The Fort Fisher State Historical Site, Cape Fear, North Carolina,
will serve as a backdrop for the 54th Coastal Artillery World
War II reunion, September 24-26, 1999. Fort Fisher's history is
a colorful one. Active during the Civil War, it later served as
a World War II US Army training center.
troops to arrive were from the 54th Coastal Artillery, the Army's
only all Black 155mm unit. In the summer of 1943, four German
Marines were captured on the beach at Fort Fisher. Following the
war, the fort was used as a rocket launching test site. Contact
The Torchlight Ceremony March 27, 2001, is an annual event co-hosted
by LTC Armstrong (current1-46 INF BN CDR) and Col. Richard Carvell,
who was one of the Battalion Commanders of the 1-46 INF in Vietnam
and today serves as the Honorary Colonel of the Regiment. The
46th Infantry Regiment served in WWII with the 5th Armored Division
(Victory Division) in Combat Command A, as the 46th Armored Infantry.
The 46th Infantry also served in Vietnam as a unit in the American
Division, the 196th LIB, and the 198th LIB. Today it still serves
at Fort Knox, Kentucky.
Ceremony honors all veterans of the 46th Infantry from WWII through
Vietnam up to today and celebrates the rich history of the unit,
sacrifices of its soldiers and linkage with today's soldiers.
It is a major Fort Knox event with hundreds of members attending
and held the same time as the annual Vietnam Fire base MaryAnn
reunion. There will also be a dedication of a major training facility
(an outdoor obstacle course), named after a legendary 46th Infantry
Regiment soldier, Captain Kern Dunagan who was awarded the Medal
of Honor in Vietnam with Company A/1-46 Infantry. The facility
will be named the Dunagan Teamwork Development Course.
1-46 INF, 1ATB, ATSB-BAD (Torchlight), Bldg. 6540, Eisenhower
Ave, Fort Knox KY 40121; 502-624-2719; email@example.com.
The Far Eastern theater, 12,000 miles from the US and last on
the list for supplies, reinforcements or mail, was called the
"forgotten war." But those who served never forgot.
After the war, a group of Milwaukee China, Burma, India vets started
a local social club. The Milwaukee Basha, named after the bamboo
and thatch huts where CBI vets lived overseas, became the China-Burma-India
Veterans Association in 1948, gathering a national crowd of 325
including three generals and the governor of Nebraska. Fittingly,
over 1,000 members returned to Milwaukee for the 50th anniversary
of the first reunion. For a few, it was their first reunion, but
many attend regularly, keeping treasured friendships alive and
strong. Lester Dencker, 83, the association's first national commander,
remarked "They all come to their first reunion hoping to
find their buddies, but they come back because they've made new
of the gathering is the Puja Parade, some of the participants
sport the uniforms of their youth, others don garb characterizing
the far-east countries where they served.
Service numbers reveal the general locale an individual entered
service. Knowing this, Paul Repsher of the 919th Engineer Aviation
Maintenance Co. contacted the National Personnel Records Center
(NPRC) in St. Louis and asked how to review morning reports and
rosters for his old unit. The NPRC is a warehouse for such data
but permission from the Army Freedom of Information and Privacy
Acts Office in Arlington, Virginia, was required. Repsher received
approval in two weeks; spent two days researching in St. Louis
and collected a list of 700 names and service numbers to help
narrow the search for his buddies.
phoning likely matches at some expense. Finally his wife
suggested a computer and phone lists. Those with unusual first
or last names were relatively easy to locate through Parsons Directory
USA, Select Phone by Pro CD, Inc. and PhoneDisc USA by Digital
a post card invitation to a reunion to each person from the phone
lists. Approximately 20% were the wrong person, the post office
returned another 10% for insufficient address (apartment and route
box numbers aren't on phone lists).
reward comes when friends meet again after a 40-45 year separation.
NPRU, Attn: ORU/Barbara Herrod, 9700 Page Ave, St. Louis MO 63132;
314-538-4028. Freedom of Information and Privacy Act Office, Crystal
Square #2, Ste 201, 1725 Jefferson Davis Hwy, Arlington VA 22202
vets demand justice
On Flag Day, June 14, 1997, thousands of Filipino veterans and
supporters protested in Los Angeles for equity and social services
which they've been denied since the 1940s. Filipino vets ranging
from 70 to 90 years old chained themselves to a statue of Douglas
MacArthur. For them this is all or nothing.
War II, Filipino soldiers fought under MacArthur, beside Americans,
believing they were fighting for freedom and equality. Now many
are fighting to pass House Bill 836, the Filipino Veterans Equity
Act, sponsored by Democrat, Bob Filner, of San Francisco and Republican,
Benjamin Gilman, of New York.
by Cesar A. Cruz
Rock climbing and skiing may be hip and trendy now but 50 years
ago they were basic survival skills for the 10th Mountain Division's
14,000 elite soldiers. The 10th learned to ski and climb mountains
with 100-pound packs on their backs in the most frigid conditions.
Only a few hundred members still ski regularly but once a winter
those who live in the Midwest reunite at Indianhead Mountain on
Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Still wildly enthusiastic about skiing,
they waste no time heading for the slopes.
my Motrin and I hit the hills," said Vern Cartner, 72, of
Ironwood, Michigan. Cartner spent six months in hospital during
the war with leg wounds, but it didn't show when he snapped his
boots into their bindings and schussed down the hill.
to the 10th were prized. Some of the world's best skiers joined,
including Olympic champions. They trained far longer than the
average GI. According to Russell Berg, 73, Wausau, Wisconsin,
some service branches viewed the 10th as lightweights who were
having fun skiing in Colorado while the rest of the soldiers were
fighting a war.
But their lengthy training prepared them for ferocious mountain
attacks that turned the tide in Italy. By the end of the war,
nearly 1,000 members of the 10th were dead and another 4,000 wounded.
war, members of the 10th helped established nearly 60 ski resorts
throughout the US transforming downhill skiing from an obscure
sport for the privileged to a winter thrill for the masses.
from The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
Soldiers are a unique part of US history
The Soldiers of the 10th Cavalry received the "Buffalo Soldiers"
tag during the 1871 campaign against the Comanches in Indian Territory.
Benjamin H. Grierson, Colonel, 10th Cavalry, 1867 to 1890, said
the Comanches respected the soldiers tireless marching and dogged
trail skills. Thus they earned the name of the rugged and revered
the 19th and 20th centuries, the Buffalo Soldiers were a part
of the American military forces when and where they were needed
most. Buffalo Soldiers responded to every call made of them from
Teddy Roosevelt's campaigns with the Rough Riders to World War
of Afro-American history and Black military history question why
these soldiers were fighting for a country that denied them opportunity
and equality. Some say there was a "freedom" for these
many stories of these brave soldiers who risked their lives for
a country who oppressed their race. They are a part of the great
military tradition in the US and distinct part of African American
accomplishment in the US.
National Archives and Records Administration
Soldier lives on
Now 77, Tom Hendricks, one of the few surviving Buffalo Soldiers
inspires children with the legacy of the US Army's black cavalry.
As a teenager in the 1930s, Hendricks lied about his age to enlist
in the all-black horse riding unit like his grandfather. He never
lost his cavalry spirit though his active service consisted of
driving tanks with General George Patton across North Africa and
Europe in World War II.
Soldiers units in the Army were formed soon after the Civil War.
Hendrick's grandfather, James Hendricks, was a Buffalo Soldier
in the 1880s and 90s riding the plains from New Mexico to the
Canadian border. Hendricks cherishes his grandfather's discharge
papers from 1892. He honors Buffalo Soldiers by publicizing the
hardships they endured, including considerable discrimination
in spite of their valiant and valued service.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Soldiers will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Spanish American
War in 1998 in Baltimore. Contact Booker T. Brooks, 1701 Bunker
Hill Rd, NE, Washington DC 20017-3026.
place in history?
US Army Military History Institute's collection is one of our
nation's finest sources of primary research material on World
War II. It is the official central repository for research materials
in military history from the Spanish American War, World War I,
World War II and Korea. Materials are made available to visiting
scholars, researchers and scholars.
its collection, the Institute is collecting primary source materials
from veterans of combat and its supporting roles and their families.
To participate, request survey forms. Each veteran will receive
a questionnaire, franked mailing labels and flyers describing
the Institute's projects. Veterans are asked to record their recollections,
which are filed under the veteran's name and unit in an electronic
database and processed. Questions pertain to a wide spectrum of
veterans' experiences in and out of combat and ask respondents
to reflect on their service and contributions.
accepts memoirs, diaries, correspondence (including V-mail), camp
and unit newspapers, regulations and manuals, unit histories,
professional military journals, maps, photographs, soldier art,
motion pictures, slides and transparencies, sound recordings,
unit insignia, and shoulder patches. They are NOT interested in
three-dimensional objects; uniforms, equipment, artifacts.
Anyone wishing to donate historical materials can contact me directly at 717-245-3094 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions concerning this change, please contact me.
Army Maneuvers remembered
The Wilson County Bicentennial Military Heritage Day will be September
11, 1999 in Lebanon, Tennessee. The day includes displays, an
Army Band concert, battle reenactment, dinner for maneuver guests
and a big band dance. The focus is on everyone who participated
in the 2nd Army Maneuvers during WWII the largest maneuvers ever
held. Over 850,000 troops participated in the dress rehearsal
for D-Day and other battles. The 2nd Army Maneuvers is headquartered
in Lebanon at Cumberland University. Contact Lt. Col. Jim D. Henderson
(USAF ret), 615-443-2809, fax 615-443-2844 or e-mail: JHende6561@aol.com
John Martz and Roland Bragg were members of Headquarters Company
2nd Battalion, 513th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 17th Airborne
Division which fought in Europe during World War II.
combat buddies, after the war they returned home and didn't see
each other again. Until a few months ago, when they had an opportunity
to relive a special incident that bonded them for life.
ago, during the Battle of the Bulge, Bragg drove a stolen German
ambulance twenty miles to get the wounded Martz to an Allied hospital
in Belgium. The story of Bragg's heroic drive is recounted in
The Bitter Woods, a book written by John Eisenhower, son
of former president General Dwight David Eisenhower. "I'm
forever grateful to Roland Bragg for saving my life," said
Martz, now 74 and living in Oceanside, California.
by Joe Quade
with a purpose
The Dallas Grand Hotel is the long-time headquarters for reunions
of the Son Tay Raider Association and the Southwest Chapter of
the Special Forces Association. The reunions are sponsored by
the Siegel Beverage Company of Dallas and Miller Brewing of Fort
Worth who finance newsletters, association incidentals, "man
of the year" awards, a casino party and beverages for all
Kay Petrie, 10-year veterans of organizing reunions, have developed
some larger purposes than camaraderie and celebration. The Special
Forces Association supports Montagnard families in the Dallas
area. The Montagnards were hill tribesman who fought along side
Special Forces but were not part of the South Vietnamese Army.
About 25 families settled in Grand Prairie, Texas, and, according
to Petrie, are doing very well. Special Forces also provides scholarships
for the Montagnard children.