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Military History/3044 grave registration co

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QUESTION: Dear Sir,
My Father served with the 3044 Grave Registration Co in Italy during WWII and I've been trying to research his Army past. Unfortunately his Army records were destroyed in a fire in 1973 and although I've been researching different military sites on the internet for the past two years,and anything that I could find, was mostly vague information on the 3044 Grave Registration Co. If at all possible, could you help me in finding information on the history of his unit, such as when it was formed and where it operated in Italy,along with anything else you can tell me about it.
Thank You for your time,
Terry Hogan

ANSWER: Good Day,
       Thank you for your question.  In it you typed "My Father served with the 3044 Grave Registration Co in Italy".  Would you be so kind as to share with me your source that your father was assigned [assigned] to the 3044th QM Graves Registration Company prior to May 8, 1945?
       In your question you typed "his Army records were destroyed in a fire in 1973".  In St. Louis, Missouri, your father's personnel file.  However, the unit records of the 3044th QM Graves Registration Company are intact, archived at Carlisle, Pennsylvania.  Maybe a road trip is in your near future?
       In your question you typed "on the internet".  If you desire information about your father's role in WW 2 or the 3044th QM Graves Registration Company, "the internet" seems to be adequate.  HOWEVER, if you desire FACTS, then I would suggest published sources, since published sources have editors to check for factual content.  The internet has no one to check for factual content.
       In your question you typed "finding information on the history of his unit".  It would be my pleause, as soon as I am sure that the unit your father was assigned [assigned] to prior to May 8, 1945 was the 3044th QM Graves Registration Company.
       The 3044th QM Graves Registration Company was assigned [assigned] to the Peninsular Base Section while in Italy.  The PBS was the Logistical Support Entity for Fifth Army upon the Italian Peninsula, September 1943-May 1945.  The 3044th QM Graves Registration Company was awarded a Meritorious Unit Commendation for the period August 18, 1944-May 19, 1945.  General Order Number 189, HQ, Peninsular Base Section, awarded July 10, 1945.
       Would you be so kind as to share with me ALL THE FACTS typed in Box #6, #32, #33 & #36 on page two of your father's Discharge Documents (WD AGO Form 53-55)?
       Good Luck with your quest.

  Respectfully,
   Richard V. Horrell
    WW 2 Connections

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

QUESTION: Dear Mr.Horrell,
Thank You so much for you quick response and taking the time to helping me in my quest.
In answer to your Questions:
Block #6 reads  3044th QM GR Co
Block #32 reads  GO 33 & GO 40 WD45  Rome-Arno
Block #33 reads  Good Conduct, EAME thr Service Medal,W-1 Bronze Star and
         Victory Medal
Block #36reads  8 Feb 43 ETO 21 Feb 43
         19 Oct 45 US  19 Nov 45
I hope that these answers above, answeres your questions, and please let me know if there is any other questions you may have.
Again Sir, I can't thank you enough for the help!!!
Terry Hogan

ANSWER: Good Day,
       Thank you for your follow-up.  In it you typed "Block #6 reads  3044th QM GR Co".  The content of Box #6 is the unit the Veteran was assigned [assigned] to when the Veteran was discharged from the US Army.  Sometimes it is the unit the Veteran was assigned [assigned] to prior to May 8, 1945, sometimes it is not.  In the case of your father, the 3044th QM Graves Registration Company was NOT the unit he was assigned [assigned] to prior to May 8, 1945.  Please read on & I will explain how the FACTS support that statement.
       In your follow-up you typed "Block #32 reads  GO 33 & GO 40 WD45 Rome-Arno" (General Order Number 33 and General Order Number 40, War Department dated 1945).  Your father participated in the Rome-Arno CAMPAIGN (January 22-September 9, 1944) yet the 3044th participated in no CAMPAIGNS.  Therefore, your father had to of been assigned [assigned] to a different unit prior to May 8, 1945 for him to have received a CAMPAIGN Credit, while the 3044th received no CAMPAIGN Credit.
       In your follow-up you typed "Block #33 reads.......and Victory Medal".  The "1 Bronze Star" (actually, a Bronze CAMPAIGN Star) indicated the Rome-Arno CAMPAIGN that your father participated in.
       In your follow-up you typed "Block #36reads 8 Feb 43 ETO 21 Feb 43".  The USAHT Acadia, USS Florence Nightingale  AP-70, USS Lyon  AP-71 & the USS Thurston  AP-77 departed the Hampton Roads, VA Port of Embarkation, while the USS Lakehurst  APM-9 & the USS Susan B. Anthony  AP-72  departed the New York Port of Embarkation, ALL on February 8, 1943.  Via the Straits of Gibraltar, all six vessels arrived at Oran, Algeria, North Africa February 21, 1943.  Your father was a passenger upon one of these six vessels.
       In your follow-up you typed "19 Oct 45 US 19 Nov 45".  With all due respect, there is an error with the dates.  It would not have taken one month to travel from the ETO (European Theater of Operation) to an East Coast Port of Embarkation.
       As to trying to determine the unit your father was assigned [assigned] to prior to May 8, 1945, have you any of your father's wartime correspondence?  You do not need the letter, but the envelope.  Depending upon who wrote the letter, the unit appears in the address or the return address.
       Good Luck with your quest.

  Respectfully,
   Richard V. Horrell
    WW 2 Connections

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

QUESTION: Dear Mr. Horrell,
In answer to your question as to my family having an envelope of my Fathers war correspondence unfortunately, when my Father passed away in 1988 my Mother without saying anything threw away all but a few small things of my Father Army past.
In regards to the questions, you presented with conflicting information on my Father discharge. My Father spoke very little of his Army past. Certain things that I do know at least according to him are, while in North Africa after he first got there he was assigned to some part of the 1st Army Division and then at some point in North Africa he was moved from being attached with the 1st Army Division and moved into the 45th Infantry Division.  He also made claims as to that he helped train troops of the 45th Division before the invasion of Sicily. He always claimed as being part of one of the 45th Division infantry unit but never mentioned which one. According to him after Sicily, he crossed the Strait of Messina into Italy and while in Italy fought in the battle of Salerno, went to Monte Carlo but was only there  as  reserve unit and was pulled out and sent to Anzio and then fought in the battle for Rome. He had a scrapbook of pictures and in one particular picture; it showed him sitting inside the barrel of a huge cannon on a railroad flat car he called Anzio Anne.
After the fall of Rome in 1944 and there are two different stories as to why, he stayed in Rome and didnít move on with the 45th into France with the 45th
One: he was court marshaled and was later found innocent of all charges, and Two; he was placed in an Army Hospital for battle fatigue and after being released, he was attached to the 3044 GR Co. My family has a notebook he carried with him containing notes he wrote on bodies he found and a copy of a Stars and Stripes magazine that contains an article about Grave Registrations in which the article included a picture of him.



He also traveled to North Africa aboard the ship called the Florence Nightingale.
The reason I am trying to research his past to find out more than I know, is I had questions as to why if he was with an infantry company, why he was not awarded a Combat Infantry Badge and then questioned if he just traveled with the 45th Division in a Grave Registration Co.
Do you need to have been in actual combat to receive Campaign metals?
Again, Mr. Horrell I cannot thank you enough for you taking the time in efforts to help me and want to express to you that the information you supplied has meant a lot to me!!!!!
Terry Hogan

Answer
Good Day,
       Thank you for your follow-up.  In it you typed "assigned to some part of the 1st Army Division".  Respectfully, it would have been either the 1st Infantry Division or the 1st Armored Division.
       In your follow-up you typed "moved into the 45th Infantry Division."  The 45th Infantry Division (National Guard) began arriving in North Africa June 22, 1943.  The 45th Infantry Division made an amphibious assault at Sicily, July 10, 1943.
       In your follow-up you typed "he crossed the Strait of Messina into Italy".  VERY few US Military Personnel entered Italy via the Straits of Messina.  
       In your follow-up you typed "Monte Carlo".  With all due respect, I believe the location your father was referring to was Monte Cassino.
       In your follow-up you typed "sent to Anzio".  Yes, the 45th Infantry Division was "sent to Anzio" arriving January 22, 1944.
       In your follow-up you typed "the battle for Rome."  Yes he did, entering The Eternal City Sunday, June 4, 1944.
       In your follow-up you typed "sitting inside the barrel of a huge cannon on a railroad flat car he called Anzio Anne."  It must have been "THE THING" to do in June 1944, I have a photograph of my father laying feet first in the breech of Anzio Anne!!!  Small World.
       In your follow-up you typed "He also traveled to North Africa aboard the ship called the Florence Nightingale."  I am so, so pleased to read that you have the FACTS as per the USS Florence Nightingale  AP-70.  Would you care to comment as per my question about your father's voyage home, "19 Oct 45 US  19 Nov 45"?
       In your follow-up you typed "Combat Infantry Badge".  From what you have typed, your father was certainly entitled to a Combat Infantryman Badge.  The unit records of the 45th Infantry Division would certainly have the record of your father being awarded his C.I.B., most likely in late August or September 1943.
       In your follow-up you typed "Do you need to have been in actual combat to receive Campaign metals [sic]?"  No, one only needs to have participated in a Campaign to be creditted with participation, as well as to have a Bronze Campaign Star placed upon the soldier's Campaign Ribbon.
       In your question of July 19, 2015 you typed "his Army records were destroyed in a fire in 1973".  Did you actually attempt to obtain your father's personnel file, or were you just typing what you have been told.  Approximately 15% of the personnel files were not destroyed.  I inform everyone to submit a request, someone has to be in the LUCKY 15%!!!

  National Personnel Records Center
   1 Archives Drive
    St. Louis   MO   63138

Please remember, said address is for a personnel file, Carlisle   PA is the location for the unit records.
       Good Luck with your quest.

  Respectfully,
   Richard V. Horrell
    WW 2 Connections  

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Richard V. Horrell

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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.

Experience

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.

Organizations
AASLH, Middle Tennessee Genealogical Society

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

Education/Credentials
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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