Pictured Right: Tidewater Veterans Memorial, Virginia Beach, Virginia
The Union Appeal, November 5, 1942
Private First Class Roy H. White and Walter C. Smith, USMC, both of Union, are more than just buddies at the marine barracks, Pearl Har
bor. Both 23, they grew up on adjoining farms, attended the same school, enlisted together and fought side by side in the battles of Coral Sea, Midway and the Solomon's. The two graduated Beulah Hubbard High School and attended East Central Junior College where both played football.
The Union Appeal, November 19, 1942
Coffee will be rationed from midnight, November 19, on. War book holders of 15 years of age or older will be eligible for one pound of roasted coffee only on stamp no. 27.
"Somewhere in England" is the present address of Private Charles L. Mabry, now fighting with Uncle Sam's defenders. he was educated at County Line High School.
The Union Appeal, November 26, 1942
Captain William L. (Billie) Cole, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. M. Cole of Union, received his promotion to captaincy in August and is now serving at Camp A. P. Hill in Richmond, Virginia.
Staff Sergeant V. A. Wolverton, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. T. Wolverton of Union, is now serving with the U. S. Army somewhere in England.
Mr. and Mrs. Nolan James of Union have received word that their son Albert, has landed safely overseas and is doing well.
The Union Appeal, December 10, 1942
W. P. Howle received a telephone call from his son, Bill Owen, informing him that he had arrived safely in San Diego from somewhere in the Pacific war zone and would be home in about ten days. Bill Owen has been in the service about two years and this will be his first trip home. He has been in active combat service on a Flying Fortress for several months.
Pictured Left: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford County, VA
The Union Appeal, December 17, 1942
Corporal Leon Gardner is at home on furlough with his parents, Mr. & Mrs. F. B. Gardner. He recently returned to the states after serving several months in the Pacific war zone.
Last week in Union school we made a special drive on account of Pearl Harbor Day. The amount of stamps and bonds clearly showed that the spirit of the students is 'we will do our part'. They bought 3 in stamps and 0 in bonds.
The Union Appeal, December 31, 1942
Sgt. J. C. Simmons, who was reported missing in action on October 21st when the plane he was in failed to return from a flight over western Europe, is now a prisoner of war in Germany.
The Union Appeal, February 4, 1943
Cpl. Marzine Thrash, USMC and son of Mr. and Mrs. J. O. Thrash of near Sebastopol, arrived home Saturday. Seventeen months of his service has been spent on Midway Island.
Ladies! Don't throw away your old silk and nylon hose. Take them to the Modern Beauty Shop where they will be collected for the defense of our country.
The Union Appeal, February 25, 1943
Sgt. Carl Rushing, a paratrooper in the U. S. Army, is visiting in Union this week.
The Union Appeal, March 18, 1943
2nd Lieutenant Allen B. Cleveland, formerly of Union, has been promoted to the rank of 1st Lieutenant at Selman Field, Monroe, Louisiana.
The Union Appeal, April 15, 1943
Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Livingston of Union Rt. 2, received a telegram last Sunday from the war department stating that their son, Corporal Raymond H. Livingston, was wounded in action in North Africa on March 24.
Corporal Maston S. McMahan has been promoted to sergeant. Sergeant McMahan is a member of the Maintenance Company, 41st Armored Regiment, 11th Armored Division. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac H. McMahan of Union.
The Union Appeal, April 22, 1943
William C. Hansford, Seaman First Class, U. S. Naval Hospital, Oakland, California, is spending a 30 days leave with his parents. He was aboard a ship that was shelled by the Japanese and was injured by an exploding shell.
The Union Appeal, May 6, 1943
Sergeant Moody Lockley, of the U. S. Marine Corps, who was stationed on Midway Island when the Japanese tried to take it, was in town this week. He is on furlough and is being transferred to North Carolina.
Elmo Watkins, who is with the Merchant Marines and has recently made a trip to Russia, is spending a ten-day leave with relatives and friends in and around Union.
The Union Appeal, May 13, 1943
Mrs. E. Simmons of Union recently received a letter from her son, Sgt. J. C. Simmons, who is a prisoner of war in Germany.
The Union Appeal, May 20, 1943
Pfc. Clyde Smith and Pfc. Hinton White are spending a few days furlough with their parents here. They joined the Marines about three years ago, and have seen action in battles at Earl Harbor, the Coral Sea, Midway and occupation of the Soloman Islands.
The Union Appeal, June 3, 1943
James Randolph Harris, whose wife, Mrs. Rebecca Hataway Harris, is a resident of Union, has been commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps. he will soon take to the field to lead the leathernecks in battle.
M/Sgt. Carl H. Russell and wife visited his sister during the past week. Sgt. Russell and his wife resided at Pearl Harbor during the attack. His wife was sent back to the States while he went on to see service in a number of the islands in the Pacific.
Pictured Right: John Winfield McBeath (U.S. Army Air Force Airborne Engineer Aviation Co. - WWII)
The Union Appeal, July 1, 1943
Guy Lafayette Tucker, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. G. L. Tucker of Union, won his Navy "Wings of Gold" and was commissioned an Ensign in the Naval Reserve this week following training at the Naval Air Training Center in Pensacola.
Haskell Vance, who is on army maneuvers in Louisiana, has recently been promoted to First Lieutenant. Vance is the son of Mr. and Mrs. L. W. Vance of Union.
Carlis E. Pinson, who is in the U. S. Navy and stationed at Bainbridge, Maryland, is spending a furlough here with his wife and other relatives in Union.
The Union Appeal, July 8, 1943
Sgt. Oree Collins, who is stationed at Albany, Georgia, is spending a few days furlough with his wife and parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Collins.
Pfc. Virgil Gordon, of Camp Phillips, Kansas, is spending a 12-day furlough with relatives and friends in and around Union.
M/Sgt. Ernest A. Dixon, Jr. who graduated from officers candidate A.A.S. Grinnel, Iowa, has received his commission as Second Lt. in the U. S. Army.
The Union Appeal, July 15, 1943
Shelton D. Blalock, 22, seaman 2/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. M. Blalock, Union, has completed basic training at the Submarine School, New London, Connecticut, for duty with out-going fleet of undersea fighters. Blalock was graduated from County Line High School three years ago, lettering in basketball while there.
Cecil Ingram, Robert Stribling and Ernest Wells, who joined the U.S.Navy recently, have been sent to Great Lakes, Illinois, where they will receive basic training.
The Union Appeal, July 22, 1943
Corporal John Neff Wilson, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. G. Wilson of Little Rock, is serving with Uncle Sam's Army Air Corps somewhere in England.
Pfc. Albert N. James, United States Marine Corps, has been overseas for nine months, serving in the South Pacific.
Jack Howle, Torrence Hunter and Bill Wells left Sunday for Miami Beach, Florida, where they will enter training for Cadelts in the Army Air Corps.
The Union Appeal, August 5, 1943
Captain Brooks C. Vance, formerly of Union, has recently received his commission as captain and is currently serving overseas.
Auxiliary Hazel N. Holder, one of the Union girls who answered Uncle Sam's call with the WACS, has completed five months basic training, and is now stationed at Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The Union Appeal, August 12, 1943
Two Union boys recently met while they were in London, England. Corporal Ozborn Driskell and Sergeant Rudolph Germany met at an American Red Cross Club.
Robert J. Stribling, 18, son of Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Stribling, has exchanged his civilian clothes for 'Navy Blue'. He reported to Great Lakes, Illinois, where he will begin boot training.
The Union Appeal, August 19, 1943
Private Pete Evans will preach at Rock Branch Baptist Church Sunday. Pete is in the U.S.Army and is stationed at Camp Shelby.
The following letter was received by Mrs. Susie Lockley from her son from who she had not heard from in 17 months. He was taken prisoner while Bataan fell to the Japanese. "I am interned in Osako Umeda Bunto prisoner of war camp. Me health is usual. I am working for my pay."
O. J. Hollingsworth and Willie H. French, who are in the Navy and stationed at the Great Lakes Training Station, are at home on a few days furlough.
The Union Appeal, October 14, 1943
Headquarters, European Theater of Operations, London, England - Mississippi and Arkansas soldiers held their third reunion and dinner overseas at the American Red Cross Mostyn club recently. Present from Union was Corporal William F. Ware.
Private Marshall Lewis, who is stationed at Camp Shelby, spent the weekend with his wife and other friends and relatives in Union.
The Union Appeal, October 21, 1943
Mr. and Mrs. E. V. Buckley received a telegram from the War Department that their son, Ross, died on October 16. Ross was stationed in the South Pacific war zone and was a member of the Army Air Corps.
Pvt. Octavis McElhenney, son of Hez H. McElhenney of Route 2, Union, has reported for training as an airplane mechanic at Gulfport Field.
Sgt. Carl Rushing, who is a paratrooper with the U.S.Army, spent a few days furlough with his mother here last week.
Pictured Left: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
The Union Appeal, November 4, 1943
Tech. Sgt. James O. Gill, son of Mr. and Mrs. R.F.A. Gill of Union, Rt. 2, received his training in camps at Florida, Texas and Oklahoma before being sent to foreign service. He currently is somewhere in North Africa.
Mrs. Dan Lockley of Union has received another card from her son, Cpl. Rufus W. Lockley, who is a prisoner of war in Osaka, Japan.
Lt. Wilson Fulton returned to duty this week after spending a few days with relatives and friends in Union and Neshoba.
The Union Appeal - November 25, 1943
Pvt. James H. Hand, son of Mrs. Macie Hand of Union, has landed safely in England.
1st Lt. Carl L. Tucker, son of Mr. and Mrs. Morris L. tucker, Route 2, Union, has been promoted to that rank from 2nd Lt. he is an assistant ordinance officer at Courtland Army Air Field.
S 2/c William J. Gordon has been assigned to the S.S. Hornet, an aircraft carrier, and is sailing somewhere, according to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Gordon of Little Rock.
The Union Appeal - December 2, 1943
Pfc. Dewitt Bradley, who is stationed in New York, spent a few days furlough with his father, J. O. Bradley and other relatives and friends.
The Union Appeal - December 16, 1943
Lt. Earl Lewis, son of Mr. and Mrs. M. S. Lewis of Neshoba, is at home on leave after spending several months in England and North Africa with the U. S. Army Air Forces.
The Union Appeal - December 23, 1943
Sgt. Ralph Charles Gardner, son of Mr. and Mrs. F. B. Gardner, recently enjoyed a ten days furlough at home. He took his basic training in San Diego, California and attended Machinist Mate School USMC, in Norman, Oklahoma. He is now stationed at Edenton, North Carolina as 1st mechanic on a B-25
The Union Appeal - December 9. 1943
Pfc. Gordon Boler and Pfc. Buford Boler, sons of Mr. and Mrs. Ned Boler, of Union, are currently serving their country in the armed services. Buford is with the engineers. Gordon is with the armored infantry.
Eight Union, Mississippi men are new recruits at the U.S.Naval Station in Great Lakes, Illinois. They are John T. Smith, Hadden S. Gipson, W.M.Mowdy, Reginald Thomas, William L. Rigdon, L.V.Comans, Alton H. Cole and Bennie M. Pinter.
Earl Hutson is somewhere in England. He wrote his parents to say he is getting along fine and asked them to say hello to all his Union friends.
The Union Appeal - December 30, 1943
L. V. Comans, S 2/c, of the U. S. Navy, is spending a 12 days furlough with family and friends. He is stationed at Great Lakes, Illinois.
Lt. Colonel Ernest M. Smith, who is stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky, was greeting his many friends in Union on Monday this week.
The Union Appeal, January 6, 1944
Ernest A. Dixon, who is stationed at an air base in Albuquerque, New Mexico, has been promoted from 2nd Lieutenant to 1st Lieutenant, effective December 24.
T/Sgt. William O. Howle, USMC of Union, has reported to the U.S. Navy Pre-Flight School in Athens, Georgia, for three months of schooling. Howle is the son of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Howle.
The Union Appeal, February 24, 1944
Willie Howard French, S 2/c, who is stationed at Martha's Vineyard, Massachusets, is spending a 15 days furlough with relatives and friends here.
The following boys have passed the Air Corps examination: John Robert Laird, Bill Houston, George Stribling, James Galloway, Gerald Staton and Earl Burns.
The Union Appeal, March 2, 1944
Robert P. Lewis, son of Mr. F. C. Lewis, has reported to Bainbridge Army Air Field as an aviation trainee.
Mr. and Mrs. E. C. Crane of Conehatta received a telegram from the War department that their son, Corporal Ernest H. Crain was killed in an airplane crash in Dobodura, New Guinea, on February 17. He had been overseas about two years.
Pictured Right: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
The Union Appeal, March 16, 1944
Word has been received here that Sgt. Charles Houston Freeburgh, son of Mrs. Mae Freeburgh, has been missing in action since February 24th, when he was on a bombing mission over Germany.
Sgt. Alvin C. Johnson has been promoted to his present rank at Camp Blanding, Florida. Sgt. Johnson has many friends all over Newton County, he having made the race for Circuit Clerk of the county last summer.
Major Earl L. Laird of the Field Hospital in Fort Jackson, South Carolina, is spending a few days leave in Union this week.
The Union Appeal, March 23, 1944
Hubert Massengale, ARM 3/c, of the U. S. Navy, who is stationed at Palaxant River, Maryland, is at home on a few days leave with relatives and friends.
Ensign Harold Davidson, wife and daughter spent last weekend in the home of Private Fred Barfoot. They will leave Saturday for Boston where Ensign Davidson will be stationed.
The Union Appeal, March 30, 1944
Private Arnold Nelson, who is stationed at Camp Shelby, came in this week on a short furlough to visit friends in the County Line community.
Union boys meet in San Diego: Sailor Billy R. Winfield, son of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Winfield of Route 2, Union and Marine Woodrow L. Holley, son of Mr. and Mrs. Sim Holley of Route 4, Union, told of how nice it was to meet each other in California. Winfield has been in the Navy for about two years and Holley has been in the service for about 18 months.
The Union Appeal -- April 6, 1944
Pfc. Thurman E. Sharp, who is stationed at Fort Benning, Georgia, spent a few days furlough with his wife and other relatives in Union.
The Union Appeal -- April 13, 1944
Technical Sgt. Thomas Barfoot, who has been in the Marine Corps for two years, and in the South Pacific for 18 months, is at home with his parents on a 30-day leave.
Pfc. Rex Gordon, who is stationed at Pratt Air Force Base, Pratt, Kansas, is spending a ten days furlough with his parents here.
The Union Appeal -- April 20, 1944
Walter D. Adkins, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. C. Adkins of Duffee, recently graduated from the Aviation Radio School in Jacksonville, Florida. Adkins is now a qualified aviation radioman and will probably see service with a Naval Air Unit.
Former Aviation Cadet Lucien G. Maury of Union was recently graduated from the Army Air Forces Pilot School at Moody Field, Georgia, and commissioned a Second Lieutenant with the rating of Army Pilot.
Staff Sergeant Ethel Coy Lewis of Union was awarded the Soldier's Medal for heroism in rescuing a stunned sailor and aiding several other members of the Navy after a landing barge capsized approximately 200 yards from shore. Sgt. Lewis was waiting for reinforcements at Blue Beach, Media, French Morocco, during the invasion of North Africa. Sgt. Lewis is the son of Mr. W. G. Lewis. He finished high school here and played on the football team.
The Union Appeal - April 27, 1944
Born to Sgt. and Mrs. Charles M. Smith on April 20 an eight pound baby boy named Charles Marcellus, Jr. The proud father is somewhere in England.
Pvt. Wilbert Laysone is now stationed in Italy. He served on the Cassino front and is now on the Anzio beachhead front. Mrs. Laysone is the former Evonne Holder of Union. Pvt. Lasone is serving faithfully at his post of duty, but is hoping to be back with his wife soon, and baby, which he has never seen.
Mrs. Ernest Wells has received a letter from her son Ernest Lee, saying he and James Horton, who are in the Pacific serving in the U. S. Navy, have met. Both boys report liking Navy life fine.
The Union Appeal - May 4, 1944
Private Robert B. Foster, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Foster of Union, has been promoted to the rank of sergeant in the U. S. Army at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Sgt. Foster has one brother in the Army.
Thomas Graham, S 2/c in the U. S. Navy, who is stationed in San Diego, is spending a few days leave with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. W. B. Graham and other relatives here this week.
The Union Appeal - May 11, 1944
James Morris Payne, son of Mrs. Jewell Payne of Union, has arrived safely overseas in England. He was inducted in the Army in August of 1943.
Mrs. Mae Freeburgh received a card from her son, Sgt. Charles H. Freeburgh, who is a prisoner of war in Germany. This was the first direct word she has heard from him since he became a prisoner.
The Union Appeal - May 18, 1944
Private Dee Hanson, who is stationed at Camp Gordon, Georgia, saw his brother, Corporal Carr Hanson, for the first time in four years. The two brothers met while each was on furlough. Cap. Hanson is stationed in New Zealand.
Sgt. Belton Russell of Pittsburgh, California is spending a furlough with his father, Mack Russell of Stratton.
L. J. Horton, Seaman first class of the U.S.Navy, is spending a few days furlough with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. George Horton.
The Union Appeal - June 1, 1944
Sgt. Alvis C. Johnson is now stationed somewhere in England, according to his wife. Sgt. Johnson has three brothers in the Army, two of them overseas.
Pvt. Hubert S. Ogletree, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Ogletree of Union, is a telephone operator with a 15th AAF bB-24 Liberator group which was recently awarded a Presidential citation for the low level attack on the Ploesti, Rumania oil fields last August.
1st Lieutenant Ernest A. Dixon, who is stationed at Kirkland Field, Albuquerque, New Mexico, is spending a few days furlough with his mother, Mrs. Mable Stamper.
The Union Appeal - June 8, 1944
Private Allan C. Clarke, of Camp Claiborne, Louisiana, spent the weekend here with his wife and parents.
The Union Appeal - July 6, 1944
Pfc. W. L. Johnson of Union, a machine gunner, has been wounded while in action somewhere in France. He has been transferred to England where he is convalescing. Pfc. Johnson spent last Christmas with his family and on Christmas Eve, he married Miss Evelyn Smith.
Sgt. Percy M. Duette of Union was wounded in the invasion of France on June 6. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Duette of Route 4.
Pfc. Morris H. Reagan of Union, who is serving with an AAF B-17 Flying Fortress wing headquarters squadron in Italy, has been awarded the Good Conduct Medal.
R. H. Thompson received a card from his son, Private Robert H. Thompson, that he arrived safely in England from France and is doing fine.
The Union Appeal - July 13, 1944
Mr. & Mrs. Nolan James received a telegram from their son, S-Sgt. Albert James, who recently landed back in the States after nearly two years of service in the South Pacific. He expects to be home on furlough in a short while.
Mr & Mrs. James T. Crane of Lake received a message that their son, 2nd Lieutenant Charles O. Crane has been missing in action since June 23rd over Yugoslavia.
S-Sgt. Bill Owen Howle of the US Marine Air Corps, came in this week on a furlough to visit his parents, Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Howle.
Pictured Right: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
The Union Appeal - July 20, 1944
1st Class Boatsman Mate Charles Ray Hunter, son of Erby J. Hunter of Union, writes that he was in the invasion of France and they were having a hot time.
Corporal George Calvert of Camp Shelby is at home with his parents, Dr. and Mrs. W. C. Calvert, on a 12 days furlough.
Pfc. Noble Germany, who had been stationed in Laredo, Texas, is at home on a few days furlough while being transferred to the First Army Corps in Massachusetts.
The Union Appeal - July 27, 1944
Mrs. S. C. Burns of Union received a telegram Monday that her son, Sgt. Ufa S. Burns of the US Marines, had been killed in action in the South Pacific.
Letters have been received this week from Hack Vance and Ralph Luke by their parents both stating that they were in Army hospitals. It is presumed that they received wounds while in action in France.
Private Clois Watkins, stationed at the San Diego Marine Base, has returned back to base after visiting his relatives and friends in Little Rock.
Loyd O. Vance, who is stationed in the Navy at Camp Perry, Virginia, is at home on a ten-day leave visiting his parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. Q. Vance.
The Union Appeal - August 3, 1944
Corporal Raymond W. Majure of Union is now serving with the Eastern Command of the U. S. Strategic Air Forces in Europe, somewhere in Russia, with a contingent of picked American troops that now staff U. S. bomber and fighter bases in the Soviet Union.
John Thomas Smith, Seaman 1st/C of the U. S. Navy is now stationed in the Hawaiian Islands. He is the son of Mr. &Mrs. E. M. Smith of Union and a graduate of Beulah Hubbard High School.
Private John C. Richardson, son of Mr. & Mrs. Lee Richardson of Neshoba, has been wounded in action. He has stated that he is doing okay, but that he will have to be in the hospital for a long time.
The Union Appeal - August 10, 1944
Union Brothers in Service
Pfc. Benton Clay Gordon, son of Mr. and Mrs. Benton Gordon of Union, was inducted into the Marine Corps Nov. 12, 1943 at Camp Shelby, Miss., and was sent from there to San Diego, Calif. for his boot training. He has been made an instructor on the rifle range and has won a very high score on his own shooting, winning the "expert" medal. He has recently been sent to an unannounced destination. Like all Marines, he is proud of his branch of service. Pfc. Benton Rex Gordon was inducted into service May 4, 1943 at Camp Shelby, Miss. He was assigned to the Army Air Forces and sent to Gulfport Field for his basic training. He graduated at Shephard Field, Texas, as an airplane mechanic and was sent from there to Pratt, Kans., where he received further training on the B-29. He has recently been shipped out for an overseas destination. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Benton Gordon, of Union.
Two Union friends meet in Honolulu: S 1/c Kenneth F. Lewis, son of Mr. & Mrs. C. G. Lewis and S 2/c J. D. Leeke Jr., son of Mr. & Mrs. J. D. Leeke, met recently in Hawaii.
Edwin Fulton, A.M.M. 3/c, who is stationed at Corpus Christi, Texas, came in Saturday on a two weeks leave.
The Union Appeal - August 17, 1944
Pfc. Joe W. Johnson of Little Rock, writes that he is doing fine after his safe arrival in France on D-Day. Pfc. Johnson has three brothers serving their country: Sgt. Alvis C. Johnson, now stationed in England; M/Sgt. Edsel F. Johnson serving in Sardinia; and Pvt. Henry E. Johnson at Camp Blanding, Florida.
Pvt. Carl I. Vance was killed in action in England July 3. He was inducted into the Army November 11, 1942 and sent to England in April of 1944.
Pfc. John Charles of Neshoba was wounded in the battle of Saipan. He was wounded on July 12th and is now in a Navy hospital.
Seaman James McCorkle of the U. S. Navy, has been at home on a few days leave from Camp Wallace, Texas. He left Thursday morning not knowing where he will be stationed next.
S/Sgt. Toxey McMahan came in on a 20 days furlough to visit his parents. He is just back from Africa where he spent 28 months in the U. S. Army.
The Union Appeal - August 31, 1944
Jim Walton & Bill Houston, two of our last years high school graduates, have just finished boot training in the Navy and were back home this week on a few days leave.
A letter was received by Mrs. Velma Addy, mother of Private Gordon Addy from his commanding officer, Captain John W. Blaike of the 7th Infantry. In it, he praises Pvt. Addy for his personal courage and able performance.
Pictured Left: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
The Union Appeal - September 21, 1944
S/Sgt. Elmo M. Winstead, 23, the son of Mr. & Mrs. W. L. Winstead of Union, returned from service outside the continental United States. Winstead, a B-26 engineer gunner, flew 49 missions during 19 months in England, winning the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with seven clusters.
S/Sgt. Percy W. Adams, son of Mr. & Mrs. John H. Adams of Union, is a Liberator gunner in the European theater. He flew on 50 missions and was awarded the Air Medal with five oak leaf clusters and a personal citation.
The Union Appeal - September 28, 1944
Pfc. Leo Tomlin was awarded the Good Conduct Medal and the Silver Star for gallant action in the Admiralty Islands during campaign. During a four hour period under heavy Japanese fire he administered first aid to fourteen of his wounded comrades. Pfc. Tomlin is the son of Mr. & Mrs. J. H. Crocker of Route 3, Union.
Sgt. Bill Winstead left this week for St. Petersburg, Florida, after spending a ten days furlough with his wife and baby at Little Rock.
The Union Appeal - October 12, 1944
Mr. & Mrs. Bennie Milling received a telegram from the War Department stating that their son, Pvt. Bennie Odell Milling was seriously wounded in action in France on August 13. The last word they received from him that he is now in a hospital in England and will be there for a while. Pvt. Milling has two brothers serving their country: S/Sgt. Embry Bernard Milling and Orem Dollis Milling, MOMM 3/c.
Mr. & Mrs. Ned Boler have received word that their son, Pfc. Gordon Boler has arrived safely in France.
The Union Appeal - October 19, 1944
Gunnery Sgt. C. L. Lundy came in on a furlough to visit his father, J. P. Lundy. He has just returned from the South Pacific, after 27 months overseas. He has been in the Marine Corps seven years, this the first time he has been at home in six years.
Hubert A. Massengale, ARM2/c, has returned to Patuxent River, Maryland, Naval Air Station, where he is stationed, after spending a leave with his parents and friends around Union.
The Union Appeal - October 26, 1944
The Bronze Star has been awarded Staff Sergeant Toxey McMahan, son of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac McMahan, Rt. 4, Union. The award was made for participation in action in Africa where McMahan's bomber group helped Montgomery's 8th Army blast the Nazis out of Tripoli, Bengasi and Torbuk.
Lt. Bruner A. Lewis, son of Mr. G. W. Lewis of Union, is home from the Aleutians, in the Pacific, where he had been stationed the last two years.
The Union Appeal - November 2, 1944
Marine Pfc. John Charles Richardson, 21 year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. Lee Richardson of Union, has been awarded the Purple Heart for wounds he received on Saipan when he was slashed by a Jap officer's saber as he lay asleep in a foxhole. Richardson had spent 27 days routing Japs from caves and pillboxes on Saipan before he became a casualty.
The Army-Navy "E" award was formally presented to the management and employees of the Lebanon Shirt Co. here last Friday, when several representatives of the War Department, town officials and members of the surrounding community were present.
The Union Appeal - November 9, 1944
Mr. & Mrs. Walter F. Vance of Conehatta have been notified that their son, Pvt. Royce Vance, 19, was wounded in action in Italy on October 4th. He has two older brothers in service, Cpl. Walter Lloyd Vance in the Pacific and Sgt. James Melborn Vance in France.
S-Sgt. Ethel C. Lewis of the Army Air Corps in Pratt, Kansas, and Lt. Breuner Lewis of the U. S. Army, who was stationed in the Aleutian Islands, were home on a recent furlough with their father, G. W. Lewis.
The Union Appeal - November 16, 1944
The Engineering Group of which T-Sgt. Herbert E. Worthen of Union is a member, has been commended for the reconstruction of a railroad bridge in France, while under fire from German artillery for 16 days. Sgt. Worthen is the son of Mrs. G. S. Worthen.
Mr. and Mrs. R. L. Garrison of Union, Route 2, have been officially notified that their youngest son, Dorris Gwin Garrison, disappeared in a naval battle on October 24 and his fate is still unknown. Garrison served aboard the USS Princeton, which was sunk by the Japanese in the Battle of Leyte.
The Union Appeal - November 23, 1944
Hit by shrapnel from an enemy artillery shell during fighting on the Siegfried Line in Germany, Pvt. Arthur D. Belk, 19, of Route 1, Union, is recovering from wounds of the right foot at a United States Army General hospital in England. Pvt. Belt has been awarded the Purple Heart.
Pfc. John W. McBeath of Neshoba recently completed two years of overseas service with a veteran airborne aviation engineer company in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations.
Pictured Right: John W. McBeath (middle back row) somewhere in Northern Africa
Dennis Herrington, who is in the Marine Corps, is at home on furlough. His son, Corporal Kenneth Herrington, is also at home on a furlough from the Army.
The Union Appeal - November 30, 1944
Born to Pfc. and Mrs. Allan Clarke on November 25 a fine baby boy weighing eight pounds, named Allan Cameron Clarke. Pfc. Clarke is in Holland with the U. S. Army.
Mr. G. W. Foster received a telegram from the War Department that his son, Sgt. Charles E. Foster, was wounded in Germany. He is now in a hospital in England.
The Union Appeal - December 14, 1944
Corporal Frank Pinson of Fort Pueblo, Colorado is spending a 15 day furlough with friends and relatives in Union and Little Rock.
The Union Appeal - December 21, 1944
Sgt. & Mrs. V. O. Collins came in last week from Turner Field, Albany, Georgia, to spend the holidays with the home folks.
Private Harold Germany, wife and daughter are visiting his parents, Mr. & Mrs. Henry Germany of Union, Route 1. Pvt. Germany is stationed at Hot Springs, Arkansas.
The Union Appeal - December 29, 1944
Miss Juanita McElhenney recently received a telegram from her brother, Pvt. William J. McElhenney, 19, stating that he had arrived safely in England with the 291st Infantry. James is the oldest son of Mr. & Mrs. W. J. McElhenney of Decatur.
Haward Amis, of the U. S. Navy, who recently returned from action in the Pacific, is spending a few days leave with relatives and friends in the Greenfield community. He was on one of the destroyers that were sunk in the naval battles of the Philippines.
The Union Appeal - January 4, 1945
Charles Raymond Viverette, son of Mr. and Mrs. Luther Viverette of Union, received his silver wings when he graduated as a second Lieutenant from Marfa Army Air Field.
Charles Ray Hunter, B. M. 2/c, of the U. S. Navy, son of Mr. Irby Hunter, came in this week on a 33 days leave. Charles Ray has seen some action several times but says he has been lucky so far.
The Union Appeal - January 11, 1945
Little Rock -- Pvt. Henry E. Johnson, one of this community's finest citizens was killed in the Battle of France on November 25. An infantryman with General Patton's Third Army, he met his death on the battlefront near Nancy. He is survived by three brothers: Sgt. A. C. Johnson, who is serving in France; Pfc. Joe Johnson with a chemical warfare unit in France since D-Day; and Master Sgt. Edsel F. Johnson Army Air Corps, who has been overseas since the invasion of North Africa.
According to a letter received here by Mr. H. L. Laird, Major Earl L. Laird was taken prisoner by the Germans in their big drive in December for two days, along with his hospital staff. Friends are now glad to know he is safely back on the American side.
Hit in both legs by shrapnel from a German artillery shell during heavy fighting near Aachen, Germany, Sgt. Charles E. Foster of Union is now recovering at an Army Hospital in England. Sgt. Foster, the son of Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Foster, has been awarded the Purple Heart.
The Union Appeal - January 18, 1945
Morris Reagan, son of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Reagan, came in this week on a furlough after spending many months in Africa and Italy with the 15th Air Force.
James Lamar Harrison, A.O.M. 2/c of the U. S. Navy and wife recently returned to Los Angeles, California, after spending a ten days leave with their parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Harrison of Neshoba and Mrs. J. J. Caraway of Hickory.
Pfc. William E. Stribling is spending a 15 days furlough with his wife and baby here in the home of O. A. Stribling.
Pictured Right: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
The Union Appeal - February 1, 1945
Pvt. William Rainer and his elder brother, Pfc. Charles H. Rainer, of Union, are both members of the armed forces. William, 19, is fighting in Italy. Charles, 22, is now on duty at Barksdale Field in Louisiana. Both men are graduates of Beulah Hubbard High School.
Willie H. French, AOM 3/c U.S.N.A.A.F., who is stationed at Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, is at home on a 16 days leave, is visiting relatives near Union.
The Union Appeal - January 25, 1945
Lt. Bruce Cleveland, son of Mr. and Mrs. I. L. Cleveland of Union, has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Mrs. Ibra Cleveland has two sons, Cpl. Durwood Cleveland and Pvt. George "Hap" Cleveland, besides her son-in-law, Sgt. James . Cook, in the service. Durwood has seen action since June of 1944, serving in France. Hap has been serving in Italy since December of 1944 and Cook has been serving as an aerial gunner on bombing raids over Germany.
Lt. Wilson Fulton, son of Mid Fulton of Neshoba, has returned to the United States, having been injured while on duty with the Marines in the Pacific area.
The Union Appeal - February 8, 1945
W. A. Coursey of Decatur received a message from the War Department Tuesday that his son, W. A. Coursey, Jr. was killed in action in France on January 18.
Lt. Colonel Glenn D. Walker, husband of Mrs. Margaret Walker of Union, has been awarded a silver Star for gallantry in action. Walker is a battalion commander with the 3th Infantry Division.
Pvt. Charles L. Mabry, son of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Mabry, came in Tuesday on a furlough. He spent nearly three years in Europe and North Africa with the U. S. Army.
The Union Appeal - February 23, 1945
Melburn R. Russell, S 1/c of Union, Route 2, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. R. Russell and William C. Adams, S 1/c of Lawrence, son of Mrs. Opal Adams, met recently in the Philippines. These two boys attended school together at Conehatta High School.
John Blanton received the sad news that his nephew, Roy Blanton, was killed in action in Germany on January 2.
Mrs. O. G. Walters of Union, Route 2, received a letter from her husband, Pvt. O. G. Walters, announcing his safe arrival in the Philippines. He is a member of the 655th Field Artillery Battalion.
The Union Appeal - March 1, 1945
Roy L. Dorman, son of Mr. and Mrs. U. G. Dorman of Union, has been promoted to the rank of Captain. He is presently fighting in the Philippines with the 472nd Field Artillery. He hoped to meet his brother-in-law, Sgt. Ernest C. Huddleston, who is with the famous 43rd division on Luzon. He also has a brother and another brother-in=law, Sgt. William E. Dorman and Pfc. Victor L. Huddleston who are on combat duty in the South Pacific.
Stafford Bankston, son of Mr. and Mrs. Clay Bankston, came in today on a furlough to visit his wife and parents. He has just returned from the battle front in Europe.
The Union Appeal - March 15, 1945
Pfc. Onree Heflin came in this week on a 30-day furlough. He just recently returned from the battlefield of Europe where he was wounded. Pfc. Heflin is the son of Mr. B. M. Heflin of Union.
Tommie Jim Walton, S 1/c, of the U.S.Navy came in last week on a 23-days leave to visit his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Hubert Walton.
Mrs. Glenn Walker left the past weekend to be with her husband, Lt. Colonel Glenn Walker, who is recuperating from war wounds at a government hospital in Topeka, Kansas.
The Union Appeal - March 22, 1945
Sergeant William Denver Wilson of Union is making it possible for the giant B-29 super fortresses to strike regularly at the hear of Japan's war industry.
Missing since November 23, 1944, Sgt. Charles D. Williams of Little Rock is now known to be a prisoner of war of the Germans. His nephew, Lt. Billy Williams, lost his life in March 1943, while bombing Rotterdam. His brother-in-law, Pvt. Herman Smith, is now fighting in Belgium.
Pfc. Glenn White came in Monday from Europe on a 30 days furlough. Glenn has been in the Army for five years and has served 34 months overseas. He has been wounded twice and had frost bitten feet.
The Union Appeal - March 29, 1945
Mrs. Bessie Lockley of Union received a telegram from the War Department that her son, Sgt. Major Dan H. Lockley, 25, was killed in action February 19 on Iwo Jima. Dan was a member of the 4th Marine Division.
Pfc. Wesley E. Dempsey, the husband of Norma S. Dempsey of Decatur, has been awarded the Bronze Star for meritorious service in action against the enemy. Pfc. Dempsey is now fighting in Germany with the 84th Infantry Division.
Mrs. Mildred Boler received word that her husband, Pfc. Gordon Boler, was slightly wounded in Germany on March 6. Gordon is the son of Mr. and Mrs. A. C. Boler.
The Union Appeal - April 5, 1945
Private William H. Rainer of Union, the son of Mrs. Lorada Rainer, is serving in an infantry unit that utilized every conceivable means of winter warfare in combating the Germans on the Fifth Army mountain front during the winter just ended. He is presently serving in Italy. Rainer is a rifleman serving in the 337th Regiment of the 85th Custer Division.
Mrs. Ludie Williams came in last week and subscribed The Appeal to be sent to her nephew, S/Sgt. Bill Williams, who has been stationed overseas for some 25 months, serving in Sicily, Italy and France.
Mr. Dennis A. Herrington, who has the unique distinction of having been honorably discharged from both World War I and II, is now liviing with his family in Union. Mr. Herrington was recently discharged from the Marine Corps after three years of service.
The Union Appeal - April 12, 1945
S/Sgt. Charley B. Barnes, 28, of Union, is in Rome on rest leave there. Overseas 19 months, Sgt. Barnes is with the 12th AAF and was employed at Peoples Bank as a teller before entering the Army in December of 1942.
Pvt. Selby H. McMahan, the oldest son of Mr. & Mrs. I. H. McMahan of Union, is now serving his country in Germany. He has been overseas since November of 1944. Pvt. McMahan has two brothers in service, Sgt. Maston H. McMahan also in Germany and Sgt. Toxey H. McMahan, who served 28 months overseas but is now based in Kansas.
Mrs. Selby Heflin of the city received a letter from her brother, Pfc. John Morgan, stating that he is a German prisoner. This is the first news from her brother since the War Deparment reported him missing in action since December 19. Pfc. Morgan was attached to the 22nd Signal Unit of the First Army until he was taken prisoner in Luxemburg.
The Union Appeal - April 19, 1945
Mrs. Howard Turner has received word that her husband, Pfc. Tommie H. Turner, is in a U. S. hospital somewhere in England, recovering from a leg wound received while fighting with the 1st Army in Germany.
Lt. Alan B. Cleveland, son of Mr. and Mrs. I. L. Cleveland of Union, has been transferred from the European front to India and has been promoted from Lieutenant to Captain in the Army Air Force.
Pfc. Robert O. Heflin has returned to a New Orleans hospital after spending a 30-day furlough at home.
The Union Appeal - April 26, 1945
Mr. and Mrs. G. N. Staton of Union have received a message from the War Department that their son, George N. Staton Jr. of the U. S. Marine Corps is missing in action in the service of his country somewhere in the Pacific.
Lt. E. L. Lewis and S/Sgt. Noble Germany saw each other in London after being separated for about three years. The boys were students at Union High School together and were stars on the football team.
Following the sudden death of the late Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Vice-president Harry S. Truman was sworn in as chief executive.
A message has been received from the War Department that Sgt. Arthur C. Vance, 23, was killed in action on April 5 in Germany.
The Union Appeal - May 3, 1945
Sgt. J. B. Jones of Union is serving with an infantry division in Germany. On June 6, 1944, he served with the famed 29th Infantry Division, taking part in one of the bloodiest and most heroic battles in U. S. military history. Sgt. Jones is a graduate of Beulah Hubbard High School.
Mrs. R. F. Brown of Dixon brought to the Appeal office a hen egg that had the perfect letter "V" on it. Mrs. Brown has two sons in the service, Pfc. Henry Brown and Pvt. Robbie C. Brown, Sr.
Lt. Raymond H. Livingston of Decatur has just returned from 32 months of overseas service. He is the holder of several service ribbons including the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star.
Mr. and Mrs. Willard Harrison of Little Rock are the parents of four boys, all in the armed services. They are Hermon E. Harrison, S 1/c, age 24, who is now aboard a large tanker in the Pacific. Pfc. William Leon Harrison, 22, has been in the South Pacific for the past 20 months with the 295th anti-aircraft artillery. S/Sgt. Charlie Lewis Harrison, 21, is with the 3rd aircraft maintenance unit now in New Guinea. Pvt. John Morris Harrison, 18, is now at an infantry replacement training center at Camp Wheeling, Georgia. Mr. Millard Harrison was a veteran of World War I.
The Union Appeal - May 10, 1945
President Truman, in words of stern triumph and dedication, proclaimed defeat of a crushed Germany today and served notice on Japan that her doom is sealed.
Pfc. John Morgan, ex-prisoner of war, came in Saturday afternoon from Foster General Hospital in Jackson. Morgan served 18 months overseas, four months was spent in a German concentration hospital.
Two Union boys, sons of Mr. and Mrs. Joe Collins, are serving in the Army overseas, Verne Oree Collins is now in England. Jenner Lee Collins landed in England, went to France and is now in Belgium.
The Union Appeal - May 17, 1945
Mrs. Charles L. Williams received a letter from her husband, an ex-prisoner of war, that he will be coming home soon. He has been a German prisoner since November 23, 1944.
John T. Smith, S 1/c and James R. Smith, S 2/c of the U. S. Navy, sons of Mr. and Mrs. M. E. Smith of Union, recently met somewhere in the South Pacific. Both of these boys attended Beulah Hubbard High School.
A Memorial service honoring ex-servicemen of all wars and all men in uniform will be held at the First Baptist Church Sunday, May 27.
The Union Appeal - May 24, 1945
Private George N. Staton was killed in action on March 7th and has been buried on the island of Iwo Jima.
Mrs. Mae Freeburgh received a phone call Monday from her son, S/Sgt. Charles H. Freeburgh was in New York after having been liberated from a German prisoner camp. Sgt. Freeburgh was shot down over Germany on February 24, 1944. He was a turret gunner on a B-24 Liberator.
Sgt. Nilon Hagan and Cpl. Andrew Claiborne Hagan are the only sons of Mrs. Dora Hagan and the late Andrew Hagan of Little Rock. Nilon is serving with General Patton's Third Army and has earned the Bronze Star. Andrew was serving with the 4th Engineers and participated in the invasion of France. He was wounded in September of last year.
The Union Appeal - Thursday, May 31, 1945
Two Marine From Union Meet in Pacific
Pfc. Norman Bates and Pfc. Clay Gordon, school mates and life-long chums, were very happy when they met up with each other on an island in the South Pacific. Pfc. Norman Bates, son of Mr. and Mrs. Tom Bates of Union, Miss., enlisted for service in the Marine Corps in September, 1942. He received his boot training in San Diego, Calif., trained there four months and without being given a furlough was sent overseas to the Pacific and has served on numerous islands in both the South and West Pacific. Pfc. Clay Gordon, son of Mr. and Mrs. Benton Gordon, after finishing high school in Union, also enlisted in the Marine Corps in Nov. 1943, and was sent to San Diego for boot training. After finishing his training he was given a short furlough then sent overseas to the Pacific. On landing there, he and Pfc. Bates chanced to meet and both were very thrilled to be fortunate enough to be together for awhile. They are now in the Okinawa operations.
England, VE Day -- Among the 185,000 men and women of the Eighth Air Force congratulated today by Lt. General James H. Doolittle were the following from Union: Cpl. William F. Ware, Sgt. Malcolm E. Ferguson, Sgt. Percy Sessions, Pvt. Eddie J. Session, S/Sgt. Oree Collins, S/Sgt. Cecil B. Rhodes, Cpl. Royce W. Gordon, S/Sgt. Noble Germany and 1st Lt. Carl L. Tucker. The Eighth dropped an average of a ton of bombs every minute of the last 12 months.
O. J. Gordon and his nephew, W. J. Gordon, brother and son of Earnest Gordon of Little Rock, had a happy meeting somewhere in the South Pacific.
The Union Appeal - June 7, 1945
Mr. E. Simmons received the following message from the War Department Wednesday of this week: "The Secretary of War desires me to inform you that your son, Sgt. James C. Simmons returned to military control May 2nd, 1945."
1st Lt. R. T. Staton, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. R. T. Staton, Sr., of Union, was awarded the Bronze Star for heroic achievement in connection with military operations against the enemy April 10, 1945 in Germany.
Sgt. Willie O. Graham of Union has been awarded the Bronze Star for heroic action against the enemy in Belgium.
Cpl. Reuben Cleveland has arrived in San Francisco after spending about nine months in the South Pacific. He is in a hospital where he is being treated.
The Union Appeal - June 14, 1945
Petty Officer 2/c Wilber R. Vance and Petty Officer Jack B. Vance of Union, Route 2, recently met in the Pacific. They had not seen each other in three years. Mr. and Mrs. Vance have another son, T-Sgt. John C. Vance, who is serving in Germany.
T-Sgt. 'Cub' Brunson, who has served several months with the 15th Air Force in Europe as a crew member of a bomber group, is spending a leave with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Brunson. Sgt. Brunson has been wounded three times but is not being discharged from the service, since he is classified as essential.
The Union Appeal - June 21, 1945
Loyd Oneal Vance, S 1/c, Pho. M., son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Q. Vance, has received his wings from the U.S. Naval Air Gunners School, Jacksonville, Florida. He is now awaiting further orders.
Major Jerry E. Rouse, 6th Armored Division, of Rt. 4, Union, recently was awarded the Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster to the Bronze Star Medal for meritorious service.
Pvt. Amos Chaney, who was seriously wounded in the fighting in Europe, has returned to a government hospital in Oklahoma for a check up on his wounds. He has been home in Union while convalescing.
Jack Russell, S 2/c, son of Mr. Mack Russell, came in last week for a 24 days leave from the Pacific
The Union Appeal - May 9, 1946
A memorial service for Howard Houston will be held at the Methodist Church Sunday night. He went down with the Cruiser Indianapolis on July 30, 1945
Clay Gordon, son of Mr. and Mrs. Benton Gordon, received his discharge from the U.S. Marine Corps last week after serving about two and one-half years, most of which he served in the Pacific war area. He saw heavy action on Okinawa.
The Union Appeal - August 22, 1946
Junior Taylor, son of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Taylor of Union, came in last week with a discharge from the U.S. Marine Corps. He was in service almost 20 months, most of which time was spent in the Pacific. His duty was on the USS Yorktown (The Fighting Lady) and was in Tokyo Bay at the close of the war.
A special Thanks goes out to Mrs Etoile Rainer Sharp, whose faithful clipping of the below World War II era newspaper items provided us a wonderful history of the era.
Pictured Left: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
Wounded in Action - PFC. Onree Heflin
Mrs. Cara Cleveland Heflin received word from the War Department that her husband, Pfc. Onree Heflin, was slightly wounded in action in France on November 13.
A Letter From Onree Heflin
The following is a sketch of a letter that Onree Heflin wrote to his wife:
I never did tell you anything about just before we left the States coming over. In fact I couldn't, up until now. When we left Camp Phillips, Kansas, we went up around through Canada and into Boston, Mass. We were at a camp named Miles Saddish, Mass. We were there for about a week, then we landed on a boat in Boston and sailed to Liverpool, England. We were on the water for 12 days and they were long days too, although the water was very quiet coming over. We were in a light storm for about 3 days. We got to Liverpool just before night one evening and stayed on the boat until the next morning. We unloaded and were put on a train and sent about 35 miles from Liverpool, near a town named Manchester. We were there for about six weeks. Then we loaded up and started south. We went almost to the English Channel. Then we stopped there for about a week. While we were there the invasion came. The night of the invasion some of us were up. The air was full of planes all night long and you could hear a long distance roar from our big guns and bombs. Then in about two days we were sent on to the English Channel to a town named Southampton. We were there about two days and then we got the boat. The boat was a large landing craft, and across the Channel we went. We were on the boat for about 30 hours, then we were in France, and about 3 days later we were at the front lines, and we are still there. But a lot has happened since that day to the 79th Division. We have been up at the front for 35 days now and we have enough to eat, such as it is. All we need is a prayer ever once in a while. I saw Shelby the other day and he is O. K. I also got a letter from Billie and he is still in England. Take it easy and I'll be seeing you and Janet.
Union Soldier Receives Qualification Badge - Cpl. Thurman E. Sharp
The following letter was received by Cpl. Thurman E. Sharp from his commanding officer:
Fort Benning, GA.
10 November, 1944
Tec. 5 Thurman E. Sharp
Medical Det. Sect. 1
I wish to congratulate you upon being awarded the Motor Vehicle Qualification Badge, which you are now authorized to wear. This badge has been awarded to you for your demonstrated ability and the excellent performance of your duties, an achievement for which you should fee proud.An entry of this qualification has been made in your service record and has become a permanent part of your military record. Your Detachment Commander thanks you for the fine work you have done in earning this award and urges you to continue your effort toward winning the war.
John B. Joyner
Major, MAC, Commanding
Cpl. Thurman E. Sharp is the son of Mr. And Mrs. Luther Sharp, Union, Miss., Rt. 4, and entered the Army on Nov. 11, 1942, going to Fort Benning, Ga., from Camp Shelby, where he has remained ever since, being transferred three times in the same camp. Cpl. Sharp also wears the Good Conduct Medal, which he received about 18 months ago. His wife, the former Miss Etoile Rainer, resides with the soldier's parents, and has been an employee of the Lebanon Shirt Co. For the past four years.
Cpl. Thurman Sharp, who is stationed at Fort Benning, Ga., spent Christmas with his wife and other relatives here.
Prisoner For Two Days - Major Earl L. Laird
According to a letter received here from Major Earl L. Laird by his parents, Mr. And Mrs. H. L. Laird, he was taken prisoner by the Germans in their big drive in December and was held prisoner for two days along with his hospital staff. Friends are glad to know that he is now back safely on the American side.
Returns From Overseas - Major Earl L. Laird
Major Earl L. Laird came in the first of the week from Europe, where he served about 18 months, and was on his way to Camp Shelby, where he hopes to get a leave of absence to visit friends and relatives.
Serves Aboard U.S.S. Stoddard - Ned E. Chamblee, S 2-c
Ned E. Chamblee S 2/c of the U. S. Navy, is serving aboard the U.S.S. Stoddard on duty with the 3rd Fleet. His wife, the former Christine Rushing, and six months-old son make their home with the former's parents in Union.
Grover Hanson Killed In Airplane Crash
Grover Hanson, A.M.M. 2/c, of the U. S. Navy, son of Mr. And Mrs. Royal Hanson of Union, was killed instantly last Thursday, Nov. 8, in a naval plane crash at Pensacola, Florida Air Base, where he and a companion crashed soon after their take-off for a routine flight. Grover entered the U. S. Navy August 20, 1943. He was home the last time about two months ago at which time he spent eighteen days leave. He was twenty years of age at the time of his death and was killed while serving his country. One brother preceded him in death. Left to mourn his passing are the following: His mother and father, three sister, Miss Norma Hanson, Mrs. Octavie Payne, and Mrs. Eris Loper; four brother, Bill Hanson, Harold Hanson, Raymond Hanson, and Cpl. Brady Leon Hanson, who is with the armed forces in France. Final rites were held Sunday, Nov. 11, at 2:30 P. M. From Mount Zion Methodist Church with Rev. Jodie Moore in charge of the service. The following naval men in uniform acted as pall bearers: Reabon Adams, M. S. Horton, Norman Harris, O'Neal Vance, Jim McNair, and Morris Barnett. The flag draped casket was lowered to rest after Seaman Adams, who escorted his former buddy's remains from Florida, presented the grief-stricken mother the flag of the United States. Interment was in Beach Springs cemetery, beside his brother. Many beautiful flowers covered Grover's final resting place. Union Funeral Home was in charge.
From Somewhere in France
January 17, 1945
Hello Mr. And Mrs. Edwards and Kids,
Well, at last I have got around to dropping you a few lines once more. I hope this finds all of you in the best of health and enjoying life to the utmost. I have just finished writing Nell and I had some more time so I continued to write. To begin with I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart, for the package you mailed to me, although it was a little late getting here. But a lot of my buddies are getting their presents late. I hope you folks are not having the kind of weather there that we have here. The temperature stays down around twenty and lower and I haven't seen the ground now for three weeks. I'm telling you it's pretty tough to have to get up in the middle of the night and go fix a broken telephone line, especially when the Jerries have the area under shell fire and he usually does. But you would be surprised to see how we work. I guess after so long, you get used to it. I guess all of you have been keeping up with the news from over there, especially the Seventh Army front. Well, we have had a few tough battles but the situation is pretty well in hand now. Some of these days I'll tell you all about it, I wish I could now but it's impossible. Well so much for that. I had a letter from Dr. Laird the other day and he seemed to be very happy because I had written to him earlier. He said that during the recent counter offensive of the Germans, that he and his whole hospital, patients too, were prisoners of war for two days. But other forces fought their way back to them and they manage to get away safely. I sure was proud to hear that. How are things back home these days? Is business still good? I sure would like to be there and find out for myself for a change. I guess a lot of the men are getting scarce since they are tightening up on the draft board. Well to win this war we have got to have men from some place, for to my great sorrow I have seen a lot that had to pay the supreme price. Well, Mary, Jack, and Bonnie, how are you tonight? Wish I were there to give each of you a big hug tonight. But don't worry, I'll be back to see you some day. How is "Little Stan", and Sallie? I bet he is as pretty as a picture. I will close for tonight, wishing all of you the best of luck.
Love, Durward Cleveland
In Memory of George N. Staton, Jr.
Son of Mr. And Mrs. G. N. Staton of Union, Miss., who was killed in Action on Iwo Jima while serving with the 5th Division of the U. S. Marine on March 7th, 1945
He died in the line of duty,
The stars were still his goal,
And he took with him way up in Heaven -
My very heart and soul.
He fought with the faith that was taught him
Tyranny he'd help to destroy,
And he gave his life for his country-
A true Marine, and he was my boy.
He saw only the beauty around him,
His outlook, not like any other,
His life he lived purely and simple,
And I'm proud to say, "I was his mother."
I'll not grieve ‘cause I'll see him no longer,
I'll keep smiling no matter the cost,
For I'm happy in having the knowledge,
That Heaven has gained what I lost.
Received His Navy "Wings Of Gold" - Guy Lafayette Tucker, Jr.
Guy Lafayette Tucker, Jr., son of Mr. And Mrs. G. L. Tucker of Union, won his Navy "Wings of Gold" and was commissioned an Ensign in the Naval Reserve this week following completion of the prescribed flight training course at the Naval Air Training Center, Pensacola, Fla. Having been designated a Naval Aviator, Ensign Tucker will go on active duty at one of the Navy's air operational training centers before being assigned to a combat zone.
Pictured Right: Somewhere in North Africa, John W. McBeath (U.S. Army Air Force Airborne Engineer Aviation Co. - WWII)
Brothers In Service
Cpl. Robert Haskle French / Willie Howard French, S. 2/c
Robert Haskle is serving with the U. S. Army. He entered service September 10, 1942, and is now somewhere in England. He says that he has seen lots of the world and hopes to see more before he returns. Willie Howard is in the Navy. He entered service June 18, 1943, and is stationed at Quonset Point, Rhode Island. These are the sons of Mr. and Mrs. Ernest French of Union, Route 2.
Union Boys Meet In London
Lt. E. L. Lewis and S/Sgt. Noble Germany see each other in London after being separated for about three years. Lt. Lewis, a nephew of Mrs. W. F. Childres, formerly of Union, serves as glider pilot and has been overseas for about two years. Sgt. Germany, son of Mrs. Ruth Germany of Union, serves with the Eighth Air Force, based in England. He has been awarded the Air Medal for "Meritorious Achievement: in accomplishing with distinction several aerial operational missions over enemy occupied Continental Europe. These boys were students of Union High School together and were stars on the football team. They graduated in 1940.
Rescued From Japanese Prison - Wilburn Lockley
Mrs. Dan Lockley received a cablegram from her son, Wilburn, on the island of Guam, stating that he had been rescued from Japan as a prisoner of war and was on his way home by plane. Wilburn fought on Bataan and Corrigedor and has been a prisoner for over three years. He was with the U. S. Marines. Friends in Union will rejoice with Mrs. Lockley for this good news. Another son of Mrs. Lockley, Dan Jr., gave his life in the fighting at Iwo Jima and is buried on that island, while still another son, Moodye Lockley, is stationed somewhere in the Pacific.
Brothers Meet In Pacific
Petty Officer 2/c Wilber R. Vance and Petty Officer 2/c Jack B. Vance, sons of Mr. And Mrs. Porter Vance of Union, Rt. 2 met recently in the Pacific. They had not seen each other in three years. Wilber R. Vance volunteered in the Navy in August 1942 and received his boot training at San Diego, Calif. He served as gunner's mate aboard the aircraft carrier, U. S. S. Core in the Pacific until October 1944. Later being transferred to the Pacific. Jack was inducted into the Navy in October 1943, and received his boot training at San Diego, Calif. He then entered radar school and received further training at Treasure Island, Calif., and Seattle, Wash. He has been U. S. S. Smalley in the Pacific for the past 14 months. His wife, the former Miss Opal Ezell, is residing in Meridian, Miss. Mr. And Mrs. Vance have another son, T-Sgt. John C. Vance, who was inducted into the Army in April 1942, and is now somewhere in Germany. His wife is the former Miss Sarah Blackburn of Conehatta, Miss.
Lt. Col. E. M. Smith Writes From Belgium
Belgium, March 4, 1945
Dear Newton County Friends,
I have thought for several weeks that I would find time to write a few lines (via the press) to you people who have been so kind to me in years gone by. I appreciated receiving Christmas Greetings from some of you, even if it was in January when I received most of them. Nothing is appreciated more than news from home. Mrs. Smith sends the Newton Records and the Union Appeal to me and I never fail to read every word of them. There are so many things that I would like to tell you, but for security reasons, I am limited to what I write. I will state, however, that I have seen enough of Europe to satisfy any desire that I may have ever had to see it. I have seen service in England, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland, and Germany. I have seen the horrors of war in these countries that one would have to see in order to know just what the present war is like. The people over here seem to be very glad to see the American soldiers. I shall never forget moving through a Belgium city of about 15,000 population one Sunday afternoon last October. I saw more U. S. Flags being waved that afternoon than I have ever seen before or since then. The natives had made U. S. Flags of scraps of cloth, paper, or anything they could get that was Red, White, and Blue. Most of the flags had the correct number of stripes but I think the number of stars varied from twenty to forty. I remarked to a friend of mine that they had made an honest effort to make a U. S. Flag. Several times when my vehicle had to traffic in the street I passed through in October, due to the demolished buildings that had fallen in the street. I could hear the explosions from the weapons of war as Hitler's armies were being pushed out of the Ardennes Forest by the American armies, I thought of the poor civilians who greeted us as we passed through there in October. I wish I had not been language lazy when I was in school. However, twenty years ago, I had no idea that I would be in Europe in 1945 or that I would ever be here. French seems to be the most universal language in Europe. I have a small book of English-French conversation that I take a glance at occasionally. I have learned to say "Sil vous plait" (please) and "merci" (thank you), plus a few other words and phrases. I hope it will be only a short time before I will not need to know a foreign language in order to talk with civilians. I think the thing that makes me the most furious is to read an article stating that a coal mine, defense plant, etc., back in the states is closed due to a strike. I believe if those people were over here with us for one week they would be glad to get back to their jobs and work many more hours than they are working for food and clothing only as pay for their work. I do not mean to infer that you people are not sacrificing plenty, and I can not understand how any group of people would have the nerve to quit vital war work. I know that I had better get off this subject before I blow my top. I have not seen a person from Newton County since I left there. I am sure that many Newton County boys are on this front but things happen so fast it would be almost the impossible to contact a friend. I think I could write a book but I must close. I hope that we can all soon return to our homes and loved ones and enjoy a World Peace. With best wishes to each of you. I am, Sincerely, Ernest M. Smith
Four Brothers In Service
Mr. and Mrs. Millard Harrison of Little Rock, Miss., are the parents of four sons all in the armed forces. Three are serving overseas in the Pacific theater and one on duty in the states. Left to right they are as follows: Hermon E. Harrison, S 1/c, ag 24 years, who is now aboard a large tanker in the Pacific, was inducted in May of 1944. He trained at Camp Wallace, Texas, before going overseas in September, 1944. He has taken part in the battles of the Philippines and Iwo Jima. His wife, the former Miss Louise Ritchie, is employed by Rhodes Perdue Furniture Co., of Mobile, Alabama and resides with her parents in that city. Pfc. William Leon Harrison, age 22, has been in the South Pacific for the past 20 months with the 295th anti-aircraft artillery. He was inducted on Dec. 28, 1942 and completed his basic training at Fort Eustis, Va., before going to Hawaii for combat instructions. He took part in the battle of Leyte Island and writes his parents that the going there was rough for several weeks. He has never been given a furlough since his induction. S/Sgt. Charlie Lewis Harrison, age 21 years, is with the 3rd aircraft maintenance unit (floating) and is now in New Guinea. He was inducted in April of 1943 and received his training at St. Petersburg and Miami Beach, Fla., Amarillo Air Field, Amarillo, Texas, Chanute Field, Illinois, Patterson Field, Ohio, Daniel Field, Augusta, Ga., Brookley Field and Point Clear, Alabama, before going overseas in January of this year. Pvt. John Morris Harrison, the 18 year old son, entered the army on February 1 of this year and is now at an infantry replacement training center at Camp Wheeler, Georgia, for his basic training after which he expects to come home on a 15-days furlough. They have one sister, Dorothy, 15 years old who is at home with her parents helping them carry on while the boys are away helping to win the war. Mr. Harrison is a veteran of World War I, having spent six months overseas on the battlefields of France and was on the border of Belgium when the armistice came. So he can understand, in part at least, what his four sons are up against.
T/Sgt John C. Vance Writes From Germany
Mr. and Mrs. Porter Vance of Union, Route 2, have received the very interesting letter from their son, T/Sgt. John C. Vance, who is in Germany. It is as follows:
June 9, 1945
I hope these few lines find everybody feeling good. I am fine. I have had a bad cold, but it is better now. We have been.... He was stationed right on the top of the highest mountain in Germany and had every thing up there. He and his associates had their homes there. They had enough SS men there to guard a whole country almost. They had a post office, laundry, bakery, nursery, garage, cafes, and there was only one way to get up there. They said he left there one day, and it was bombed the next. Boy, they really tore it up. Some kids were around there who had some post cards of the place before it was bombed and it sure looked like a wonderful place, but it's far from that now. In Hitler's home he had a big window he always passed by when he had his picture made. It was one whole side of the building, and from it you could see the whole town of Bertesgaden below, all over the valley. There was b beautiful lake and river there in the valley. We went boat riding on the lake and on each side the cliffs were straight up for hundreds of feet to the top of the mountain. They called one of the cliff's "Lover's Leap." They said it was a very usual thing for disappointed lovers to climb to the top and jump from the cliff. It was straight down 3,000 feet. On the trip we saw Hitler's, Goring's, Himmler's and Von Ribbentrop's homes. Then on another trip, I went to a big lake called Chimsee. Out in the lake was an island on which King Ludenigs II had his castle. We went through it, and it was the most elaborate thing I've ever seen. It was said that he visited Louis XIV palace in Paris, and liked it so well he went back to Bavaria, and said he was going to surpass it. He spent 30 million dollars, and only finished 14 out of its 60 rooms. Blue was his favorite color and it stood out all through the place. Everything was either made of gold and silver or painted that color which looked the same. They said it took 7,000 women 8 years to do the needle work on the draperies and curtains. The floor was of lightly polished hardwood with inlays of rosewood. Of all the figures in it all were done by hand. The chandeliers were of enormous size. They held from 50 to 150 candles each and were made of porcelain, ivory and crystal glass. He had a bouquet of glass flowers on his dining table that looked so real you could almost smell them. The chandelier that hung over that table was the biggest one-piece one in the world. It was made of Venetian glass that held 150 candles, and they said he destroyed the mold when it was finished to keep it from being copied. The most outstanding room of the palace was the ball room. It was 100 meters (38 Ѕ in perimeter) long and on one side it was the windows. The other side was made completely of mirrors. It had 48 hanging chandeliers and 44 that stood on the floor. It took 2,300 candles to light the room. The roof of the room as well as the rest of them, had artistic paintings all over them. The....describe. From this place we went to Munich. There we saw another bomb flattened the city. It was once a very beautiful place tho, you could tell. Here we saw Hitler's palace and all his favorite palces in town. Back in 1923 the Nazi party got in a gun battle with the police of the town and Hitler just missed getting killed. 16 of his followers did die in the battle. It all started in a big beer hall right at the beginning of the up rise of the Nazi party and ended at his palace where he buried the 16 men that got killed. We went to a park which used to be world known place. It was called "The English Gardens," but it wasn't much. It had been bombed and torn up a great deal. Just before we got into Munich we saw the remainder of the German air force. It was along the big four laned auto bound highway which they had used for landing strips. Most of the planes had been shot up or burned, but they had all kinds, shape, form and fashion. There was a string of them on both sides for about ten miles. They said they were completely out of gas and oil. While I was away on this trip last Sunday, Bernard Milling came to see me. I sure hated to have missed him, but he left word where he was located, and it might be that I can see him later. We are still wondering what we're going to do. My news is gone, so I'll close. Hoping to see you soon. Love, Cortez
Pvt. R. C. Smith In Marine Corps
Pvt. R. C. Smith, son of Mr. And Mrs. R. F. Smith of Union, left for the Marines June 8, 1944. He received his basic training at San Diego, California and came home on a 10 day leave the 16th of August. He went back to Camp Pendleton, California for his overseas training. He has received his training and is waiting to be moved. Two other Union boys, "Woo" Jeffcoat and Odell Ezell went to the Marines with him. He says the Marines are okey.
Pictured Left: Schofield Barracks, Island of Oahu, Hawaiian Islands, US Army Soldiers of the 325 AAA S/L B/n, Hq Battery, WWII
Sgt. Charles D. Williams
The War department has notified Mrs. Marjoree Smith Williams, of Little Rock, that Dewitt Williams has not been seen since November 23, when he was fighting inside Germany. He is an infantryman. Inducted into service on November 11, 1942, Sgt. Williams received training at Camp Adair, Oreg; Camp Horn, Ariz; and Camp Carson, Colo. He landed in France last September 7 and from that front, went on through Holland and Belgium and into Germany. St. Williams is father of a baby girl, Sammie Kate, who was born last September 2, a few days before he landed overseas. His parents, Mr. & Mrs. James Williams of Little Rock have paid and are still paying a heart-breaking price for defense of the homeland. One son, Lt. Hulon Williams, was killed in a plane crash occurring in Wisconsin on June 24, 1942; and a grandson, lt. Billy Williams, of Ft. Worth, Texas, lost his life in March, 1943, while bombing Rotterdam, Holland.
Killed In Action - Pvt. Carl I. Vance
Prt. Carl I. Vance was killed in action in England, July 3, 1944. He was inducted in the Army Nov. 11, 1942. He took his basic training at Ft. Benning, Georgia and Camp Siburt, Ala., and was sent to England in April, 1944. Pvt. Vance is survived by his mother, Mrs. Florence Vance of Union; three sisters, Maudie Vance also of Union, Mrs. Mildred Andrews and Mrs. Lessie McDill of Conehatta; one brother Pvt. W. R. Vance of Camp Barkeley, Texas.
Pfc. Irvin Lamar Chaney, of Little Rock, was slightly wounded on December 12, fighting in France, says an official message just received by his wife, Mrs. Maurine Smith Chaney, also of Little Rock. This is the second time the soldier has been listed as a battle casualty, having been seriously wounded last July 5, also in the Battle of France. He has been awarded the Purple Heart medal. Pfc. Chaney was inducted into the army on June 2, 1942, at Camp Shelby, Assigned to the 79th Infantry Division, he was trained at Camp Pickett, Va,; Camp Blanding, Fla., and on maneuvers in Tennessee, California, and Arizona. His unit left the States last March and immediately went into combat on arriving in the European Theater of War. The soldier is a son of F. S. Chaney, of Little Rock. His brother, Pvt. John K. Chaney, is also in the army and is now overseas.
Two Union Friends Meet In Honolulu.
Kenneth F. Lewis, S 1/c, son of Mr. And Mrs. C. G. Lewis; J. D. Leeke, Jr., S 2/c, son of Mr. And Mrs. J. D. Leeke.
Wounded In Action
Mrs. Allan Clarke has received word from the War Department that her Husband, Pfc. Allan Clarke was slightly wounded in action in Germany on Nov. 21.
Wounded Union Soldier Recovering At Hospital In England
The 131st General Hospital, England - Hit in both legs by shrapnel from a German artillery barrage during the heavy fighting near Auchen, Germany, Sergeant Charles E. Foster, 28, of Union, Mississippi is now recovering at this United States Army general hospital in England. His ward surgeon, First Lieutenant Walter J. Alves of Guntersville, Alabama, said, "Sgt. Foster is making a rapid recovery and will return to duty soon." Sgt. Foster, an infantry communications sergeant, said, "I was on a wiring mission repairing telephone connections severed during a heavy artillery barrage. I was hit when a shell landed nearby. "A medic reached me immediately and carried me to cover, " said Sgt. Foster, "after receiving emergency treatment at several field hospitals, I was brought to England." Sgt. Foster is the son of Mr. & Mrs. W. G. Foster of Union. He has been awarded the Purple Heart.
Wounded in Germany
Mr. W. G. Foster received a message from the War Department Sunday that his son, Sgt. Charles E. Foster, was wounded in Germany on Nov. 17. He is now in a hospital in England, according to a letter he just received from him.
A Letter From Norman Bates
The following letter was received by Mr. & Mrs. Tom Bates from their son Norman, who is now on Guam, and as you will see from the letter has been about over the Pacific quite a bit.
Guam, August 4, 1944
My Dearest Folks,
Well, Dear Mom, at long last I can write you a few lines and let you learn about me. I have been around quite a bit since I last wrote you. You probably saw by the top of this sheet as to where I am. The initial landing saw me safely on the beach of Guam. You should see the big head on me. Ha! I've always heard so much about it and now I know about it. The island as yet isn't nearly secured but it's not half as dangerous as it was. Mother, I've never seen so many dead Japs in my life. They seemed to be stacked five high. I can tell you now some of the places I've seen so far is, New Caledonia, Guadalcanal, Russell Island, Marshall Islands, Green Islands, and now the big island of Guam. Getting around a little bit, huh? I knew you would be worrying if I didn't get you a letter, but I do want you to quit worrying so much. I am one of the finest kind. If you see Audrey or Kat or any of my correspondents, try to explain to them why I haven't written and I promise to make up for lost time when I have a little more time. You need not expect to hear from me quite as much for a while yet. This is a real nice island, I wouldn't mind being stationed here for a while. I don't know. Be sure and ...with the ones I've been writing. I'll close for now. Hoping you are in the best of health. Love, Norman.
Army-Navy "E" Presentation at Lebanon Shirt Company
A most cordial invitation is issued to the entire community of Union, Mississippi to attend the....Ceremony of the Army-Navy....duction Award to the....management of the Lebanon Shirt Company for Excellence....Production. The ceremony will take place at the Lebanon Shirt Company Plant on Friday, October 27, 1944 at.... if the weather is fair. If it is rain, admission will be by ticket issued to employees only because of the limited indoor space. The Lebanon Shirt Company Management and Employees
With Our Boys In Service
15th AAF in Italy - Private First Class Morris H. Reagan of Union, Mississippi, who is serving with an AAF B-17 Flying Fortress wing headquarters squadron in Italy, has been awarded the Good Conduct Medal. Overseas for the past 19 months, Pfc. Reagan is the son of Mr. And Mrs. T. C. Reagan of Union. According to the published order, Pfc. Reagan was given the Good Conduct Medal "for having honorably completed one year of active Federal Service after December 7, 1941, and having been recommended by his squadron commander for exemplary behavior, efficiency and fidelity." The presentation was made by Major J. R. Deming, Lakeland, Ohio, squadron commander.
Corsicana, Texas, June 27, 1944 - Aviation Cadet Jack Howle has just arrived at Corsicana Field from the San Antonio Aviation Cadet Center, San Antonio, Texas as a member of Class 45A. A/C. Howle has been assigned for primary flight training to the 2552nd AAF Base Unit, commanded by Major Leonard S. Dysinger. Corsicana Field is the site of one of the many Primary Flying Schools in the Army Air Forces Central Flying Training Command. This man is the son of Mr. & Mrs. W. P. Howle of Union.
A native of Little Rock, Newton County, Miss., Lt. Col. Ernest M. Smith, has been assigned as executive officer of Combat Command "B", 16th Armored Division, Camp Chaffee, Ark., it was announced today by the division's public relations office. Colonel Smith was transferred to the armored division from the Tennessee maneuver area where he was in command of a tank battalion. Commissioned in 1928, he was promoted to first lieutenant in 1931, captain in 1935, major in 1942, and his present rank last year. The new CC "C" commander held the position of Newton County Superintendent of Education before starting his Army career. He is a graduate of Newton County Agricultural High School and Mississippi State College and attended Peabody College, Nashville, Tenn., while working on a Masters degree. Col. Smith is the son of Mr. and Mrs. R. F. Smith, Union, Miss. and has one daughter, Ruby Carolyn.
Shirt Co. Employees Enjoy Big Picnic
There was a big time in the old town of Union Tuesday when the employees of the Lebanon Shirt Company held a gala Fourth of July picnic at the American legion grounds at Decatur. One hundred soldiers of the Key Field Army Air Base, Meridian, were invited as guests to join in the festivities. The son shone down happily on 1,000 people and everyone joined in the fun. Games of all kinds, including contests, were featured and generous prizes of war stamps and bonds were awarded winners of the games and contests. Marshal L. W. Vance of Union acted as judge of the games while Mayor H. G. Stamper, C. S. Jenkins, S. O. Taylor, Mr. Ganns, Government Inspector, and Cpl. Nate Krouse were judges of the bathing beauty contest. The winning contestants and prizes awarded for each contest are as follows. Wheel Barrow Race - Cpl. Natt Krouse, Key Field, Meridian, ; Sue Barnes, Lebanon Shirt Company, , Hilda Cleveland, Lebanon Shirt Company ; Johnnie Kilpatrick, Lebanon Shirt Company, . Three Legged Race - Private Bob Brooks, Key Field, Meridian, , Opal Harris, Lebanon Shirt Company, , Maudie Vance, Lebanon Shirt Company, , David Ezell, Union . Sack Race - Cpl. Doyal Pinkston, . Pie Eating Contest - Bill Hanson, Union, Miss. . Bathing Beauty Contest - 1st place, Arietta Vance, War Bond, 2nd place Evelyn McBeath , 3rd place, Sara Hudnall . There were heaps of delicious fried chicken, sandwiches, popcorn, hamburgers, hot dogs and cold drinks served throughout the day. The food committees are to be commended for the successful manning of the tables for the two complete picnic meals for the large crowd. The entertainment included a square dance led by the Cleveland Band, made up of Weldon Cleveland, Clint Driskell, Wilson Rowell, Duffee Jenkins, Joe Cleveland and Ned Cleveland. The dance music was furnished by the well known Jerry Lane Orchestra of Jackson, with a fine professional floor show during the evening consisting of a master of ceremonies; a dancer; the Burlap Sisters; a comedy ace of three men; two numbers by the band; a trombone solo by Jerry Lane; a feature piano number; two number by Martha Glamour, vocalist. Fun continued all day and ended at midnight in time for the tired but happy soldiers to return to their base. All the soldiers agreed that they enjoyed themselves tremendously, and indicated their appreciation of the fine time and hospitality extended by Union residents.
Pictured Right: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
Union Boy Writes From Luxembourg
The following letter was received from S/Sgt. William F. (Pete) Evans, by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. W. F. Evans, of Union:
November 3, 1944
Somewhere in Luxembourg
My Dear Mother & Dad:
This is another beautiful, cold morning, in fact my ears are burning now from the result of being out in the cold. We are very fortunate to be sleeping in a hay loft instead of holes in the ground. I can just see some people back home complaining because they don't have enough gas or they don't get enough meat to eat. I am even thankful that I have a barn to sleep in and this does protect us to a great extent. I have learned not to always have everything that people at home call essential things of life. We learn to live on the bare necessities of life and then are most thankful for life as it is. We do get enough to eat and our clothes are the warmest kind. I think that I shall always be thankful for just the bare necessities of life if I only return home. We Americans have plenty, as I can plainly notice from just glancing around here. Sometimes these people only eat once a day and then their meal is bread and potatoes. They work and toil practically all day long and then they only exist on what they can possibly get by with. They were perhaps happy before the war wrecked their homes and they perhaps thought that no power on earth would ever be able to destroy their homes. Many of them will have to start life anew and have everything to begin over again. Their lives are wrecked-their families in distress. America should be more than thankful that our nation has not been trod under and that our homes and buildings are still standing. God has certainly blessed our wonderful country and shall continue to bless her if we will remain as His children. (We cannot forsake God.) Job said, "Tho God slay me I will not curse Him." If our nation brings a curse upon God and forgets his divinity then we shall suffer for our sins by seeing our nation over-run, but let us pray that this shall never happen. We are a gifted nation and a gifted nation should give unto their giver all the praise and honor that is due. "Render tribute unto whom tribute is due." "Praise unto whom praise is due." I wonder many times myself if I, as an individual, in such a great nation as ours, if I render my praise unto God as the founder of our home. Certainly just to place my feet on American soil would be a gifted pleasure and many other boys would think the same thing, for our nation offers so much to the individual. Here the individual has no part in living his own life but he only listens to someone else who gives this rule, "What is yours is mine, and what's mine is mine." God hasten the day when the world shall be freed from ungodliness and return the day when they Son shall be the chief corner stone of each building. If the world would only realize that war only pays off in the price of blood and that at the end there were no conquerors, and if we would let God be the pilot of the world then peace could be obtained. The world for many centuries has been trying to discover a proper solution for world-wide peace - and a war to end all wars. This shall never be perfected until God is the ruler. On every peace treaty that has been signed in the past one hundred and thirty years, the nations have let greed and hate be the main figure and have forgotten the giver of all peace–God. Maybe this is enough of this, anyway I have gotten something off my system. Dad, I have been reading some of the football scores. I see them about once a week. I noticed that Miss. State was undefeated so far. I hope they can keep this record all the season. The time really passes to a certain extent and now the month of November has made a hasty beginning. Time is very valuable in mans earthly life and we many times dispose of it in the wrong manner. I wonder how many of us can abide by the examples of Christ and when we meet life's end, Christ will say, "Well done thy good and faithful servant." I know that your love is untold but I can still feel that great tithe that binds and that your love follows me even unto the end of the world. "I will be with thee always, even unto the end of the world." A great utterance by a great man–Christ. Let us life our hearts in unison and give Him our love and thanks, just for life. May His love and blessings follow you each day. I remain, Your loving son, Pete Evans
Dies of Wounds Received in Action
The following letter received by Mrs. Bonnie Dee Watson, who now lives in Meridian, informs her of the death of her husband, Willie Watson. Willie was the son of Andrew Watson of Union, and his wife is the daughter of Mr. Luther Gray of Neshoba. The letter from his commanding officer is as follows: Dear Mrs. Watson: It is with heavy heart that I direct this letter to you. Despite its painful news, I hope it will bring some measure of comfort. As you have already been notified, your husband Willie was wounded in action on 30 July 1945 at Kiangan, Ifugao Prince, Luzon, Philippine Islands and died 30 July 1945. Willie was with a combat patrol when hit in the head by enemy shell fragments. I assure you that he received the best of medical treatment and every effort was made to relieve his suffering. Certainly words cannot console in such a time as this; but Willie served his country well and faithfully, and justly merited the pride you felt in him. We who knew him through these years of war realize the magnitude of your loss. We knew him as a fine gentleman, a capable soldier and a worthy friend. His cheerfulness and willingness to help others made him a favorite with all the officers and men of the organization. He was a comrade whose memory will always be dear to us. To my own most sincere expression of sympathy, I add that of all the men in the organization in your bereavement. Willie was given a Christian burial in an United States Armed Forces cemetery, Luzon, Philippines Islands; the services being held by our Chaplain. The exact location of the grave will be furnished by the Quartermaster General without the need of any further inquiry on your part. With sincerest sympathy, James M. Garrison, Captain, 20th Infantry, Commanding
Serving Overseas - Pvt. Selby H. McMahan
Pvt. Selby H. McMahan, oldest son of Mr. and Mrs. I. H. McMahan of Union, Rt 4, is now serving his country in Germany. He has been overseas since November 1944. Pvt. McMahan was inducted into the Army in September 1943 at Camp Shelby and was sent from there to Ft. Eustis, Virginia, where he received his basic training in Coast Artillery. He was transferred to Camp Claiborne, La., in February 1944, where he received training in the 84th division of the Infantry. From Camp Claiborne he was sent to Camp Polk, Louisiana in September 1944 for a few weeks training in Field Artillery before going to the port of embarkation in October and overseas in November 1944. He spent about two months in England and a few weeks in France, but his last letters were written somewhere in Germany. Pvt. McMahan has two brothers in service, Sgt. Maston S. McMahan, also in Germany, and S/Sgt. Toxey H. McMahan, who has served twenty-eight months overseas but is now stationed in Kansas. Pvt. McMahan's wife, the former Ethel McAdory, is residing with his parents, near Union, during his absence. She is a member of the faculty of Beulah Hubbard Special Consolidated School.
Loses Life In Action - William Howard Houston
The following telegram has been received by Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Houston: Washington, D. C., September 17, 1945, Mr. & Mrs. William Grover Houston, Union, Miss.; I deeply regret to inform you that a careful review of all facts available relating to the disappearance of your son William Howard Houston, Pharmacists Mate Second Class, U.S.N.R., previously reported missing, leads to the conclusion that there is no hope for his survival and that he lost his life as result of enemy action on 30 July 1945 while in the service of his country. If further details are received they will be forwarded to you promptly. Sincerest sympathy is extended to you in your great loss. Vice Admiral Louise Denfeld, The Chief of Naval Personnel
Loses Life On Iwo Jima - Pvt. George N. Staton, Jr.
Pvt. George N. Staton, Jr., serving with the Fifth Marine Division, was reported missing in action in the Pacific, but on May 18th his parents received word that he had lost his life on March 7th, and had been buried in the Marine cemetery on Iwo Jima. Private Staton was born in Union and graduated from Union High School at the end of the first semester of 43-44; and went directly into the service of his country. After receiving a few months training in San Diego, he was shipped to the pacific where he saw action from the first day of the battle for Iwo Jima.
Ship's Captain Home On Visit - Capt. C. A. Montague
Captain C. A. Montague, who has been with the Merchant Marine for about eight years, is at home on a leave to visit his wife and son. Capt. Montague is the son of Charlie Montague, formerly of this county but now of Biloxi, and a grandson of J. H. Richardson of Little Rock. His wife was formerly Miss Nellie Herrington, daughter of the late Judge J. T. Herrington of Little Rock. During Captain Montague's period of service he has visited most all the major ports of the world, having made three trips as master of his ship. In his younger days he was quite an athlete, having been a member of Beulah Hubbard High School's first basketball team, later being a star on Biloxi High School's football and basketball teams.
Missing In Action - George N. Staton, Jr.
Mr. and Mrs. G. N. Staton, of Union, have received a message from the War Department that their son, George N. Staton, Jr. of the U.S.Marine Corps, is missing in action in the service of his country somewhere in the Pacific. The above picture was taken during Pvt. Staton's "boot" training.
John W. Cleveland, S 1/c
John W. Cleveland, S 1/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. Earl Cleveland of Decatur, Miss., is serving somewhere in the South Pacific. he was drafted into the Navy after finishing high school at Stratton, on May 18, 1944. Receiving his training at Camp Perry, Va., he was granted a short furlough home. After returning to Virginia, he was shipped to Atlantic City, New Jersey and from there to New Orleans, where he boarded the U.S.S. LTS No. 598. Since at sea he has been to Panama, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Guam and is now at some unknown port loading his ship for the next invasion.
Ex-Prisoner Of War Spends Week-End With Family - Pfc. John Morgan
Pfc. John Morgan, ex-prisoner of war, came in Saturday afternoon from Foster General Hospital at Jackson to spend Saturday night and Sunday with his family. John served eighteen months overseas. About four months of that time was spent in a German concentration hospital. He was liberated the 27th of March and flown from Heppenheim to Paris, where he remained until a few weeks later. He was then flown from Paris to New York and on to Foster General Hospital in Jackson. John was happy to be with his family and friends over the week-end and hopes to be back for a 30 days furlough shortly.
Serving In England - Royce W. Gordon
Royce W. Gordon is serving his country, stationed in England. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. L. A. Gordon of Union. Royce is a graduate of Stratton High School and E.C.J.C. of Decatur. He volunteered for service in the Army Air Corps in December 1941, and received his training at Keesler Field, Miss., Santa Monica, Calif., and Tacoma, Washington. he was sent overseas in August 1943 and landed in England, where he is now serving as a clerical worker in the Eighth Air Force.
Awarded Good Conduct Medal - Pfc. Ike R. Laird
The Good Conduct medal has been awarded to Pfc. Ike R. Laird, son of Mr. and Mrs. H. L. Laird of Union, who is stationed at Phoenix, Arizona. "The award of the Good Conduct Medal is authorized to those enlisted men of the Army of the United States who honorably served one year of active military service since February 7, 1941 and who are recommended by their commanding officers for exemplary behavior, efficiency and fidelity." Pfc. Laird has two brothers in the services, major Earl L. Laird, who is serving somewhere in Germany, and John Robert laird, S 2-c, who is taking training in Memphis, Tenn.
Ex-Prisoner Of War Is Safe In The States
Mrs. Mae Freeburgh received a phone call Monday from her son, S/Sgt. Charles H. Freeburgh, who was in New York, after having been liberated from a German prison camp. Sgt. Freeburgh was shot down over Germany on February 24, 1944, and had been a prisoner in Germany ever since. He was a turret gunner on a B-24 Liberator.
Receives Discharge - T/Sgt. J. B. Jones
T/Sgt. J.B. Jones, who has served his country overseas for about three years, came home Monday morning after being discharged from the Army at Camp Shelby. Sgt. Jones is the son of Mr. and Mrs. M. R. Jones of Little Rock and the husband of Mrs. Josie Mae Johnson Jones.
Missing On Indianapolis - Howard Houston, Ph.. M 2/c
Pharmacist's Mate 2/c William Howard Houston, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Houston of Union, has been missing in action since the sinking of his ship, the heavy cruiser Indianapolis, in the Philippine Sea on July 30. The cruiser had just delivered a cargo of atomic bombs to Guam and was enroute to Leyte to join the fleet when it was dealt the fatal blow by an enemy submarine. Houston was one of the 875 missing out of 1196, everyone of which was a casualty. A graduate of Union High School, Houston acted as school secretary and assistant commercial instructor there for a number of months. Prior to enlistment in the Navy in October 1942, he was employed in the Veterans' Hospital at Gulfport and gained experience which enabled him to get the rating of Pharmacist's Mate 3/c. Until being transferred to the Naval Hospital in Norman, Oklahoma on December 2, he worked in the main dispensary at the Naval Air Base in Pensacola, and after six months at Norman was sent back to his first base. There he studied to be a dental technician and upon completing the course, passed his second class examinations. He worked in the dental clinic until he was sent to Shoemaker, California for sea duty. Exactly two years after his entry into the Navy, Houston boarded his first and only ship, the Indianapolis, which carried him safely through attacks on the Japanese home island, the invasion of Iwo Jima, and minor battles. Only when the ship was badly crippled by a Jap Kamikaze pilot at Okinawa did she return to the states. While repairs were being made Houston was able to spend a few days leave at home before leaving the east coast on his last mission July 16.
Three Brothers Serving Overseas
Sgt. Dewey Moulds, Cpl Alton R. Moulds, Hq Co, 7th A., B. T-5 Melvin D. Moulds, 1648 Engr. Utilities Det. Melvin D. Moulds is the youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. W. D. Moulds of Union Route 2. He has been in the service two years and three months and has been overseas twenty-five months.
Sgt. J. C. Simmons Liberated
Mr. E. Simmons received the following message from the War Department Wednesday of this week: "The Secretary of War desires me to inform you that your son, Sgt. Simmons, James C., returned to military control 2nd May '45. J. A. Ulio, The Adjutant General." Sgt. J. C. Simmons enlisted in the Army Air Corps in June, 1941, and went overseas in June 1942. He was stationed in England with the American 8th Air Force, and was in the first bombing mission the Americans made over Europe. He was credited with shooting down his first German plane on August 22, 1942, being attached to a Flying Fortress as tail gunner. He continued on bombing missions over France and Germany until his plane was shot down on October 21, 1942, when he was made a prisoner of war by the Germans after being picked up by fishermen on the North Sea where his plane went down. From letters received by his parents, it seems that he was moved to all parts of Germany during the two years and six months he was held prisoner by the Germans. J. C.'s many friends here rejoice with his family over the news that he has been liberated and are looking forward to the day when he will be able to return home.
"Old Hickory" Invasion Veteran Coming Home - PFC Billy B. Griffin
With the 30th Infantry Division in Assembly Area Command, France. - Pfc. Billy B. Griffis, of Union, Miss., enroute home from Europe with the "Old Hickory" Division, which broke up Germany's supreme counter-offensive in Normandy, is now being processed at Campt Oklahoma City, an infantry redeployment center operated by the Assembly Area Command. Landing on the French coast on D plus four, the 30th, commanded by Major General L. S. Hobbs, spearheaded the St. Lo breakthrough, poured across Northern France, Belgium and Holland, and then crashed through the Siegfried Line to complete the encirclement of Anchen. On December 17th, 1944, the division wheeled to help stop Runstedt's lightning attack in the Ardennes. After some bitter fighting in the Stavelot-Malmedy sector they sent the Germans reeling back frustrating Nazi plans to seize Belgium's northern ports. Stunner SS Panzer troops taken prisoner and gasping Nazi radio commentators spoke of having yielded to "Roosevelt's SS" in this battle. Out for the kill, the 30th led the 9th Army's assault crossing of the Rhine on March 24th and fought its way more than 200 miles to the Elbe at Magdeburg where Russians and Americans clasped hands in an historic union. Pfc. Griffis is the husband of Mrs. Willie Mae Griffis of Union. He holds the following decorations: Purple Heart and five Campaign Stars.
Letter from Okinawa - Albert N. James
October 12, 1945
Dear Mama, Dady and Louise:
I received your letter of Sept. 29th last Monday. I thought I would write you Tuesday but we had a tornado starting Tuesday and lasting till about 8 o'clock Wednesday morning. Everything was torn up, our tent was blown down in the evening and everything got wet and a lot of stuff torn up. We stayed down at the line with the planes until about nine o'clock Tuesday night. We were wet through and through, and I mean it was cold. There are a lot of native burying grounds cut in the side of the hills. I got so cold I got a flashlight and crawled in one, there was the bones of a body in a box, so I shoved it out the door. In the inside of the cave was about ten feet square with steps or shelves built like stairs cut to the dirt. There were about twelve urns full of bones. When the body buried in it stays in the box for seven years the bones are put in the urns. I put them all on the top shelves and settled down among them to get out of the rain. Pretty soon on it was full of men to keep out of the rain. I never thought I would spend the night in a cemetery, but I was glad to stay in the burying ground among the bones. I would have stayed anywhere; then I say up all night. Wednesday morning three of my buddies and I started building our tent back. We worked in the rain all day. We couldn't get a tent Wednesday, so we slept under the floor of the ten that night and boy, was it cold, without blankets or mattress. They were all wet. We finally got the tent Thursday evening so we got it put up in fine shape and got a good night's sleep last, so we worked today. We only get two meals a day now. One of the mess halls blew down and tore up everything. There were only about five tents left in our squadron. In one squadron every tent blew down, also the office and all the records were lost. They saved our records in our office. The telephone poles were broken in half. I saved my radio and it look O. K. but the power is off, so I don't know if it will play or not. I hope it does. Well, I must go for now. Love to all, Albert (S/Sgt. Albert N. James)
Union Boy Writes From the Philippines - Reuben L. Cleveland
Te following letter is from Cpl. Reuben L. Cleveland, son of Mr. and Mrs. O. H. Cleveland of Union.
Somewhere in the Philippines
March 26, 1945
Hope everyone at home is still O. K. I am doing fine except for a little cold, which I am about to get rid of. Every time we change places it takes me about two weeks to get use to the different kinds of weather - and the drinking water here is different. This is really a dusty place now but pretty soon the rainy season will begin and it will be just as muddy then as it is dusty now. We have not had any pay for two months as we have been moving, but guess we will be paid the first of April. Everything in town is sky high. Prices on everything have gone up about five times the normal prices. Civilians here pay .00 a pack for "American cigarettes" on the black market. A hamburger that would ordinarily cost 2 cents is now 25 cents and a bottle of coke 25 cents, and doesn't taste very good at that. Many people here have been starving to death but prices are going down a little, and the army is feeding a lot of them now too. Before the war this must have been one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Most of the prettiest parts of the city have been destroyed. There were many pretty colleges and universities here, but were either burned by the Japs or destroyed by our artillery fire to drive the Japs out. In one part of the city you can ride for miles and there is but one building that hasn't been touched. This one particular building is a big white building with about twenty stories. All the furniture was stolen out of the building, but the building itself is still very pretty, standing in the midst of all those ruins. In another place where everything is torn to the ground a big church still stands. Every building around it was burned and shelled but the church still stands untouched by the artillery shells that came so near it. This truly looks like the work of God for the church is always open and is usually about full of people. When we first got here there were a lot of dead bodies around that gave out quite an odor, but they are mostly all gone now. I have looked at the mass of destruction and thanked God that you at home have never seen it and pray that you will never see anything like it. Bye for now. Love, Reuben.
Killed In Action - Sgt. Arthur C. Vance
A message has been received from the War Department that Sgt. Arthur C. Vance was killed in action on April 5, 1945 in Germany. Sgt. Vance was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Roy Vance of Union Route 2, and husband of Mrs. Dean Russell Vance, daughter of Mr. Will Russell of near Decatur. Sgt. Vance was inducted into the Army on Nov. 18, 1942 at Camp Shelby, Mississippi and on Nov. 20, was sent to Camp Adair, Oregon, where he was assigned to the infantry and trained as a mechanic. While there he won the marksmanship medal with the rifle. On July 10, 1943, he was returned to Camp Shelby and was sent from there to Ft. Meade, Maryland, and sailed for overseas duty on Sept. 10, arriving in France Sept. 19, 1944 and was placed in the First Army. He saw service in France, Belgium and Holland and was wounded in Belgium on Jan. 16, 1945, and was killed in Germany on April 5, 1945. Sgt. Vance was 23 years of age. he will better remembered here by his friends as Cobert Vance.
Serving in Germany - Sgt. J. B. Jones
Sgt. J. B. Jones of Union, Miss., is serving with an Infantry division in Germany. Inducted in the Army on June 2, 1942, he received his training at Camp Wheeler, Ga., then was sent to Camp Blanding, Fla. There he was assigned to an overseas unit and sent to New Jersey before sailing for England in October of 1942. he remained in England 18 months and on June 6, 1944 with his division, the famed 29th Infantry Division, took part in one of the bloodiest and most heroic battles in the U. S. military history. He wears the E. T. O. ribbon the combat infantrymans badge with the silver wreaths and the good conduct medal. Also his unit has been awarded Presidential unit citations for the capture of St. Lo. Sgt. Jones is a graduate of Beulah Hubbard High School. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. M. R. Jones of Little Rock, Miss., and the husband of the former Miss Josie Mae Johnson of Decatur, Mississippi.
Getting An Eye Full of Rome - S/Sgt. Charley B. Barnes
Air Forces Rest Center in Rome -- S/Sgt. Charley B. Barnes, 28, of Union, Mississippi, is caught by the Army cameraman while in Rome on rest leave there. Overseas 19 months he is a Sgt. Major for the 12th AAF and was employed by Peoples Bank of Union as a Teller before entering the Army December 29, 1942.
Pictured Right: Robert Mills, US Army 325 AAA S/L Bn Hq Battery, WWII
Brothers Meet in South Pacific - James R. Smith, S 2/c, John T. Smith S 1/c
John T. Smith, S 1/c., and James R. Smith, S 2/c, of the U. S. Navy, sons of Mr. and Mrs. M. E. Smith of Union, Miss., recently met somewhere in the South Pacific. Both of these boys attended Beulah-Hubbard High School at Little Rock, Miss. John T, age 22 years, took his boot training and attended service school at U. S. Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Ill., and went overseas last June, reporting to the Naval Supply Depot in Hawaii for which he still carries on the good work. James R. Smith, age 19 years, took his boot training at Camp Peary, Va., and sailed on a light cruiser, the U. S. S. Springfield, out in the Atlantic and on through the Panama Canal into the South Pacific where he is now serving.
In Service Together - Grady Fred Roebuck & Melvin E. Wilson
Grady Fred Roebuck, S 1/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. Carter Roebuck, of Union, Miss., and Melvin E. Wilson, S 1/c, son of Mr. and Mrs. H. A. Wilson, of Dixon, Miss., entered the Navy July 11, 1944. They took their training together at Camp Peary, Va., came home on their ten day leave together. They were sent back to Norfolk, Va., and took their ship, the Mayflower, there Nov. 5 and landed at Pearl Harbor Nov. 28. They stayed there 30 days and were sent to Tinian Island and landed there Jan. 13th. They are with the F. E. A. unit. Both of them drive tractors, cultivating vegetables on a 3000 acre garden. The vegetables they raise are used in hospitals and chow halls there. They have had a lot of Jap snipers to contend with.
Englishman Writes to Father of Service Man
The following letter was received by mr. Jessie T. Hitt of Duffee, Miss., from and English friend of his son in the U. S. Army, Thomas Darrell Hitt:
St. Helens, Lance, England
Please excuse me taking the liberty of writing to you, but I promised your son Thomas, that I would write and let you know how he is keeping. Well I am very pleased to say that he is doing fine and in very good health also hoping that you and all at home are the same. I have known Tom quite awhile, and myself and family was quite pleased with his company--he was always welcome at my house. When he was sent away from Burtonwood we was sorry because we used to look forward to his visits, so believe me Sir, we miss him very much, more so myself because we used to go for walks and cycle rides, and he was good pal and my family miss his company very much. There is one good consolation, this war is over, and hope that your boys are not long before they are with you again, because that war has caused a lot of heartaches, and I hope the world is a lot better after it; I hope that we have finished with wars and that we can live in peace. I hope that when you get this letter he is at home with you. if so, will you please give our best regards and we wish him the best of luck. Well, Sir, I have not much to write so I will close by wishing you and your family all the very best, and me and Mrs. Burke and family, that is young Bill, Irene and Rita, send you our best regards and very best wishes.
Rainer Brothers Both Wear Khaki
Pvt. William H. Rainer, left and his elder brother, Pfc. Charles H. Rainer are the two soldier sons of Mr. and Mrs. C. A. Rainer, Union, Route 4. They are grandsons of the Rev. and Mrs. W. H. Rainer, of Little Rock, and the late Mr. and Mrs. Will Smith, of Union. Pvt. William H. Rainer, who is 19 years of age, was inducted into service last June 7. Assigned to the infantry, he was trained at Camp Blanding, Fla. Last October, he was given 10 days delayed traveling time on his way to Fort Meade, Md., his last station before going overseas. He is now fighting in Italy and, since he wears medals for his marksmanship with rifle and machine gun, is giving a good account of himself. Pvt. Rainer is married to the former Miss Bernell Gordon, who resides with her parents near Stratton and is employed by Lebanon Shirt Co., of Union. Pfc. Charles H. Rainer, 22, entered the Army Air Corps on September 5, 1943. He received his training at Keesler Field; Lowry Field, Colo., and Buckingham Air Field, Fla., and is now on duty at Barksdale Field, La., serving with the Third Air Force. Prior to entering the service, Pfc. Rainer was employed by Mississippi Power Co., in Meridian. His wife, the former Miss Helen Dallas, resides with him in Bossier City, La. Both these service men are graduates of Beulah-Hubbard High School., which their 10-year-old brother, Fred, and two sisters, Artimar and Geraldine, still attend. They have two married sisters, Mrs. Etoile Sharp and Mrs. Nellie Ruth Galloway, both residents of Union.
From Somewhere in France
January 17, 1945
Hello Mr. And Mrs. Edwards and Kids:
Well, at last I have got around to dropping you a few lines once more. I hope this finds all of you in the best of health and enjoying life to the utmost. I have just finished writing Nell and I had some more time so I continued to write. To begin with I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the package you mailed to me, although it was a little late getting here. But a lot of my buddies are getting their presents late. I hope you folks are not having the kind of weather there that we have here. The temperature stays down around twenty and lower and I haven't seen the ground now for three weeks. I'm telling you it's pretty tough to have to get up in the middle of the night and go fix a broken telephone line, especially when the Jerries have the area under shell fire and he usually does. But you would be surprised to see how we work. I guess after so long, you get used to it. I guess all of you have been keeping up with the news from over there, especially the Seventh Army front. Well, we have had a few tough battles but the situation is pretty well in hand now. Some of these days I'll tell you all about it. I wish I could now but it's impossible. Well so much for that. I had a letter from Dr. Laird the other day and he seemed to be very happy because I had written to him earlier. He said that during the recent counter offensive of the Germans, that he and his whole hospital, patients too were prisoners of war for two days. But other forces fought their way back to them and they managed to get away safely. I sure was proud to hear that. How are things back home these days? Is business still good? I sure would like to be there and find out for myself for a change. I guess a lot of the men are getting scarce since they are tightening up on the draft board. Well to win this war we have got to have men from some place for to my great sorrow I have seen a lot that had to pay the supreme price. Well, Mary, Jack and Bonnie, how are you tonight? Wish I were there to give each of you a big hug tonight. But don't worry, I'll be back to see you some day. How is "Little Stan" and Sallie? I bet he is as pretty as a picture. I will close for tonight, wishing all of you the best of luck. Love, Durward Cleveland
Brothers Are Reunited in England
Proof that happiness can sometimes be found, even in the midst of war's chaos, is shown by this picture, made in England recently when these two brothers met for the first time in almost two years. Sgt. Percy Martin Session, left, beams with pride and affection on his younger brother, Eddie Joe, who was wounded November 29, fighting at Metz in France. When the sergeant who has been stationed in England the past 21 months with a headquarters squadron of the AAF learned of his brother's injuries, he immediately contacted army hospitals in that area and succeeded in locating the youngster and visiting him. Pvt. Eddie Joe Sessions, aged 19 years, is an infantryman, and has been overseas since last October. In a recent letter to homefolks he said: "I arrived in Metz in time for the last two days of combat there, then battled on up to the Roer river. it was there I was injured. A shrapnel fragment entered the middle finger of my right hand, near the tip; tore through it and crossed over to my third finger and lodged in its base, near the palm. The doctors are to remove this shrapnel soon and I am going to be okeh." These two soldiers are sons of Mr. and Mrs. Luther Sessions of Union, Route 4. They have two brothers, R. L., manager of the Gulf Transport Bus shops in Louisville; and Donovan Sessions, still a student in school. Their only sister is Mrs. Christine Skinner, who lives at Terry. Sgt. Percy Sessions, who is 28 years old, is married to the former Miss Virginia Parker, of Lawrence. She now resides in Newton, where her husband formerly maintained headquarters when he was serving as welfare agent for Newton County.
Bronze Star Medal - T/Sgt James O. Gill
Tech. Sgt. James O. Gill, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. F. A. Gill of Union, Route 2, has been awarded the following citation for award of the Bronze Star Medal: James O. Gill, 20424926 Technical Sergeant, Service Battery 932nd Field Artillery Battalion, United States Army, For meritorious service in connection with military operation against an enemy of United States during the period 29 October 1944 to 8 May 1945. As battalion supply Sergeant during the above period Technical Sergeant Gill's intelligence, efficiency, and thorough knowledge of supply procedures and administration relieved his superior officers of many hours of detail work, thus enabling them to devote their time to more urgent business. He skillfully kept his section well organized at all times, and incorporting new methods and procedures when necessary, and coordinating the securing and delivering of supplies between the battalion units. Due to his untiring efforts, the units of the batalion were continuously well supplied with all classes of supplies. Entered military service from Union, Mississippi.
Wins Decorations - Sgt. Dwight L. James, Jr.
A Ninth Air Force Reconnaissance Bast. Germany--Sergeant Dwight L. James, Jr., 24, son of Mr. and Mrs. D. L. James of Stratton, Miss., is serving with the 67th Tactical Reconnaissance group, a unit recently awarded the Presidential Unit Citation, highest organizational decoration awarded the U. S. armed services. Sgt. James whose wife, Mrs. Carnell James, lives in Jackson, is a veteran of service in the battle for Europe in England, France, Belgium, and Germany. This group was the first American "Tac-R" outfit to perform "airspionage" in the European theater. The Presidential Citation was conferred upon the organization for a vital pre-invasion reconnaissance task. P-15 Mustangs from this unit flew "clay pigeon runs"--straight and level cameras flight over the flak-bound coasts of Normandy--to successfully accomplish "the most extensive low altitude oblique photograph's assignment ever undertaken over enemy territory". The pictures they obtained were used in planning our D-Day landings. Led by Lieutenant Colonel Richard S. Leghorn of Worchester, Mass., the 67th Group operates as an aerial scout force for several U. S. Armies and the Ninth Air Force. Col. Leghorn's pilots use Mustangs for low1level photography, for visual "spy" missions, and long range artillery adjustment. They also fly P-38's mapped the entire Siegfried Line and the Rhine valley in just five days. Participating in air-going offensives from Normandy, across France and Belgium, into Germany, the planes of the group have provided army and air commanders with up-to-the-minute battle intelligence and 2,200,000 photos of frontline sectors. Sgt. James, a clerk in the administrative section of the headquarters section of the 67th Group, is a graduate of Mississippi State College. he enlisted in the armed service in August, 1942. In addition to the ribbon denoting Presidential recognition, Sgt. James also wears four battle stars on his European Theater Operations ribbon.
Pictured Left: National D-Day Memorial, Bedford Co, VA
Pvt. Henry E. Johnson
Little, Rock, Miss., Jan. 8, 1944--Pvt. Henry E. Johnson, one of this community's finest young citizens was killed in the battle of France on Nov. 25. An infantryman with General Patton's Third Army, he met his death on the battle front near Nancy, according to an official message received here by his widow, Mrs. Edna Skinner Johnson. Aged 20 years, Pvt. Johnson was inducted into the army last April 29. After training at Camp Blanding, Fla. and Fort Meade, Md., he was send overseas, and had been in combat only about three weeks before losing his life on the battlefield. Up to the time he entered the service, Pvt. Johnson had spent his entire life on the family farm, near Little Rock. He was a gay, likeable boy, and seemed to possess those traits of character that would most endear him to his associates. In addition to his widow and two small daughters, Kathelene, age 16 months, and Henrietta, age 8 days, the soldier is survived by his widowed mother, Mrs. W. S. Johnson, two sisters, Mrs. H. R. Chandler of Little Rock, and Mrs. S. M. Simmons, of Vicksburg, three brothers, Sgt. A. C. Johnson, serving with the Army Postal Unit in France, Pfc. Joe W. Johnson, with the chemical warfare service in France, since D-Day, and Master Sgt. Edsel F. Johnson, Army Air Corps, who has been overseas since the invasion of North Africa, and is now based in Corsica.
Poem from Shelby Heflin
The following poem was sent by Pfc. Shelby Heflin to his mother, who died on the 8th of January, 1945. Pfc. Heflin did not receive word of her death until the 6th of Feb. The poem arrived home a few days after his mother's death. Pfc. Heflin has been serving overseas for one year. He is now with the 7th Army in Germany.
Well, here I am overseas, so far away from you,
And I've discovered many things that before I never knew.
I miss so many things you did through all my life for me,
I was too selfish, Mom of Mine, and never stopped to see
How tired you were from household care and favors I would ask,
You never whimpered, Mother Dear, but took each added task.
War does things to a fellow, Mom, when death steals up so near,
A man finds himself then counting the things that he holds dear,
And so I felt that I had to write these lines to you today
To tell you all the little things, I never stopped to say
I think of the cookie jar you kept filled to the rim,
Each cake was an act of love from Mom to satisfy my whim,
I see my little overalls with patches in the knees
I smell fried chicken, muffins, and thinks as good as these;
I see the broken window pains, my ball upon the floor,
I hear your gentle reprimand sound in my ears once more
And If from war I should return Oh Mom of Mine I pray
Teach me again those little things, you taught me yesterday.
Written by Shelby Heflin
John Thomas Smith
John Thomas Smith, Seaman First Class, U. S. Navy, age 21 years, son of Mr. and Mrs. M. E. Smith of Union, entered the service Nov. 3, 1943, took his boot training at Great Lakes, Ill. He is now stationed in the Hawaiian Islands. This fine young sailor finished high school at Beulah-Hubbard High School in 1941. In civilian life he was a farmer. he also has one brother serving our country, James Raymon Smith, Second Class Seaman, U. S. Navy, age 18 years, who is now at home on leave after just finishing his boot training at Camp Peary, Va., and one brother, Myrl, age 6 years at home with his parents. he also has many friends in his come community wishing him a return home soon. His father, a farmer, also served in World War One.
Like Marines Fine - Pvt. Shelton Reeves
Pvt. Shelton Reeves has been home on a weeks furlough and has returned to Camp Lejune, N. C. He has just finished 8 weeks of schooling. He says he likes the Marine life fine. Pvt. Reeves is the son of Mr. and Mrs. O. C. Reeves of Union.
Cpl. Roy Henton White
Mrs. Jennie White of Union, Miss., has just received a letter from her son, Cpl. Roy H. White of the U. S. Marine Corps, somewhere in the Pacific. Cpl. White states he is fine and in the best of health. He enlisted in the Marine Corps on August 6, 1940. He is a survivor of the U. S. S. Astoria that went down on August 9, 1942. He has seen plenty of action against the Japs. Cpl. White had a furlough home in May 1943 and his many friends enjoyed his being at home. He states that he doesn't have time to write very often and to tell all of his friends and relatives hello for him.
Horace Jenkins, F. 1/c
Horace Jenkins, F. 1/c U.S.S. Currituck, is 17 years old, son of Mr. and Mrs. Duffie E. Jenkins of Union Route 4. He enlisted in the U. S. Navy on Oct. 1, 1943. He completed his Naval Training School (Deesel) Navy Pier, Chicago, Ill., March 10, 1944, and also completed advance deesel operators school, Naval Training School, Dearborn, Michigan, the 9th of May, 1944.
Pictured Left: US Army Soldiers of the 325 AAA S/L Bn Hq Battery, WWII
Received His Wings - Lt. Raymond Viverette
Marfa, Texas, Dec. 23, 1944--Charles Raymond Viverette, son of Mr. and Mrs. Luther E. Viverette, Union, Miss., received his silver wings today when he graduated as a Second Lieutenant from Marfa Army Air Field, an advanced two-engine pilot school of the AAF Training Command, it was announced by Col. A. J. Kerwin Malone, commanding officer. The new pilot, a former resident of Union, completed a course in training in twin-engine aircraft. he was assigned here from Minter Field, Bakersfield, California. He is a former student of Union High School and Mississippi State College.
Lands in Boston - T/Sgt. Herbert Worthen
Mrs. G. S. Worthen received a message from her son, T/Sgt. Herbert Worthen, the first of the week stating that he had landed in Boston, and would be home in a short time. He is a member of the Army Engineer Corps, and has seen much service in Europe since D-Day.
Seaman Home On Leave - James M. Harrison
James M. Harrison, Seaman First Class in the U. S. Navy, is in Little Rock for a three-week leave with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. M. B. Harrison. One of nine children, the sailor is being royally entertained by his father, mother, six sisters and two brothers. Seaman Harrison, known to all his friends as "Mack", entered the service in July 1943. After attending boot camp at Great Lakes, Ill., he was assigned to a heavy cruiser and went to sea. Serving as a gunner, he has seen much action in the six major battles within the past 14 months.
Union Boy Lands Safely in India
Pvt. Homer L. McAdory, of Union and Jackson, has landed safely in India, according to a cablegram received by his wife who resides in Jackson. Pvt. McAdory, son of the late Rev. and Mrs. S. E. McAdory of Union, entered the service in September of last year. He received his basic training at Camp Crowder, Mo., where he was later attached to the Signal Corps. Upon completion of his training there, he was moved to Fort Dix, N. J. and soon afterwards was shipped from an undisclosed point on the East Coast. Sgt. Berlin Gill McAdory, a brother, is stationed at Camp Carson, Colo.
Wounded in Action - Pvt. Bennie O. Milling
Mr. and Mrs. Bennie Milling received a telegram from the War Department, August 28, stating that their son, Pvt. Bennie O. Milling (Odell) was seriously wounded in action in France on August 13, 1944. The last word received from him was that he is now in a hospital in England and will be there for quite awhile. Odell is unable to write himself. A friend wrote for him but told nothing about his wound except that Odell could not write on account of his eye. In a later letter he was able to walk around in his ward but still unable to write. Pvt. Milling has two brothers serving their country, they are: S/Sgt. Embry Bernard Milling and Orem Dollis Milling, MOMM 3/c.
Back In The States - Odell Milling
Mr. and Mrs. Bennie Milling received the following letter from their son who was wounded August 13 in France and has recently been brought back to the States:
October 11, 1944
Dear Mother and All,
Guess you all will be surprised to hear from me and to know I am back in the States. I got here yesterday afternoon. I am here in New York in a hospital. Won't be here but a few days. Will be sent closer home to a hospital. I thought I would let you know I was back, but you need not write until I get to the other hospital. Don't know what hospital I will go to yet, but I am doing as well as can, I guess. I am up and around a little. Can't see any too good yet. I lost one of my eyes, don't you knew it thought, and got my head cut up awful bad. But mother I'm thankful to be living. I had a close call, but now I'm doing fine. Hope to recover soon. I am hoping this finds you all well. I know you have worried lots about me but I could not write; this is my first, you may not be able to read it. Tell everyone hello and I'm happy to be back in the States. I will let you know where I am as soon as I get there. Love, your son, Odell Milling.
Mrs. Thurmon Sharp Joins Husband
Mrs. Thurman Sharp left Thursday for Fort Benning, Georgia to live with her husband, Cpl. Thurman Sharp. Cpl Thurman Sharp, who is stationed at Ft. Benning, Ga. has been spending a few days furlough with homefolks here. He was accompanied by his wife.
Dr. Laird Has Namesake in Belgium
The Laird Hospital Staff received the following letter from Major Earl L. Laird, M. D. recently:
5 January 1945
I sincerely hope each and everyone a most happy New Year and may all we see all you very soon. I have just returned from a trip down in France to try to get new hospital equipment so I can go back to the front again. We have been at the front six months continuously but that isn't too bad, some have probably been longer. I consider ourselves most fortunate to be with the Americans in 1945 instead of with the Jerries as we came so near. About going to France--the travel is difficult--ice, snow, and very slippery roads, lots of wrecks. let me tell you what happened last night. I stopped in a city in Belgium (Mons) to eat. While eating the restaurant proprietor asked if I were not a doctor. The answer being yes, he asked if I would come upstairs and see his wife who was sick. The man spoke some English and I have learned a little French. Upon examining his wife, Madam Edith Deberg, I found her to be in labor and seemed to be rather intense. Also found out there was a hospital there in Mons for maternity cases. I suggested sending her to the hospital and they insisted that I go with them and see that she came through all right. Well, I decided to spend the night in this town (35,000 population) and try my hand again on obstetrics. As usual, after the normal lengthy procedure, this morning at 12:30 I delivered a 3 1/2 Kilo of 7.7 pound baby boy, and by the way the parents are just like all others, they wanted to know as soon as I examined her what it was going to be. From all indications I thought it would be a boy--that proving true they were more than thrilled and most appreciative--gave me a big steak and French fried potatoes at 1:30 A. M. and were they good--oh, yes. The baby was named Mitchell Laird Debert. Perhaps I should not have written this but if you could have seen how thrilled I was and how all those Belgiums acted, you could understand why I have written so much all on account of one baby being born. I am sure I shall be just as thrilled with my first case when I return to Union after being away three years already. And you good people please write me when you have the time. Love to all, Earl L. Laird.
Dr. E. L. Laird Promoted to Lieutenant Colonel
Dr. Earl L. Laird, head of Laird Hospital, received confirmation notice Christmas Day that he had been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in the u. S. Army Medical Corps. Colonel Laird recently retired from active duty in Europe where during the battle of the so-called bulge in Belgium, he with his entire field hospital unit was captured by the Germans. He led his unit back to the American lines after being prisoner for a short time. Colonel Laird saw much service as a surgeon right up on the front lines where he saved the lives of many of our soldiers by his skill. Colonel Laird is our of service at present on accumulated furlough. He will be discharged early in 1946 or transferred to the reserve. he will continue his practice in Union, where he has a good hospital and fine clientele. Union friends congratulate Colonel Laird on his promotion and are proud to know we have such a distinguished citizen who did so much during the recent war.
Union Boy Awarded Distinguished Flying Cross - Bruce Cleveland
Bruce Cleveland, son of Mr. and Mrs. I. L. Cleveland of Union, has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, according to the following letter received by his mother:
Headquarters Twelfth Air Force
10 January 1945
Mrs. Willie K. Cleveland
Dear Mrs. Cleveland,
I am very happy to tell you that your son, Lieutenant Allan B. Cleveland, has been awarded the highly coveted Distinguished Flying Cross for outstanding achievement in action against the enemy. I know you will be glad to hear this. Only a few men who fly in battle for their country have been so honored. The high qualities that your son has displayed reflects the inspiration that his loved ones exert in his life, and this had no small part in making his achievement possible. Lieutenant Cleveland, by his courage and devotion to duty, has set an example which has made his comrades proud to serve with him in this war for high ideals. As the Commander of the Air Force in which he has served I also take pride in his accomplishments and appreciate the more intimate joy which I know is yours at this moment. It is a genuine pleasure to have had with me, in the Twelfth Air Force, such an outstanding airman. Very sincerely, (Signed) John K. Cannon, Major General. U.S.A.
Was Home On Leave - Coyt C. Watkins, S 2/c
Coyt C. Watkins, S 2/c, after completing his boot training at Great Lakes, Ill., spent a 9-days leave with his wife and relatives of Little Rock, Mississippi. He returned, accompanied by his wife, to Great Lakes, where after a few happy days together, she returned home and he was sent to Bremerton, Washington to be assigned to a ship where he thinks he will be sent to the South Pacific. He says he is living a Christian life and God will bring him safely back home soon.
Wins Good Conduct Medal
Mrs. Alvis C. Johnson, who resides at 814 Grand avenue, this city, has received the following letter from Lt. Oscar H. Barnhill, commanding officer of the 65th Army Postal Union, France: "With the utmost pride and pleasure, I would like to announce to you and to his friends, the award of the Good Conduct medal to Sgt. Alvis C. Johnson, a member of this command. "The medal was awarded to Sgt. Johnson for exemplary behavior, efficiency and fidelity. Your husband's fine character and record for efficiency are very outstanding and therefore warrant the highest commendation. We can justly be proud of his attainment." Sgt. Johnson is a son of Mrs. Susan Johnson of Little Rock, and the late W. D. Johnson. He entered the Army on September 10, 1943. His wife is a valued employee of Sears, Roebuck and Co.
Brothers at Home From the Services - Herman Bradley, H. A. 2/c & Pfc. Dewitt Bradley
Pfc. Dewitt Bradley and Herman Bradley, H. A. 2/c, sons of Mr. J. O. Bradley of Union, Route 4, were fortunate to be able to be at home at the same time. Dewitt being on furlough while his brother, Herman has just recently received a medical discharge. Pfc. Bradley is attached to the hospital ship Emily H. M. Weder, and has seen action in the invasion of Southern France in 1944 and then in the invasions of New Guinea and the Philippines. he has five campaign ribbons and six battle stars. He will report back to his ship in a few days. Herman took his boot training at Great Lakes, Ill., and was sent to Idaho, where he was taken sick, then being sent to California, where he received his discharge.
Pfc. R. C. Smith
Word has been received that Private First Class R. C. Smith has been awarded the Purple Heart for injuries sustained on Iwo Jima. Pfc. Smith is the youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. R. F. Smith of Little Rock, Miss., and is serving with the Fourth Marine Division in the South Pacific.
Brothers Serving In Germany - Sgt. Nilon Lamar Hagan & Cpl. Andrew Claiborn Hagan
Sgt. Nilon Lamar and Cpl. Andrew Claiborne Hagan are the only sons of Mrs. Dora Hagan and the late Andrew Hagan of Little Rock, Miss. Sgt. Nilon Lamar Hagan is a 10th Armored Infantryman, serving in Gen. Patten's Third Army in Germany and is known as the "Fighting Tigers". He is 30 years old. He served at different posts in Georgia, last being at Camp Gordon, Augusta, Ga., where he left for embarkation camp in September 1944 and landed in France the latter part of September. he has gone on through Germany, where he is now. He wears the good conduct medal, infantryman's badge and the bronze star. Sgt. Hagan was a farmer before inducted into the army. Cpl. Andrew Claiborne Hagan, age 25, volunteered his service for Uncle Sam's Army in January 1940, and was put in the 4th Engineers. He served at different posts on the east coast. he also took part in the maneuvers in Louisiana and the Carolinas, last being stationed at Fort Jackson, S. C., before sailing for overseas duty in January 1944. He landed in England where he was on duty until the invasion of France, where he fought until he was wounded on Sept. 7. He was then taken back to England for treatment. Cpl. Hagan rejoined his company sometime in October, and is now in Germany with Gen. Patton's Third Army, Cpl. Hagan was also a farmer before joining the Army. Besides these sons, Mrs. Hagan has two daughters, Mrs. Luvina Dean of Little Rock, and Mrs. Dares Parks of Decatur.
Radioman is Lost (From the Meridian Star)
Mr. & Mrs. R. L. Garrison of Union, Route 2, have been officially notified that their youngest son, Dorris Gwin Garrison, disappeared in a naval battle on October 24 and his fate is still unknown. Radioman third class in the U. S. Naval Reserve, young Garrison served aboard the ill fated U. S. S. Princeton, which was sunk by the Japanese in the Battle of Leyte. Bombed by Jap air forces, the Princeton fought valiantly until her magazines exploded, then was sent to the bottom of the Pacific by U. S. forces. Radioman Garrison, aged 19 years, graduated from Union High School with the class of 1943. After training in Radio school at Bainbridge, Md., he was assigned to the Princeton and, for the past eight months, had been based at Pearl Harbor. The sailor is the youngest of Mr. and Mrs. Garrison's eleven living children. His six sisters are Mrs. Nora and Mrs. Sybil Buchanan, both of Heidelberg; Mrs. J. P. Dennis, Richmond, Va.; Mrs. Hazel Harrison, Mrs. Ruby Johnson and Miss Helen Garrison, all of Union. The five brothers are C. A. Garrison, of Philadelphia; Opal, of Kreole; Earl, Walnut Grove, and Cpl. Horace Jay Garrison, who is in Holland with the 104th U. S. Infantry fighting beside the Canadian First Army.
Prisoner of War - T-Sgt. Charles D. Williams
Missing since November 23, 1944, T-Sgt. Charles D. Williams of Little Rock, Miss., is now known to be a prisoner of war of the Germans. His wife, the former Miss Marjorie Smith, received the news Monday, March 12, after 15 weeks of anxious waiting. T-Sgt. Williams has a daughter, Sammie Kate, 6 months old, whom he has never seen. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. James Williams of Little Rock, Miss. He was inducted into the army on Nov. 11, 1942, landed in France last September 7th as a member of an infantry unit. He campaigned through France, Holland and Belgium and was fighting inside Germany when captured by the enemy. One brother, Lt. Hulon Williams was killed when his training plane crashed in Wisconsin on June 24, 1942. One nephew, lt. Billy Williams lost his life in March, 1943, while bombing Rotterdam. He also has 2 nephews in France and three on duty in the States. One brother, Carl, and one nephew, Howard Williams, have been given medical discharges. His brother-in-law, Pvt. Herman Smith, is now fighting in Belgium.
Charles Williams - Back in American Hands
Mrs. Charles Williams of Little Rock, has received the following letter from her husband, who has been a German prisoner since Nov. 23, 1944:
April 29, 1945
Just a few lines to let you know that I am in American hands again. We passed through the lines on the 27th, and you can believe me when I say my prayers have been answered. It's been a tough, hard pull, but we've never let down for a minutes. I'm O.K. Hope all of you are well. I don't know much that's going on, but I'm thinking that it won't be long before I'll be seeing you. I hardly know what to write, and I haven't too much space on this form. All I'm wanting now is to be sure you hear from me. I don't know if you've been getting any mail from me or not. Guess it doesn't matter now anyway. I've been waiting for this day for 5 long months. Now that its here, I hardly know how to act. Guess that's about all for now. I'll be seeing you soon, I hope. I love you. Charles.
Union Boy With Air Force In Russia
Cpl. Raymond W. Majure, of Route 4, Union, Miss. is now serving with the Eastern Command of U. S. Strategic Air Forces in Europe, "Somewhere in Russia", with a contingent of picked American troops that now staffs U. S. bomber and fighter bases in the Soviet Union. Cpl. Majure, son of Mr. and Mrs. Irby W. Majure, was among troops dispatched to the Soviet Union by the Army Air Forces, and with their Soviet Allies they built bases in what high-ranking American officers described as a "surprisingly short time." Now soldiers of the two nations jointly operate them. Major Kenneth A. Reecher, a base commander, points with pride to the wholeheartedness with which the Americans and the Russians cooperate and their earnest endeavor to understand each other and to learn each other's language. "We are surprisingly alike in our savvy of mechanics, in spontaneous wit, our like of entertainment, and earnestness of purpose," the officer said, "We're getting on splendidly." Red Army soldiers and women greet the Americans with: "Good morning; how are you?" The Americans answer: "Kharasha!" or just plain, "Okay!" They mean the same thing and everybody knows both--now. The men and women work side-by-side servicing heavy bombers and American fighters now knocking Germany and her satellites about from the east. The AAF now encircles Germany, from Russia, England and Italy.
Pacific Veteran of 29 Months - Cpl. Leslie L. Langham
Boca Chica, Fla., Dec. 26--Marine Corporal Leslie L. Langham, son of Mrs. W. Langham, Route 1, Little Rock, Mississippi, veteran of twenty-nine months of Central Pacific duty recently joined the Marine Guard here. Corporal Langham was transferred to the Marine Detachment at the South Florida naval air base on the completion of a special weapons course at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. The native Mississippi Marine has been in the Corps since July of 1940 and during his overseas tour was stationed at Pearl Harbor and in the Palmyra Islands. He was attached to an anti-aircraft outfit. Langham's wife resides at Route 3, Union, Mississippi.
With The Air Force in Italy - Sgt. Charley B. Barnes
Sergeant Charley B. Barnes, son of Mrs. Love Barnes of Union, Mississippi, is currently serving as a member of an Air Service Group of the 12th Air Force Service Command "somewhere in Italy." He has also seen service in North Africa and Sicily. His wife, Mrs. Sue Barnes and mother reside in Union. Sgt. Barnes is a graduate of the Union High School having received his diploma with the class of 1935. He entered the Army on Dec. 29, 1942 and has served overseas one year. Sgt. Barnes is serving with a Squadron that is instrumental in keeping Uncle Sam's planes in the air. he is doing his job and doing it well like all good Americans.
Prisoner of War - Pfc. John Morgan
Mrs. Shelby Heflin of this city received a letter from her brother, Pfc. John Morgan, stating that he is a German prisoner. This is the first news from her brother since the War Department declared him missing in action since December 19. John states that he has a place to sleep and plenty of food and asked his family not to worry, that he hopes to see them in the near future. Pfc. Morgan was attached to the 22nd Signal Unit of the First Army until he was taken prisoner in December. He was serving in Luxemburg at that time.
Pvt. "Hap" Cleveland
Mrs. Ibra Cleveland has two sons, Cpl. Durwood F. Cleveland and Pvt. George Hap Cleveland, besides her son-in-law, Sgt. Cook, in service. Cpl. Cleveland entered the service in November of 1942 and received his training at Camp Blanding, Florida, Camp Forrest, Tennessee, and Camp Phillips, Kansas, before departing for overseas in March of 1944. He has seen action since the 18th of June, having landed in France on his birthday. A wireman in the Field Artillery, the Corporal is a member of the famous 79th Division of the Seventh Army. His wife, Mrs. Inell Edwards Cleveland, resides with her parents in Union. Pvt. "Hap" Cleveland entered the service June 30, 1944 and received four months of training at Camp Wheeler, Georgia. He was then granted a short furlough home, before leaving for Fort George G. Meade, Maryland and a point of embarkation. He arrived safely in Italy December 23, 1944.
S/Sgt. James M. Cook
An Eighth AAF Bomber Station England--On the day the Eighth Air Force sent up more than 2,000 heavy bombers for the first time, Staff Sgt. James M. Cook of Union, Miss., entered the aerial offensive against Germany on a bombing mission to an airfield near Frankfort. Top turret gunner and aerial engineer on a B-17 Flying Fortress, the sergeant is a member of the 385th Bombardment Group, commanded by Col. George Y. Jumper of Natoma, Calif. Entering the Army Air Forces in November of 1941, Sgt. Cook attended Airplane, Mechanics school at Sheppard Field, Texas, and received his aerial gunnery wings at Laredo, Texas in May, 1944. His mother, Mrs. James M. Cook; his wife, Mrs. Christine Cleveland Cook, and his young daughter all reside on Route 2, Union, Miss.
Arrives Overseas - Sgt. Malcolm E. Ferguson
Sgt. Malcolm E. Ferguson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Raleigh Ferguson of Union, Route 4, has arrived safely in England.
Serving in France - Pfc. Joe W. Johnson
Pfc. Joe W. Johnson of Little Rock and Union, writes that he is doing fine after his safe arrival in France on D-Day. Pfc. Johnson is a graduate of Beulah Hubbard Vocational High School, and before being inducted into the Army in September 1942, was employed by McDonough Motor Express. He received his training in Chemical Warfare Service at Fort D. A. Russell, Texas and Camp Pickett, Va. He has been serving overseas for the past ten months and before going to France was stationed in England. Pfc. Johnson has three brothers serving their country: Sgt. Alvis C. Johnson, now stationed in England, M/Sgt. Edsel F. Johnson serving in Sardinia, and Pvt. Henry E. Johnson in Camp Blanding, Florida.
With Our Boys In Service - A Letter From Durwood Cleveland
Somewhere in France
July 24, 1944
While I am getting a few hours rest it just occurred to me to write you a letter to let you know just how far your paper circulates. I being one of the home town boys, like to read it to see what is taking place back there while the war is going on. I don't know whether you or the people back home know it or not, but the 79th Division has quite a few boys from Newton County in it. Ralph Luke and Clinton French are both over here with me. We don't know what kind of publicity our division is getting back there, but over here it is rated as the best. I thought you might like to know that we boys took part in the battle for Cherbourgh and we were the first Americans to enter the city. It was plenty tough, but we moved those Germans out in a hurry. We boys over here are feeling pretty good over the situation, because we know that the Germans can't last much longer, because they haven't got the supplies and war material and they are also short on men. All the Germans that we capture are either old men or young boys. I am anxious to get my next Union Appeal to see the news from home. You don't have any idea as to how much it helps a soldier on the front to get his home town paper and read it. Mr. Stribling if you would like to, you may put this in your paper. it might help the people to know that all we boys want is the backing from the home front and we will finish this business up over here in a hurry. Yours truly, Durwood Cleveland, Hq. Bat 311 F. A. Bn. A.P.O. 79 % Postmaster, New York, N.Y.
Smith Promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel on November First - Lt.-Colonel Ernest M. Smith
Major Ernest M. Smith received a promotion effective on November 1 to Lieutenant-Colonel with the U. S. Army. He entered service in February 1941, after being called as a Reserve Officer, and had the rank of Captain at that time. During the last three years, he has served with Armored Command Organization (Tanks) at Ft. Benning, Ga., Camp Bowie, Texas, Deser Training Center, Indio, Calif., and at Ft. Knox, Ky. He graduated from the Command and General Staff School, Ft. Leavenworth, Kans., September, 1942, and from the Ordinance Motor Base Maintenance School, Stockton, Calif., in November 1942. He was promoted to the grade of Major in July 1942. Lieut. Col. Smith is commanding the 785th Tank Battalion at Fort Knox, Ky., which is a new battalion organized under his supervision. At the time he entered active service, he was serving his second term as superintendent of education of Newton county, which term his wife is completing in December of this year.
A Letter from California - Mr. & Mrs. V. L. Spivey, Vernon and Jo Ann
Sept. 14, 1943
Dear Mr. Stribling,
I am sending money for the paper and just wanted to say a few words. You just don't know how very much we people enjoy the paper from Union and I would like to say after my family and my sister and brother-in-law Mr. and Mrs. Owen McDill read it, we then send it back to my brother, Arthur Horton, who lives at McCelland, Arkansas sometimes. Thelma's sister-in-law Ann McDill, whose home is at Conehatta but now lives at Long Beach, also reads it before we send it to Arkansas. I always meet the postman on Thursday morning, as that is when we usually get it, and always read it before doing another thing. I just wanted you to know how very much we do enjoy it. Do wish it was possible that all old people could come and live in California. This is sure a beautiful country. We live thirty-five miles from Los Angeles, ninety miles from San Diego, and twenty miles from Long Beach. Long Beach is a beautiful place. We were down to hear Dr. Fuller. He celebrated his 18 anniversary on the air this month. He is a wonderful man. We always listen to his broadcasts. If you people back there have never heard him, wish you would sometimes. There were so many boys there in different uniforms and so many that should go. There were two thousand and five hundred people there at the municipal auditorium on the 5th of this month. I have enjoyed having some of the boys in camp from Union and Winona and some of my Mothers' Mrs. Horton's nephews from Texas, that were stationed here in California. I always have friend chicken and hot biscuits for them. My brother Jim Horton, has just recently moved out here. His boy, James, is stationed at San Pedro, about thirty miles from here. He is in the Navy and we sure enjoy his visits. He was on the Union football team last year. My mother writes often about the there. The people are so different out here. There are so many people from back East, but you see very few from Mississippi. They say that most of them are "Okies" and "Arkies." If you print this, I would like to say hello to all my friends in and around Union. Hope it won't be very long before I can enjoy a good visit there. My husband, Spivey, as they call him, is working at Inglewood, just out from Los Angeles. He is helping to build B-25's. The boys drive to and from work each day, which is 80 miles a day and 10 hours a day, so they are sure working to help win this war, which we hope will soon be over. Thanking you for the space and hope to continue to receive the paper. Yours very truly, Mr. and Mrs. V. L. Spivey, Vernon and Jo Ann.
Qualifies as Sharpshooter - J. Gordon MM 2/c
J. Gordon MM 2/c, son of the late O. J. Gordon of Little Rock, received the following from his commanding officer:
From: Officer in charge 14th Super-Construction Battalion
To: Gordon, J. MM 2/c
Subject: small weapons proficiency in
1. Our Battalion range records indicate that you have qualified as Sharpshooter with 30 caliber Carbine.
2. Allow me to extend the appreciation of the Officers and men of the 14th Super Construction Battalion for your part in breaking the Camp Peary, Va., range record for the highest Battalion score for 30 Caliber Carbines.
Guy S. Keepers Lt.-GEC-USNR
Somewhere in England - Pvt. Jack Thomas Cooper
Mr. and Mrs. Tom Cooper of Union, Route 2, have received news that their son, Pvt. Jack Thomas Cooper, has arrived safely in England. He has been in the Army since July 1943, having received his basic training in Camp Haan, California, then transferred to Camp Robinson, Ark. Before entering the Army he was a student of Union High School.
Union Boy Wounded in France - Pfc. W. L. Johnson
Word has been received here that Pfc. W. L. Johnson, a machine gunner, has been wounded while in action somewhere in France. He has been transferred to England and is convalescing nicely. "Three cheers," he says, "for the doctors and nurses. They are so good to us boys." The youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. I. S. Johnson, he was inducted at Camp Shelby September 10, 1942 and received his basic training at Camp Walters, Texas. There he qualified as an expert with the machine gun, rifle, bayonet, pistol and carbine. He was well trained for battle, as are all of Uncle Sam's boys, having been on war maneuvers in the Tennessee hills. Pfc. Johnson spent Christmas with his family, and on Christmas eve he married Miss Evelyn Smith, who with his family, is anxiously awaiting his return. In January of 1944, he sailed to England, hence he crossed the Channel to fight for his country and the liberation of France. Those desiring his new address may contact either his wife or parents.
Cpl. Wilson C. Calvert
The following "V" Mail letter from Cpl. Wilson C. Calvert to his parents Dr. and Mrs. W. C. Calvert and dated June 13, 1944:
Death Mother and Dad:
I will write you at this, my earliest opportunity, so you won't be worrying about me. I came into France with the invading forces in the third wave, and we're still here and well dug in. However I think I will starve to death as we live in slit trenches and eat out of a small box what is called "K" ration. They're the most horrible approach at food I've ever seen. The crackers taste like cement, and the powdered drink tastes like formaldehyde. I am glad that I was among the first troops in this invasion and I'm damned glad I didn't get hurt. Many of those who went before us died, but they were the ones that hit the beach first. I will write again as soon as possible. I haven't seen a newspaper in eight days, so I don't know how the war is coming. Love, Wilson
Pfc. Thurman E. Sharp
Pfc. Thurman E. Sharp of Fort Benning, Ga. has just returned back to camp after spending a few days with his wife and homefolks here. Pfc. Thurman E. Sharp of Ft. Benning, Ga., spent last week end with his wife and homefolks in and around Union.
Pfc. Onree Heflin
Pfc. Onree Heflin, who is stationed at Camp Forrest, Tenn., is at home on a short furlough visiting his wife and other relatives in and around Union this week.
Pvt. Willie B. Smith
Pvt. Willie B. Smith, who is stationed at Camp Roberts, California, came in this morning to spend a few days with his wife and small baby.
My Home - George Roaten, M.M. 3/c
Composed by George Roaten, M.M. 3/x, of the U. S. Navy, Port Hueneme, Calif., to his wife Mrs. Frances Roaten of Union, Miss.
"This is Gods day He lent to me
As I sail out on the sea.
As I sail from day to day
May God keep me all the way.
As I sail across the blue
I pray to God to keep me true,
If I go and do my best
May God watch over my little nest.
And as I fight and its all through
I hope again to cross the blue,
And back at home I hope to roam
I pray to God they're all at home.
My home I love with all my heart
I've loved them all right from the start,
As I go my poor heart yearns
God keep them safe until I return.
This is from George who loves them all
God bless Frances, Gordon and Paul,
Not only Frances, Gordon and Paul
My prayers to God is bless them all.
As I go to do my part
Frances, this comes right from my heart,
To you I'm trying to be so true
No one will know how I love you.
Arrives Overseas - Sgt. Alvis C. Johnson
Sgt. Alvis C. Johnson is now stationed Somewhere in England, according to word received by his wife, Mrs. Johnson. Sgt. Johnson was inducted Sept. 10, 1843 at Camp Shelby, Mississippi, and received his basic training at Camp Lee, Va. he was sent from Camp Lee to Westchester, Pa., where he received a 6 weeks course in Army Postal School, upon completion of which he was promoted to Corporal. He was then sent to Camp Blanding, Fla., and after one month was promoted to Sergeant. Sgt. Johnson has three brothers in the Army, with two of them overseas.
Pictured Right: Robert Mills, US Army 325 AAA S/L Bn Hq Battery WWII
In Service Overseas - Cpl. John Neff Wilson
Cpl. John Neff Wilson, son of Mr. J. G. Wilson of Little Rock, Miss., who is serving with Uncle Sam's Army Air Corps, somewhere in England. Cpl. Wilson is a brother of Mrs. Clois Smith and Mrs. Lonnie Cleveland of Union.
Ross A. Buckley Died in the Pacific By Accidental Drowning
After first receiving a telegram, Mr. and Mrs. E. V. Buckley received the following letter from the War Department, confirming the death of their son, which gives all the known facts pertaining to his death:
21 October 1943
Mr. And Mrs. Evanda V. Buckley,
"Dear Mr. And Mrs. Buckley:
It is with deep regret that I am writing to confirm the recent telegram informing you of the death of your son, Private First Class Ross A. Buckley, 34,615,411, Corps of Engineers in the Pacific Area. Unfortunately no details are known at this time other than the information contained in the official report from the Commanding General of that area, which stated only that your son died on 16 October 1943 as a result of accidental drowning. Reports of this nature rendered by the commanding generals in the field are of necessity brief due to the conditions under which they are prepared and the limited means available for their transmission. However, I assure you that should additional information be received regarding the circumstances surrounding his death, you will be advised promptly. I sincerely regret that this message must carry so much sorrow into your home. May the knowledge that he served bravely in defense of his country, at the time of our gravest crisis, be a source of sustaining comfort to you. My deepest sympathy is extended to you in your bereavement. Sincerely yours, J. A. ULIO, Major General, "The Adjutant General"
Ross A. Buckley was born at McDonald, Miss., on November 4th, 1920. He moved with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. E. V. Buckley, to Union in 1920 and lived in Union all his life, except for four years in Decatur during which time his father was sheriff of Newton County. He was a member of the graduating class of 1940-41, Union High School. In 1942 he completed a special course in aviation school in Nashville, Tennessee, after which he worked in the Glenn Martin Airplane factory in Baltimore, Maryland from April, 1942 to January 1943. He entered the Engineers Corps of the United States Army on January 7th, 1943, and due to his efficiency and special training, was soon sent overseas. He had served in various departments of the army since entering the service. He was married to Miss Margine Smith, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. C. B. Smith, of Decatur. Besides his wife he is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. E. V. Buckley and one sister, Miss Elouise Buckley, of Union. He was a member of Henry Clay Lodge No. 485, F. & A. M. Ross was a young man of sterling qualities and pleasant disposition and was held in high esteem by all who knew him. He will be greatly missed by his many friends and acquaintances. The Appeal extends its sympathy to the bereaved.
Guest of Germans Was Fun At The End - Union, Mississippi Lad Lost Seventy Pounds as Prisoner
(From Jackson Clarion-Ledger)
The memory of German Army officers just before V-E Day "chasing around like American hotel bellhops" to see that their starved prisoners of war had plenty to eat is one of the few experiences as a guest of the Germans which liberated Sgt. Charles M. Freeburg, of Union, son of Mrs. Mae Freeburgh, of Philadelphia, enjoys recalling. Sgt. Freeburgh, a top-turret gunner of the Army Air Forces, who lost 70 pounds during his internment by the Germans, and who is now being treated at Foster General Hospital for malnutrition, was liberated by 82nd American Airborne Infantrymen just six days before V-E Day. On his second bombing mission over Germany the latter part of February, his B-24 Liberator was forced out of formation, and hit while flying over Gothe. The crew had to bail out. Then began for him nightmare days as a prisoner of the Jerries. Once for seven days he was put in solitary confinement with only a thin slice of bread and a pint of drinking water daily as his diet. Once he was placed in chains. The Germans starved him until this Mississippian, who towers over six feet, weighed only 90 pounds. After he was captured and taken to a Nazi prison camp near Gotha, a major questioned him about the bombing capacity and mechanical construction of the B-24, and his headquarters base, about the number of planes there. "Because I wouldn't talk", related Sgt. Freeburg, "I was placed in solitary confinement for seven days." From Gotha he was transported with 5,000 prisoners to Silenmonde, Germany on a tanker which had a capacity of only 500. "On that three-day trip," he said, "we had no food and very little water. When we were taken off the tanker, because the Allied drives were so effective, they put us in chains, probably fearing we would escape: They crowded us into trains and headed us for Keifhude's Luft-Stapplager 4 (air internment camp 4). When we changed trains on the trip, we were forced to double time. The penalty for breaking formation was being bayoneted. "The Russian crossing of the Elbe had become serious," he continued, "So we were moved again. The Jerries made 7.000 of us hike 900 kilometers to Nuemberg. There it was the same story. We had to push on because the Allies were near. By this time there were only 500 men continuing the hike. I fell out on March 20, and went to a Nazi hospital near the village Grobow. Rations there consisted of two loaves of bread and 20 pounds of potatoes for every 20 men a day. After 10 days they put me on a work detail at Lublow. The motto of the place was "Work or get beaten." Finally I couldn't take it any longer, and went on sick call. I was transferred to an Infirmary. "Then all American prisoners were to be transferred to Stammlager 2-E" he continued, "but again, due to Allied pressure, we didn't make it. We ended our trip at Cono village. I suffered a relapse on the 25-kilometer trip, and was carried in." He added with a chuckle, "It was at this camp while the Allied campaign was really getting hot that the German officers-majors and all-suddenly couldn't do enough for the American prisoners, chased around to make sure we had plates full of food, and kept asking us where the American armies were, and why didn't they hurry up and get there. They were scared the Russians would reach them first." On May 2, just six days before V-E Day, American troops liberated Sgt. Freeburgh and his fellow prisoners.
Father & Daughter - Denver L. Rigdon
Denver L. Rigdon, Seaman First Class, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. M. Rigdon of Duffee, Miss., was inducted in the United State Navy on June 1943. He took his boot training at Naval Training Station at Great Lakes, Illinois. From this station he was sent to the Naval Air Station, Quonset Point, Rhode Island for a period of six months. Later he was transferred to Shoemaker, California for a period of two weeks further assignment to amphibious training somewhere in the Pacific. On M?? the 24, 1944 he joined the L.S.T. on which he entered the invasion of Siapan, then the invasion of Pal???, later the invasion of Iwo Jima. May the 13, 1945 he landed in San Pedro, California. There he received a 40 day leave, which he spent with his mother, father, family, friends and his sixteen months old baby, who he had never seen until this date, Milford Denver Rigdon. The following is a letter which he wrote to his father and mother:
June 29, 1944
Dearest Mother and all:
I have just told Doris in her letter that I couldn't write to you all, but it looks as if I will try to drop a few lines anyway. I am still safe and sound, best of all. It is hard not to get to write to your parents, no matter if you do have a wife to write to. There isn't anyone that has ever had as good and true a mother and dad as I have. There isn't many people who can say that they never heard their mother and father have a fuss or use curse words. I have told lots of guys if I could be the man my father is I would be ready for any battle that would come before anyone. Not that I can't take it, I am just saying that I believe that I have the truest and best mother and father in the country. I hope you both feel as good over reading it as I do over telling it to you, knowing that I am telling the truth. There isn't any one of the children who can truly say that they are sorry for having to go through a few hard times. They can't say their father and mother didn't do all they could to please them or keep them lacking of anything. Well it may be a long time before you hear from me again but just live in hopes because you will hear from me sooner or later. Love to all of my family. Denver L. Rigdon.
Sons of Mr. and Mrs. O. E. Cooksey, Union, Route Two
Otis Cooksey, S. 2/c entered the service July 9th, 1943. He received his training at Great Lakes, Ill., and after a short leave home he was assigned to the ship "Colorado" and is yet serving his country somewhere in the South Pacific. Pfc. Gleason Cooksey was inducted in the service Sept. 10, 1942. He took his training at Camp Shelby, Fort Benning and Camp Gordon, GA., before being sent overseas. He wrote the following letter home. Also sent the message of thanks to the American soldiers from the Czech people.
Germany, May 16, 1945
Dearest Mother and All"
Got your letter yesterday and was real glad to hear from you. How are all of you? For me, I'm doing just fine. Well, Mother, you have been wanting to know for a long time just where I am, and at last I can tell you. At the present I'm in Cham, Germany, so just look on the map and you can see right where I am. Have been here shortly after the war ended. We are acting as military government at the present time and I guess will until they get around to sending us home or to the South Pacific, one or the other. We were in Czechoslovakia when the war ended, and the people were so very nice to us. It made us feel so good after being in Germany so long and couldn't talk to the people there even if we wanted to. The Czech's gave us parties, dances and did everything they could to make us comfortable with what they had, and we all appreciated it very much. We regretted to leave there very much and return to Germany. I crossed the Rhine the day after the infantry crossed. I do not remember the exact date. We were with the 4th Armored Division until we crossed. After we crossed and went to the 11 Armored, well I could write all day about where we have been and what we have done. But to make a long story short, we were with the 4th, 5th, and 90th Divisions most all the way through. I am sending you a letter that they gave my Bn. As you will notice their English isn't so good. Well Mother, I must go now. Love always, Gleason.
Writes from Okinawa - Marzine Thrash
The following letter was written on Okinawa by Marzine Thrash, son of J. O. Thrash of Conehatta.
Sept. 9, 1945
I don't remember whether or not I've written since the censoring was lifted, but I have a few minutes tonight, so I will say hello and hope everyone is well. I'm fine and in good health, but Okinawa is certainly getting on my nerves. We don't do very much these days and no one seems to know what we are going to do. There are rumors around that we are going to China, but I don't think I will go, since I have so much time overseas, even if this out does go. I hope to be leaving here pretty soon for Guam then maybe to the States but I might even end up going to China, but I hope not. Papa, Okinawa isn't much of an island as far as size concerns, however it's pretty large and has some pretty good land. But no land is worth the blood that was given for it. As you already know, it was a bloody fight and the people you had to fight, it looks a shame. These people here live like hogs back there, very poor they are and so dirty. Since I had some close calls but always made it. Papa, the night we got the word that the war was over, there was something very bad happened here. Someone got the bright idea that they should celebrate by opening up with their guns. So a few guys started shooting and the word got around and everything got out of control. The sky was completely full of shells bursting and the result was 17 men lost their lives and over a hundred wounded. Before I came here I was down on one of the Marshall Islands. The name however we only had one very bad of it was Rio. I almost got it there, raid. The people on those islands were very friendly to us. But the Navy killed most every one on the island shelling them. So there was not too much ground fighting to it. Well, I think I can be safe in saying I've been more than lucky in this terrible war and I shall be and am very thankful to our Maker for everything. Well, I think I have written enough for tonight, so Bye to all. Love to all, Marzine.
In Loving Memory
Ross A. Buckley
Who Died One Year Ago.
A happy home we once enjoyed,
How sweet the memory still
But death has left a loneliness
The world can never fill.
No one knows how much we miss you
No one knows the bitter pain
We have suffered since we lost you
Life has never been the same
In our hearts your memory lingers
Sweetly, fondly and true,
There is not a day that passes
That we don't think of you.
Mr. & Mrs. E. V. Buckley and Eloise
Loses Life - Lt. Laverne D. Thames
Mrs. Doris Wesson Thames, who resides at 1514 20th Avenue, Meridian, Miss., has been officially notified of the death of her husband, First Lt. LaVerne D. Thames, a native of Duffee, who died serving his country as a liaison pilot in the U. S. Army Air Corps. He was killed on June 26 in an airplane crash while on an orientation flight over Luzon island, in the Philippines. Below follows excepts from a letter, giving details of the tragedy: "Lt. Thames and a friend left the camp for a visit to Manila and the airport. Plans were being made to drop supplies to some isolated troops up front and in order to observe the terrin and the air-drop procedure, the two went on the mission. "By next afternoon they had not returned and it was then that Colonel Bedinger, Lt. Thames' commanding officer, learned from airport officials that the plane was known to have crashed and the men reported missing. In order to get all details, Colonel Bedinger contacted another AAF officer, an eyewitness to the crash. "It seems that in coming over the drop-area, all the planes were flying very low, one plane in particular. Supplies were dropped in a valley and was necessary that altitude be regained as quickly as possible. However, this particular plane--a C-47--tried to regain altitude too rapidly. Pulled back on the stick, the plane's tail struck the ground and all the men aboard were killed instantly." Lt. Thames, who died at the age of ?? years, entered the service in November of 1940 as a member of the Mississippi National Guard unit, the 114th Field Artillery from Decatur, where he was a student at East Central Junior College. He was stationed at Camp Blanding, Fla.; Camps Bowie and Barkley, Texas; and Camp Gruber Okla. before entering Officers Candidate School (Field Artillery) at Fort Sill, Okla., in May, 1943. Receiving his commission the following August, he was sent to Pittsburg, Kans., for flight training and after receiving his wings, reported to Fort Sill for advanced instruction. On completion of the course, he served varying periods at Camp Livingston, La.; Camp Gruber, Okla., and Camp Bowie, Texas, before sailing for the Pacific theater last May 29. The officer is survived by his widow and two small daughters, Judith Anne, aged two years, and LaVerne four weeks old; his parents, Mr. and Mrs. T. T. Thames, of Duffee; one sister, Mrs. W. I. Munn, Monroe, La., and numerous other relatives. A memorial service will be held for Lt. Thames on Sunday, August 26, at Mt. Nebo Baptist church. The service will begin at 3 o'clock in the afternoon.
Killed on Guam - Lionell Brown
Lionell Brown was accidentally killed February 15, 1946, on the island of Guam. He was 22 years old. He enlisted in the Navy August 14, 1942 and served in the Pacific. The following is a letter received by his father, L. M. Brown, from the Chaplain, telling how he was killed:
Navy Receiving Station
Guam, M. I.
Feb. 26, 1946
Dear Mr. Brown,
It is with great sorrow that we had to inform you of the tragic death of your attractive son. The accident was the more tragic because he was killed by one of his best friends. The investigation disclosed the following facts, which I will give you in brief. Your son was sitting talking to three of his friends in the bed room of the Guard House at the Staging Center (to which he was attached) on the evening of February 15. One of the guards came off watch earlier in the evening and took the ammunition clip out of his Carbine. Then instead of placing the empty gun in the Office of the Guard House according to regulations, he absent mindly placed it on the bed of your son's friend–Ferguson. When Ferguson went to remove the gun from the bed and return it to the office, the bed clothes must have caught in the trigger, since he handled the gun near the muzzle. It immediately went off and killed your boy almost instantly. He never regained consciousness. It was discovered that the careless guard had removed a full clip of ammunition and the gun had been inspected earlier by the Security Officer himself and that the barrel was found to be empty. How the bullet ever got into the barrel remains a mystery' however there was no intention of foul play. On the contrary your son was so well liked by everyone at the staging Center that almost three-hundred officers and sailors attended the funeral and went twenty-five miles to pay their last respects at the grave. I was in charge of the funeral party myself and Chaplain Wayman read a beautiful service. Seven ladies of the American Red Cross were present and sent by his friends. He was buried with full military honors, as was befitting this young hero of so many actions in the Pacific. I am still pretty upset about the matter myself. If there are any questions you have in mind, please do not hesitate to write me. I need not add that the poor boy who brought about this tragedy in a moment of mental aberration, has also a terrible lot to bear. So, in addition to his own grief, he now faces trial by General Court Martial. In closing, let me repeat that your boy's passing was a great loss to us. All of us join you and your family in deepest sympathy. Yours very sincerely, W. B. Shope
Breaks World Record on Production - Cpl. Thomas D. Hitt
An AAF Service Command station in England, announces that Cpl. Thomas D. Hitt, son of Mr. and Mrs. J. T. Hitt of Duffee, has won high commendation for helping to shatter world's production records in repairing life rafts, "Mae Wests" and de-icers. Last month, Cpl. Hitt and his fellow mechanics repaired the largest number of rubber life-saving devices recorded since the Air Service Command began operations in England. "A knock-out blow against Germany," was the way Brig. Gen. Isaac W. Ott, described the mechanics' work. "This extra effort helps make it possible to maintain a constant air cover over Allied armies rolling toward Germany." Formerly a farmer, Cpl. Hitt entered the Air Corps in July 1942. He was trained as a plane mechanic at Lincoln, Nebr., and Detroit, Mich.
From an Unknown Arkansas Newspaper
On Furlough. Cpl. Worrell Monroe Mills Jr. of the Army Engineers is home on furlough visiting his wife and parents, Mr. and Mrs. W. M. Mills of 820 East Eighteenth street. He is stationed at Camp Pickett, Va. He attended Morris High School, England, and was employed by Sears-Roebuck & Co., before enlisting in July 1943. He received basic training at Camp Claiborne, La., and received special training in the Diesel Mechanic's School at the Atlanta Ordnance Depot, Ga. His brother, Cpl. Robert Mills, is stationed in Hawaii with an anti-aircraft unit.