David - Thank you for the post. The information you provided was helpful. What I know about my father and the 106th ID and the 159th IR I stumbled across when I got a copy of the Daily Journal of the Headquarters 6951 PWTE between April 18 1945 and June 21 1945 when the Remagen (A2) camp was closed. In the reports the 159th was referenced repeatedly and there was a reference that the camp was assigned to the 106th ID. In other materials I found the 159th IR was a "non-divisional" regiment assigned to go where and when needed. It was, as you said, assigned to the 106th ID to replace one of its lost regiments.
My father was in England at Burtonwood Base repairing aircraft engines until early March 1945 (based on a photo dated March 7). It is my assumption at this point that as the demand for mechanics was being reduced in early 1945 he became one of those soldiers that was sent as replacements for infantry units. I recall hearing from him that he was in France, Belgium and Germany at different times. I have a photo of him at the motor pool office at the 6951 PWTE. That camp existed from April to July 1945.
My father received the Central Europe Campaign medal and the Army of Occupation/Germany medal.
The interesting thing for me is that I can not find written documentation that my father with the 106th or the 159th....only the photograph puts him where they were. Also, the photo identifies a Lieutenant Woolsey and 2 German PoWs who were also mentioned in the 6951 PWTE Daily Operations reports!
My father was discharged twice. The first was November 20, 1945 at Cmp Phillip Morris France. His papers indicate that he was a Sgt., 69th Amphibian Tractor Bn at the time! He re-enlisted the same day and returned to the U.S. in late December. His final discharge is dated August 20 1946 at Ft. Sheridan Illinois.
Incidentally, I tried to research the 159th and actually talked to the widow of the gentleman who was in charge of that association. However, her husband was with the 159th when it was in the Aleutians and then transferred to Europe. He was out before they were in Germany.
There are so many other mysteries...My father had in his personal effects a Combat Infantry Badge, but it was not listed on his paperwork. I have been told by WWII vets that paperwork was notoriously incomplete or inaccurate, but the guys did not care at the time...they only wanted the signature of the right people on the right page to get their discharges! Consequently not everything was recorded. Actually, there is no "official" record of my father's time with the 8th AAF in England...I have photographs and newspaper clippings..but not a thing on "offical" paper! Also, for what it is worth, my father's first discharge was signed by Col Lawrence Smith (14th Cav). His 2nd discharge was signed by a Major Earl Bender.
I think it is very interesting that your dad and mine were serving during the same period of time with the same unit or may have had some very similar connections to the same unit(s). What did your dad do with the 159th? Incidentally, I wrote the Ca State Military Museum, but did not get anything of value from them.
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