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My Grandpa Edward J Brousseau 703rd Tank Destroyer Battalion

Discussion in 'Military Service Records & Genealogical Research' started by melbrousseau, Jan 15, 2010.

  1. melbrousseau

    melbrousseau recruit

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    Hi,

    I started looking into my grandfathers Military history about a month ago and I have found out a few things but I am stuck right now. I can't request the records because my father and Uncle are still living so they have to request them from what I understand, I am working on them but my family is so not intrested. This is what I know so far from pictures I have and what I have been told, as well as the records I can find online.

    My grandfather enlisted on 2/11/1942 at FT Devens, at a private, his branch code and Alpha designation was Branch Immaterial - Warrant Officers, USA this is from his online records.
    I know from his platoon/Unit pictures he was at FT Polk, LA (my husband was also stationed there when he was in the Army)
    From the flag in the picture I believe he was with the 703rd Tank Destroyer Battalion.
    This all makes sense with what I know from family, they just knew it had something to do with tanks, my dad said he thought he walked in front of or by the tanks but he didn't know.
    My grandfather recieved a purple heart, my Uncle says he has it somewhere in a closet, but I couldnt find anything in his online records and it dosn't say anything on his headstone just he was PFC Edward Brousseau. But from what I read alot of the Purple Heart's were given in battle with some not having documentation with them?
    I found this information online about his Battalion:
    Formed at Camp Polk, from 3rd Armored Division cadres, the 703rd was yet an attached unit owing allegiance not to Armored Force, but to Tank Destroyer Command, a new branch of service. Excepting for a short TD and commando training course at Camp Hood, Texas, however, and a period during the Ardennes fighting of 1944-45, the battalion always remained under "Spearhead" control. With the 3rd, it trained on California's Mojave Desert and at Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania. Although originally wearing the black and orange tiger patch of TD service, the fiercely independent 703rd finally adopted the "Spearhead" patch and was as much a part of the division as any of its own tank battalions.
    And that matches what my Uncle said, he only knew he was with the Spearhead division.

    My only other clues are that he had a friend/military buddy with the last name Eddie or Edward Arrsanault I belive, not sure if its spelled right or not. And last my grandfather was from Canada, and spoke excellent French, so toward the end of the war he ended up driving the Captain around, not sure if it was in his Battalion or a different one. Sorry this was so long I wasn't sure what to put, I am hoping someone will remember him? The attachment has all the info I have and a picture of my grandfather.

    Thanks, Mel

     

    Attached Files:

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  2. tank destroyer

    tank destroyer Member

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    Greetings,

    I have also just begun researching my wife's grandfather who was in the 703rd. I was able to get a copy of his discharge paperwork and determine from some notes of his what his unit affiliation was. He was in 3rd platoon, A co., 703rd TD Bn. Some one here might be able to get you info on how to get the documentation, but once you find out what unit he was in, check Out "Spearhead in the West" G-3 suppliment for tracking his movement. the 703rd stayed with the 3AD almost exclusively with the exception of the Bulge when some portions spent time with the Big Red One (1st div) and 82nd Airborne.

    Spearhead in the West - Complete Text - Index
     
  3. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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  4. kerrd5

    kerrd5 Ace

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    Mel,

    While at the NARA last weekend, I found and scanned
    a Signal Corps photo of two Tank Destroyers of the 703rd
    in Stolberg, Germany. III-SC 195748 is dated 24 October 1944.

    If you would like a copy, just let me know.


    Dave
     
  5. adeutch

    adeutch recruit

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    Hey folks. My grandfather passed last Spring. I miss him a lot, and I was very interested in his WWII military service. I know he was in the 703rd as well and it was exciting to see some of the things the OP mentioned mirroring the few things my grandfather told me. I remember him telling me about training at Camp Polk and Camp Hood.
    I really want to find out more about him/his service, but at this point I don't know where to start. He had a scrap book that he showed me once or twice when I was younger. It had photos, comic strips, various papers, just stuff he wanted to remember I guess. I hope my grandmother still has it, but I just feel like it's too soon to ask her about it.
    Anyway, I understand the 703rd played a pivotal role in the Battle of the Bulge. And their logo is awesome. Does anyone have some good sites to recommend for learning more about the 703rd? Especially anything with photos would be great.
     
  6. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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  7. papa7n

    papa7n recruit

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    sir, would you by chance have a way to post or send a picture that you refer to in your post. My dad was also in 703rd and trained at polk, mojave, and indiantown gap. Thanks
    Norman
     
  8. uncle bam

    uncle bam recruit

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    My dad, John Czajkowski was in the 703rd and was a very close friend of Eddie Arsanault who was from the Waterbury, Connecticut area. A lot of the 703rd were from Connecticut and the Western New York area. When I was a kid we used to go to reunions in the 1950's and 1960's. They also had a good friend from Cheshire, Conn named Crossatiere(not sure of the spelling) I have a picture of Mr Arsenault and my dad and another person from a reunion when they were older.
     
  9. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow Patron  

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    Welcome to the forum, uncle bam. You may be interested in the website TankDestroyer.net. The have a page just on the 703rd TD Battalion. They have Operational Reports as well has a history of the 703rd during WWII, all of which you can download. There are also photos and an article on the 703rd from Yank magazine.

    If you would like to share anything regarding your father's WWII service on the forum, we would be very appreciative. I had a great uncle who was in the 776th TD Bn.
     
  10. sebfrench76

    sebfrench76 Dishonorably Discharged

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    Hello to all.First,Broussaut and Arsenault are both french second names.Do you have any family tree ?These names are often found in the former Napoleonic part of the states,like Cajun country,Louisiana.I will be quite interested in some infos on your ancestors.Second,did the 703 participated in the battle of Mortain?If yes,i could be able to post pics of digged up relics in the future.
     
  11. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow Patron  

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    sebfrench76,

    From the 703rd unit page at tankdestroyer.net :

     
  12. sebfrench76

    sebfrench76 Dishonorably Discharged

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    Thanks TD!Anyway,if you're avid of Mortain's digged up tank parts,just gimme a message!
     
  13. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow Patron  

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    You should post photos of your finds in the Militaria section of the forum. I'm sure there would be quite a few members who would be interested in seeing what you have found at Mortain. :D
     
  14. sebfrench76

    sebfrench76 Dishonorably Discharged

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  15. Camizzy

    Camizzy recruit

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    Hello uncle bam. My dad, John Misiaszek, served with your dad, Eddie Arsanault and Bill Crossatiere in the 703 TD Bn. When I showed him your post, he remembered your dad. He too was a good friend of Eddie and Bill and as a child I remember them coming for a visit to our home in upstate NY. Dad will turn 93 this Wednesday and still shares his experiences from the war.
     
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  16. Camizzy

    Camizzy recruit

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    Hi Mel. When I saw your post I had to ask my dad if he knew your grandfather. He said he did and thought your grandfather was in Company B, 1st platoon of the 703 TD Bn. One thing the information that you found online didn't include was that after they left the Mojave Desert, they went to Camp Pickett, Virginia. They were originally going to be shipped to Africa for fighting, but then were "cooled off" and sent to Indiantown Gap, PA where they were for approximately another 7-8 months. They were then sent to NY where they went on board the troop ship Shawnee bound for England. My dad, who turns 93 this Wednesday, still recalls the zig zag route the ships took across the Atlantic to avoid submarines and mines. He also recalls how the trip made him pretty seasick. If you have any questions, I'd be happy to ask my dad. Just let me know.
    Carol
     
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  17. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow Patron  

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    Welcome to the Forum, Carol. First, I would like to thank your father for his service. Please let him know how much we appreciate him as well as all of our veterans here at the WW2 Forums.

    I encourage you to tell us a little about your father's service in the What Granddad Did in the War section. Personally, I am very interested to hear his story as I had a great uncle who served in a Tank Destroyer Battalion.

    Unfortunately, Mel and unclebam have not signed onto the Forum for quite a while. However, they could come back sometime, so you may want to keep an eye on this discussion thread.

    Again, welcome to the Forum and please make yourself at home here. :D
     
  18. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    I'll echo Tommy and welcome you to the forum, Carol. I hope you consider his suggestion about posting something about your grandfather. While I have no vested interests in TD battalions, I'm always interested to read personal accounts of the conflict.
     
  19. melbrousseau

    melbrousseau recruit

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    Hi Carol
    I wish I wouldn't have waited so long to check back. Thanks for your comments and extra info, it was so exciting too read! I would love to hear from you.
    Thanks Melanie
     
  20. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Nice to have you back Mel. Let's hope Carol returns here quick. You may also send her a private message.
     

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