DIABLO Voice Of The Family And Friends Of The 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment Association- February 2007- Vol. 2, Nr. 1
Friends and Family Reunion Set For Birmingham
New Association’s First Regimental-Wide Gathering
From The Jumpmaster From The Crewmember further exposed them to open fire.
By Dick O’Donnell By Leland Burns - editor Making matters worse the German fire
had the American outpost on edge and
The 508th web site continues to be a I continue to meet new wonderful they started firing in that direction at
popular Internet “LZ” for numerous people with ties to the 508th. And now I anything that moved. Even a “run for
people within the U.S. and in various have three more favorites on my ever- it” approach was out of the question.
European nations as well. You may have growing list of airborne heroes. The Holding tight to the current
noted that the visitation counter has saga of 1st Lt. Roy Murray‟s team came position wasn‟t an option either. By
increased by more than 10,000 since our to my light recently when I was able to now German and American riflemen
reunion meeting last October. meet his daughter Pam in Augusta this were firing at each other and the plasma
We are frequently the recipient of e- past fall. team was in the middle. They started to
mail from people seeking additional D-day+2 on Hill 30 Colonel withdraw on the run and while looking
information about the 508th and its men. Shanley was in dire need for blood for some opening somewhere.
It is our privilege to assist them in plasma. Captain Adams of the 1st Lieutenant Roy Murray was shot dead.
whatever manner that we can. Most Battalion with 50 to 70 men, holding Seconds later Frank Circelli was hit
gratifying is the increasing occasion of ground south of the hill and boxed in several times in the arm and then took
contacts by family members previously near the river, had 12 units. devastating shots into his lower jaw and
unknown to us. As a result, our newsletter There were several guys who neck. He and James Green both
distribution list has swelled to more than volunteered but Captain Adams reached the river but had become
1,300 individuals. selected Roy Murray of the 3rd Battalion separated.
An enclosure to this newsletter details to lead the team. Two men were chosen Green was seen by a German and
the Association‟s first annual Reunion that to go with him. They were Corporal had a potato masher tossed at him. It
will be held in Birmingham, Alabama in James Green, also from the 3rd, and exploded in the water beside him and
August 2007. We hope that you will take PFC Frank Circelli of 1st Battalion. knocked him into a concussion. Dazed
advantage of this event to meet with At dark the three volunteers had and no longer able to realize his
veterans, families and friends of the 508th. the plasma strapped down and headed whereabouts he managed to move out
We are already thinking about future off through a flooded area. Slipping past of the river and into a thicket. It took
reunions. Rock Merritt has agreed to be the first Germans was easy (by several days to recover his senses.
the host for our 2008 reunion that will be comparison) and the team of three Circelli managed to find his way
held at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Stay made progress by moving up through back to Captain Adams and, although
tuned for the specifics at a later date. We the flood waters. Then when trying to talking was difficult, shared that his
have also nailed down a spot in the Sun leave the river and move into the lieutenant had been killed. Ken “Rock”
City Fiesta to be held in El Paso, Texas in orchard around Hill 30 they came under Merritt recalls that Circelli looked like
July 2009. heavy enemy fire. They withdrew with walking death. A few days later Circelli
thoughts of moving left and trying was surprising more than a few by
again. Jerries however must have seen staying alive. Rock Merritt went to see
Diablo Editor them reenter the swampy area and him and Circelli asked, “When the hell
336 S. Pearson Lane moved in. are we getting out of here?”
Keller, TX 76034 Moving forward again they found a Rock wanted to offer his friend
Phone: (817) 337-7492 small hole and managed to get close some encouraging words and looked
E-mail: Editor@508PIR.org enough to see an American outpost on away to think of some. He saw it just as
Hill 30. Progress from there however he heard it. In the distance an American
was impeded. Attempts to move up tank came up the road bearing the
DIABLO FEBRUARY 2007 PAGE - 2 -
markings of the Texas-Oklahoma They presented me with a photo of announcement of our appointment as
Division. “The Human Liberty Bell” - 25000 Eisenhower‟s‟ Honor Guard was made.
“Right now Frank, we‟re getting officers and men at Camp Dix, New Some of us who were eligible to return
out now.” Jersey. by the end of ‟45 were transferred to the
They were dressed as soldiers in the 101st, which was to return, possibly for the
MAIL BOX uniform of 1918. The gift was from the Victory Parade. As we know the plans
soldiers and civilians of Fort Dix. changed and we were reassigned to the
Dick, Tom Porcella 82nd (the 504), to return and participate in
Could you please add these updates Thomasmlb@aol.com the New York parade. What a reception,
about Wollaton Park to the DIABLO? (Editors note: Liz Farrell forwarded some the cab drivers wouldn‟t take our money!
I had a meeting with the Wollaton photos around of Tom Porcella being honored As I said at the start, I was a late
Park management team on January 7, at Fort Dix. This letter to Ellen Peters was an comer, and being assigned to the motor
explanation of the photos.) pool didn‟t get to know and be close to a
2007. I have now handed over half of
my collection with the other half to lot of the guys, but obviously I‟m proud to
follow on Easter. Wollaton Park was Jumpmaster 508 PIR have been, and be a part of the 508 family.
extremely excited and grateful. They I am most grateful for you continuing Thanks for the memories.
expressed thanks to the 508th P.I.R. for to maintain the Diablo publication. I was a Marv Silver
their kindly contributions. latecomer to the 508, joining in England Service Co., 508 PIR
I would like to thank the following just before the Holland jump. In fact the Sept. ‟44 to Jan. „46
people for their inspiration in helping day we were to start jumping we instead 1742 Ridge Point Loop
me to re-develop the 508th Museum at watched the C47‟s fly to Holland. I finally Santa Fe, NM 87506
Wollaton Park: Walter & Gloria Barrett, caught up with the regiment in Belgium Phone # 505-820-9949
Tom & Molly Porcella, Ellen Peters, when the Nottingham base camp was Fax # 505-988-7330
Dave & Sharon Pike. closed and everyone went to the Bulge.
My good friend Jimmy Wynne will As I read some of the recollections in Dear Sir!!!
be staying with Linda and me for 2 the Aug. issue I thought I could supply a I was away from home for a week
weeks in June. Hopefully he will be the few dates and events. We arrived back at and found the November Diablo
first WWII Paratrooper to see the Sisson from Belgium the end of Feb. ‟45. I Newsletter in my computer!! I
museum‟s new look. was in the Service Co. Motor Pool, and appreciate your consideration greatly
Once again – thanks – and I hope to was assigned to drive for Major Medusky. and thank you for your kind intention
see each of you soon. The tragic training jump, which I didn‟t sending it to me! I am sorry I was
Graham Lawson make as I had just finished jump school in unable to make the Augusta reunion but
Sept, was in March while we were in will try to make it next year!!! It was an
Ellen, Sisson. A plane lost an engine (or prop.) honor and a big privilege to escort Pam
Colonel MacNeil invited me to be and nosed down through the stick that Murray on her father's footsteps in
the guest of honor at Fort Dix, New had just jumped from the plane in front. I Normandy and to meet my close pal
Jersey. They have this dinner once a don‟t know if Marlene Dietrich was Ernie and Charlene Lamson in St Paul
year for non-commissioned officers and watching that jump, I do know she was last month. Proud to be part of the 508
high ranking officers. They drink a toast there about that time, I have a picture of family, the very best to you from
to all the wars we were in. At the head she and her friend standing with me in the Normandy.
table were full colonels and generals and chow line, and she did stay for lunch with Bobby
little ol‟ me – a private. To me it was an us. Bobby.firstname.lastname@example.org
honor to be there. On April 4th we went to the Airports for
the proposed jump on the POW time was
Col. MacNeil arranged the para-
on May 7th. One of my duties as Maj. Incorporation Info
drop in Normandy every year. His first
trip to Normandy was in 1984. I have Meduskys‟ driver was to pick up the daily The “Family and Friends of The 508th
been visiting Normandy since 1969 and regimental messages from the teletype PIR Association” is incorporated as a
along the way I met the colonel. Every office at the airport headquarters. On May 501(c)7 corporation in the Common-
year in Normandy the colonel wanted 7th the men I was friendly with at the wealth of Massachusetts.
me to speak to the troops about the office showed me a copy of the official William Mone, Attorney
battle of Normandy. They have an message announcing the signing in Rheims Ropes & Gray, LLC.
enormous amount of respect for of the German surrender at 02:41. I
Normandy vets. Some times I feel like returned to our camp and told everyone
the news. THE WAR WAS OVER, AND Newsletter Distribution
I‟m on “show and tell”. The young
troopers are in awe to meet a NO ONE BELIEVED ME! It was while All Family and Friends on file
Normandy vet. we were still in Chartres that the receive the newsletter regardless of
membership status. Postage for each
DIABLO FEBRUARY 2007 PAGE - 3 -
quarterly newsletter edition is Robinson action and suffered body and mental
approximately $500 and that doesn‟t Philip "Robbie" Robinson would like it to injuries. Back then, we just did not care
include the cost of printing the items to be reported that his wife passed away on for our men with such disorders.
be mailed. The subscription is free, but 02/07/99. She was from Heidelberg, I am now trying to find out anything I
membership or donations are welcome. Germany. The two were married 45 years. can to restore his dignity and to tell the
Use of e-mail is an effective cost true story to the remaining family
cutting mechanism. The newsletter can members. The only thing I have is his V-
be attached in either Microsoft‟s Word Searching For … Mails (4). I've looked on the 508th site but
or Adobe‟s PDF formats – or both. Sgt Jack M Chambers never found a picture or name. Do you
If you prefer to receive The Diablo Dear Sirs, have any suggestions on how to proceed
via e-mail please drop a line to My wife was a cousin to Sgt. Jack M. with this research?
jumpmaster@508PIR.org. Chambers, 508 Parachute INF, 82 Honor and Respect, Britt Mitchell
Hard copies will continue to be Airborne Division, WW II, born 28 May email@example.com
delivered to physical addresses as long 1922 WV, d. 5 July 1944. Buried: Rece
as they remain active. If you are reading Cemetery, Milton, WV. Does anyone Pvt. Raul L. Ortega
this by way of email – Thank you. know how he died? Hello, my great-uncle was Pvt. Raul L.
Ortega, Co. E, 508th PIR, killed in action
Thank you, during Market Garden near Bemmel,
Condolences Prentice D. Eubanks Holland on 11/8/44. Raul was a
email; firstname.lastname@example.org replacement after D-Day, joining the
Longiotti, Leona 508th in England. I'm asking if anyone
Leona, formerly of Meadville, PA., Steve Mauro knew my uncle, it would be very
wife of Frank Longiotti, Co. C, died Trying to find any information on my appreciated that you contact us at
December 3rd 2006. uncle, Steve Mauro, from Rochester, NY email@example.com. Thank you very much.
who was in the 508 in WW II. I know he
received a Silver Star in Normandy and Joe Aguirre
was involved in Market Garden where he firstname.lastname@example.org
briefly spoke with his brother (my father)
over a field phone. My father, Lt. Carl Tony Pacheco
Mauro, was in Co. E, 504. I hope to learn (Letter from Canon City Colorado.)
which company of the 508th he was in so I I would like to hear from anyone in E Co.
can obtain after-action reports who knew Tony Pacheco. Tony jumped in
Normandy and Holland and was wounded
From: Carl Mauro Jr. in the Bulge.
PFC Troy Mitchell email@example.com
Dear Mr. O‟Donnell,
Born May 1, 1925, in Blair, Ohio, I am the nephew of Troy Mitchell, 2nd LT William S. Scudder
she was a daughter of Carl Horn and 508th Par. Unfortunately I have very little Dear Sirs:
Mabel Bussard Horn. On July 2, 1949, history on my uncle, other than he was It has taken me over 42 years to
she married Frank Longiotti. She had involved in the initial jump into write this letter to you. You see, the
been employed at Meadville Laundry, Normandy. It appears by his V-Mail that man listed above, 2nd Lt. William S.
Keystone View, Viscose Talon, GTI he was wounded during the initial Scudder, killed in action, Normandy,
and DIC Tool. She was of the Lutheran operation. I do not know if he continued France, July 3rd, 1944 is my grandfather.
faith and served as a volunteer at with the 508th after his recovery. As a My grandmother was pregnant with my
Crawford County Care Center and a young child, I remember the rest of the father when she received the news that
member of its auxiliary. She was also a family talked of him being an alcoholic her husband had been killed.
candy striper for Meadville Hospital and "not right" after his return. He died, Unfortunately, my father never had the
during World War II. She enjoyed with the family feeling he was an chance to meet his father, and all my
bingo, garage sales and bowling. In embarrassment and social outcast. He now family has is a few newspaper clippings,
addition to her husband of 57 years, lies in an unmarked grave. his Purple Heart and precious few other
survivors include two sons, three I did not ever feel that way. He was mementos to recall the life of a husband
grandchildren, three great- always kind to me, and did mention that and father and for me a grandfather I
grandchildren; and lots of nieces and he was wounded in action in Europe. He never knew. The obituary tells the story
nephews. died before I reached the age of that his company came under enemy
understanding. I know now that he saw
DIABLO FEBRUARY 2007 PAGE - 4 -
fire and retreated to a safer location, shot. Any additional info you could
then, under the cover of darkness, my Paul Geutjes provide or anyone of your unit
grandfather organized a group of Please contact me at members who may have known my
volunteers to return to the field of firstname.lastname@example.org. father would be appreciated. I‟d love to
battle and recover the dead and hear, as we say in the Navy, a Sea story
wounded. The story goes on to say that PFC Julius Veriest or two. Thank you for your service!
during this rescue and recovery mission Dear Sirs,
that my grandfather was killed by sniper I am doing research on my father, V/r,
fire. PFC Julius Verniest. I came across your CDR John W. Verniest
Every kid wants to grow up website from a Google search and U.S. NAVY
thinking that their relative who died in learned my father served in the 508th email@example.com
combat was a hero, but after 42 years of and earned numerous medals including
my life I just want to know what the Purple Heart and Combat Infantry
happened to the man who is my father‟s badge. Unfortunately, my father is now Get Well
father. Any assistance you could deceased and has been since 1986.
provide would be gratefully appreciated. Since then I graduated from SJSU in Smith, James
1990 and earned a Commission in the A note was sent by Jim Smith explaining
Sincerely, US Navy and am now a CDR serving in he missed the Augusta reunion due to
Wiliam Blaine Scudder, Jr. VP-30, the P-3 Fleet Replacement health reasons. He had a Carotid
Knight2King3@aol.com Squadron. Your website has helped me operation and had a pace maker put in
learn more about my father‟s military and is now doing great. Jim added he
PFC Harold Francis Taylor service then he ever talked about when does not surf the web and thus it is
I‟m looking for information that is related I was a child growing up and for that, I expected he does not have e-mail. You
to paratrooper Harold Francis Taylor, thank you. Father did jump in Normandy, can write him at –
508th. He died on 19th Sept. 1944, Market but that‟s about all he disclosed as I was 1403 Valencia Dr.
Garden, Wylerbaan at Groesbeek, buried growing up. I later learned from one of Fayetteville, NC
at Margraten, The Netherlands. We found my Uncles, he made the march from
his signed coffee cup. France, all the way into Germany and was
336 S. Pearson Lane
Keller, TX 76034