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Still trying to find out more about my dad's service during WWII

Discussion in 'What Granddad did in the War' started by JillinSC, Feb 4, 2020.

  1. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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    I've posted here once before, about a year ago, but only heard from one person, so I thought I would give it another try.

    Here's what I know from the records that could be recovered from the archives, from my dad's dog tags, and from what he told us (which wasn't much):

    George Llewellyn Kremer, Jr., serial number 32223422, transferred as a Corporal to the 44th Infantry Division at Ft. Lewis, WA, SQ#303, Hq TIS, Dec.15/1942.

    Date of induction was Mar.5/1942.

    He was in the Officer Candidate Class of #135, attached to 16th. Co.THIRD STUD TNG BN (OFF) FIRST STUD TNG REGT, ISSC at Ft. Benning, GA for the month of Dec, 1942
    .
    His Final Payment Worksheet says:
    Enlisted or Inducted in Brooklyn (King's County), NY on Mar. 5, 1942, and that he arrived back in the States on 6 November 1945. He had three years of service and was honorably discharged on 12 November 1945, and the notation is RR1-1.

    He was with the 174th. Infantry in San Fernando, CA, in July 1943 and had a pass allowing him "...to be absent from this post at any time to carry out his duties as assistant to the Special Service Officer." It's signed by 1st. Lt. Carl A. Straub, the Special Service Officer, and dated July 27, '43.

    He told us he was involved in putting together mostly radio shows for the troops, and he said he worked on a radio show called "The Isle of Dreams." At one time, we had some of his radio scripts, but they were lost during a move.

    He was at Camp Clatsop, OR, in 1942 (we think, based on what was written on the backs of some pictures), as well as Ft. Lewis, WA.

    He achieved Sharpshooter status (203 points) while at Camp Clatsop, OR.

    He became friends at some point (probably in San Fernando, CA) with Chaplain Boardman Wallace Edwards, US Army.

    I have some pictures he took in 1945 of Versailles, Compiegne (dated May 1945), and one that says "Marie Antoinette's favorite chalet." I also have a post-war picture of him standing in front of the Jockey House at the Compiegne Racecourse, as well as other pictures taken in the States, during his training in WA and OR and in San Fernando, CA.

    He told us he took a class at the Sorbonne after the war.

    He returned to Brooklyn, NY (King's County) to live with his parents (George L. Kremer and Lulu [Dieffendorfer] Kremer) after the war ended.

    Can anyone help me figure out how he got from the 174th Infantry to the 44th Infantry, with which he said he served during the Battle of the Bulge?

    FYI, he gave me a bell that has "The Battle of Bastogne Dec 1944" engraved on it, that he said was made from some sort of shell casings. I still have it.

    I truly appreciate any help anyone can provide. I'm desperate to find out more about my dad's service. I wish he had been more willing to talk about it while he was alive.

    Thank you!

    PS/If there's another place on this site where I should have started this thread, please advise.
     
  2. chibobber

    chibobber Member

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    Try contacting a researcher.Golden Arrow Research is one of the best of many.Yes it does cost money,but Geoff will get you the info you seek.He found a lot on my father.
    good luck!
     
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  3. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    I agree with Bob. Golden Arrow is a good choice, although you can check with other researchers.
    Do you have his discharge documents? Some of this sounds a bit confusing. If you could post what you have it might help us to give you more details. Transfers were not uncommon, especially if a unit needed replacements. What rank did he achieve? I'm guessing he was an officer.

    I did find this at Wiki
    The regiment was inducted into federal service on 16 September 1940 as a part of the 44th Division. They moved to Fort Dix, New Jersey on 24 September 1940, to Camp Claiborne, Louisiana, on 16 January 1942, and then to Fort Lewis, Washington, on 4 May 1942. On 5 January 1943, the regiment relocated to Ojai, California, and then to San Fernando on 27 January 1943 where on the same date they were relieved of assignment to the 44th Infantry Division. Now assigned to the Western Defense Command, the 174th was subordinated to the III Corps on 22 January 1944 and moved to Camp White, Oregon, on 4 February 1944. On 28 March 1944, the regiment was transferred to Camp Chaffee, Arkansas, under the XVI Corps. From April 1944, the regiment provided an accelerated six-week course of infantry training (four weeks of familiarization, qualification, and transition firing, and two weeks of tactical training) to men who were formerly members of disbanded anti-aircraft and tank destroyer units or who had volunteered for transfer to the infantry from other branches of the Army..

    You can also look here for information on the 44th Division 44th Infantry Division — US Army Divisions
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2020
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  4. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow

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    I also encourage you to think about using a researcher. I have done so for several veterans and have never been disappointed with the result. A researcher will use the unit Morning Reports which record the day to day status of all soldiers assigned to the unit. Because they are unit records, they were not stored with the Army personnel records and were not affected by the 1973 fire. The researcher will be able to track your dad's movements through most if not all of his WWII service. Many members here, like Lou and myself, have used Geoff at Golden Arrow Research, but there are others out there as well. Geoff has always been fair and reasonable with me.

    I found a couple documents that are interesting. I'm not certain if it is your Dad, but the info is pretty close. The first is his WWII Draft card. It has his wife's name, so I presume that will allow you to confirm whether or not it is his very easily.

    Kremer George Jr - WWII Draft Card 16Oct1940.jpg

    The second is a New York Guard Service Card. This one may not be him. The Draft card has his address in Westchester County, while this card has him in Brooklyn. Also, it has a different birth date & does not have "Jr." in the name.

    Kremer George L - NY Guard Svc Card.jpg

    I found an article on the NY State Military Museum website with more info on the 174th Regiment and it's relationship with the 44th Infantry Division. The title of the article is almost as long as the article: THE NATIONAL GUARD IN WAR: AN HISTORICAL ANALYSIS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY DIVISION (NEW YORK NATIONAL GUARD) IN WORLD WAR II; Chapter 3: Reorganization And Training

    It is mostly about the 27th Infantry Division, but the relevant information is in the 2nd paragraph: "The National Guard in New York was more than Just the 27th Division. The 87th Infantry Brigade, consisting of the 71st and 174th Infantry Regiments, and the 69th Field Artillery Brigade's 196th Field Artillery Regiment were all based in New York City but an integral part of the 44th Division (New Jersey National Guard)."
     
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  5. Tipnring

    Tipnring Active Member

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  6. TD-Tommy776

    TD-Tommy776 Man of Constant Sorrow

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    I think you may be correct. The patch on his left shoulder appears to be the Western Defense Command SSI (shoulder sleeve insignia). If you read the Wikipedia link, it refers to the 44th ID and the 174th IR being part of the WDC through late 1943. Nice find.
     
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  7. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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  8. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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    Thanks so much for the info!
    The WWII Draft Card is not my dad's, but the NY Guard Service Card definitely is his.
    I appreciate you sharing anything else you find about my dad. Can't tell you how much every little piece of info about him means to me!
    Stay safe and well,
    Jill
     
  9. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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    Thanks for the info! Everything I know about my dad's service I posted here on February 4, 2020.
    Sadly, I don't have my dad's discharge papers. He achieved the rank of Corporal.
    The picture from the LA Times that was just posted was especially great to see!
    I truly appreciate any help you, and any other folks reading this, can provide.
    All the best,
    Jill
     
  10. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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  11. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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  12. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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  13. Tipnring

    Tipnring Active Member

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  14. JillinSC

    JillinSC New Member

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    Thanks so much! I actually found this one, too, while I had a trial subscription to newspapers.com.
    Sure do appreciate you continuing to look for anything you can find!
    Stay safe and well,
    Jill
     
  15. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Ha! 101st Cavalry New York National Guard!

    Had a second cousin who was an LTC in the 101st during the unpleasantness in Europe. I've got three china plates from the Item Troop mess, complete with crossed sabers. Probably date from the late 1930's.

    Cousin Hubert worked his way up, enlisting in 1924 in the NG cavalry at age 21; private, private 1st class, corporal, sergeant, 1st sergeant; commissioned 2LT in 1934. He was a CPT when the the regiment was inducted into federal service on 27 Jan 1941. Retired a COL.

    https://www.trackingthe101st.com/

    https://www.trackingthe101st.com/lt-col-hubert-c-leonard

    I-101 .jpg
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
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  16. Mike Pucci

    Mike Pucci New Member

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    Col. Hubert Leonard was my great uncle! My grandmother was very proud of her big brother’s WWII service and that of her Leonard cousins’ too. My dad had Hubert’s dress sabre for years until he passed it on to one of Hubert’s grandsons. Very cool to marvel at when I was a kid.

     
  17. R Leonard

    R Leonard Member

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    Howdy, Cuz!

    My Dad was Bill Leonard, USN

    Rich
     

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