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PAGE 16

 

The RAF at Mortain....provided by 1st Lt. Robert A. Peters...3rd Bn., 117th Inf. Reg.

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Special Topic Booklet page...various topics.....new topics added each quarter.  Feel free to send your own Adobe PDF files to add to the PAGE!!!

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World War II Diary by Keith Sy

World War II Diary by Keith Sy
Comments by: Dan Kuhlman

Please click here to the Keith Sy diary:  http://dankuhlman.com/content/world-war-ii-diary-keith-sy 

Note find reference to lead scout Keith Sy on page 26 of the 119th official history book...a TRUE HERO!!!

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117th Unit Journal for February 24th through February 28th.

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Battle of Condecourt...Microsoft Word Document

Hello,
thanks for your Christmas letter.
If you permit, I send you the texte of a not wellknow battle of the 30th
Infantry,
around 20 KIA in one day.
We are 45km N-W Paris.
Best regards.
Bruno Renoult
régional historian
Votre message est prêt à être envoyé avec les fichiers ou liens joints
suivants :
Chemin de mémoire condécourt.doc
Message de sécurité

 

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Mr. Watson,
 
My name is Andrew Raming. I stumbled onto your website while doing a bit of research about my Grandfather who only passed away several weeks ago at the young and virile age of 96. He too served with the 30th Infantry division as a surgeon with the rank of Lt. Col. If you're interested here is a portion of his obituary
 
Dr. William E. Knaus, 96, of Belleville, IL, born Sunday, April 19, 1914, in East Saint Louis, Illinois, passed away Sunday, October 24, 2010 at his residence.
Dr. Knaus was a U. S. Army Veteran serving in the 30th Infantry Division. He served as Surgeon from 1941 to 1945 and obtained the rank of Lt Col. in 1945. He served five campaigns in the European Theatre receiving the Purple Heart in December of 1944 in the Battle of the Bulge and Bronze Star with one Oak Leaf Cluster in 1945.
 
I noticed that your site is dedicated to your Father and the other men who served alongside him, I think that is a very honourable way to celebrate him. If you're interested here's the link his entire obituary http://www.kurrusfh.com/index.aspx?news=227 . What these guys did, not only in WWII but throughout their lives so we can live how we do today is incredible.
Thanks for the great site.
 
Much appreciated,
 
Andy

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My father, John Thomas Reidy(Jack), served in the 30th during WWII. He was in Europe from Feb.,1944 until August, 1945 He was a Tech Srgt. with Headquarters Div. A.G section.
I am attaching a letter, written by him, to his sisters, dated Nov.7,1944. It is quite fascinating and very touching.  I hope you will enjoy it!
Sincerely
Henry Reidy

Read this tremendous Christmas story by clicking this link!

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"In Memory P.F.C. W. A. Robinson, G Co, 2nd Bn, 120th Regt, 30th Inf Div, WIA 9 July 1944, D.O.W. 13 July 1944, Radio bearer Capt Walter Bunch, C.O. G Co, who was KIA 9 July '44, with PFC Robert Shine, G Co Runner KIA 9 July '44.   Robinson was from Franklin, Tennessee, a Sept 1942 Volunteer, married with three sons, ages 8,6,& 4 yrs."

Manchester, Tennessee, April 13, 2003 -At Emma’s Family Restaurant, retired Maj. Gen. Bob Robinson said, "Freedom is preserved by the strong, IN SACRIFICE." Having reached the rank of major general, Robinson does not need to advertise his own strength to too many.  Nor does he have to think too long about where he got his strength. The general's father, Private First Class W .A. Robinson, gave his life after being wounded just 8 miles inland from Omaha Beach in July 1944 during the 30th Infantry Division’s on St. Lô, France.  PFC Robinson was but one of the 850,000 trainees who trained in the U. S. 2nd Army Tennessee Maneuvers in the Middle Tennessee counties near Camp Forrest. Fortunately, his oldest son Bob saved some of his strength to research his father's past and that of Camp Forrest and with help from photographer Bob Couch of Tullahoma, an impressive exhibit of photographs, news stories, and other memorabilia was created and is now on display at Emma’s.  The unveiling of the exhibit took place Wednesday.  With Bob Robinson were his younger brother Boyd; Boyd's son David and family friend Bud McAlister, along with Couch and his sister Searcy Couch Hopkins.  Emma’s.  Proprietor Danny Scoggins said the exhibit would be on display indefinitely. "Tennessee was the first site for a U. S. Army division size parachute assault in 1943, led by the "Father of the U. S, Army Airborne," Maj Gen William Lee.  General Lee, while leading this Airborne Assault from the Tennessee sky, suffered a leg injured in a glider landing near Lafayette, Tenn.  He was treated as a patient in the 44th Evac Hospital training in the Tennessee Maneuvers, this being the same hospital unit that received the wounded P.F.C. W. A. Robinson in Normandy, France" on the 9th of July 1944.  Robinson said, "(and) Camp Forrest and the 21 counties of Middle Tennessee was the largest training center in America during World War II.”  Robinson read where Airborne leader, General Lee reportedly said "the next time I will come in by parachute." P.F.C. W.A. Robinson, and his numerous GI buddies, probably did not know what to expect when he arrived at Camp Forrest. Still, the man from Franklin, Tenn., volunteered to help his country in September 1942, leaving his life as a tenant farmer and his family, which included his wife Cornelia and three sons Bob, Baxter, and Boyd. "He went in the Army to get a better education and get his family a better life, " Bob Robinson said. W.A.'s infantry training also took place at Camp Wheeler, Georgia, and Camp Blanding, Fla. It was W. A. Robinson's destiny to be part of what some consider the most decisive operation of the entire war - the D-Day invasion on the French coast of Normandy.  He fulfilled the state motto “VOLUNTEERS” of so many Tennesseans before him and in doing so, earned eternal gratitude for his supreme sacrifice.On July 9, 1944, G Company, 120th Inf Regt led the 30th Inf Div' s attack toward St. Lo, France, and less than 30 days after landing on Omaha Beach following D- Day, W.A. Robinson, radio bearer for company commander Capt. Walter Bunch and Private First Class Robert Shine, company runner, were advancing toward Co G' s line of defense under heavy attack by elements of the SS Panzer Div. "Das Reich" and Panzer Lehr.  While crossing a road near a house in an area that had the ironic name St. Jean De Daye, an 88-millimeter shell exploded near the three men.  The Nazi forces initiated a counterattack with elements of the 2d SS “Das Reich” Panzer Division and the SS Panzer Lehr Division with infantry, tanks, mobile flamethrowers, mortars, and deadly artillery.  A dreaded Nazi weapon of that fateful time was the Nazi 88 millimeter cannon.  "Nothing was more feared by the GIs than that," Bob Robinson said. During the battle on 9 July 1944, history would record that on the entire Allied front in NORMANDY, the U. S. Army suffered the highest number of wounded and dead that fateful day.  During the 55-day period from D-Day 6 June to 31 July 1944, no other day in France would produce so many casualties or be so critical."PFC Shine was killed outright and Captain Bunch died within the hour,” Bob Robinson said.  His father suffered a serious neck injury and was initially treated in the U. S. Army 44th Evac Hospital.  On the morning of 10 July ’44, PFC Robinson was air evacuated on a C-47, taking off from a new airfield above the OMAHA BEACH to the 217th Gen Hosp about 35 miles SW of London, England, where he underwent major orthopedic surgery, but died from his wounds July 13, 1944.  He was buried in Brookwood Military Cemetery.  His remains were returned to his hometown of Franklin, Tennessee in January 1949. "We didn't know much about his death (back then)," the retired major general said, as brother Boyd recalled, it was Franklin police officer Oscar Garner who delivered the sad telegram in August 1944.  Across the heading of the telegram by the name of the Addressee, were the words “Do Not Telephone,” reflecting the impact of the information, as in other telegrams received by families of approximately 292,000 KIA’s or DOW (died of wounds) during WWII. In August 1944, the Robinson family was very pleased to learn in a personal letter from the 44th Evac Hospital's Chaplain Walthall, that P.F.C. Robinson on the morning of July 10, 1994 prior to evacuation to the U .K., made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ, and was baptized before his comrades in his ward.  P.F.C. Robinson requested his membership be sent to the Methodist Church in Franklin, Tennessee, where his Memorial Service was held in August 1944.  Bob was 10 when his father died, while Boyd was six.  Bob had to age a few more years before starting his career in the Army.  He was a Distinguished Military Graduate in ROTC at Tennessee Tech, Cookeville, and, in his words, "I was most honored to be the first ROTC graduate inducted into the Tennessee Tech ROTC Hall of Fame.” Bob Robinson did not have the intense combat experience his father did, but it is safe to say he had to do more than look nice in his Class A to achieve the rank of major general.  In the U. S. Army he earned the Master Army Aviator wings as a pilot in fixed and rotary wing aircraft, an instructor in Army utility helicopters at Stuttgart, Germany, and parachutist with jumps in North Carolina with the 82nd Airborne Division, and international jumps with the Israeli Defense Forces in 1988, and with the Royal Thai Special Warfare Forces at Lop Buri, Thailand in 1989.  He had several duty assignments in Germany last serving as an Inspector General.  On July 9, 1944, when the 120th Inf Regt led the 30th Inf Div' s attack toward St. Lo, France, and less than 30 days after landing on Omaha Beach following D- Day, W.A. Robinson, radio bearer for company commander Capt. Walter Bunch and Private First Class Robert Shine, company runner, were advancing toward Co “G’s” line of defense under heavy attack by elements of the SS Panzer Div. "Das Reich" and Panzer Lehr.  While crossing a road near a house in an area that had the ironic name St. Jean De Daye, an 88-millimeter shell exploded near the three men. "Shine died immediately and Bunch died within the hour," Bob Robinson said.  His father suffered a serious neck injury to his spinal cord, paralyzing him from the waist down, and was air evacuated to the 217th Gen Hospital in England, where he underwent orthopedic surgery, but died from his wounds July 13, 1944.  He was buried in England’s Brookwood Military Cemetery 13 July 1944, about 30 miles SW of London.  His remains were returned to Franklin, Tennessee in January 1949. In August 1944, the Robinson family was very pleased to learn in a personal letter from the 44th Evac Hospital's Chaplain Walthall, that P.F.C. Robinson on the morning of July 10, 1994 prior to evacuation to the U .K, made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ, and was baptized before his comrades in his ward.  P.F.C. Robinson requested his membership be sent to the Methodist Church in Franklin, Tennessee, where his Memorial Service was held. Bob was 10 when his father died, while Boyd was six.  Bob had to age a few more years before starting his career in the Army.  He was a distinguished military graduate in ROTC at Tennessee Tech and, in his words, "I was honored to be the first ROTC graduate inducted into the Tennessee Tech ROTC Hall of Fame." Bob Robinson did not have the intense combat experience his father did, but it is safe to say he had to do more than look nice in his Class A to achieve the rank of major general.  He was a pilot in fixed and rotary wing aircraft, an instructor in Army utility helicopters and parachutist and had several duty assignments in Germany last serving eight years as an Inspector General. While serving as an Army Reserve Officer in a major command in Alexander, Va., in which Maj Gen George Patton; the son of WW II’s famous General George Smith Patton, Jr., the U. S. Armor’s “Blood and Guts” icon was assigned.  Robinson had a private meeting with son Patton.  After a thought provoking discussion, with Maj Gen Patton asking details of the St. Lô Battle, Robinson determined he must make a concerted effort to track down more information about “his hero father, PFC Robinson.” “I wrote the Army Records Center in St. Louis in 1989 to see if Dad was entitled to any medals or awards” he said, and it set me on a great quest to learn of his Dad’s path from the Williamson County community of Boston, to the event of his death in 1944.The Robinson family was informed that P.F.C. Robinson was indeed due several belated honors for his service with the 30th "Old Hickory" Infantry Division.  Forty-four years after his demise, his family learned he had earned the Bronze Star, Combat Infantryman Badge, and The Purple Heart, and several campaign and invasion medals.  In 1989 PFC Robinson’s family received the belated medals from the U.S. Army.  Bob Robinson said.  “With PFC Robinson in barely 4 weeks of combat in Normandy, the paper work never got processed for timely award of these medals," but now the Robinson family shares appropriate pride in this delayed recognition of P.F.C. Robinson's sacrifice for their Freedom and the liberation of France and other European Countries. In 1986, Robinson located Bill Goble, a 30th Infantry Div veteran of Seymour, Indiana, an eyewitness who saw P.F.C. Robinson fall in battle.  He was able to describe the house, road and where PFC Robinson was wounded.  During the last 20 years, Maj. Gen. Robinson visited Normandy 10 times.  He made several trips to Washington, D.C. to research WWII Army records in the National Archives.  With copies of maps and unit reports, and Bill Goble’s information, June 6, 1993, exactly 49 years after D-Day Robinson located the site in France where his father was wounded. Bob Robinson is not the first person bitten by a history bug, especially when it concerns World War II.  He decided to collect more WW II historical memorabilia and received assistance from a bona fide expert, Bob Couch of Tullahoma.  Bob Couch is the proud holder of the last American 48 star flag to fly over Camp Forrest after it was lowered in 1946.The WWII photo exhibit now at Emma’s Family Restaurant contains two walls of photographs and copies of Camp Forest information material. There are many pictures of soldiers, military equipment, and buildings, and even a 1941 photograph of Maj Gen George Patton Jr. and then Lt Colonel Mark Clark sitting on a sidewalk by a street in Manchester.  Both of these men became renowned four star Generals by war's end. People inevitably go their separate ways.  Bob Robinson lives in Altamonte Springs, Fla. Boyd Robinson, who put in six years in the Tennessee Air National Guard, but worked mostly in medical services, lives in Fayetteville, Ga. Baxter the middle brother lives in Arrington, Tennessee and served in the Tennessee National Guard. The exhibit may take on special meaning now with the war in Iraq, and Bob Robinson mentioned he is highly pleased with the competence with which the operation is proceeding and the fact that today, 9 April 2003, American units entered Baghdad, Iraq.  And if these WWII pictures and memories now showing at Emma’s show how much men like W.A. Robinson are willing to give and by their selfless acts demonstrate how much destiny can intercept the role large scale military maneuvers brings to a locale like Camp Forrest, Tennessee and the 21 counties which made up the U. S. Second Army Tennessee Maneuvers.Moreover, there is no guaranteeing how people will be affected.  As Bob Robinson put it, “You are what you are as a result of the circumstance of the time.”Bob’s 20 years of research has made him somewhat of a recognized WW II historian about the U.S. Army’s June – July 1944 activities from Omaha Beach to St. Lô, a vital town which served as the headquarters of a major Nazi Command with excellent communications and road network   In April 2004, he contributed photos and materials to producers of NBC News, in their preparation of a documentary entitled “Back to Normandy with Tom Brokaw 2004.”  This program was prepared by NBC for the Discovery Channel and first shown June 6, 2004.  It’s major focus was WW II U. S. Army combat in Normandy Invasion’s “Battle of the Hedgerows” and the 30th Infantry Division’s participation in taking St. Lô in July 1944.

For 2006, Bob Robinson’s major effort over the next 3 – 4 months is the preparation of his collection of WW II photographs, artifacts, and historical memorabilia to be on permanent display in the Williamson County Archives at the invitation of Mrs. Louise Lynch, Director contingent upon approval of Mr. Rogers Anderson, Williamson County Mayor.  MAYOR ANDERSON REFUSED TO ACCEPT THE DONATION UNLESS ROBINSON AGREED TO INDEMNIFY WILLIAMSON COUNTY FOR ALL LEGAL FEES & EXPENSES SHOULD ANY PARTY LAY CLAIM TO ANY ITEM IN THE COLLECTION.  THE ROBINSON FAMILY FELT THIS WAS AN INSULT TO THE FACT THAT P.F.C. Robinson HAD MADE THE SUPREME SACRIFICE THAT ENABLED MAYOR ANDERSON TO EVEN SEEK THE OFFICE FROM WHICH HE NOW EXERCISED HIS UNREASONABLE DEMAND OF FURTHER RETRIBUTION FROM THE ROBINSON FAMILY.

 

©  Bob L. Robinson, 2005

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A Lonesome Hero:  Sgt. Robert S. Haws...KIA Sept. 13th, 1944....119th IR, Company K...click to open.

 

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Oct. 2nd through Oct. 6th....119th, 2nd Battalion attack south of Ubach, Germany.

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30th Division News....March 20th, 1948...special thanks to Steven Burgess for providing this paper!

Earl Johnson, 120th Inf. Reg....see scan six above, last column.

T/Sgt. Wade J. Verweire, Jr. Co. C, 119th Inf. Reg....see scan three and four, second column.  This is a very sad story and I have researched it
on Reports Page 5...please scroll down that page.

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Tremendous Magazine Article in Automobile Magazine "MY FATHER'S FOOTSTEPS"...those footsteps belonged to Warrant Officer Robert J. DeMatio of the 118th Field Artillery.
Click to enlarge  Please read the following email I received from his son Joseph DeMatio:

Dear Mr. Watson:
You might already have heard about this from my brother Greg DeMatio, whom I’ve cc’d here, but I have written a story about our father, Robert J. DeMatio, who served with the 30th during WWII, for the magazine where I work, Automobile Magazine, based here in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I understand that you maintain a Web site about the 30th, so I wanted to bring the article to your attention in the hopes that you might publicize it on your site.
Key facts: it’s the cover story for the September issue of Automobile Magazine, which is on newsstands NOW, in AUGUST, not in September. By early September, it will be gone forever. This seems worth stressing, as a lot of people will, understandably, think that the September issue is available in September, but it’s actually on sale a month earlier than the cover date.
Availability: Automobile Magazine is distributed nationwide, but availability is somewhat limited. Definitely at airports. Definitely at most Barnes & Noble and Borders. Also at other bookstores, Walmarts, drugstores, grocery stores, etc. If you don’t find it at one place, keep looking.
There are two attachments to this email: 1) picture of the cover of the September 2010 issue of Automobile Magazine; 2) picture of Robert J. DeMatio.
The title of the article is “My Father’s Footsteps,” and it is a major feature story with professional color photography and substantial quotes from the semi-official history/journal that our father wrote about his battalion’s journey through France, Belgium, Holland, and Germany. It is sure to be of interest to anyone who is interested in Old Hickory, the Normandy invasion, and general WWII history. The framework of the story is that Greg and I retraced our father’s route through Europe from Omaha Beach to central Germany in a Cadillac coupe. Here is the subtitle of the article:
Less than two weeks after D-Day, Warrant Officer Robert J. DeMatio hit Omaha Beach with the 118th Field Artillery Battalion, 30th Infantry Division, XIX Corps, United States 1st Army. It was the first stop on a journey through France, Belgium, Holland, and Germany that wouldn’t end until VE-Day in May 1945, a journey he chronicled in a typewritten history of his “rear echelon” section. Sixty-six years later, that journal in hand, JOE DEMATIO retraces his late father’s route in a Cadillac CTS-V coupe and learns that American power---at least automotive power---is still embraced on the Continent.
Thank you very much and best wishes,
Joe DeMatio

 Click to enlarge

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Exciting new website...maybe the first with an American and German working together to tell the true stories of common soldiers.  Please take a look.  This was the brain child of Willi Weiss and he has so graciously allowed me to take part.
WESTERN FRONT '45: http://www.archiv-oberaussem.com/western-front45/doku.php?id=start


 

 

Operation Grief....December, 1944...another fantastic research project by Willi Weiss.

Follow this link:  http://www.archiv-oberaussem.com/western-front45/doku.php?id=operation-greif:part-one

 

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Seizure of Kalrath, Germany...Feb. 1945.   Project by Willi Weiss.

http://www.archiv-oberaussem.com/western-front45/doku.php?id=seizure-of-klatath-feb.26-1945

 

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After Action Reports, Maps, and German report (thanks to Willi Weiss) of 117th action east of the Roer River
February, 1945.
Click here Adobe PDF file

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The 743rd Tank Battalion attacked  Oberembt
Under the cool moonlit sky of February 26, A and C Company tanks and infantry attacked the 9th and 11th Panzer Divisions defending Oberembt. Bad luck plagued the outset of the attack. Only thirty minutes after departing, two tanks tipped into deep bomb craters in what turned out to be a minefield. A T-2 and two additional tanks responded to the call for assistance. During the confusion, two enemy tanks moved in and placed everyone under fire. Just after the first tank was pulled out of the bomb crater it was struck and began burning. Within minutes the T-2 and another tank were hit and immediately flamed up. The burning tanks brightly illuminated the remaining men and vehicles. After a fourth tank was hit, the enemy armor withdrew.
Charlie Company tanks came under direct fire again outside Oberembt. Although one tank was hit and exploded into flames, only two crew members received slight burns. After battering their way into Oberembt, A Company tankers were surprised to discover two abandoned enemy tanks, engines idling. Whenever encountering what appeared to be an operable tank, the crews blasted it with a round of HE to see "if anyone was home." During the battle, C Company's lead tank also knocked out a 380 mm rocket firing Sturmtiger, a self-propelled howitzer mounted on a Mark VI chassis. The assault group secured the town within two hours and set up defensive positions.
The night's advance route was clearly indicated by the furiously hot, dark bottomed pyres where the battalion's tanks sat burning. Under a lightening sky a rising early morning breeze sometimes distorted the dark columns of smoke, and at other times heavier gusts carried the odors of the burning tanks to ground then up into the tree tops. For the rest of the day the three line companies held their new positions, refueled and maintenanced while awaiting nightfall. Just before midnight on February 26, A Company prepared to leave Oberembt and attack Puetz.

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Link to history of the 30th patch...thanks to Willi Weiss.

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Article in German magazine about my father and Willi Wiess' father. 

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Knox Journal

http://www.oldhickory30th.com/knox1start.hml/knox1START.htm 

 

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