Monday, April 24, 2017

PFC James L. Banchero

PFC James L. Banchero was born in 1925 in Napa, California the only child of Louis Jr. and Eunice (Pedrotti) Banchero.  His father worked at many jobs including running a tavern.

James was drafted in August 1944.  Sent overseas, he was transferred from the replacement depot to I Company 116th Infantry on 4 Mar 1945.  He was promoted to PFC on 16 Mar 1945.  PFC Banchero was wounded on 24 Apr 1945 and died of his wounds later that day.

We think that PFC Banchero was repatriated and is buried in Tulocay Cemetery in Napa, California. 

SSG Walter Boger

SSG Walter Boger was born in 1921 to Isaac and Sophia (Radke) Boger of Homestead, Kansas.  Isaac was a farmer who died in 1926.  The youngest of Isaac and Sophia's 5 children, by 1940 Walter was supporting his mother as a clerk in a grocery.

While we don't know at this time when Walter entered the service it appears that he was assigned to I Company 116th Infantry prior to the D-Day landings.  On 16 Oct 1944 he was promoted to SSG. From 18 to 27 Dec 1944 he was at the 29th Division Training Center.  Returned to I Company, he was killed in action 24 Apr 1945 in the vicinity of Grippel, Germany.

SSG Boger is buried the Netherlands American Cemetery

PFC Donald Albert Morton

PFC Donald Albert Morton was born 3 Aug 1924 in Burlington Junction, Missouri.  His parents, John Willard and Crystal Belle (Bartlett) Morton had 8 other children 2 of whom died in infancy, Donald was their second. While his father served as Saddler during WWI, his younger brothers were too young to serve during WWII but his brother Robert served in Korea. 

Donald entered service 5 May 1943 and was assigned to I Company 116th Infantry before D-Day or so it seems according to the morning reports as he isn't mentioned from 6 June until he was killed in action on 24 Apr 1945 near Grippel, Germany. He now rests forever in Ohio Cemetery, Burlington Junction, Missouri.

PFC Vincent F. Mazzaferri

courtesy of Des Philippet
PFC Vincent F. Mazzaferri was born 20 Mar 1923 in San Francisco, California to John and Frances (Ruggero) Mazzaferri.  Not much is known about this soldier or his family.

Vincent was apparently working as a carpenter's assistant or apprentice when he was drafted in late April 1943. We don't know much about his military assignments until he was transferred from the replacement depot to A Company 116th Infantry on 5 Mar 1945.  PFC Mazzaferri was killed in action on 24 Apr 1945.

PFC Mazzaferri is buried in the Netherlands American Cemetery.

PFC Charlie Ralph Gardner

PFC Charlie Ralph Gardner, b. 17 Jan 1924 - d. 24 Apr 1945. Son of the Reverend Robert Fulton and Mattie Esther (Warner) Gardner of Rockingham, North Carolina. Entering service in Jul 1943, Charlie was assigned to I Company 116th Infantry while the unit was in England and participated in the D-Day assault where he was first wounded. He returned to the unit on 24 Jul 1944 and then was injured (non-battle casualty) on 5 Aug 1944.  He came back to the unit after leaving the hospital on 5 Sep 1944.  Charlie went back to the hospital again a non battle casualty (illness perhaps) on 14 Nov 1944 and again returned to the unit on 11 Dec 1944.  He was at the 29th Division training center and back in the unit on 18 Mar 1945. He was killed in action on 24 Apr 1945.  PFC Gardner now rests in the Carolina Memorial Park, Concord, North Carolina.

PFC James Paul Ewing

PFC James Paul Ewing was born 4 Apr 1926 in Creighton, Missouri to James Upton and Ora Mae (Kepner) Ewing. The family of 7 supported themselves by farming.  Elder sister Elizabeth helped family income by teaching.

When James was drafted in August 1944 he had graduated from high school.  Completing his training he was sent overseas to replace soldiers who had been wounded or killed and was assigned to B Company 116th Infantry on 6 Mar 1945.  Wounded on 24 Apr 1945 and evacuated to hospital he died of wounds that same day. 

PFC Ewing was returned to the U.S. in 1949 and is now buried in Newton Burial Park in Nevada, Missouri. 

PFC Everett Eugene Evans

PFC Everett Eugene Evans was born 22 Jun 1924 in Carter County, Kentucky to Sam and Martha (Jones) Evans.

Entered service in September 1943 and after training was assigned to I Company 116th Infantry.  Likely participated in D-Day landings.  Wounded on 9 Oct he returned to the unit via the replacement depot on 6 Jan 1945.  Killed in action on 24 Apr 1945.

PFC Evans is buried in Bowen Chapel Cemetery in Olive Hill, Kentucky. 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

CPT Berthier Botts Hawks III

courtesy of Natalie Padgett
CPT Berthier Botts Hawks III was born 21 Nov 1919 in Elizabeth City County, Virginia (now the city of Hampton) to Berthier Botts and Fannie Prince (Lashley) Hawks.  His father managed a coal grading company, was a salesman of road machinery, and later at the family home place in Totaro in Brunswick county, a farmer. He died in 1943.  CPT Hawks' grandfather, the first Berthier Botts Hawks, was a disabled veteran of E Company 56th Virginia Infantry in the Civil War.

Berthier was enlisted 14 Jun 1938 and rose to the rank of CPL by 2 Feb 1941. He was commissioned a 2LT effective 3 Feb 1941 and was promoted to 1LT effective 25 Jul 1942.  On 2 Jun 1944 he was on duty as Commander, C Company 116th Infantry and so led the unit during the amphibious assault on Omaha beach on 6 Jun 1944, D-Day.  He was injured in action on 10 Jun 1944 and evacuated to the hospital.  He was dropped from rolls and did not return to the Regiment from the replacement depot until 9 Dec 1944 when he was assigned command of I Company 116th Infantry.  He led that unit until killed in action on 6 Apr 1945.  CPT Hawks was awarded the Bronze Star but we have yet to find for what action he received the award. 

CPT Hawks was repatriated and rests forever in the Emporia Cemetery in Emporia, Virginia. 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

PFC C. J. Galloway

PVT C. J. Galloway was born 7 Feb 1925, likely in Lonoke County, Arkansas.  After entering the army and being sent overseas he was transferred to Headquarters Company 2nd Battalion 116th Infantry on 4 Sep 1944.  On 2 Oct 1944 he was transferred to A Company 116th Infantry.  PVT Galloway was killed in action on 5 Apr 1945.

PVT Galloway was repatriated and is buried in Butlerville Cemetery in Butlerville, Arkansas.

PFC Reese Philip Black

PFC Reese Philip Black was born 21 Oct 1912 to Charles Wilbur and Elizabeth (Evans) Black of Bordentown, New Jersey.  His father worked in a veneer mill and a steel mill.  Reese was a machinist. He married Marian A. Marlin and they had one son. 

Drafted in August 1943, after his training he was sent overseas.  We don't know when he was assigned to B Company 116th Infantry. The first mention in the morning report is 1 Nov 1944 where it is noted that he has an "old injury".  On 17 Nov 1944 he went to hospital for treatment of that injury.  On 29 Nov 1944 he returned to duty with B Company. He was promoted to PFC on 16 Mar 1944. PFC Reese was killed in action of 5 Apr 1945. 

PFC Black is buried in Our Lady of Lourdes Cemetery in Trenton, New Jersey.  Marian apparently remarried and had other children. 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

2LT Oliver Earl Mayo

courtesy of Des Philippet
2LT Oliver Earl Mayo was born in 1921 in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  He was the 2nd of 8 children born to William Clarence and Leana Lois (Martin) Mayo. His father worked as a miller in a cement factory and a moulder in a stove factory. Oliver attended 4 years of high school and began work as a typesetter.

Oliver volunteered for Army service in August 1942. After enlistment he would have gone through basic training and Officer Candidate School before he was sent to the European theater of operations.  2LT Mayo was first assigned to F Company 116th Infantry from the replacement depot. Serving as a rifle platoon leader, he was wounded just 5 days later and evacuated to hospital on 19 Jun 1944. It probably took a while to recover as he was returned to the regiment from the replacement depot, this time assigned to E Company 116th Infantry on 18 Oct 1944. On 30 Oct 1944 he was moved from a platoon leader position to serve as the company executive officer. 2LT Mayo was wounded again on 23 Nov 1944 and again evacuated. He was returned to E Company on 30 Mar 1945 to serve as a platoon leader but on 2 Apr 1945 was reassigned to C Company 116th Infantry to fill a platoon leader vacancy in that unit. 2LT Mayo was killed in action on 4 Apr 1945.

2LT Mayo rests forever in the Netherlands American Cemetery

3 brothers served as well.  William Wade Mayo attained the rank of MSG.  Ivan V Mayo served as a SSG in the Army Air Corps. Andrew Jackson Mayo served as a SRCPO in the U.S. Navy. His father served in the Navy in WWI.

PVT Albert J. Genova

courtesy of Des Philippet
PVT Albert J. Genova was born in 1922 in Ohio.  Albert's mother's name was Anna, she had remarried by 1946 but we do not know what became of his father.  In February 1941, Albert was a PVT in a National Guard field artillery unit in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and was mobilized with that unit. 

T5 Genova was transferred from the 227th Field Artillery Battalion to Medical Detachment 116th Infantry on 1 Aug 1944.  From 8 Jan 1944 to 14 Jan 1944 he was on temporary duty at the 29th Division Training Center.  On 19 Mar 1945 he was reduced in rank to PVT but we don't know why.  PVT Genova was killed in action on 4 Apr 1944.

PVT Genova is buried in the Netherlands American Cemetery.  Albert was awarded the Bronze Star but we do not know the circumstances.

PFC Wilbur Daniel Copeland

PFC Wilbur Daniel Copeland, b. 29 Sep 1924 - d. 4 Apr 1945. Son of Jack and Alene (Outlaw) Copeland of Bethune, South Carolina, married Bessie Lee Corbett. Assigned to C Company 116th Infantry. He is buried in the Quaker Cemetery in Camden, South Carolina.