Sunday, September 24, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Lester Taylor, 101st Airborne / National Gold Star Mother's Day

Cpl. Taylor, 101st Airborne, was killed in a successful attack near Best, Holland
that netted more than 1,000 prisoners and captured one of the needed bridges.
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=17313845&ref=acom
http://www.ww2marketgarden.com/battleatbest101stairbornedivision.html 

Today is National Gold Star Mother's Day, created by Congress in 1936 to recognize and honor the mothers who lost a son or daughter while serving in the US Armed Forces. 

Lester A. Taylor never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 24, 1917 in Tennessee. His parents were also both born in Tennessee. His father worked as a farmer. Lester had an older sister, six younger sisters, and a younger brother.

While in California, he enlisted in the army on January 30, 1942. He had been working as a farmhand. He decided to volunteer for the Airborne and ended up as a corporal in Company I, 3rd Battalion, 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division.

Cpl. Taylor was with his unit when they jumped into Normandy in the dark early hours of D-Day. He survived that battle and jumped into Holland on September 17, 1944 as part of Operation Market Garden. Its mission was to capture the railroad and road bridges at Best. The Germans destroyed the railroad bridge just as the paratroopers were getting close. The highway bridge remained in German hands for two days until the 502nd successfully captured the bridge leaving more than 300 enemy dead and taking more than 1,000 prisoners. Cpl. Taylor was killed during this battle.

His grave is at Restview Cemetery in Loretto, Tennessee.

Thank you Lester for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Lester.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Saturday, September 23, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Doolittle raider Edwin Bain

Sgt. Edwin Bain and his crewmates flew this B-25 on the famous Doolittle raid to bomb Japan.
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=56305660&ref=acom
https://www.thisdayinaviation.com/27-march-1942/
Edwin V. Bain, Jr. never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 23, 1917 in North Carolina. His father was also born in North Carolina while his mother was from up north in New York, but just one generation away from Ireland. Edwin Jr. had a younger sister. His father worked as a garage mechanic and later as a real estate salesman after moving to Chicago. Edwin Jr. stayed in North Carolina and lived with his sister at the home of his dad's father. His mom died of pellagra in 1934. 

Edwin joined the Army Air Corps on August 20, 1936. He was originally trained as a radio operator and repairman. When the war started he was a sergeant and trained gunner on B-25s. Early in 1942 he volunteered for a secret mission which turned out to be the Doolittle raid on Japan.  He was the upper turret gunner on the 14th plane to take off from the USS Hornet on April 18, 1942. His plane bombed Yokohama and safely made it to China where the crew all bailed out and evaded Japanese capture. 

After returning to America, Sgt. Bain's next assignment was the Mediterranean. By December 1942 he was flying missions as a gunner on B-26 Marauders.

He was killed in action on July 19, 1943. After a combat mission near Rome, his plane crashed into the Tyrrhenian Sea. His remains were not recovered.

His death is memorialized at the Sicily-Rome American Cemetery and Memorial.

Thank you Edwin for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Edwin.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Friday, September 22, 2017

WW2 Fallen - B-29 airman Frank Crane

Sgt. Frank Crane last mission was on the 497th Bomb Group's B-29 Pacific Union.
http://www.worldwarphotos.info/gallery/usa/aircrafts-2-3/b-29/
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=151480146&ref=acom
Francis Joseph Crane never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 22, 1917 in Wisconsin. His mother was born in Indiana. His father was born at sea (Frank's grandparents were German immigrants).  His father worked as a planing mill woodworker and later an automobile repairman. Frank had a twin sister (Frances Josephine). He also had an older brother and younger brother who served in the navy during the war. 

Frank completed 4 years of high school and enlisted in the Army Air Corps in November 1940. He became a staff sergeant in the 869th Bombardment Squadron, 497th Bombardment Group, Twentieth Air Force which was equipped with B-29 Superfortresses. Sgt. Crane arrived with his fellow airman on Saipan in September 1944. They flew missions over Iwo Jima and Truk and eventually focused on Japan.

On January 14, 1945 Sgt. Crane was onboard the B-29 Pacific Union with a mission to bomb the Mitsubishi aircraft plant in Nagoya through heavy overcast. There were 73 B-29's on the mission. Five did not return, include Pacific Union which ditched in the ocean near Saipan. Four of the crew survived, but the rest, including Sgt. Crane, went down with the plane.

His cenotaph grave is at Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

Thank you Frank for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Frank.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Thursday, September 21, 2017

WW2 Fallen - B-17 engineer/gunner Albert Beyke

Sgt. Albert Beyke was the flight engineer on the B-17 Dear Mom.
http://www.americanairmuseum.com/aircraft/4380
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=37205286
http://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2013/08/18/Belgian-town-honors-crew-of-Dear-Mom-a-U-S-bomber-shot-down-in-WWII/stories/201308180169 

Albert V. Beyke never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 21, 1917 in Ohio. His mother also born in Ohio and his father was born in Tennessee. His father worked as a farmer. Albert had two older brothers and an older sister. He also had three younger brothers and a younger sister. By 1940 Albert had completed one year of high school. He lived at home working on the family farm.

He enlisted in the army on April 14, 1942. He became a tech sergeant in the 331st Bombardment Squadron, 94th Bombardment Group, Eighth Air Force which was equipped with B-17s. The 94th arrived in England in April 1943 and flew its first mission in June. Sgt. Beyke was a flight engineer / top turret gunner.

On August 17, 1943 Sgt. Beyke was on the B-17 Dear Mom on a mission to bomb the Messerschmitt factory at Regensburg. Once over Belgium the 146 B-17s on the mission were expecting to pick up a P-47 escort. The Thunderbolts never showed up, but German fighters did. Dear Mom had the misfortune to be the first B-17 to go down. A FW-190 shot up Dear Mom's oil tanks and the plane flipped over on one side. The front of the plane exploded, killing six airmen, including Sgt. Beyke. The back part of the plane survived the explosion and four men jumped. Two of the crew were captured but two evaded capture and escaped safely. The plane crashed near Lummen, Belgium. Only half of the bombers on the mission returned relatively unscathed. More than 50 sustained heavy damage and aside from Dear Mom, another 23 were lost.

The Belgians built a memorial to honor the men from this plane. You can read more here.

His grave is at St. Mary Cemetery, Fort Recovery, Ohio. Three of his brothers served in the army during the war. All came home.

Thank you Albert for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Albert.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

WW2 D-Day Fallen - William Evans, 101st Airborne + NBA tie-in

Cpl. William B. Evans jumped into Normandy on D-Day with these men of the 3rd Battalion, 502nd PIR.
http://www.americandday.org/D-Day/Airborne_Division-Pathfinder-Plane_19.html
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=139703139&ref=acom  
William B. Evans never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 20, 1917 in Kentucky. His parents were also both born in Kentucky. His father worked as a coal wagon driver. William had an older brother. By 1940 William had married and was living with his wife and his in-laws while working as a laborer. They had at least one son.

He enlisted in the army on May 13, 1942. At some point after that he volunteered to serve in one of the new parachute regiments. He became a corporal in the headquarters company, 3rd Battalion, 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division.

Bad weather made it difficult for the 502nd to land in its designated drop zones on D-Day, June 6, 1944. Despite having fewer troops than anticipated, Corporal Evans' 3rd Battalion was able to take the two causeways linking up with Utah Beach. I don't know if Cpl. Evans was killed while achieving these objectives or earlier during the day.

His grave is at Park Cemetery, Greenfield, Indiana. His widow never remarried and died in 1987. I don't know what happened to his son.

Thank you William for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for William.

Red Auerbach

Also born on September 20, 1917 was Red Auerbach, one of the most success coaches in NBA history. He was raised in Brooklyn and quickly found a talent for basketball. He attended George Washington University on a basketball scholarship and graduated with a master degree in 1941. He got a job as a high school basketball coach but after two years he joined the navy for three years of service. Among his navy duties was coaching basketball.


http://www.celticsbeagle.net/redtribute.html
After the war Auerbach continued his coaching career eventually becoming the legendary coach of the Boston Celtics where he became the winningest coach of all time (as of then) and won nine NBA championships. Auerbach died in 2006.

The lost sports accomplishments of the 408,000 fallen will forever remain unknown. Though their names are missing from the record books, let us still remember their names for the more significant accomplishments they achieved in sacrificing their lives for the freedoms we enjoy.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

WW2 Fallen - B-24 bombardier Richard Hanford

Lt. Dick Hanford was a B-24 bombardier for the 762nd Bombardment Squad
and was killed on the mission when this photo was taken.
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=92031446&ref=acom
http://freepages.family.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~webermd1/wwII.html 

Richard "DIck" A. Hanford never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 19, 1917 in Nebraska. His mother was also born in Nebraska while his father was born in New York. His father worked as a clothes merchant and later as a laundry dry cleaner when the family moved to Oregon. Still later he worked as a salesman. Richard had a older sister and a younger sister. By 1940 Richard had completed four years of high school and was still living at home while working as a salesman.

He enlisted in the Army Air Forces on October 19, 1943. Dick would serve for less than one year. He became a second lieutenant in the 762nd Bombardment Squadron, 460th Bombardment Group, 15th Air Force which was equipped with B-24 Liberators. Lt. Hanford was trained as a bombardier.

On October 16, 1944 Lt. Hanford's plane, White K for Knight, took off from Spinazzola Airbase with a mission to bomb the aircraft factory in St. Valentine, Austria. Anti-aircraft fire over the target was intense and accurate. Lt. Hanford's B-24 exploded in mid-air. Eight of the crew were able to jump out, but Lt. Hanford and one other man did not and died when it crashed.

His grave is at Lincoln Memorial Park in Portland, Oregon.

Thank you Dick for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Dick.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Monday, September 18, 2017

WW2 Fallen - B-17 radio operator Cyril Curb + famous historian

Sgt. Cyril Curb and the crew of the B-17 "Pennsylvania Polka".
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=33274627 

Cyril Edward Curb never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 18, 1917 in Minnesota. His mother was born in North Dakota and his father was born in Holland. His father worked as a logging camp sawyer and later as a bar tender. Cyril had two younger brothers and one younger sister. During the war one brother was a pilot and the other was an army engineer. Cyril completed four years of high school.

He enlisted in the army on October 31, 1941, leaving a sawmill job. He became a tech sergeant radio operator in the 323rd Bombardment Squadron, 91st Bombardment Group which was equipped with B-17s.

Sgt. Curb was on board the Pennsylvania Polka on his final mission on February 4, 1943. It was a mission to bomb the railroad marshaling yards in Hamm, Germany. On the return flight, Sgt. Curb's bomber was shot down by German fighter planes 12 miles northwest of Terschelling Island. The plane crashed into the North Sea with no survivors.

His cenotaph grave is at Evergreen Cemetery in Gemmell, Minnesota.

Thank you Cyril for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Cyril.

Clinton Rossiter

Also born on September 18, 1917 was Clinton Rossiter who became a well-known historian. He grew up in New York and graduated from Cornell University. In 1942 he earned a PhD from Princeton University. Shortly thereafter he joined the navy and served three years as a gunnery officer, mostly on the USS Alabama, and attained the rank of lieutenant. 

He became a professor of history after the war and a prolific writer. His best known book 1787: The Grand Convention is one of the best accounts of the Constitutional Convention. If you studied the Federalist Papers, there is a good chance the version you read was put together by Rossiter.


https://www.slideshare.net/atrantham/presidency-60928534

Rossiter died an early death at his own hand at age 52 attributed to depression brought on by student unrest at Cornell.

We will never know what great books remained unwritten by the 400,000+ fallen who never came home.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Sunday, September 17, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Thomas Cross, 82nd Airborne and bomber boy brother Robert

Sgt. Thomas Cross, 82nd Airborne and his B-17 tail gunner brother Sgt. Robert Cross.
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=30440110&ref=acom
http://asaapicardie3945.fr/index.php/english/airmen/127-boeing-b-17-judy-42-29963-379th-bomb-group-527th-bomb-squadron-30-december-1943-ully-saint-georges-oise 

Thomas G. Cross never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom. His kid brother did the same.

He was born on September 17, 1917 in Missouri. His parents were also both born in Missouri. His father worked as a farmer and later as a state highway patrolman. Thomas had an older sister and a younger brother, Robert, who became a B-17 tail gunner.

Thomas enlisted in the army on April 20, 1942. Two months later Robert, two years his junior, also enlisted in the army. Thomas decided to volunteer for the paratroopers and became a sergeant in the Headquarters Company, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division. Robert became a staff sergeant in the the 527th Bombardment Squadron, 379th Bombardment Group which flew B-17s.

Big brother Thomas was possibly not yet with the 82nd when they participated in the invasion of Sicily. We don't know if Thomas arrived in England in time to spend any leave time with his brother who was in England by late 1943. 

On December 30, 1943, Robert's B-17 Judy was part of a mission of 710 bombers to bomb the chemical works at Ludwigshafen, Germany. Robert  was the tail gunner. After successfully releasing its bombs, one of Judy's engines was knocked out by flak. The pilot tried to make it back to England as a straggler, but while flying over Oise, France, the damaged plane was attacked and shot up by three German fighter planes. Now uncontrollable, the pilot ordered everyone to jump. Three men did not get out and crashed with the plane, including Robert Cross.

Being the only remaining son, Thomas was most likely given the option of avoiding dangerous frontline duties. He chose to stay with the 82nd and jumped with his unit in the early hours of D-Day. Encountering heavy clouds, the 508th PIR troops were mostly scattered miles away from their drop zones. Despite being short on weapons, the 82nd Airborne kept the Germans from closing in on Utah Beach. Sgt. Cross was killed on D+4: June 10, 1944.

The Cross brother's graves are both located at Emery Chapel Cemetery in Bucyrus, Texas.

Thank you Thomas for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Thomas.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I stated this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Saturday, September 16, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Navy Cross hero Andrew Ham, USS Bennington

Lieutenant Commander Andrew Ham was the squadron leader flying SB2C Helldivers from the USS Bennington.
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=72518978
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/398427898264769436/
http://www.uss-bennington.org/hist.html 
Andrew Britte Ham never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 16, 1917 in Georgia. His parents were also both born in Georgia. His father worked as a manager for an electric battery company and later a motor plant proprietor. Andrew had an older brother and three younger sisters. 

Andrew entered the navy in June 1935 when he was accepted to the US Naval Academy. He graduated in 1939. Later he married Roberta Crittendon.

He rose to the rank of lieutenant commander in March 1944 and served as a dive bomber pilot and squadron leader on the USS Bennington no later than July 1945, flying SB2C Helldivers.

During the month of July Lt. Cmdr. Ham was involved in numerous missions to attack targets in Japan. Only a select few knew about the upcoming atomic bomb mission so most people were focused on reducing Japan's ability to wage war prior to an American invasion.

Lt. Cmdr. Ham was a fearless pilot who was recognized with numerous awards.

On July 14 Lt. Cmdr. Ham earned the Distinguished Flying Cross. For two hours, with a spotting officer in his plane's second seat, he flew over enemy targets, sometimes at dangerously low heights, to provide targeting coordinates to US Navy battleships and cruisers so they could hit major industrial targets around Kamaishi on Honshu Island. He was under constant fire from shore based and ship based anti-aircraft batteries.

Three days later Lt. Cmdr. Ham earned a Gold Star in lieu of a Second Award of the Distinguished Flying Cross. On that day he volunteered to be the leader of the final division of dive bombers attacking the Japanese battleship Nagato in Tokyo Harbor at 3:30 in the afternoon. The Nagato was the Japanese flagship during the December 7 attack on Pearl Harbor. His late position in the attack guaranteed that the enemy would be fully alerted to throw up the most intense flak. Going in last he was able to photograph the execution of the attack by the planes ahead of him and afterward he made a low altitude sweep to obtain photographic evidence of the attack. Ham's bomb was a near miss, as were an incredible 60 bombs dropped. Only two bombs hit the battleship causing light damage. The task force went on to other targets the next day and did not return to sink the Nagato.

On July 28, Lt. Cmdr. Ham's final mission would result in him being posthumously award the Navy Cross. On that day the Third Fleet resumed its attack on Japanese Imperial Navy vessels at Kure Naval Base. Ham lined up for a dive bomb attack on the so far undamaged carrier Katsuragi and scored a direct hit resulting in heavy damage. He was shot down by enemy flak and his body was not recovered. The Navy lost 102 pilots during the attack on Kure.

His cenotaph grave is at Evergreen Cemetery in Charlotte, North Carolina. I don't know what happened to his widow.

Thank you Andrew for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Andrew.

Thanks to Darillyn Lamb Starr for recommending that Andrew be profiled.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Friday, September 15, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Paulie Buss, 36th Infantry Division

Sgt. Paulie Buss, 36th Infantry Division
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=33834379&ref=acom 

Paulie C. Buss never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 15, 1917 in Texas. His parents were also both born in Texas. His father worked as a merchandise store clerk. Although only 28 at the time, he died of diabetes in 1923. His mother remarried a farmer. Paulie had a younger brother and sister plus a half-sister. By 1940 Paulie had completed two years of high school. He had moved out on his own and worked as a service station attendant.

He enlisted in the army on November 16, 1940. He became a sergeant in Company L, 3rd Battalion, 141st Infantry Regiment, 36th Infantry Division. The 36th ID arrived in North Africa in April 1943. It was first assigned to guard the thousands of German POWs from the Africa Korps. It first saw action in Italy during the Battle of Salerno in September 1943 where it suffered more than 4,000 casualties. The 36th was given six weeks of rest before returning the front line in mid-November. It captured a number of enemy positions on the Bernhardt Line despite bad weather and strong enemy resistance. By mid-December the 141st IR was advancing on San Pietro. The engagement was later made famous by John Huston's documentary movie The Battle of San Pietro, released in 1945. The 3rd Battalion came under a minor counter attacks three different times on the morning of December 16, 1943. The enemy was unsuccessful in beating the Americans, but Sgt. Buss was killed. The regiment needed nearly 300 men to replace the soldiers it lost killed or wounded during December.

His grave is at Breslau Cemetery in Halletsville, Texas.

Thank you Paulie for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Paulie.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Thursday, September 14, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Tom Nishimoto, 442nd Infantry Regiment

Pvt. Tom Nishimoto served with these men in Italy in the 442nd Infantry Regiment
which was honored with a Congressional Gold Medal.
http://nisei.hawaii.edu/object/io_1149294490406.html
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/297026537906882653/
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=7926424&ref=acom 
Tomiga T. Nishimoto never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 14, 1917 in California. His parents were both born in Japan. His father came to America in 1899 and worked as a farmer and later as a grocery store owner. Tom had a younger sister. After the attack on Pearl Harbor the Nishimoto family was relocated to a camp in Southwestern Arizona in May 1942.

Tom left the camp on June 3, 1943 to find work in the midwest. On July 7, 1944, while in Illinois, he enlisted in the army and joined the 3rd Battalion, 442nd Infantry Regiment as a private. The men in the 442nd IR earned more decorations than any other regiment in World War 2. It suffered so many casualties that more than 14,000 men served in the 4,000 man unit. Nearly 10,000 earned Purple Hearts.

In early April 1945 the 442nd was given the assignment to attack the long entrenched Germans defending the Gothic Line. Pvt. Nishimoto's 3rd Battalion attacked Mount Folgorita on April 5. It took 30 minutes to dislodge the surprised Germans and their counterattack was not able to retake the high ground. Pvt. Nishimoto died during this battle. His parents received notice of his death while still living at the Poston relocation camp. Twenty-five other former Poston internees also died serving their country.

His grave is at Evergreen Cemetery in Los Angeles.

Thank you Tom for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Tom.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

WW2 Fallen - Tugboat cook Melvin F. Meyer

Seaman 2nd Class Melvin Meyer was a cook on the tugboat Sonoma.
The bottom right picture shows the unsuccessful attempt to put out the fires that sank the ship.
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=123540229&ref=acom
http://www.navsource.org/archives/09/64/64012.htm
https://www.facebook.com/pages/USS-Sonoma-AT-12/140588372633534
Melvin F. Meyer never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 13, 1917 in Michigan. His parents Herman and Elsa were also both born in Michigan. His father worked as a farmer. and later as a milk station car washer.  Still later he was a construction labor operator. Melvin had two younger brothers who both served in the war and a younger sister. On June 18, 1938 Melvin married Beatrice Langlois. They had two sons. He ran Mel's Hamburger Shop.

He enlisted in the Navy on April 21, 1944 and became a seaman second class and cook on the navy tug USS Sonoma. The Sonoma was built in 1912 and saw action in WWI. During WW2 the Sonoma served in the Pacific theater. It had a crew of 61.

By mid-October 1944, the Sonoma was in the Philippine Sea as part of the task force supporting the invasion of Leyte. On the morning of October 24 the task force came under attack from Japanese planes. A damaged Japanese bomber crashed into the Sonoma midship on the starboard side, causing two explosions that spread into a fire. Nearby ships tried to hose out the fires without success and the Sonoma sank. Seaman Meyer was either killed in the fire or died of his wounds the next day.

His grave is at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Saginaw, Michigan. His widow remarried and died in 2014. I don't know what happened to his sons.

Thank you Melvin for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Melvin.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to share why I have created this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

Follow on Twitter @ww2fallen100
Join the public Facebook group WW2 Fallen 100

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

WW2 Fallen - B-25 airman Melvin McKelroy

Sgt. Melvin McKelroy was an airman in the 83rd Bombardment Squadron, 12th Bombardment Group.
http://www.airspacemag.com/history-of-flight/17_aug2017-above-beyond-180963936/
https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=73653114&ref=acom 

Melvin C. McKelroy never had a chance to reach 100 years old today. Instead, he sacrificed his life for our freedom.

He was born on September 12, 1917 in Arkansas. His parents were also both born in Arkansas. His father worked as a farmer. By 1930 the family had moved to Oklahoma were his father worked as an oil industry pumper. Melvin had an older sister, two younger sisters, and one younger brother. He completed four years of high school.

He enlisted in the Army Air Corps on October 29, 1940. He became a tech sergeant in the 83rd Bombardment Squadron, 12th Bombardment Group, 9th Air Force which was equipped with B-25 Mitchells. Sgt. McKelroy's first assignment took him to Egypt in August 1942 to help the British fight back the Afrika Korps. With the defeat of the Germans in North Africa, Sgt. McKelroy's next missions were to support the campaign in Italy. By August the 12th BG was operating out of Foggia Airfield in Italy. Sgt. McKelroy was killed on August 15, 1943. The circumstance are unknown.

His grave is at A.J. Powell Memorial Cemetery in Hominy, Oklahoma.

Thank you Melvin for your sacrifice. Let's Earn It for Melvin.

On behalf of the fallen, if you would like to see more people become aware of this project to honor the WW2 fallen, be sure to share with others on Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your interest!

I created this video to explain why I started this project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXt8QA481lY.

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