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Military History/Grandfathers service in WW 2


QUESTION: Hello Mr. Horrell,
    Thank you for all your hard work on finding information about our family members that served in WWII. I just have a couple questions. My grandfather served in the 352nd QM Railhead Co. I would like to find out more information concerning him.  He passed away over 25 years ago and I was to young and didn’t get the chance to talk to him about his service.

•   What troop ship did he take heading over to England?
On his honorable discharge paper (WD AGO Form 53-55) it says in box #36:
       Departed      Arrived
  30 May 44      ETO      5 Jun 44
       30 Nov 45       US   19 Dec 45

•   On his discharge form in box #32 it says he was in the Normandy, Northern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe campaigns.  During these campaigns was he attached to other army’s/divisions/units and supplied them?
I did find a V-Mail with APO 403 on it.

I thank you for any information you can find about my grandfather. I’m putting together a scrapbook for my mom for her fathers WWII service.  

  Have a great day.

All the Best,

Ryan Jones

ANSWER: Dear Sir,
       Thank you for your question.  In it you typed "What troop ship did he take over to England?"

Departure Date:   May 30, 1944
Departure Location:   New York Port of Embarkation
Troop Ship:   RMS Queen Elizabeth
Arrival Date:   June 5, 1944
Arrival Location:   Gourock, Scotland
    13,125 Troops onboard

As to your grandfather's voyage home, I do not have the FACT you desire.  For me to provice the FACT of a troop ship voyage, I require three different sources, one of them a Primary Source.  What I am about to share with you does NOT meet my criteria, so please understand the context of my answer.  Departing Le Havre, France, the SS Richard Rush arrived at the New York Port of Embarkation December 19, 1945.  You typed "I can find the ship he came back to the US on with the 310th FA".  What troop ship is that?  What are your sources for your reply?
       In your question you typed "During these campaigns was he.......with APO 403 on it."  Your grandfather was assigned [assigned] to the 352nd QM Railhead Company during the Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace & Central Europe Campaigns.  During those campaigns, the 352nd was assigned [assigned] to Third Army, commanded by General George S. Patton, Jr.  During the spring of 1945, the 352nd was briefly attached [attached] to XII Corps, which was assigned [assigned] at that time to Third Army.
       Good Luck with your quest.

   Richard V. Horrell
    WW 2 Connections

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Dear Mr. Horrell,
  Thank you so much for the information you relayed to me concerning my grandfathers WWII service.  Having the troop ship he arrived in Europe with is a great addition to my timeline of his service.  
  You asked what ship I determined he came home on and my sources for that information.  How I determined that was I found a few newspapers that mentioned troops arriving home and had the 310th Field Artillery Battalion listed.

December 18, 1945
The Daily Free Press from Carbondale, Illinois ·
Scheduled to arrive:
Payne Wingate from Marseilles, 566 troops including 310th Field Artillery Battalion.

December 19, 1945
The Troy Record from Troy, New York
Payne Wingate from Marseilles, 566 troops, including 310th Field Artillery Battalion.

December 18, 1945
Freeport Daily Review (Nassau Daily Review)
Payne Wingate from Marseilles, 566 troops including 310th field
artillery battalion; miscellaneous troops on following—

  Not sure how accurate these reports are but the dates line up to his discharge paper. Also I think the liberty ship is spelled Paine not Payne. Not sure if that matters or not.

  You mentioned he was assigned to Patton’s Third Army throughout the war.  Is there a way to find out more about the 352nd QM Railhead Co. or is it a smaller Company, that finding records for it would be impossible?  Or would my best bet be to find a book on the Third Army during WWII and get some basic information from there?  Just curious on your opinion on what my next step is in detailing his WWII service.
  Thank you for all your help.

All the Best,

Ryan Jones

Dear Sir,
       Thank you for your follow-up.  I have the SS Paine Wingate arriving at the New York Port of Embarkation on December 17, 1945.  Newspapers are not the best Primary Source, but an adequate source to corroborate other sources.
       In your question you typed "Is there a way to.......for it would be impossible?"  I suggest you contact:

US Army Heritage & Education Center
950 Soldiers Drive
 Carlisle   PA   17013

for the unit records of the 352nd QM Railhead Company.
       In your question you typed "would my best bet be.......basic information from there?"  Any & every source, as long as it is FACT-BASED, is a "best bet".
       Good Luck with your quest.

   Richard V. Horrell
    WW 2 Connections  

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Richard V. Horrell


Can answer: World War Two. Specifically, the troop transport ships that took US Military Personnel overseas & returned them to the US, 1941-47. Also, unit history of US Army QM, Signal, MP, Ordnance, Medical, Transportation & Engineer units that served during WW 2. The more obscure units are my specialty. If you have the APO that a Veteran sent letters from or received letters at, I can look up the history of that APO.


A lifelong study of WW 2, including participation as a WW 2 Re-enactor, 1980-2002. Also, interviewing over 400 WW 2 Veterans about their role in WW 2.

AASLH, Middle Tennessee Genealogical Society

Over 800 Profiles that I have written for client's about their loved one's role in WW 2.

BA, History & Political Science (19th & 20th Century European History) Webster University, Webster Groves, MO.

Awards and Honors
Assisting the National Archives on numerous occasions during the 50th Anniversary Commemoration of WW 2, 1991-95.

Past/Present Clients
Respectfully, I do not disclose the names of the clients I deal with. I have a confidentially agreement with them.

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