Monday, December 5, 2016

PVT George Anthony Somers

PVT George Anthony Somers was born 4 Jan 1921 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was the 3rd of 5 children born to Ralph and Ellen "Nellie" (Hagerty) Somers. A sister was still born in 1929 and his father left the family about the same time. Nellie moved her family to her parent's house at 5538 Market Street in Philadelphia. Interestingly, the family paid $50 a month rent for the home in 1930 but rent had fallen to $35 a month in 1940 due to the deflation connected to the Great Depression. By 1940 Nellie was working as a cashier and George was working as a newsboy at a newstand.

George was drafted in December 1942. He completed his basic military training and was sent to England in April 1943. Assigned to C Company 116th Infantry, PVT Somers participated in the training in amphibious operations to prepare for the liberation of France. He took part in the landing and was wounded on 6 Jun 1944. Evacuated to hospital and probably to England, PVT Somers suffered an attack of gastritis in September 1944 and was not returned to C Company via the replacement depot until 27 Oct 1944. Battlefield conditions took a toll on him and he was sent back to hospital with what was diagnosed as arthritis on 9 Nov 1944. He returned again to C Company on 3 Dec 1944. The regiment was fighting to clear the west bank of the Roer River and it was in that fighting that PVT Somers was struck by fragments from an artillery shell in his chest and foot. Despite being evacuated and receiving a transfusion he died of his wounds on 5 Dec 1944.

PVT Somers was repatriated aboard the USAT Lawrence Victory in August 1948 and re-interred in the Holy Cross Cemetery in Yeadon, Pennsylvania.

Brother, Joseph Vincent Somers, served as a TM2c in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Gantner (APD-42, a Buckley class destroyer escort) in the Atlantic Ocean.

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