June 2002 Newsletter


For all veterans, relatives and friends of the
89th INFANTRY DIVISION
WORLD WAR II


89th Patch

Table of Contents: Click on the Link Below to Go To That Section:

Offical Society Announcements
Announcements and Editor's Notes
Website Developments
Email List Update
Taps
Letters and Exchanges


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Official Society Annoucements

THE SOCIETY OF THE 89th DIVISION WWII, INC.
Proposed Changes to the Current By-laws,
(Last amended 15 Sep 00)

Introduction

Our Executive Board will be meeting the first day of our upcoming reunion in Indianapolis to consider certain proposed changes to our By-laws - to decide whether or not to recommend those changes to the assembled membership for a vote to approve or disapprove. These proposed changes were developed by our President's Washington Area Advisory Group (WAAG)--consisting of five members of your Executive Board plus the Executive Assistant.

Background

1. As you surely appreciate, the "glue that holds our Society together" is clearly this printed newsletter in the magazine form that you are now reading i.e., The Rolling W [this letter is also printed in the TRW, ed]. It has been our sole link with and between all Society members since our formation. In the past several years, though, we've gone high-tech by introducing another type of newsletter -- an Electronic Newsletter - using the World Wide Web approach - by developing a web site (www.89infdivww2.org).

The editor of The Rolling W until recently has always been an elected officer of our Society - someone well versed in our wartime organization and history as well as with the personalities involved over the years. As age and publication technology have overtaken us we've had to seek competent outside technical assistance to put together and publish our The Rolling W. However, for a while we had our long time "Editor Emeritus", Bill Johnson, to supervise that contractor function. Prior to the changeover from our very capable first contractor editors we found it desirable to appoint one of our officials to supervise the editors.

Additionally in the past several years there has come into being - through the volunteered effort of Scotty Kitchell -- the new and highly interesting Internet website for our Society. Scotty also developed for us another form of an 89th Div. WWII periodic publication - an electronic newsletter. This is also included on our web site. It became apparent to the President and the Executive Board that there is need for a coordinator for these two over-lapping communications media both of which require occasional guidance and assistance. You will recall that previously for a long time we had a 3rd Vice President (Editor) position which was filled through membership election of an active member of the Society. However, two years ago - because the contract editor was not eligible to be an active member of the Society and therefore was not eligible to hold office in our Society, we amended the By-laws to delete that 3rd VP position.

Now we find that (a) with the replacement of our former Rolling W contractor editor with an Associate Member (Mary Brunner) who is not eligible to hold elected office and (b) also the advent of a companion news medium (the web site) we more than ever need a communications coordinator officer position. The WAAG has recommended a By-laws amendment, which would have the effect of reestablishing our old 3rd VP slot. However, if approved, the title would be slightly different, i.e., would read: 3rd Vice President (Communications). (See Below)

2. Also recent experience with factors of member aging, poor health and death has made it clear that we must anticipate the sudden loss of those elected to manage our activities. We need a By-laws provision to give the President the authority to take interim remedial action when struck with the unexpected loss of an officer.

This authority would permit the President to appoint temporary replacements for officers who through death or other incapacitation cannot further carry out their duties. The term of office of these interim appointees would be limited to the remaining period of the incapacitated officer's term of office. These appointments could be made by the President only after consultation with the other serving officers of the Society along with notification of the Organizational Representatives. Publication of such appointments in the next issues of The Rolling W and our Electronic Newsletter would be required. The WAAG has so recommended. (See below)

3. Friends of the Society of the 89th Division WWII. Over the last decade or so, our Society has received unsolicited substantial contributions by foreigners and naturalized citizens who assert an affinity for the 89th Division of WWII based on their own special personal relations. To date we have not been able to recognize their affiliation in any formal way. Similarly, there are a few U.S. persons who are researchers in military history who have developed an interest in or affinity for our Division and would like to join us in some formal way.

None of these persons are eligible for membership under any of the existing categories. As a courtesy we have put them on our mailing list for complimentary copies of our Rolling W magazine in appreciation for their voluntary payment of dues. We definitely consider them "friends". As our web site is seen by more researchers or admirers we will, in all likelihood, acquire more whom we will want to classify formally as "friends".

Accordingly, the WAAG has recommended that we amend the By-laws to add a formal niche within the listing of our membership categories especially for this group. The IRS has already agreed that this category would be okay and will not in any way violate their determination that we are a non-profit Veterans organization. Fortunately, the IRS has also determined that financial contributions by such "Friends" would be tax deductible. A pertinent proposed addition to our By-laws follows below:

CHANGES

Following are the Proposed Changes and Additions to Wording of our Bylaws (as of 15 Sep 2000) to Affect the Above Cited WAAG Recommendations.

ARTICLE V - Officers and Committees

(Section 1: Currently reads: "The officers of this Society shall be a President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President [Programs], and a Secretary/Treasurer.)

Proposed change in wording: "The officers of this Society shall be a President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President (Programs), 3rd Vice President (Communications), and a Secretary/Treasurer.)

(Sections 2 and 3 would remain unchanged.)

ADDITIONS

ARTICLE III - Membership

(Sections 1a through 1c define Active Membership, Associate Membership, and Honorary Membership.) Wording of the proposed additional category of membership would read as follows:

Section 1d. Friends of the Society of the 89th Division, WWII. May be granted to persons who demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Society President a sincere desire to be so designated. These "Friends" will pay dues but will not have voting privileges.

ARTICLE IV - Duties of Officers

(Sections 1 through 4 covering duties of the President, 1st Vice President, 2nd Vice President (Programs) and Secretary/Treasurer would remain unchanged.)

The proposed addition would read as follows: Section 5. The 3rd Vice President (Communications) shall be responsible for providing guidance, oversight and coordination to the Society's various media forms.

Ongoing WAAG Study Regarding The Future of Our Society

Presented to the WAAG for consideration and discussion was the following: "Considering financial, temporal, demographic, membership definition(s) and legacy characteristics of the Society, it seems imperative that a decision be reached as promptly as possible as to whether planning for the future involves simply a) termination of its existence in the foreseeable future -- as the current membership approaches zero -- or (b) consideration be given to some possible evolution of the organization for the purpose of attempting to pass on the legacy of the 89th Division beyond the participation of its WWII members. Without question, we must plan for the former contingency should no exploration of the latter be desired or feasible. But participation in the Tour of Remembrance and subsequent inquiries and comments suggest that there is an increasing interest among children and grandchildren of Society members as well as others in the history of the 89th Division role in WWII.

While the extent of such interest is difficult to assess and undoubtedly is limited, it is real. The nature of this decision will affect to at least some degree all of the other issues now confronting the Society which also deserve prompt resolution."

The WAAG studied and debated hard and long on the implications, pros and cons and alternative courses of action. These possible courses of action or inaction are summarized as follows:

1. Create an Auxiliary Society: Promote and assist in the establishment of a companion organization to consist of members not currently eligible to join our Society. In the main they would be family descendants (children, grandchildren, siblings, aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews, etc., who have an interest in preserving the history of the 89th Division WWII. In addition, this auxiliary society would be open to members of those organizations in the Army Reserve, which are descendant organizations of the 89th Division WWII (e.g. the 89th ARCOM -- now the 89th Regional Support Command -- and several separate independent organizations bearing the designations of our regiments or other elements of the 89th). This auxiliary would not be a direct part of our Society. It would have its own Constitution and By-laws, its own officers, dues and treasury, but would be closely associated and encouraged to attend our reunions. It would be partially supported financially by our Society until able to operate without our financial assistance. Following our dissolution the Auxiliary would then proceed independently as the executor of the historical legacy of the 89th Division WWII.

2. Expand Current Direct Associate Memberships Within Our Society. Change our By-laws to admit as Associate Members the categories of persons listed above as eligible to be members of an Auxiliary Society to our Society. These would be dues paying members with no vote on any policy matters to include election of our Society officers, changes in By-laws, etc.

3. Make no organizational or membership changes to our Society By-laws. But, rather, proceed with our original plans to dissolve the Society in due course. There would be no provision for any sort of membership for descendant familial members or descendant organizational members. (We would, however, seek passage of the proposal to change the By-laws to adopt the "Friends" category.) Basically, we would "continue to march" as previously planned and so proceed until the time arrives when our Executive Board will recognize that it is no longer practical to operate the Society as presently constituted. The Executive Board would then dissolve the Society -- at which time our financial accounts would be settled, our records would be retired, and finally our residual assets (cash) in accordance with our current By-laws would -- as currently bequeathed -- pass to the City of Colorado Springs. As previously arranged formally with the City of Colorado Springs this money may be used solely for the maintenance of our monument in the Memorial Park there.

Inasmuch as the results of this study - still underway -- about the future of our Society will result in conclusions of critical importance to all of us, it is fully intended that the results will be published ASAP for the information of the entire membership. The views of all members of this Society will be solicited and strongly considered before any changes of such significance are made.

Official Notice-Due increase ANNUAL DUES INCREASED TO $30 EFFECTIVE FOR YEAR 2003. The explanation is simple. Declining Society revenue coupled with rising costs over recent years have resulted in our Society operating in the red. Consequently, we have been digging into our reserves--something we cannot afford to do much longer. The facts-of-life-projections for us are quite clear: There have been a continually declining number of us around in recent years to pay in dues (at the $20 annual rate which has not been increased for the past 10 years) while the costs of operation have steadily increased. In arriving at the decision (voting was 8 for and 1 against) to raise the dues by $10, your Executive Board found the only solution which will provide an adequate and reliable increase in revenue -- thereby putting us back in a safe financial posture for at least a few years more -- maybe longer.

At the same time, though, the Executive Board fully realizes that there are some members who honestly cannot handle this increase -- or any dues at all for that matter. So all are reminded that our By-Laws continue to provide that any member who cannot pay any or all of the annual dues yet wants to continue membership in our fine Society needs only to contact our Secretary/Treasurer to make the necessary STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL arrangements. (Keep in mind that our primary purpose is to keep our membership together just as long as we can -- dues or not.) And along that line, should a member feel that he or she needs to pay the dues on an installment basis, that also can be arranged with our Secretary/Treasurer.

A happy reminder to Life Members: Of course, having paid up front for Life Membership you are not affected by any increase in dues unless you choose to help.

Your Executive Board



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Announcements, Editor's Notes

Because of the important Society announcements included herein, this issue is larger than usual. We generally like to keep the Newsletter to 10-12 pages, if we can, but this is not meant to limit any email or snail mail you wish to send in. The WAAG has done a nice job above, and getting it out in a timely manner. I only wonder how one "demonstrates a sincere desire to be so designated a "friend" to our President, as required, other than putting up the $30 for annual dues?

[The notice below is now being routinely included with each reply to a new query received about our website from vets, family and friends.]

"To our delight, we are receiving an increasing amount of inquiries, often emanating from the viewing of our website, regarding veterans of the 89th Infantry Division WWll. We try our best to answer questions and/or forward them to those in our Society or elsewhere who may have additional information, and include the request and the response in our next Newsletter, which appears on our website. Many of these requests are from relatives of 89th veterans. With your permission, which is assumed unless otherwise notified, we are including the veteran's name on our email listing and the website. Where the veteran does not use a computer, or has passed away, we will also include your email address, again if you permit. Other interested parties may wish to contact you.

Given the 89th Society's intent to reach out to widows, relatives and friends, we invite you to join us, first by subscribing to our official magazine, The Rolling W, published three times yearly for a modest annual subscription charge (currently $20 annually but increasing to $30 in 2003). At its next reunion this August, it is proposed to amend the Society's By-Laws to expand non-voting membership to family and friends. Until then, a "subscription" will keep you involved and, of course, our Society-supported website and newsletter are without charge.

To join the Society or for an annual subscription to the TRW, please send your check for $20 , made out to "89th Division Society of WWII", and mail to: Larry Berg-Treasurer 89th Division at 818 San Antonio Place. Colorado Springs, CO 80906. Lifetime memberships are also available.

Just for the record, and noting that Society income/resources are diminishing as its veteran membership declines, any amount over the annual dues or subscription rate is tax-deductible. Please contact me if you require any additional information and welcome aboard."

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR OF TRW
(This letter was sent to TRW by your editor, Ray Kitchell

A model for discussion on changes in financial management.

I spent my early years in the US Government as a budget and management analyst, during the period when the Federal Government shifted from a system which was primarily input-oriented and a listing of proposed obligations and expenditures--run by accountants-- to one of projects and programs, their justification and expected results. In addition to getting estimates on how the money would be spent, the emphasis shifted to what would be accomplished and why this was important, i.e., "Program Budgeting".

While I have only been a member of the Society for seven years, it appears to me that the system used for fiscal purposes has been and is essentially input-oriented and presumably this has been sufficient and acceptable to the leadership and membership. However, the difficulties in estimating declining membership and its effect on incoming revenues, rising TRW publishing costs, preparing for the next (and possibly last) reunion in Washington DC, and the priorities that should be given to competing budgets needs, e.g., maintaining our Division monument in Colorado, financing attendance at official events, etc., will present a unique set of problems and choices for the Society in these twilight years.

I am not recommending any drastic changes in the way our Treasurer has faithfully and efficiently carried out his job over these many years, to whom we all are indebted, but am suggesting that, at least for our next reunion when important decisions will be made about the future of our Society-- past revenues and expenditures for the previous two years, and the proposed budget, i.e., expenditures, for the next two years, be roughly categorized or packaged to more graphically and meaningfully display recent usage and intended and projected use of our limited resources (which may be assumed to be declining) and the hard choices which may be needed. Included herein is an illustrative breakdown.

RECEIPTS AND EXPENDITURES

2000-2002

Receipts: dues, TRW subscriptions, contributions, and Indianapolis reunion Surplus, sales of items, other (specify)

Expenditures: TRW, Website, reunion, Colorado Monument, travel and other expenses of officers, etc.

Estimated Receipts and Expenditures:

2003-2005

Receipts:

Membership dues Associate Member dues
TRW Subscriptions
Contributions
Sale of items
Other

Expenditures:

TRW
Website
Colorado Monument
Preparation and auditing of accounts, etc.
Preparation for 2004 reunion
Travel and expenses of Society Officers (including participation in official events)
Other (specify)

Of course, this is just a suggested and rough "model" that can and should be improved upon by the responsible Society officers. The crucial point is, in my opinion, that such officers should make an oral and written presentation and justification to the membership, certainly at the next reunion but preferably first to the total membership by a special mailing with a request for general approval or alternative suggestions.

Raymond E. Kitchell, 563rd FA Bn

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Website Developments


As you can see, the site has been slightly redesigned again. The changes are a bit cosmetic, but mostly for the benefit of making it easier for the webmaster to add new material and to make it possible for you to print out the newsletters and other pages more easily.

We are please to announce that two major articles have been added to the website. First, webmaster Ray Kitchell article on the ASTP at Oregon State College (now OSU) is complete.

You can access the story by clicking here:

Read about The Army Specialized Training Program at Oregon State College >>

Additionally, you can also read Ray's memoirs of WWII here.

Read the Memoirs of Raymond E. Kitchell During World War II >>

Mark Kitchell
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Email List Updates

Welcome to our new electronic readers listed just below and including any changes of addresses for current subscribers.

A complete listing of the names, units and email address of veterans, relatives and friends is included on the Society Page of our 89th Website, which we hope to be able to update on a monthly basis. As demonstrated above, all new addresses and changes are included in each newsletter and the next issue of The Rolling W (TRW). The full and latest list of veterans, relatives and friends of the Division is available upon request directly to the Editor, as a WORD or PDF document. Use of these listings is restricted to non-commercial inquiries and similar correspondence, please.

CONRAD, Frederick F Co, 354th Inf

JOHNSON, Frank E, c/o son David Hq Co, 2nd Bn, 353rd Inf

DURSCHNABEL, Carl J, c/o son, Mike Nobel l Co, 355th Inf (deceased)

PETERSON, Carl F Co, 353rd Inf

PETERSON, Carl F Co, 353rd Inf

CLEARY, Robert O 89th RCN

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Taps

My brother, Cpl. Iv An Yaro, passed away 1 May 2002 in Los Angeles, Calif. He was member of the H and Hq Co of the 89th Div and was an interpreter. He also participated in the liberation of Ohrdruf. [See letter below]

Personal condolences to Mary L. Brunner, Editor of TRW, for the loss of her beloved husband.  

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Letters and Exchanges

NOTE: The sender's address is hyper-linked to facilitate responses. These communications are repeated here roughly in order of receipt.

[I may have mixed up the first three stories for which I apologize. Please notify me if and where I goofed-Scotty]

A Son's Request

From: Mike Nobel

I'm writing after discovering your name on the Rolling W website. My father was T Sgt Car J. Durschnabel of L Company. Several years ago, after my mother's death, I unearthed in her basement a box of old photos, some maps of the European Theatre, circa 1945 and the 355th Inf Div, 3rd BN War Diary. My father, who died in 1964, packed these treasures away at least three years earlier when my folks [had] that house. Anyway, I'm writing now in hopes of presenting Carl Noble's [?] photographs so maybe some of those photographed might be recognized as well as some of the location identified.

I live in Chicago and would appreciate any thoughts and recommendations you might have about contacting the Div Society and properly presenting these images and mementos. Please write, or feel free to call me at 312-663-5322. 18879 Arbor Blvd. Grayslake IL. 60030

[Editor: How very thoughtful of you. I will include your request in our June Newsletter, which will also be read by many of our Society officers and members and hopefully someone will get back to you. I am sure we can identify some of the locations. We may also wish to include selected photos in our official magazine, The Rolling W, and on our website--with your approval. While we are on the subject, I am including a recent standard invitation we are making to people like you. If interested, I would also be pleased to add your father's name and unit designation to our Society email list with your name and email address included. Just let me know.]



Dear Ray,

No problem. I re-read my note to you and spotted at least two typos (the brain is faster than the fingers), so don't feel bad. I am very interested in sharing these photographs since I might be holding a great shot of somebody's dad or uncle... who knows. When I was much younger I recall my father showing us what I remember as something of yearbook from his training experience at Camp Carson, Colorado. But that is long gone. What I do have are some worthwhile photos of men in service-- some appear to be during/after combat operations while others (I'm guessing) were taken after the fighting stopped since several of the subjects are wearing infantry badges. Anyway, I'd love to share these with those who might care the most. I'm also interested to discover more about my father's unit and their European experience. I know the war had a deep and lasting affect on my father. He never spoke much about it at all... ever. But I do recall quite vividly a winter evening when my parents and I went to see "Judgement at Nuremberg." I was probably seven years old, and at one point in the film archival footage of bulldozers pushing bodies into mass graves was presented as part of the trial. It was at that point my dad handed me and my mother our coats and said, "That's it. We're outta here." On the way to the car my mother asked if he was all right, and I'll never forget his response: "It's been almost 20 years and I can still smell it." My father didn't tell stories about the war... yet the literature that most interested him was about WWII. Joseph Heller's "Catch 22", Jones' "Thin Red Line" and Mailer's "Naked and the Dead," were all on the bookshelf. For my own sake, I can imagine what he saw but it would be very interesting to know, in fact, what his unit went through.

My other guess is that your meeting this August in Indianapolis might be the best place to say hello and make contact. I'll gladly subscribe to your newsletter.

Thanks for your interest and kindness. I hope we have a chance to meet.

Sincerely, Mike Noble

A Medic's Grandson's Request

From: Ray Weinstock

I cannot tell you the joy of seeing information on the 89th infantry division and their contributions in WWII. My grandfather was a medic assigned to the 89th and with them from January 1945 thru his discharge in December of 1945.

Which brings me to my plea of help. My grandfather passed away several years ago and over fishing trip he would tell me stories of his experience. One of the most dramatic stories was his participation in the liberation of Ohrdruf. Unfortunately I have hit dead ends in my search of unit movements, assignments and general information to substantiate his stories. The Military Personnel Records Center has lost records due to a fire. So I was hopeful you may have access to information or could steer me in a new direction. His information is as follows:

Charles Maynard McDonald,
S SGT Company A 314 Medical Battalion

Birthplace, Galesburg Il
Serial # 36 705 437
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

I cannot convey my appreciation of your help and the enjoyment your website has brought me. I have a son who is nine and think it is very important to teach and inform his generation about the sacrifices his great grandfather's generation made for the freedoms we all enjoy today.

[Editor: Dear Ray:

Also delighted to receive your recent email. I assume you have read the "Ohrdruf" section on our website. A link is also given (on the HOME PAGE) to the Holocaust Museum here in DC, which may provide you with additional information. I will also include your request in this month's Newsletter. You may also wish to contact Michael T. Bukovac who is our Organizational Representative for the 314th Medical Battalion. His address is 330 7th St., Downers Grove, IL 60515. Tel: 708 9659-1295. Unfortunately, no email address Good luck. Scotty]

M.L. Northcraft-from daughter

From: peglight@socket.net

I am sorry to take so long to reply to your request. Several years ago my mother sent a picture of Daddy to my youngest daughter with the info on the back. What she wrote is as follows. I hope this is the info that you need.

Milton Lewis Northcraft, Tech. Sgt. Enlisted in the U. S. Army on January 23, 1941 Assigned to the First Infantry, Sixth Division Served at Fort Frances E. Warren, Cheyenne, Wyoming, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas Cadre that opened Fort Leonard Wood, MO, May 1941 Assigned to the cadre that reactivated the 89th Division and opened Camp (now Fort) Carson, CO. June 1942. Served in the 89th Division in European Theater of Operations in B Company, 353 Infantry until November 1945.I know that Daddy was also stationed at Hunter Liggett. He trained recruits until he went overseas in January of 1945.

I remember stories of Maneuvers in Louisiana and Georgia sometime between 1942 and 1945. As I said, I hope this is the information that you need. Some day I will scan this picture of Daddy and send it to you, if you like. Thanks for all your work on this! Peggy

As I said, I hope this is the information that you need. Some day I will scan this picture of Daddy and send it to you, if you like. Thanks for all your work on this!

Peggy Billy Hill

From: Billy Hill

PFC Billy Hill, A Btry, 563d FA, may now be contacted at this address. I still live with him, and would appreciate an updated E-mail list. Also, do you know what has become of a Howard Key? I am of the understanding that he lived in Indianapolis at some point.

Thanks, David Pope

[Can anybody help?]

Request for Info

From: Todd Missel

Do you know of anyone or anywhere that I could obtain a copy of General Eisenhower's Order of the Day, June 6th, 1944? Thanks

Grandson of M. SGT Thomas F. Halloran

[Webmaster: Try this Order of the Day

Snail letter from Frank Powers -Organizational Rep May 25th, 2002

Hello Raymond and Son Mark:

Received your newsletter and want to thank both of you for all that's taking place. The stories were very enjoyable and we should all of us appreciate your hard work and time involved in this Society of ours. I still keep in touch with both of my former units. I came to the 914th FA Bn Btry in October 30th, 1942. In November was transferred to 579th A.T. Btry, our commander was Cap't W. Scudder, a true fine gentleman like a father to us. We then went on to Louisiana, maneuvered for three months or so, than to Hunter Liggett, CA.

After being there for another 3 months or so, than to Durham, NC Camp Butner. You probably heard this many times but in my case plus 12 of us Sgt's were Artillerymen. When the 563rd FA Bn was made up with the 155 howitzers, we should have been in that Bn-instead we were shipped to the 353rd Inf. Regt and now we are in the 579th AT Co with the 57 (mm) guns. Not only this but had to take some infantry basic training. At that we were mad, all in all it turned out OK and we received another stripe (SSgt). We did question why us artillerymen ended up in the infantry. The answer was some Lt. made a mistake in our orders.

Being in the 353rd Inf Reg't, I did come across many good, close buddies. I still keep in touch worth them thru Xmas cards and letters. When I started attending reunions in 1982, we had many men from the Artillery. Cap't Chick Cecchini appointed me as our rep. But now we have more from our 353rd Inf Reg't coming to our past reunions.

After the war was over, about 10,000 of our 89th Div. ended up in Austria, as the 83rd Division. It was nice deal being occupation troops. I was stationed in Linz most of the time, rode around in a jeep to town. When I got discharged. I had 52 points being in service 41 to the day. On the way to Camp Grant, Ill, we stopped in Chicago, my hometown. Another troop train also came to a stop. We then rolled down our windows and asked how many points do you have? I let them answer first; they said we have 24 points from the Pacific theater. We shouted back, we have 52 points. We figured the US Army needed more troops in the ETO than the Pacific theater.

I will now close this letter, have a nice, healthy summer. We will see you in Indianapolis. Give the family our best.

Frank and Dottie Powers

PS. If was in the 563rdFA Bn, my commander would have been Cap't W. Scudder, C Btry

Another Son Joins Us

From: David Johnson

I recently visited your 89th Infantry website. What a wonderful tribute to the division! My father, Frank E. Johnson, served in the Hq. Co., 2nd Bat. 353rd Reg., during the Rhineland and Central Europe campaigns. I plan to subscribe to TRW in order to support the Society and to keep up to date on its activities. Thanks for your work on this website!

David E. Johnson, Ph.D.
Department of Psychology
John Brown University
Siloam Springs, AR 72761
http://www.jbu.edu/sbs/djohnson.html
dej@ipa.net
djohnson@jbu.edu

[Thank you and welcome aboard]

Request For Info

From: David Pope

PFC Billy Hill, A Bty, 563d FA, may now be contacted at this address. I still live with him, and would appreciate an updated E-mail list. Also, do you know what has become of a Howard Key? I am of the understanding that he lived in Indianapolis at some point...

Connection

From: Gene Houdshell

Found my platoon leader [Wm. Stowell]. A friend of mine who graduated from West Point found his name and address in a book titled [Register of Graduates of West Point] .We had an interesting conversation. Thanks,Gene

Do you know my grandfather?

From: Jessica Daman

I was wondering if it would be possible to find out what division my Grandfather was in? I know he was at least in one concentration camp, I am fairly certain it was Ohrdruf. He has only mentioned it one time, and I was not even aware of this fact until this year. I have considered asking him to write down or tape his experiences for me, but I am very hesitant to ask him as it seems that he doesn't like to talk about it, although I am sure he has never forgotten it. I am also not a historian, but it seems to me his experiences during WWII and especially in regards to the concentration camp are a valuable piece of our history that will be lost with him. I would like his history not to be forgotten as he was there to see it and it seems that people forget. What really happened what recommendations do you have on this? [Editor: Please excuse my confusion but can't find where I replied to you email of yesterday, but feel I did. At any rate, here's my response. If your grandfather was in Ohrdruf it is likely, but not necessarily, that he was in the 89th. Why don't you ask him? If he doesn't come to terms with his wartime experience and, as you suggest, write some of them down, both he and others will be the losers. I assume you have seen our website at www.89infdivww2.org with its special section on Ohrdruf and some personal stories. We would welcome any inputs by your grandfather regarding Ohrdruf and, if he was with the 89th, on other noteworthy experiences. We would also welcome him into our Society of 89th vets. You will note on our website that we have a history of our division backed up by many personal stories. We also have a newsletter that we put out monthly and an official magazine published three times a year, The Rolling W. If you can give me your grandfather's full name and unit designation, I can add it to our email list with your email address as we are also reaching out to family and friends in these twilight days of the WWll Division. In reading your letter, I note that you start with a crucial question. Doesn't your grandfather remember his division or is he incapacitated? If so, the only thing I can do is run his name in our next newsletter and see if any one recognizes it. Please let me know.] Thanks for your helpful reply; I will ask him what division he was in next time I see him. I am sure he will at least tell me that. I think it is not so much that he can't come to terms with it as it is that I being his Granddaughter he doesn't want to talk about things with me that are that disturbing and uncomfortable. I lived with my Grandparents when I was small, and I think it is just that he wants to protect me from it. It may be possible that I could ask my Grandfather to write some of his experiences down rather than actually tell me. I think it would be nice to have his story added to others to give people an idea of what really happened. Is there any other organizations other than your own that is aimed at collecting the stories of WWII vets that were present to witness the concentration camps, and other major events of WWII.

I think it would be easier for him to talk with someone who has been there, or more his peer. I do realize that my Grandfather is getting older, and his experiences are important. I am pretty sure my grandfather was a foot soldier, and I think he also almost died but not in the way you would think, he had food poisoning, from some bad thanksgiving turkey the army cooks had kept warm to long, and once again from eating bad pork. That is why he still doesn't eat turkey very often; my Grandmother always makes something else for him to eat on Thanksgiving.

I also know he met General Patton once in passing. His name by the way is Wayne Jackman, if you know anyone who has met him. I will email you in the next week or so after I talk with him, and I can at least figure out division. I have to admit I am probably as hesitant to ask him about it as he is to talk about it, but just finding out his division shouldn't be to hard. Thanks again.

ASTP/448th Eng

From: Francis Gates

[From Ray Kitchell: Can you please give me the name and email address of the Webmaster of the 448 Th Eng and/or the author of the ASTP article? Thank you. Webmaster, 89th Inf Div WWII.]

Yeah Ray I am both. I was in the ASTP program at Clemson as well as the 488th Engineers. The 488th history is mainly from the Unit History book, which was written, in Holland in 1945 by John Walsh. You will note in the ASTP article I cite Louis Keefer who also was an ASTPer. His book gives a good description of the program and then is mostly accounts of men who were in the ASTP program.

Also in the same time frame the Navy had a College program that I believewas labeled the V-12 program.

My name is Francis Gates, P.O. Box 324 51 Spears Street, Canton, NY 13617 (315) 386-2973

[From Ray] Hey, nice to make contact. I am well acquainted with Lou's work and have been in contact with him in the past. I attended Oregon State College in ASTP and when the program broke up, I was assigned to the 89th Infantry Division that was being transformed from a light division to a heavy division prior to deployment to the ETO. With my son's invaluable help, we created a website for our division at www.89infdivww2.org. If you pull it up, you'll find a number of stories about ASTPers in our Division. Within a month, on our website will also be an article I wrote about the ASTP at OSC which I am sure will interest you. Also a story about my "Memoirs as a PFC".

I am suggesting that we should establish a link between our two websites. What do you think? I enjoyed your description very much. Looking forward to further exchanges, including thier inclusion in our 89th monthly Newsletter.

Request for information

From: Patrick Brion

I was very happy that you decided to put the request for information on your beautiful site of the 89 ID. Since then, our unit has moved and a lot of changes occurred, including the address. Would it be possible to "relaunch" the following new request? I would be very grateful for your help and would like to thank you already in advance for your support!

Sincere greetings,

Patrick Brion Sergeant, Major Belgian Verification Agency (BEVA)

32 2 701 2455 or 2473
6 32 2 701 2959

I am still looking for veterans of the 89th whom have memories of the occupation of the town of KAHLA (Apr 45) and especially the time that the underground aircraft factory and the nearby labor camps were discovered. I am also looking for pictures of that period made by veterans of the 89th. Please note the new E-mail address!

Request of brother

From: byaro@aol.com

Sir: First I would like to report that my brother, Cpl IV AN YARO passed away 1 May 2002 in Los Angeles Calif. He was a member of the H and HQ Co. of the 89th Inf. Div. and was an interpreter. He also participated in the liberation of Ohrdruf. I am seeking members of his company who knew him. We would like to flesh out our family history. He was at Camp Carson, Hunter-Liggett and came ashore in France at LeHavre. He recalls the French were upset with a bombardment and dumped chamber pots on the arriving Americans. He has the answer to what happened to the Camp Commandant of Ohrdruf and the photos to prove it. A lot of stories have recently been written about Ohrdruf and the 89th seems to be left out. It is important that the stories be told so that history remembers. Anyone wishing to contact me may do so at my email address:

Carry On!

Ohrdruf Story

From: Warren Heyer

You say you've written to Bob. Do you mean Bob Cleary? I tried in vain to find his name in the local telephone directory. I wanted to ask him which company he was in. Do you know? Also, I wrote a letter to the editor, informing readers of the 89th web site. Copy below:

"I read with great interest the story about Mr. Bob Cleary, the Rancho Santa Fe man who led one of the first U.S. platoons to set foot in a German death camp. There are, unfortunately, those among us who deny the existence of the camps.

I was a private in the 89th, Cleary's division. I remember that we were given the day off from our movement across Germany, so that we could go to see the camp at Ohrdruf, the one Mr. Cleary's platoon first encountered. I chose not to go, but talked to many of my fellow foot soldiers who did go and came back disgusted, overwhelmed by what they had seen. I think doubters would have a hard time convincing any of those men that the holocaust never happened. The 89th division has a web site, http://www.89infdivww2.org/ohrdruf/index.htm with a special section devoted to accounts of the discovery at Ohrdruf... "

I sent the letter to the editor today. We'll see if it is published. [Editor: Dear Warren:

Yes I just contacted his wife by phone and sent him a message by using her email address, which is marcleary@aol.com. Their telephone number is in the latest Roster, 858 756-3226 and they live in California, but it doesn't list his Company. I assume your letter was to the paper that printed the story.

When I hear from Bob, we include it in the TRW, the website and our next (July) Newsletter. If you don't mind, I'll also include your letter in the June Newsletter-Bob said GO]



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