My WWI Grandfather

My WWI Grandfather

This is a discussion on My WWI Grandfather within the Bob & Terry's Place forums, part of the The Back Porch category; While reading other posts of the WWII vets, I wanted to pass this along, hope it's ok to do so. I just realized that my ...

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Thread: My WWI Grandfather

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array JoJoGunn's Avatar
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    My WWI Grandfather

    While reading other posts of the WWII vets, I wanted to pass this along, hope it's ok to do so.

    I just realized that my Paternal Grandfather's birthday had passed. He was born 4 Apr. 1897 in Wythe Co VA.

    He left the farm home according to himself at "9 years old with everything I owned in a shoe box", but I believe he was about 13 at the time.

    He ended up in Iowa, working on sheep farms until the U.S. entered WWI, when he lied about his age (a day or two short of 21) and joined the Army.

    He made it through basic, ended up riding a motorcycle as a dispatcher in the 3rd Division as well as driving troop trucks, and ambulances. Granddad was in some major battles, Chateau-Thierry, Belleau Wood and the Second Battle of the Marne. He told me many stories. After the war, he was in the Army of Occupation stationed in Germany.

    Granddad came home in Dec. 1919 and began the marriage, raising family thing, finally leaving Wythe Co VA and settled in Huntington, WV.

    Granddad lived a block from me as a kid, and I would walk over to visit. He had his complete WWI Doughboy uniform from the steel Brit style helmet all the way down to the leggins and boots. On Memorial Day and back then "Armistice Day" he would put on that uniform and attend services at local cemeteries to honor all U.S. war dead. I would dress up in a "uniform" and go with him, I was about 9 or 10. My job was to walk to each white cross, with M1 Garand and bayonet stuck in the ground with a chrome helmet placed over the butt end and lay the little paper poppies the local VFW distributed at each cross, while Granddad tearfully recited the poem "In Flanders Fields." Then I would stand at attention, throw my hand up in a "salute" and listen for the crack of the Garands as they fired the salute. Sweet memories I tell you, sweet, even though my eyes get a bit misty when writing this.

    Granddad died in Feb. 1988, I miss him, but cherish the moments.
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    Thanks for sharing Your story.

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    VIP Member Array JAT40's Avatar
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    Thanks to you his memory lives on, it's good to cherish the moments.
    We have to continue to keep this country great for the sake of or children. Just like your Granddad did for you! Never give up the fight, thanks for sharing.
    While people are saying "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, ... and they will not escape. 1Th 5:3

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    Senior Member Array CR2008's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoJoGunn View Post
    While reading other posts of the WWII vets, I wanted to pass this along, hope it's ok to do so.

    I just realized that my Paternal Grandfather's birthday had passed. He was born 4 Apr. 1897 in Wythe Co VA.

    He left the farm home according to himself at "9 years old with everything I owned in a shoe box", but I believe he was about 13 at the time.

    He ended up in Iowa, working on sheep farms until the U.S. entered WWI, when he lied about his age (a day or two short of 21) and joined the Army.

    He made it through basic, ended up riding a motorcycle as a dispatcher in the 3rd Division as well as driving troop trucks, and ambulances. Granddad was in some major battles, Chateau-Thierry, Belleau Wood and the Second Battle of the Marne. He told me many stories. After the war, he was in the Army of Occupation stationed in Germany.

    Granddad came home in Dec. 1919 and began the marriage, raising family thing, finally leaving Wythe Co VA and settled in Huntington, WV.

    Granddad lived a block from me as a kid, and I would walk over to visit. He had his complete WWI Doughboy uniform from the steel Brit style helmet all the way down to the leggins and boots. On Memorial Day and back then "Armistice Day" he would put on that uniform and attend services at local cemeteries to honor all U.S. war dead. I would dress up in a "uniform" and go with him, I was about 9 or 10. My job was to walk to each white cross, with M1 Garand and bayonet stuck in the ground with a chrome helmet placed over the butt end and lay the little paper poppies the local VFW distributed at each cross, while Granddad tearfully recited the poem "In Flanders Fields." Then I would stand at attention, throw my hand up in a "salute" and listen for the crack of the Garands as they fired the salute. Sweet memories I tell you, sweet, even though my eyes get a bit misty when writing this.

    Granddad died in Feb. 1988, I miss him, but cherish the moments.
    Thanks for sharing, I never knew my great grand father, only have seen a picture of him when he was over Egypt before WW1, and then he went to Europe to fight the Germans for the British (Jamaica was a colony of Great Briton), my grand dad said his father was a medic and sadly he died in 1975 when he slipped from some steps and broke his neck, wish I got a chance to know him.
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    Member Array rhunt's Avatar
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    It's great to hear stories like this. Both my grandfathers fought in WWII. One in the Navy and one in the Army. It gives me great pride to tell the stories that they told me of their experiences in the great war to my daughters, one of which is 18 now. My mom's dad passed away in 1998, but I will never forget staying up nights talking to him about fighting the germans in WW2 (the tank he was in was blown upside down when it ran over a land mine the day after the germans surrendered to the russians) . My Dad's father was on the destroyer USS Pringle that was sunk by a kamikaze near Okinawa. I still talk to him about the war (he's 84 now). WWI was a little too far before my time to know any people that were in it, but like the people who served in WWII "what great Americans". Seems like a better time (more loyal to the US).

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    Member Array dudester's Avatar
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    Happy Birthday Granddad.

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    Thank you for sharing!


    The tyrant dies and his rule is over, the martyr dies and his rule begins. ― The Journals of Kierkegaard

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    VIP Member Array crzy4guns's Avatar
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    Your story struck a chord with me. My paternal grand father was a WWI vet and one of the last cavalry soldiers in the Army. He often told us that his horse was watered and rested before he even drank from his canteen. He, like your grandfather, was also in France and in some of the battles that took place there at the time. My grandfather passed away in 1975 and is buried at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas.
    God bless our troops!

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    Great story, thanks for sharing~!

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