244th Field Artillery Battalion

September 1945

September – 19451

          The Battalion arrived Southampton and operated camp for G. I.’s returning from leave from the continent.

          Caption reads – “Camp Barton Stacey”, Barton Stacey, Winchester Hampshire the camp for G.I.’s returning from leave from the continent

106b. Camp Barton Stacey, Barton Stacey Winchester, Hampshire, England
Monday – 17th September 1945 HQ & Hq Battery Morning Report2

                              Sudbury, Suffolk, England 2½ mi NE WM5230 BC
                    Hull, William A.                          33 375 449    Tec. 4
                    Blosser, Dean D.                         35 612 951    Tec. 5
                              Above 2 EM dy to temp dy Loire
                              Disciplinary Training Center APO 562 for an
                              indefinite period.

Caption reads –  
          September 1945 London England – 1st. Sgt. R. Cormier and Big Ben

S331b. September 1945 London England - 1st. Sgt. R. Cormier and Big Ben
Monday – 17th September 1845
          Tally – In. Received from: Lt. T. B. Marriott
Tuesday – 18th September 1945 HQ & Hq Battery Morning Report3

                              Sudbury, Suffolk, England 2½ mi NE WM5230 BC
                    Jones, John W. (FA)                     0 349 637    Capt.   MOS 9301    Code A9-FA
                              Asgd & jd from Sv Btry this Bn par 2, SO
                              #69, Hq 244th FA Bn., Princ dy intelligence
                              Staff Off S-2 9301, Race W Comp AUS (ASR
                              89-No-457-A)
                    Marriott, Thomas B. (FA)              01 168 355    1st Lt.                  Code X-67
                              Reld asgmt & atchd unasgd this Btry
                              Par 2, SO #69 Hq 244th FA Bn.
                    Mazhein, John F., Jr.                     0 132 698    1st Lt.                  Code A1-1
                              (Inf) Asgd & jd from 14th Port asuned
                              comd 1193 Race W Comp Aus (ASR 62-No-46.6
                              -D) Par 3, SO #69 Hq 244th FA Bn.
                    Ritter, Ralph R.                            5 098 956    Pfc.     MOS 677     Code A1-FA
                              Asgd & jd from 444th AAA AW Bn Race W ASR
                              72-D Par 4, SO #69 Hq 244th FA Bn, year
                              of birth 1917

Tuesday – 18th September 1945
          Tally In Miscellaneous – Wrist Watch

Wednesday – 19th September 1945 HQ & Hq Battery Morning Report4

                              Sudbury, Suffold, England 2½ mi NE WM5230 BC
          Alerted for departure 20 Sep 45 to
          14th Port Southampton England for
          permanent change of Sta per Ltr
          Movement Order #3024 Hq Uk Base dtd
          15 Sep 45

Thursday – 20th September 1945 HQ & Hq Battery Morning Report5

                              14th Port Camp 18 Southampton England
                    Marriott, Thomas B. (FA)              01 168 355    1st Lt.              Code K1
                              Reld atchd unasgd this Btry and
                              atchd unasgd to 96th Reinf Bn APO 508 A
                              Par 10, SO #246 Hq UK Base edcmr 19 Sep 45
          Departed Sudbury Suffolk, England via
          rail at 1210. Arrived present Sta 2300.
          Distance traveled approximately 150 miles.

Caption reads –
        September 1945 London England –
        House Of Parliament On The Thames River In Fore Ground

S333b September 1945 London England - House Of Parliament On The Thames River In Fore Ground
September – 19456

          The Battalion departed this general location 50 miles North East of London.

September – 19457

          The Battalion split up generally and those with sufficient points for discharge began movement back to U. S. in October.

There follows a brief statistical summary of the achievements in action of the
          244th Field Artillery Battalion8

     No. of Prisoners of War Handled: 70,000
     No. of Rounds fired (Foreign Weapons) 10,000
     No. of Rounds fired (155 mm Guns) 32,760
     No. of Officers killed:  3
     No. of Enlisted Men killed:  5
     No. of Purple Hearts Awarded:  38
     No. of Silver Stars Awarded:  5
     No. of Bronze Stars Awarded:  90
     No. of Air Medals awarded:  8
     No. of Oak Leaf Clusters to Air Medal:  17

Types of weapons fired:
     7.62 mm Russian Howitzer
     88 mm German
     105 mm German Howitzer and Gun
     105 mm German Howitzer
     155 French Howitzer (Schneider)
     122 mm Russian Howitzer
     244th Primary Weapon 155 mm M1 Gun (Long Tom).

Battle Participation Stars:
     1 – Normandy
     2 – Northern France
     3 – Rhineland
     4 – Ardennes
     5 – Central Europe

     No. of Prisoners taken: 106

     Forgetting the statistics, the trademark of the Battalion is its spirit; its cooperative ability and the firmness of its friendships – all of which combine to make it not only “OUR” outfit but “THE” outfit.

Dearest Mom and Dad,
     I think a week has passed since my last letter was written and that is quite a long time.  I have received your last six or seven letters and you two sound much better now.  I have received Dad’s letter and the money orders – Thanks loads – I really needed it to clear up some debts before I left the Bn.  Yes
I’ve left – along with several others for a high point outfit – one slated to go home in the near future.  Don’t get your hopes up too high, but I should be home for that Thanksgiving dinner – maybe even a little
before.
     I know that makes you feel good.  I’m kind of happy about it myself.  We are located at Swinden – not far from South Hampton.  Greer & Hendry flew home – they were here, but left yesterday.  They will be home this Saturday – tomorrow!!  Sure hope I get a chance to fly – it’s over so soon.  Who knows – I may land on one of the Queens.  It takes time though.  I haven’t heard from Wink or Torres.  Both were transferred out before we left Cham and I haven’t heard from them since.  I dropped them both a line – but I guess they were too busy training.  Chinaberry just walked in – he’s here for the same thing.  I have
been working quite hard before I came here.  I had to turn the base over to a new officer and then turn the Btry over to another.  It wasn’t hard work, but it took quit a lot of time.  It came out quit OK.  All the property was turned over and in good shape.
     Nothing much else to report so I’ll leave you for now. You might as well stop writing to me here –
                                            My love to you both
                                                            Your
                                                                Son.

Saturday – 22nd September 1945
          Casual Officers Clearance Sheet

Saturday – 22nd September 1945
         Owners Certification Affidavits and Customs Declaration

Caption reads –
          September 1945 London England – Piccadilly Circus

S335b. September 1945 London England - Picidilly Circus

Dearest Mon and Dad,
     We have been doing our best to keep our moral up and ourselves warm.  It’s as cold as the dickens here – a real cold wave is roaring and we don’t have any coal or wood for a fire. I am here in town at the Red Cross writing because it’s warm. The Bn made its move from Sudbury to south Hampton Ok.  They are right in town.  Their job is to house, fuel and transport the transient troops who are shipping home.  I hope in a short time they can house me.  All of our papers are in order and we are just waiting for the word. Galway, Greer and Hendry should be home now.  They came (or went) by Green Project. (flying in a C-54)  They sure were happy to leave.
     This place is getting to look like the 244th C.P. there are six of us here now and we expect at least four more in a day or so.  The Bn is now entirely in someone else’s hands.  No old members present.
     I have all my stuff packed in a new AAF Val-Pac – that I found.  It weighs almost 75 or 85 lbs. and is a real killer to carry around.
     Say – if my old summer uniform is there – and that’s what people are wearing in the North & South you might send the things out to be washed and cleaned.  I may be needing them.  Also – if any of my “civvies” are left the same goes there.  Make me feel kind of funny to be talking about these things now after so many years of being in uniform.
     If and when I get home – I will be on “temporary duty” for 45 days – at home.  And then will have 65 days of leave granted.  I will have then a total of three months and three weeks of Army pay (a gift).  Then if Uncle Sam sees fit – I’ll be discharged and a free man again.
     I’m not going to give you a definite date of arrival because I don’t know for sure and I don’t want to get you and Dad all up in the air, then have to spoil all of your dreams.  At least by Thanksgiving!!
     I am going to write to Jane tonight.  I’m not so sure of what I’m going to say.  Up to July – I wrote to her whenever I wrote to you.  Then all of a sudden – she said – “no”.  So I haven’t written a great mistake probably – but I felt kind of bad.
   Oh well, when I see her we’ll both know what to do.  She is a swell person – and I am going down there for a few days – if it’s Ok with you and Dad.  I haven’t had any mail from you for a few days, but I expect when the next crew comes in from the Bn I’ll have a couple from “home”.
     You should see my “shirt snorter”.  It’s about 8 ft. long now.  It covers most countries in Europe and China, Japan, Dutch East Indies, Italy, Russia, Germany, Poland, Rumania, Italy, U.S. Holland, England, France, Czech., Belgium, Luxemburg etc.  I have a fair coin collection and a few foreign buttons.
     I have enough money now to get me home, so you won’t have to bother to send me anymore.
     Have you received the box of pictures and post cards?  They “left” about three weeks or a month ago. Have patience it will get there.
     I will keep you posted on all of my movements – so take care of each other till I get home to you both.
     My love to you –
                                        Your
                                                   Son.

Dear Mon and Dad,
     Have spent a lovely week-end here.  In the old days this must have been one of the very best, nothing to compare with the hotels at home.  Will tell you all about it when we get together.
My love to you both.
              Tom.

OCTOBER 1945

1b. H.M.T. Aquitania
H. M. T. Aquitania9

                                            Length, overall ~~~~~~ 901′ 0″
                                            Beam ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 97′ 0″
                                            Draft ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 36′ 0″
                                            Gross tons ~~~~~~~ 44,786
                                            Speed (knots) ~~~~~~~~ 25
                                            Radius (miles) ~~~~~~ 6.000
                                            Propulsion ~~~~~~~ Turbines (4)
                                            Passengers ~~~~~~~~ 7,724
                                            Cargo (cu. ft.) ~~~~  141,600

                      Built in 1914 by John Brown & Co., Ltd., Clydebank, Scotland.
                        Operated prior to World War II by Cunard White Star, Ltd.

          Unloading at the dock

252b . Unloading at the docks in La Harve for the trip home

          L to R – Captain William “Doc” Savage, 1st Lt. Bernard T. Kayler, jr., Captain Daniel E. Brewer

253b. Cham Germany, L to R Savage, Kayler, Brewer-1

        Caption reads – “Kaylor and the Queen”, 1st. Lt. Bernard T. Kaylor jr.

335c. Kaylor and the Queen. 1st. Lt. Bernard T. Kaylor jr, on his way
Queen Mary 2
Queen Mary10

                                            Length, overall ~~~~~~1019″ 6″
                                            Beam ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 118′ 0″
                                            Draft ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 38′ 10″
                                            Gross tons ~~~~~~~ 81,235
                                            Speed (knots) ~~~~~~~~ 28
                                            Radius (miles) ~~~~~~ 5,250
                                            Propulsion ~~~~~~~ Turbines (4)
                                            Passengers ~~~~~~~~ 10,595
                                            Cargo (cu. ft.) ~~~~  50,000

                      Built in 1936 by John Brown & Co., Ltd., Clydebank, Scotland.
                        Operated prior to World War II by Cunard White Star, Ltd.

New York Port of Embarkation (NYPE) Camp Kilmer Pamphlet No. 1
          Information for all Personnel Returning from Overseas
Wednesday – 10th October 1945
          Application for Appointment And Settlement Of Preference For Reserve Officers
Cunard White Star
          Dinner Seating Ticket
341. Front Cunard White Star Restaurant Receipt (2)
341b. Back Cunard White Star Restaurant Receipt-2
Berthing Card
          Front and back
340b. Front Berthing Card C-Deck Room 9
340b. Back Berthing Card C-Deck Room 9

          Welcome Home Well Done, New York Harbor

336c. New York Harbor. Distant sign on shore reads Welcome Home Well Done

          Enlargement, Welcome Home Well Done, New York Harbor

336a1b. Enlargement New York Harbor. Distant sign on shore reads Welcome Home Well Done
Friday – 12th October 1945
          Shoe Purchase Certificate Ration Card – Fort Sheraton Illinois
Wednesday – 17th October 1945
          Special War Ration Card
Friday – 31st October 1945
          1st. Sgt. Raymond Cormier Separation Qualification Record
5b. 31 October 1945 Separation Paper
6b. Sepeeration papers-2
Friday – 31st October 1945
          1st. Sgt. Raymond Cormier Separation Qualification Record
          Homeward Bound from Camp Shanks, N. Y.
          1st. Sgt. Raymond Cormier Gift to his mother
US Army Mother 2

NOVEMBER 1945

Tuesday – 25th November 1945
          Tec. 5 Harold Metheny – New York Port of Embarkation Paper
Tec.  5 Harold Metheny
             Sailed from Southampton England on November 19th and arriving New York
             Port of Embarkation on November 25, 1945 aboard the S. S. Europa.
408b. S.S. Europa arriving New York Harbor, 25 November 1945. Carrying Tec-5 Robert E
Tuesday – 24th November 194511
          Byron G. Rogers, A Battery

          I left South Hampton, England November 24, 1945 on board the SS Europa.  It was a French luxury liner that had been captured by the Germans.  The U.S. captured it from the Germans, and used it to take us home.  There were 10,000 troops on board the ship, and many of them, including me got food poison.  We first started getting seasick during a storm, and then we got food poison on top of that.  The food had to be thrown overboard.  Meantime I had visited the latrine, and stored me up a supply of toilet tissue for later use.  I figured there wouldn’t be any when I needed it.  We arrived in New York November 29, 1945, and went from there to Camp Gordon, Georgia to be discharged.  I was discharged as a T -5, Tech Corporal.

S. S. Europa
597b. The Europa, I came home on the Europa Nov. 1945. Lt. Marriott copy
Friday – 30th November 1945
          Cpl. Kilby H. Hoyle Separation Qualification Record
4c. 1945 November 30 - Kilby H. Hoyle Seperation Papers

December 1945

Thursday – 6th December 1945
          Lt. Hightower’s Certificate Of Service
Hightower Honorable Discharge 5 a 6 December 1945
Hightower Honorable Discharge 6 a 6 December 1945
Friday – 21st December 194512
          The Death General George S. Patton, Jr.

          At 6:00 a.m. on December 21, 1945, General George S. Patton, Jr. passed away in his sleep. A blood clot in his paralyzed body had worked its way to his heart, stopping it and ending the life of one of America’s greatest battlefield commanders.

     The 60-year-old general had led a life of adventure, fighting in almost every major American twentieth century conflict. His career climaxed with World War II, where he led corps and armies from North Africa, to Sicily, to the continent of Europe. He often led from the front, and he almost always delivered victory. His swift conquest of Sicily, his race across France, his relief of Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge, and his drive into Germany destroyed German armies, saved American lives, and captured the collective imagination of the American public.

     Yet, all his laurels could not protect the General from a simple car accident eight months into the peace. Twelve days before his death, on December 9, 1945, Patton was sitting in the back of his limousine when his driver, PFC Horace Woodring, sped too fast over a railroad crossing in Manheim, Germany, and plowed into the passenger-side of a left-turning Army truck headed into a depot.

     No one was hurt except Patton, who, despite a nasty gash on his head, immediately realized he had been paralyzed. He asked his chief of staff, Major General Hobart “Hap” Gay, who was sitting next to him, to rub his fingers. When Gay did so, Patton barked, “Go ahead Hap, work my fingers.”

     Patton was rushed to the 130th Station Hospital in Heidelberg, 12 miles away. There, he was x-rayed, revealing two crushed vertebrae. Simply put: Patton had broken his neck. For the next 12 days, Patton lay in traction, at times with painful fishhooks implanted into his cheeks on either side of his upper jaw, attached to weights to stabilize his neck. His wife, Beatrice, flew in from Boston to be at his side and read him books and letters from well-wishers. Showing a few signs of recovery, his doctors put him in a body cast to prepare him for a flight home to the United States. Unfortunately, he succumbed to his paralysis and breathed his last before the move could be made.

     With the General’s passing, Beatrice had to decide where his remains would reside. She wanted the body returned to the United States and buried near their Massachusetts home. The French government, grateful for Patton’s role in liberating their country, offered to bury him in Napoleon’s tomb, where a number of great marshals were laid to rest. But at the recommendation of Major General Geoffrey Keyes, Patton’s deputy commander in North Africa and Sicily, Beatrice made up her mind. “Of course,” she declared, “he should be buried here. Why didn’t I think of it? I know George would want to lie beside the men of his Army who have fallen.” She decided her husband would be buried at the American Cemetery in Hamm, Luxembourg, which was filled with Patton’s Third Army soldiers killed during the Battle of the Bulge.

     On December 22, an Army ambulance brought Patton’s body to Villa Renier, where it would lie in state to be visited by friends, soldiers, and the general public. The next day, people lined Heidelberg’s streets (and some roofs) to watch Patton’s funeral procession on its way to the Episcopalian Christ Church. Cavalry reconnaissance vehicles led the way, followed by an Army ambulance and staff cars holding dignitaries. An M3 half-track bore Patton’s flag-draped gunmetal casket, escorted by helmeted soldiers wearing white gloves. Allied friends and acquaintances walked behind the casket. At every block, sentinels at present arms kept the crowds at bay.

     After a ceremony at the church, pallbearers placed Patton’s casket back onto the half-track for the trip to the train station. Pallbearer Master Sergeant George Meeks, Patton’s long-serving enlisted aide, could not hide his grief at losing his commander and friend. At the station, the casket was placed on a train for Luxembourg. Before it departed, seventeen Army cannons roared a salute to the fallen general.

     Upon arrival in Luxembourg, a light rain fell as the casket was brought to the cemetery on December 24, the day before Christmas. Locals removed their hats as the casket passed. A horse with boots backwards in the stirrups joined the journey to the cemetery. In the gray skies above, an aircraft circled, attempting to bring Lieutenant General Walton Walker, one of Patton’s former corps commanders, to the funeral, but low cloud cover prevented it from landing.

     Under a large tent to keep the rain away, the pall bearers placed Patton’s casket over a grave dug by German prisoners of war. Out in the rain, an honor guard fired volleys. Although there was no eulogy, various holy men, including a group of rabbis wearing their concentration camp uniforms, prayed over Patton’s grave. When a reporter asked the rabbis why they prayed for an anti-Semite, they explained that Patton’s generalship ended the war months earlier than it would have without him, thus saving the lives of thousands of concentration camp victims. The brief ceremony over, Beatrice exited the tent clasping the tri-folded flag that had covered her husband’s casket.

     Patton did not remain in his plot for long. Hordes of well-wishers tore up the cemetery grounds making the trek to his grave in the back corner. To remedy the situation, cemetery workers moved his casket to a more central location, but it was hardly the cure, as people still made a path to the grave. Finally, the general was moved to the front of the entire cemetery, where, today, patio stones protect the ground and a white chain-link barrier preserves the grass around Patton. His cross faces those of the men he led, as if he were leading them again for one last battle.

1946

Tuesday – 19th February 194613

          The 244th F.A. Battalion Was Inactivated at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey.

2c. Honorable Discharge 1 Santo Repage - 244 FAB 29-05-1946
Thursday – 26th September 1946
3b. War Dept Letter 09-26-1946 REV

1947

Thursday – 31st July 1947
          War department Letter – Capt. Joseph T. Lyons
1a. War Dept Letter 07-31-1947

1948

Monday – 2nd August 1948
        1st Lt. Marriott – Army of Occupation Medal With German Clasp Original
54a. 08-25-48 L Award -Army of Occupation Medal With German Clasp
Tuesday – 17th  August 1948
          Fire Protection Company Disability Performance Letter For VA Application
52b. 08-17-48 L Fire Protection Company Disibility Performace Letter For VA Application
Monday – 23rd August 1948
          Special Order No. 184 – Honorable Discharged From The Illinois National Guard
53b. 08-23-48 L Special Order 184 - Discharged from Illinois National Guard to AUS 10-17-42
Friday – 5th November 1948
          VA Disability Application Denial Letter
1b. 11-05-48 L VA Disibility Application Denial Letter

1949

Thursday – 10th February 1949
          Unit Assignment
55b. 02-10-49 L Unit Assignment
Thursday – 10th March 1949
6a. War Dept letter 03-10-1949
1a. 3-24-49 New York (2)
2b. 3-24-49 New York Envelope
          Army Extension Courses Application For Enrolment Form
3a. Army Extension Courses Application For Enrolment Form 1 April 1949
          Training Program For Headquy Publication ORCTP 6-160-1N
5c. Training Program For Headquy Publication ORCTP 6-160-1N

1950

Wednesday – 1st March 1950
          Certificate Of Individual Performance Of Reserve Duty
Wednesday – 2nd May 1950
          Certificate Of Individual Performance Of Reserve Duty
Saturday – 17th June 1950
        Certificate Of Individual Performance Of Reserve Duty – First Aid
Monday – 30th October 1950
      1st Lt. Hightower – Honorable Discharge

1951

1952

Friday – 7th March 1952

          The Artillery School Fort Sill – Subcourses Available

Wednesday – 7th May 1952
          Military Occupational Specialties – MOS Qualifications

Friday – 13th July 1952

          The 244th F.A. Battalion Was Allotted to the Regular Army.

Monday – 17th November 1952
          1st. Lt. Thomas B. Marriott, jr. appointed as a Reserve Commissioned Officer into Officers Reserved Corps

1953

        Headquarters Illinois National Guard,
     Navy Pier, Chicago II, Illinois
     Army Reserve Evaluation Questionnaire Program (1953)

Wednesday – 25th February 195314

          The 244th F.A. Battalion was Redesignated as the 244th Armored Field Artillery Battalion and assigned to the 10th Armored Division, Third Army Artillery – Brigadier General Edward T. Williams.

1986

2002

Wednesday – March 27th 2002 Biloxi-d’Iberville Press
          Captain Joseph T. Lyons
  1. U. S. Army Heritage and Education Center, U.S. Army Military History Institute 202-244th 1945, “History of The 244th Field Artillery Battalion During  World War II, Page 6
  2. 244th F.A. Battalion Battery HQ & Hq Morning Report
  3. 244th F.A. Battalion Battery HQ & Hq Morning Report
  4. 244th F.A. Battalion Battery HQ & Hq Morning Report
  5. 244th F.A. Battalion Battery HQ & Hq Morning Report
  6. W. U. (Doc) Savage Letter, December 15, 1949
  7. U. S. Army Heritage and Education Center, U.S. Army Military History Institute 202-244th 1945, “History of The 244th Field Artillery Battalion During  World War II, Page 6
  8. Department of The Army, USH&EC, USAMHI, 202-244th 1945, “History of The 244th Field Artillery Battalion During World War II
  9. Troop Ships Of WW II, Ronald W. Charles, The Army Transportation Association Washington, D.C., First Addition April 1947
  10. Troop Ships Of WW II, Ronald W. Charles, The Army Transportation Association Washington, D.C., First Addition April 1947
  11. Serving In Harm's Way, A Record of My Service In The U.S. Army and WWII, Byron G. Rogers jr., January 2006
  12. The National WWII Museum
  13. U.S. Army Military History Institute, James A. Sawicki - Field Artillery Battalions Of The U.S. Army Volume I, Page 440
  14. U.S. Army Military History Institute, James A. Sawicki - Field Artillery Battalions Of The U.S. Army Volume I, Page 440