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Veterans Day

LRK - Desert Center - 1942

LRK ~ Desert Center, California ~ June 1942 ~ 161st Signal Photo Co.

My father (1910-1997) served in the U.S. Army from January 1942 through January 1946. As a Captain at Desert Center, California, first under General George S. Patton, Jr., then under General Alvan C. Gillem, Jr., he was a test officer on the armored force board and desert warfare board.

As Major, Armor, in the U.S. Army XIII Corps under General Gillem, he served as operations and training staff officer and assistant G-3 in a Corps headquarters. In 180 days, beginning in Hoensbroek, Holland, in November 1944, the XIII Corps, defending the flank of the Ninth Army, pierced the Siegfried Line, reaching the Elbe River in April, 1945, a push of more than 300 miles.

He was awarded the Bronze Star medal for “distinguishing himself by meritorious service in connection with military operations against the enemy in Holland and Germany from 8 November 1944 to 7 May 1945.”

For the many remaining decades of his life, he maintained contact with a number of his Army buddies and spoke warmly and with good humor of the shenanigans and personalities of those times. But, even under pointed questioning, he refused to speak of any other aspect of his military service.

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