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Remembrance — Veteran’s Day

November 7, 2009
By Howard Riley, hjriley@adelphia.net

The Enterprise of 65 years ago carried mostly news about World War II. Naturally, the front page was all war news and so was much of the inside pages, covering stories about local men and women in the service.

The internet figures from the last census had a total of 3,151,000 veterans of WWII surviving. There were 16 million Americans who served in WWII; 210,000 were women. Veterans Day is observed on Nov. 7.

The following are excerpts from stories published in the Enterprise in September and October of 1944.

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Pvt. Berry Wounded

"Pvt. Clarence A. Berry of Saranac Lake, holder of the Soldier's Medal for gallantry in action outside the line of duty, has been wounded in France. A telegram listing him as a casualty of war was sent to his wife (the former Irma Mitchell) who is now residing in Rome.

"It is believed he sustained shrapnel wounds in the battle of Normandy and has been evacuated to England. Pvt. Berry was a tank driver in an armored unit.

"Last spring the Soldier's Medal was awarded to Pvt. Berry in England. The citation read: Pvt. Berry, while on furlough visiting his brother who is a member of the Army Air Force was in the vicinity of a plane that was being loaded for a combat mission when one of the phosphorous bombs suddenly exploded. The explosion caused other bombs in the loading process to go off. Disregarding his own safety, Pvt. Berry rushed into the scene of the detonating bombs and burning gasoline and guided an officer and enlisted man to safety and helped carry injured men to the station hospital."

Seaman Farrisee in invasion

"James V. Farrisee, fireman first class in the Navy, was a member of a U.S. Naval crew in the American assault forces which invaded southern France. Fireman Farrisee was serving aboard a ship which took part in the initial assault off the French coast. He saw previous action in the invasion of Normandy and took part in the Mediterranean warfare."

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Lead Story - Page 1, Oct. 7, 1944

"WITH THE FIRST ARMY IN GERMANY (AP) The Germans bitter stand-or-die defense north of Aachen collapsed suddenly today under growing American First Army pressure, and U.S. tanks and infantry surged forward on a sweeping drive.

"The defenses which yesterday were so stubborn and appeared to be holding firm under heavy artillery support, gave way this morning when the doughboys launched an attack. More than 300 prisoners were taken in the first two hours."

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Fighting in Italy

"ROME, (AP) - U.S. Fifth Army troops have shoved ahead another two miles to within 12 miles of the Po Valley communications center of Bologna as the Nazis were reported working frantically to evacuate strategic war materials from Northern Italy to the Reich.

"Allied headquarters said today the Germans again had failed to stabilize their lines in the central Italian sector. Doughboys who had cleared the enemy from Loiano were fighting yesterday two miles north of that important road junction town on the main Florence-Bologna Highway No. 65."

Irma Preston burned in accident

"Miss Irma Preston, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Preston of 50 Main Street, suffered first and second degree burns of the body yesterday morning when she was scalded by boiling coffee at the Army Post Exchange at the Lake Placid Club.

"An employee at the exchange, Miss Preston was working behind the counter yesterday morning when the large coffee urn suddenly tipped over and she was covered with the boiling liquid. Someone had turned up the gas under the urn and had forgotten to fit it tightly into its base, it was reported.

"She was taken to the Post Infirmary where she will stay until she is able to be brought by ambulance to Saranac Lake."

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German prisoners at Pine Camp

"PINE CAMP (AP) - New German prisoners of war from the battle fronts in France have arrived at Pine Camp (now Fort Drum), it was announced today by Col. L. R. Clement, post commander.

"The new prisoners will be used in harvesting and agricultural work in Central New York State. They will augment the prisoner of war laborers who were taken from other fronts. They will be working under contracts negotiated by the war department with fruit and agricultural organizations.

"The prisoners range in age from 16 to 63 and were wearing German uniforms when they arrived. Some were captured in France less than 6 weeks ago. They will be issued clothing plainly marked with PW."

 
 

 

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