was assigned to the 210th Field Artillery Group, pursuant to Headquarters XXIII Corps, Station List Designation, dated 11 January 1945.
The Battalion was reorganized under Table of Organization and Equipment 6-25 dated 27 September 1944. Reorganization completed 27 January 1945.
On January 11, 1945 the Battalion was relieved from assignment to the U.K. Base and assigned to the Fifteenth U.S. Army, Twelfth Army Group.
Our stay in England was a very enjoyable one, to say the least. Here we learned the customs and courtesies of that great nation. We learned to appreciate the difficulties under which those people had been living for so many years. With their import trade at practically a standstill, meat and eggs were a forgotten food. I am sure we all admire the British much more than we did before going over there. They have a great deal of pride and never once were they heard to complain about their sacrifices during the war.
Among other things, we learned to like English beer, which is an accomplishment after drinking American beer for so long. Also we learned to like "Gin and Hot Water". In fact some of us became so fond of it that it's still quite in order on cold wet days. After two double gins and hot water, the whole world was warm and cozy, even the meager fires in the pubs seemed warm. I am sure we will never forget our "midnight rides" through the blinding snowstorms of Buxton, England for these pleasant evenings of drinking.
Deep snow, cold weather and English beer taught us also to appreciate the more modern plumbing of U.S. Army barracks back in the states.
A critical shortage of "Spirits" in England caused a new industry to spring up within the Battalion. It was known as "The Davis-Lansford Gin Mill". Good points about the product of this mill was that only Davis and Lansford dared drink the stuff. However, on one occasion several of the officers became desperate and decided to have a few "short snorts" of this wonderful concoction. The net results being that Captain J. (Cornerstone) Butts became so stiff that it was necessary to submerge him in warm water to loose up the joints of his body and Lieutenant Aure, Ln. Pilot, lost his voice and was grounded for three days.
In thinking of Lieutenant Aure, I am reminded of the day he completely demolished one good Liaison type Aircraft L-4-J.
Lieutenant Aure "came in" for a landing and deciding a strong tail wind was causing him to "Overshoot" the field, opened the throttle wide and tried to resume flying speed. Had it not been for something like 30 telephone wires at the end of the field he would have made it. But alas, his wheels caught in the wire; cutting his flying speed so much that he realized he was going to crash. Suddenly he became aware of some 200 enlisted men directly in the path of his cub. Throwing caution to the wind, he decided it would be far better to crash into the trees, disregarding his own safety, than to land in the group of men. Giving the "stick" a hard left, he crashed into the trees. The left wing took the top out of a tree just back of our command post and he crashed "head-on" into the next tree in line. We dashed out of the command post and in viewing the tangled wreckage it seemed impossible that Lt. Aure had escaped with his life. Now it so happened that it was very cold at the time and the Pilots was the object of much envy because of the warm flying jackets, which they were issued. So as we burst upon the scene of the wreckage, I heard some officer say "I get his flying jacket" The officer was doomed for disappointment however, for no sooner had he spoken than Lt. Aure came crawling out of the wreckage with not so much as one hair of his head out of place. So much for the warm, sympathetic feeling the officers had for each other.
By the 15th of February we had drawn our vehicles, uncrated our equipment and were awaiting orders to proceed to France.
On Thursday March 1, 1945, the Battalion departed Leek, England by motor for the embarking area D-6, arriving there at 2130 hours. Distance marched 210 miles. We remained there overnight and the following day marched to the Area called D-8 where we embarked at 1645 hours March 2, 1945.
The cross channel trip was made in LST's and without incident. We arrived at Le Havre, France on the 3rd of March. Marched from Le Havre to Camp "Twenty Grand", arriving at 1500 hours. The following day, Sunday March 4th, we marched from Twenty Grand to Dieppe, France and went into a bivouac camp on an old airstrip. I arrived (Major Lansford) at the airstrip slightly in advance of the Battalion and had the area pointed out to me by a sleepy soldier. Since time was so limited and it was raining very hard, I made a hurried reconnaissance of the area in my car. Upon return to the soldier, after having driven all over the place, he said "Major, I forgot to tell you, but this place has never been "swept" for mines and several have been found in the area." (A fine time to tell me a thing like that). Since I had not exploded a mine and since there was no alternative, I guided the Battalion in as best I could, after cautioning them that there might be mines in the area.
On Tuesday March 13, 1945, we were relieved from the Fifteenth Army and assigned to the First Army. Orders were received the same day to proceed to Aubel, Belgium.
Departed Dieppe, France on March 14, 1945, and arrived at Aubel, Belgium at 1800 hours March 15, 1945. Distance marched 164 miles. Quarters were taken up in an old "Castle" which had been occupied by both Germans and American soldiers prior to our arrival.
On Friday, March 16, 1945, Lieutenant Gorwitz found, hidden in the building, a Phoenician Papyrus Document, or book, written in cuneiform and Hieroglyphics. The document was taken by Lieutenant Gorwitz to Liege, Belgium and presented to Mr. Le Directeur Ochs, Musee Desbeaux Arts. Directeur Ochs estimated the age of the document at 6000 years. Stated that he know of no similar document in existence anywhere in the world. He estimated it would take five years to translate the document and promised to send the Battalion a copy of the translation. He gave it a monetary value of priceless.
On Friday March 16th, a liaison officer arrived from the First Army with orders for us to move to the city of Cologne Germany, with temporary duty there as security guard.
The next few days were taken up in relieving the 690th Field Artillery Battalion in Cologne, and getting settled.
On the 5th of April we were relieved from assignment to the First Army and assigned to the Fifteen Army.
After six weeks of solving varied and momentous problems of the German civilians, orders arrived which were to end our official duties with the Military Government in Cologne. The Battalion was to go back to its primary role of field artillery.
We were instructed to transfer our over strength to the 115th F.A. Bn., so on 20th May 1945, some 97 enlisted men were selected for the transfer. Captain Butts was to be in charge of the men until they were delivered to the 115th F.A. Battalion.
On May 21, 1945, Paragraph No. 3, Operations Instructions Number 9-1, Headquarters XXII Corps Artillery relieved the Battalion from attachment to the 417th Field Artillery Group. We were directed to move into a bivouac area near Urbach, Germany for thirty days training, prior to direct re-deployment to the China Burma India Theater (C.B.I) for further combat duty.
The Battalion was relieved and departed Cologne on May 21, 1945, going into bivouac near Urbach the same date.
The next twenty days were spent in intensive training of all Battalion personnel. Men having served in two theaters and those having a high point score were transferred to the 106th Infantry Division. A like number of Infantrymen were received from the 106th as artillery replacements for our Battalion. These men arrived in sufficient time to take part in our final service practice, and were considered well enough trained to accompany us to the CBI Theater.
We were very fortunate in that our bivouac area was well stocked with a"game" of all kinds, having once been a reserved hunting area for high-ranking German Officers. This eliminated the necessity of having small arms practice. The Officers and Enlisted men never tired of hunting and each evening after the day's work was done, they could be seen departing the area on hunting forays. This was encouraged by the fact that recall was at 1730 hours and it did not get dark until about 2300 hours, giving plenty of daylight for shooting.
The favorite weapons for hunting were the German machine pistol, the American M-1 rifle and shotguns of all types. We were never wanting for a meat ration. Barbecue pits operated day and night. The most popular of the game was deer and wild boar of which there was an abundant supply.
We had one fish fry during the period, Headquarters Battery furnishing the fish. The favorite fishing tackle was the hand grenade. Two grenades in the stream provided fish enough for the entire Battalion.
THE END OF THE WAR IN EUROPE was officially announced by the Supreme Allied Commander effective 0001 9 May 1945.
On Sunday May 10, 1945, orders were received to the effect that we would be re-deployed through the States instead of direct from Europe. No need mentioning how happy that made us, you remember that as well as anyone.
The advance detachment left the following morning for Camp Lucky Strike, France, and embarked at Le Havre, France, 0700 hours, 19th June 1945. Arrived in New York on Tuesday 26 June 1945, they were quickly processed and left for their homes on a thirty-day leave.
The main body departed Urbach, Germany at 1200 hours, 12th June 1945, motor march, and arrived at Camp Lucky Strike, France, 14 June 1945.
After being moved around several times the Battalion finally embarked from Le Havre, France en route to the U.S.A. 25 June 1945, Arriving in New York on 5 July 1945, all personnel were processed and given thirty-day leave. All were instructed to report at the termination of their leave to Fort Jackson, S.C., for permanent station.
Note: The 74th Field Artillery Battalion embarked on transport a"Marine Dragon" 1415 hours, 25 June 1945, and sailed from Le Havre, France, en route to the U.S.A on 27 June 1945.
The Battalion was assigned to the Second U.S. Army and attached to the XXXII Corps Artillery and 415th Field Artillery Group on July 5, 1945.
While the personnel were home on leave and furlough, the war with Japan ended. It meant that we would not re-deployed to the CBI Theater and everyone returned to Fort Jackson in a very happy frame on mind.
By the end of August all had reported back for duty and began "sweating out" their separation from the service.
September, October and November saw the majority of enlisted men and officers separated from the service. As I write this (Major E. O. Lansford) at the close of December 1945, there remain only a handful of the old officers and enlisted men.
Our service in the Army during this emergency will be one of the most important chapters in our lives. Whether we consider it good or bad, the fact remains that it has influenced our lives as no other event possibly could. We left our homes, schools, jobs, and loved ones to do our part in this fight for freedom. Few generations have had the honor, privilege and satisfaction of matching their intelligence and stamina against the enemy, in preserving their rights as a free people.
We who served with you have nothing but the highest regard for your character, honor and integrity. We as a unit and nation have been made secure by your determination and ability as soldiers and men.
Honor and integrity are our keys to success and happiness. Our word must be our bond. If we are steadfast in all matters, both great and small, we will gain and keep the respect and confidence of our fellowman.
In this chapter we have experienced both good and evil, it has been both pleasant and miserable. We have walked hand and hand with, and talked with God, the devil and death. Whether or not we will be better men by having done so, remains to be seen.
I sincerely hope you enjoy reading this history as much as I have enjoyed writing it. It has been a real pleasure. Our thanks for your contribution to this book, without it, it would have been impossible to make this publication.
We join, with all who served the 74th Field Artillery Battalion, in wishing you SUCCESS AND HAPPINESS - wherever you are.
Major Erdie O. Lansford
74th FA Bn, Historian
Fort Jackson, S.C.
December 31, 1945
Editor and Arranger - 1st Lt. K. Stuart Hawkinson
Assembling Pictures - 1st Lt Bertram K. Gorwitz
Service Records - 1st Lt John W. Cotton
Members of Committee - Captain Godfrey Zumbach, 1st Lt Robert B. Wilson
THE ALEUTIAN ISLANDS CAMPAIGN
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The Aleutian Islands Campaign
THE FORGOTTEN BATTLE: THE JAPANESE INVASION OF ALASKA
Click on the below link:
The Forgotten Battle: The Japanese Invasion of Alaska
VIDEO: ALEUTIAN ISLANDS CAMPAIGN WW2
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Video: The Aleutian Island Campaign WW2
HISTORY OF ALEUTIAN PERIOD, BATTERY A
The end of July 1942 saw the hydra-headed rumors, as to which Battery of the 74th FA Bn would be selected for Aleutian duty, crystallize when Battery A drew the hypothetical short straw.
The first week of August was filed with last minute preparations, drawing overseas equipment, service practice at Camp Heidle (Hydle), and finally on the 6th of August the convoy from San Rafael to pier 17, San Francisco, thence by ferry boat to Fort McDowell, California.
After six days at Fort McDowell, complete with shots, kitchen police, drawing more equipment, and no passes, most of the Battery were resigned, if not relieved, when they marched aboard the U.S.S. Mihiel.
Sailing date was the 13th and a week-long trip to Kodiak was filled with calisthenics, schools, and restless sleep in the forward hold of Hatch No. 1, punctuated by calls over the ship's speaking system of "Clean Sweep Down, Fore and Aft, Sweepers Man Your Brooms", "The Smoking Lamp is Out", and of course for the seasick the not too welcome "Pipe the Crew to Chow".
The stop over at Kodiak included a conditioning hike, familiarization with the "03" (rifle), and amphibious training. The 26th found this stepchild Battery of the 74th FA Bn aboard ship again en route to "Fireplace".
The anchor dipped into the icy waters of Kulak Bay and the Battery landed on the 30th on the bleak, barren, windswept shores of Sweepers Cove, Adak, Alaska. Of course, on hand to greet "A" Battery were three permanent residents of the Aleutians, that chain of Tundra covered sand spits dropped by some angry god into and angry sea, wind, cold, and icy rain.
After a temporary bivouac at Sweepers Cove the Battery marched to a more permanent camp near Andrews Lagoon, a slow tiring journey. At one stage the Battery took five hours to progress one mile over spongy tundra and soft oozing mud.
As September wore into October, the Battery continued work on the new camp area. OP's and Machine Gun outposts were established on bluffs overlooking Andrew Lagoon. The howitzers were towed through bogs up to the new camp area. Pyramidal tents were pitched and conditions were improved up to the point of at least endurability.
November and December were months of continual work. Quonset huts began to appear and battery schools mushroomed under Captain Ward's guidance. Alerts were becoming more frequent, caused generally by reports of Jap fleet movements. Turkey was served Christmas in a Quonset hut (36x16), a real change from the seal and ptarmigan diet of some of the outposts.
The new year brought the first change of personnel, some by transfer to other outfits, some, like S/Sgt Bedenbough, Henderson, Cpls Creek, Hebard, Walker, and Pfc Russell by return to the States for O.C.S. Work continued on Camp improvements; roads were built, and a steady stream of details were sent to other outfits for construction work. Battery officer's schools, gun drills, and an occasional service practice completed the training program.
Enemy action was of a limited nature but he threat of invasion and large scale bombing raids was very real and ever present, particularly in the early days. One Jap raid did cascade four 250-pound bombs within three hundred yards of the camp area and adjacent areas were strafed.
Spring and early summer of 1943 saw preparations for the Kiska Operation commence, R.S.O.P.'s and Firing problems became more frequent and amphibious operations were practiced on the shores of Sweepers Cove.
In August, training was considered almost complete and a year, almost to the day, after leaving San Rafael, California Battery A again loaded on a ship, this time for a dress rehearsal invasion of Kiska. The island of Great Sitka was chosen for the practice landing. "A" Battery was ashore and ready to fire one hour and fifteen minutes after leaving the transport S.S. Whitney for the L.C.V.'s and the beach. After the practice at Great Sitka, the Battery returned to Adak, made another practice tactical landing and then were given a week to ready themselves for what appeared to be the real thing.
The Kiska operation came, of course, as a welcomed anti-climax when it was found to be undefended and the 74th FA Bn, except for an advance bivouac party, never left their ship but, after a day in Kiska Harbor, turned around and steamed back to Adak.
The fall of 1943 brought recurrent rumors of an early return to the States but no slacking of work on the camp area and the gun positions.
The second Christmas dinner was served in the new Battery Club House, constructed the previous month. The Turkey bones were hardly picked dry before a succession of blizzards struck and that winter was largely spent digging out from storm after another.
A Bronze Battle Star was added to the Asiatic-Pacific ribbon worn by the men and the same citation awarded a streamer for the Battery A Guidon. But the big event came when, finally, on the 6th of April 1944, the Battery loaded on the S.S. Findley M. Garrison for a return trip to the States. A stop-over at Dutch Harbor, rough weather, continuing schools, and an emergency appendectomy on Cpl. Epler on a pitching ship's hospital table were the highlights of the return trip.
The ship docked at Pier B, Seattle, Washington on the 17th of April and within a few days most of the tundra happy veterans were off for furloughs prior to reporting to the parent organization at Fort Sill, where they were welcomed back with the now famous remark that "we are glad you're back because now we can all go overseas".
HEADQUARTERS BATTERY OVERSEAS ROSTER
Lt. Col. Davis, Commanding
Major Lansford, Bn Exec. and S-1
Major Harrington, S-3
Captain Ward, S-2
Captain Spradlin, Ln. O.
Captain Sorensen, Asst. S-3
Lt. Gorwitz, Asst. S-2
HEADQUARTERS BATTERY OFFICRS
Captain Zumbach, Bn Com. O.and Hq BC
Lt. Archer, Asst. Bn Com. O.
Lt. Johnson, Motor Officer
Lt. Smith, Ln. Pilot
Lt. Aure, Ln. Pilot
BATTALION HEADQUARTERS SECTION
M/Sgt Marlow, Sgt Major
T/Sgt Badillo, Pers. Sgt Major
Sgt Bula, Msg. Cen. Chief
T/4 Jacobson, Hq. Clerk
T/4 Jensen, Classification Clerk
Cpl Dukeminier, M/R Clerk
Cpl Paxton, Msg. Cen. Clerk
Cpl Niedermeyer, Bn. Agent
T/5 Withers, Bn Mail Clerk
Pfc Baron, Hq. Typist
Pfc Liedtke, Hq. Typist
BATTERY HEADQUARTERS SECTION
1st/Sgt Bledsoe, 1st Sgt
T/Sgt Funke, Com. Chief
Cpl Hernandez, Btry Clerk
S/Sgt Fee, Radio Sgt
T/4 Batey, Radio Repairman
T/4 Mitchell, Radio Repairman - My dad, T/4 Willard Mitchell served with HQ Battery. He used to regale me with stories from both the horse-drawn days and the days after becoming motorized. - Charles Mitchell
T/4 Goodman, Radio Repairman
T/4 Morgan, Radio Repairman
T/4 Grace, Radio Repairman
T/4 Rappe, Radio Repairman
T/4 Chandler, Radio Repairman
Cpl Mellen, Radio Cpl
T/5 Clark, Radio Operator
T/5 Drew, Radio Operator
T/5 Echele, Radio Operator
T/5 Kedzior, Radio Operator
T/5 Jennings, Radio Operator
Pfc Hildebrand, Radio Operator
S/Sgt Bruech, Wire Chief
Cpl Kramer, Wire Cpl
Cpl Billings, Wire Cpl
Cpl Tarter, Wire Cpl
Cpl Tonn, Wire Cpl
T/5 Clanton, Wire Tel. Man
T/5 Gardner, Wire Tel. Man
T/5 Palmeri, Wire Tel. Man
T/5 Sant, Wire Tel. Man
T/5 Schoessler, Wire Tel. Man
T/5 Walker, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Boulware, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Cornick, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Craft, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Cunningham, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Dearman, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Frye, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc George, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Lott, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Machi, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Robbins, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Silk, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Cory, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Hall, Wire Tel. Man
Pfc Hines, Wire Tel. Man
S/Sgt Seiler, Survey Sgt
T/4 Morris, Instrument Operator
T/5 Goldberg, Instrument Operator
Pfc Lew, Rod Man
Pfc Smith, Rod Man
Pfc Taylor, Rod Man
Pfc Wells, Rod Man
T/Sgt Wagner, Operations Sgt
S/Sgt Hamilton, Computer
T/4 Isom, Computer
T/4 Wilson, VCO
T/4 Wydeck, HCO
T/5 Bedwell, Computer
Pfc Gaborick, Operations Asst.
S/Sgt Cahill, Mess Sgt
S/Sgt Domench, Motor Sgt
S/Sgt Wasley, Supply Sgt
S/Sgt Dunham, Cook
T/4 Talbot, Cook
T/4 Shepard, Cook
T/4 Kremsreiter, Auto Mechanic
T/4 Youngblood, Auto Mechanic
T/5 Nichols, Supply Clerk
T/5 Bratlin, Auto Mechanic
T/5 Harrell, Cook
T/5 Circosta, Driver
T/5 Page, Driver
T/5 Bryant, Driver
T/5 Bicklin, Driver
T/5 Van Horn, Auto Mechanic
Pfc Spivey, Cook
Pfc Paulson, Driver
T/3 Hudson, Air Mechanic
T/5 Scott, Air Mechanic
T/5 Christian, Driver
MACHINE GUN SECTION
Cpl Perkins, Machine Gun Cpl
Cpl Mather, Machine Gun Cpl
Pfc Royer, Machine Gun Operator
Pfc Martinez, Machine Gun Operator
Pfc O'Neal, Machine Gun Operator
Pfc Wilson, Machine Gun Operator
BATTERY "A" OVERSEAS ROSTER
Captain Hawkins, Battery Commander
1st Lt. Wilson, Exec. Officer
1st Lt. Covington, Rcn. Officer
1st Lt. Cotton, Mtr. Officer, Asst. Exec.
1st/Sgt Smith, 1st/Sgt
Cpl. Epler, Clerk
T/5 Swank, Mail Clerk
S/Sgt Terrell, Chief of Detail
T/4 Northington, Radio Opr.
T/4 Robeyson, Radio Mechanic
T/5 Brown, Radio Opr.
T/5 Scott, Radio Opr.
Pfc Adamski, Radio Opr.
Pfc Deluise, Radio Opr.
Cpl Foster, Scout Cpl
Cpl Stimax, Scout Cpl
Cpl Mitchell, Agent
Cpl Smith, C.H. Recorder, Instr. Opr.
Pfc Sweeney, Inst. Opr.
Cpl Fowler, Wire Cpl
T/5 Kuhn, Wire, Tel. Man
T/5 Powers, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Glasgok, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Vogel, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Martin, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Kaminski, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Benninger, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc McCasland, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Stanfield, Driver
T/5 Brady, Driver
Pfc McMahon, Driver
Pfc Grund, Driver
Pfc Polonkai, Buglar
Cpl Thornton, Machine Gun Cpl
Pfc Simini, Machine Gunner
Pfc Sparks, Machine Gunner
S/Sgt Fowler, Chief to Section
Cpl Holliday, Gunner
T/5 White, Driver
Pfc Dunstan, Cannoneer
Pfc Hays, Cannoneer
Pfc Jacobs, Cannoneer
Pfc Barnes, Cannoneer
Pfc Spalding, Cannoneer
Pfc Tryon, Cannoneer
Pfc Tuttle, Cannoneer
Sgt Tidwell, Chief of Section
Cpl Riley, Gunner
T/5 Mikkola, Driver
Pfc Benson, Cannoneer
Pfc Caban, Cannoneer
Pfc Lowe, Cannoneer
Pfc Nordin, Cannoneer
Pfc Pojecsko, Cannoneer
Pfc Breen, Cannoneer
Pfc Trujillo, Cannoneer
Sgt Amizich, Chief of Section
Cpl Lorino, Gunner
Pfc Bartz, Cannoneer
Pfc Stamberger, Cannoneer
Pfc Thill, Cannoneer
Pfc Brown, Cannoneer
Pfc Malotke, Cannoneer
Pfc Swartout, Cannoneer
Pfc Willis, Cannoneer
Pfc Zorger, Cannoneer
Sgt Hovey, Chief of Section
Cpl Smith, C. W., Gunner
Pfc Lillya, Driver
Pfc Bates, Cannoneer
Pfc Chrisholm, Cannoneer
Pfc Dicus, Cannoneer
Pfc Hanson, Cannoneer
Pfc House, Cannoneer
Pfc Mauck, Cannoneer
Pfc Shehan, Cannoneer
FIFTH SECTION (MACHINE GUN)
Sgt Hunter, Chief of Section
Cpl Walker, Machine Gun Cpl
Pfc Paulson, Machine Gunner
Pfc Beeker, Machine Gunner
Pfc Williams, Machine Gunner
Pfc Farley, Machine Gunner
Pfc Spencer, Machine Gunner
Pfc Wilson, Machine Gunner
Pfc Barnes, Machine Gunner
Pfc Henneke, Machine Gunner
S/Sgt Hillyard, Supply Sgt
T/4 Bowser, Supply Asst.
S/Sgt Wright, Mess Sgt
T/4 Chappell, First Cook
T/5 Davis, Cook
Pfc Satterwhite, Cook
Sgt. Kelly, Motor Sgt
T/4 Hansen, Motor Mechanic
T/4 Martin, Artillery Mechanic
T/5 Gossman, Mess Driver
BATTERY "B" OVERSEAS ROSTER
Captain Abbott, Battery Commanding
1st Lt Morris, Exec. Officer
1st Lt Bessler, Recon. Officer
1st Lt Hoppe, Mtr. Officer, Asst. Exec.
1st Sgt Owens, 1st Sgt
Cpl Domolewicz, Btry. Clerk
T/5 Jones, Mail Clerk
Pfc Williams, B.C.'s Driver
S/Sgt Guthrie, Chief of Detail
T/4 Bozanich, Instr. Opr. Recorder
T/4 Keating, Radio Mechanic
Cpl Boucher, Agent
Cpl Dodd, Radio Opr
Cpl Hamman, Scout Cpl
Cpl LaRue, Scout Cpl
T/5 Buck Driver
T/5 Friedrichs, Wire, Tel. Man
T/5 Mountford, Radio Opr.
T/5 Newby, Switchboard Opr.
Cpl Newman, Wire Cpl
Pfc Flemming, Wire, Tel. Man
Pfc Johnson, Wire, Tel. Man
T/5 Randels, Instrument Opr.
Pfc Butterworth, Driver
Pfc Dikes, Driver
Pfc Goldsmith, Lineman
Pfc Mittermeir, Lineman
Pfc Moore, Instrument Opr.
Pfc Roman, Lineman
Pfc Slagle, Lineman
Pfc Torres, Lineman
Pfc Smith, R. J., Lineman
Pfc Menzi, Computer
S/Sgt Neely, Chief of Section
Cpl Lovelace, Gunner
Pfc Davis, Driver
Pfc Hamrich, Cannoneer
Pfc Kleekamp, Cannoneer
Pfc MacDonald, Cannoneer
Pfc MacGallrey, Cannoneer
Pfc White, Cannoneer
Pfc Zubrzycki, Cannoneer
Pfc Brummett, Cannoneer
Sgt Gibson, Chief of Section
Cpl Bruno, Gunner
Pfc Goodbrand, Driver
Pfc Anderson, Cannoneer
Pfc Cingolani, Cannoneer
Pfc Flythe, Cannoneer
Pfc Halligan, Cannoneer
Pfc Hendrix, Cannoneer
Pfc Luellen, Cannoneer
Pfc Collins, Cannoneer
Sgt Doose, Chief of Section
Cpl Loudon, Gunner
Pfc Karaliunas, Driver
T/5 Graham, Cannoneer
Pfc Olson, Cannoneer
Pfc Palumbo, Cannoneer
Pfc Kennedy, Cannoneer
Pfc King, Cannoneer
Pfc Rowe, Cannoneer
Pfc Olson, Cannoneer
Pfc Padgett, Cannoneer
Sgt Oldani, Chief of Section
Cpl Mason, Gunner
T/5 Duarte, Driver
Pfc Chisler, Cannoneer
Pfc Murphy, Cannoneer
Pfc Pierazzi, Cannoneer
Pfc Costello, Cannoneer
Pfc Bigger, Cannoneer
Pfc Eubank, Cannoneer
Pfc Walker, Cannoneer
FIFTH SECTION (MACHINE GUN)
Sgt Lange, Chief of Section
Cpl Allen, Machine Gun Cpl
Cpl Overholt, Machine Gun Cpl
Pfc Brown, Ammo Handler
Pfc Dronen, Ammo Handler
Pfc Thompson, Ammo Handler
Pfc Neri, Ammo Handler
Pfc Schoemake, Ammo Handler
Pfc Castelone, Driver
Pfc Wilson, Driver
S/Sgt Shariff, Supply Sgt
Pfc Beck, Supply Asst.
Sgt Schultz, Mess Sgt
T/4 Kuntz, First Cook
T/5 Moody, Cook
Pfc Warren, Cook
Pfc Dearman, Cook
Pfc Stanley, Cook
Pfc Krans, Driver
S/Sgt Simmons, Motor Sgt
T/4 Leddy, Motor Mechanic
Pfc Rea, Driver
T/4 Dice, Artillery Mechanic
BATTERY "C" OVERSEAS ROSTER
Captain O'Connell, Battery Commander
1st. Lt Hankinson, Exec. Officer
1st. Lt Dyer, Recon. Officer
1st. Lt Beadles, Mtr. Officer, Asst. Exec.
1st Sgt Masters, 1st Sgt
Cpl Ellebrecht, Clerk
T/5 Glynn, Mail clerk
Pfc Watkins, Battery Commander's driver
S/Sgt Estes, Chief of Detail
T/4 Blaine, Radio Repairman
T/4 Coffman, Radio Operator
T/5 Frye, Radio Operator
T/5 Rey, Radio Operator
Cpl Timken, Scout Cpl
Cpl Cosby, Scout Cpl
Cpl Gignoux, Agent
Cpl Piaser, Instrument Cpl
Pfc Leff, Instrument Operator
Pfc Speer, Instrument Operator
Cpl Whitsett, Wire Cpl
T/5 Bliss, Wire, Telephone man
T/5 Pyc, Switchboard Operator
T/5 Boone, Wire Telephone man
T/5 Larson, Driver
Pfc Clark, Wire Telephone man
Pfc Walls, Wire Telephone man
Pfc Gretton, Wire Telephone man
Pfc McManon, Wire Telephone man
Pfc Burgess, Wire Telephone man
Pfc Jackson, Wire Telephone man
Pfc McCloud, Wire Telephone man
Cpl Munk, Machine Gun Cpl
Pfc Pointkowski, Machine Gunner
S/Sgt Tolbert, Chief of Section
Cpl Ruckle, Gunner
Pfc W. N. Davis, Driver
Pfc Beccaria, Cannoneer
Pfc Martin, Cannoneer
Pfc Riley, Cannoneer
Pfc Pizzini, Cannoneer
Pfc Woods, Cannoneer
Pfc Fluke, Cannoneer
Pfc Wagner, Cannoneer
Pfc Roller, Cannoneer
Sgt Carroll, Chief of Section
Cpl Plummer, Gunner
Pfc Duryee, Driver
Pfc Sweat, Cannoneer
Pfc Thomas, Cannoneer
Pfc Tapio, Cannoneer
Pfc Janik, Cannoneer
Pfc Eubanks, Cannoneer
Pfc Bennett, Cannoneer
Pfc Sarracino, Cannoneer
Pfc Gorman, Cannoneer
Sgt Green, Chief of Section
Cpl Myers, Gunner
Pfc Hansen, Driver
Pfc C. F. Davis, Cannoneer
Pfc Ellerman, Cannoneer
Pfc Ward, Cannoneer
Pfc Ferry, Cannoneer
Pfc Marting, Cannoneer
Pfc Bushmeier, Cannoneer
Pfc Holt, Cannoneer
Sgt Olesen, Chief of Section
Cpl Dalton, Gunner
Pfc Burkett, Driver
Pfc Peterson, Cannoneer
Pfc Gudmunson, Cannoneer
Pfc Esteban, Cannoneer
Pfc Daniel, Cannoneer
Pfc Hatten, Cannoneer
Pfc Downs, Cannoneer
Pfc Shaffer, Cannoneer
Pfc Burns, Cannoneer
FIFTH SECTION (MACHINE GUN)
Sgt Cola, Chief of Section
Cpl Brown, Machine Gun Cpl
T/5 Carper, Driver
T/5 Murrish, Driver
Pfc Wynn, Driver
Pfc Bounds, Machine Gunner
Pfc Barkdale, Machine Gunner
Pfc Brewer, Machine Gunner
Pfc Allor, Ammo Handler
Pfc Cieciel, Ammo Handler
Pfc Clary, Ammo Handler
Pfc Strong, Ammo Handler
S/Sgt Jones, Supply Sgt
T/5 Jovanovich, Supply Asst.
S/Sgt Erkes, Mess Sgt
T/4 Cadena, First Cook
T/5 McDonald, Cook
Sgt Martinet, Motor Sgt
T/4 Eeten, Motor Mechanic
T/4 Rudstrom, Artillery Mechanic
74TH FIELD ARTILLERY BN. BATTERY C, CHRISTMAS MENU AND ROSTER, DEC. 25th, 1942
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SERVICE BATTERY OVERSEAS ROSTER
Captain Butts, Battery Commander, S-4
1st Lt Willoughby, Am Train Cmdr.
1st Lt Schulte, Battalion Motor Officer
WOJG Westmoreland, Asst. S-4
1st Sgt Brittain, 1st Sgt
Cpl Walter, Clerk
T/5 Jimenez, Mail clerk, Bugler
T/5 Quigley, Radio Operator
Pfc Austin, Driver
Pfc Roma, Driver
Pfc Silver, Driver
BATTALION SUPPLY SECTION
T/Sgt Kimsey, Battalion Supply Sgt
S/Sgt Bailey, Battalion Supply Sgt
T/5 Flader, Driver
T/5 Swan, Driver
Pfc Alexander, Supply clerk
BATTALION MAINTENANCE SECTION
M/Sgt Robling, Battalion Motor Sgt
T/4 Anderson, Battalion Mechanic
T/4 Overbo, Battalion Mechanic
T/4 Vogel, Mechanic, Welder
T/5 Ogden, Battalion Mechanic
Cpl Rupert, Parts Cpl, Dispatcher
Cpl Weatherby, Machine Gun Cpl
Pfc Stachowski, Machine Gunner
HEADQUARTERS AMMUNITION TRAIN
S/Sgt Gow, Ammo Sgt
T/4 Ward, Radio Operator
Cpl Jason, Agent
T/5 Gniewek, Driver
Sgt Drennan, Chief of Section
Pfc Cizl, Driver
Pfc Pigman, Driver
Pfc Coelho, Driver
Pfc Whitfill, Ammo Handler
Pfc Berry, Ammo Handler
Pfc Ferri, Ammo Handler
Pfc Krajewske, Ammo Handler
Pfc Olson, Ammo Handler
Pfc Schelburne, Ammo Handler
Pfc Barnett, Machine Gunner
Sgt White, Chief of Section
T/5 Moyer, Driver
T/5 Haughn, Driver
T/5 Neabuhr, Driver
Pfc Bellizzi, Ammo Handler
Pfc Fotheringham, Ammo Handler
Pfc Longmire, Ammo Handler
Pfc New, Ammo Handler
Pfc Todd, Ammo Handler
Pfc Villa, Ammo Handler
Sgt Stockton, Chief of Section
T/5 Pankratz, Driver
Pfc Moshier, Driver
Pfc Coons, Driver
Pfc Fleming, Ammo Handler
Pfc Godwin, Ammo Handler
Pfc Robbins, Ammo Handler
Pfc Scarbrugh, Ammo Handler
Pfc Tripp, Ammo Handler
Pfc Paquette, Ammo Handler
Cpl Norup, Machine Gun Cpl
BATTERY MAINTENANCE SECTION
S/Sgt Petrose, Supply Sgt
S/Sgt Babcock, Mess Sgt
T/4 Sullivan, First Cook
T/5 Hutchison, Cook
Sgt Westphal, Motor Sgt
T/4 Rauscher, Mechanic
T/5 Penny, Driver
Pfc Barrious, Driver
Pfc Schingleton, Machine Gunner
Pfc Wood, Battery Carpenter
TECHNICIAN FIFTH GRADE (T/5) MARION T. NEABUHR
74th Field Artillery Battalion, Service Battery, 2nd Section, 1941 to 1945
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Return to The Fort Ord U.S. Army Station Veterinary Hospital (Horse) WW2 homepage:
FORT ORD U.S. ARMY STATION VETERINARY HOSPITAL (HORSE) WW2
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Fort Ord U.S. Army Station Veterinary Hospital (Horse) WW2
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11TH CAVALRY PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, 1919 TO 1940
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11th Cavalry Presidio of Monterey, 1919 to 1940
76TH FIELD ARTILLERY REGIMENT PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, 1922 TO 1940
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76th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Battalion
THE ARMY VETERINARY SERVICE DURING THE GREAT WAR, WW1
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Veterinary Corps in WW1
SERGEANT LEONARD MURPHY VETERINARY HOSPITAL NO. 18, A.E.F., WW1
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Leonard Murphy in WW1
U.S. ARMY VETERINARY CORPS HISTORICAL PRESERVATION GROUP
Motto: "Illic est Vires in Numerus" There is Strength in Numbers
"Working Hard to Preserve Our Country's History wherever it is being lost"
U.S. Army Veterinary Corps Historical Preservation Group is a group of individuals that are concerned about the preservation of the History of the Veterinary Corps, Remount Service and Cavalry or wherever our country's history is being lost in conjunction with our beloved "Horse and Mule". There is no cost to join and membership is for life. We believe by uniting together in numbers we will be a more powerful force to be heard. Our membership list is private and only used to contact our members. Email us and become a member.
FACEBOOK: U.S. Army Veterinary Corps Historical Preservation Group
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