tow line      tow line 2325th Glider Infantry Association

82nd Airborne Division                              

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Taps

Our Condolences to Their Families...

Editor: Please forgive the abbreviated Taps information – we did not have complete access to the latest Paraglide like we normally do. We will try to get more complete information for future Tow Lines.

Hartman, William P., Jr. - passed away July 9, 2014. William was a member of the Cleveland Chapter of the 82nd AB Association. He served with the 325 GIR from March 1942 till March 1945.

Koschal, Andrew P. - passed away March 7, 2013. Andrew served in the 325 from December, 1944 until October 1945.

Omblado, John - passed away January 23, 2013. John was a member of the Mathew B. Ridgeway Chapter of the 82nd AB Association. His dates of service were not available.

McKnight, Phillip W. - passed away at the age of 92 on 04 January 2014. Phil was a charter Member (C584) and Combat Veteran of 4 combat assaults; he entered the US Army on 15 November 1942 and served in WWII with the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment making 2 Parachute jumps (Sicily and Salerno) and then served with the 325th Glider Regiment making 2 Glider Assaults (Normandy and Holland). For over 20 years Phil was at every meeting and event that the Gateway Chapter held. Phil was also a big supporter of the St. Louis Battle of the Bulge Survivors and helped erect a monument at Jefferson Barracks historical part in St. Louis, Missouri. On June 4, 2012 Phillip's 90th birthday, the city of St. Louis proclaimed it Phillip McKnight day for all his activities during WWII and his actions at local school events. Phil was also a big draw at the local WWII re-enactor event each year held each year in St. Louis where he would tell his combat activities to the younger generation. Having lost his wife Marilee McKnight years earlier, Phil is survived by his sons Paul (Charlotte) and Tracey (Beth) McKnight. Courtesy of CSM (Ret) Frank J. Mantia, Chaiman Gateway Chapter 82nd Association.

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If you hear of any other fellow 325 vets or spouses who have passed, please pass whatever information you have along so we can keep our membership updated. Thank you!

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Letters from our friends...

FYI

On occasion we have items that don’t really fit our usual ‘Letters’ or ‘Submissions’ columns. So when that happens we will post them under For Your Information:

George Fisanich sent me an update that our good friend Herb Huebschen has moved to an assisted living facility. Herb’s new address is: Herb Huebschen, Riverside Terrace, 3055 South Riverside Drive, Beliot, WI 53511- 1553.

If you want to email Herb please send it to his son Don at: donhuebschen@@gmail.com and Don will get the emails to his father.

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Drew Paulson, grandson of PFC Leo Davis (E Co, 325) has not only joined the 325 Glider Infantry Association but he’s also joined the82nd Airborne! 2Lt Paulson is currently stationed at Ft. Bragg – while his mother continues to have her Tow Lines sent to her in Livonia, MI. I know Leo would be proud of his daughter and grandson not only staying active in the Association but also carrying-on the tradition of serving in the 82nd! Drew may be reached at the following: Drew Paulson, 1131 Pine Knoll Drive, Apt. 302, Spring Lake, NC 28390. The Association is proud of you as well, Drew!

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Speaking of which – Drew promptly sent in his $20 dues to George when he wanted to join the Association. Have you sent in your dues lately? If you have, thank you so much! If not, please consider sending a check to George – the Tow Line costs on average $200 or so to publish per edition, which runs the Association around $800 per year along with the wreaths and other 325-related events that the Association contributes to. Every little bit helps with publication and helps us to all keep in touch! Once last thing – please don’t forget to let The Glider Tow Line know when you move! Every issue we receive at least one newsletter marked "return to sender: addressee has moved" or something to that effect.

Help us keep costs down and let us know when you move so you can continue to receive your Tow Line!

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Your editor recently received a copy of a new book published just in time for the 70th Anniversary of the Normandy landings, more which will be covered later in this edition. The copy was kindly sent to me by Nicole Schiele of Zenith Press, the publisher. The Americans on D-Day was written by Martin K.A. Morgan. The book is a compilation of 450 wartime and current photographs regarding the Normandy invasion just as the title describes. The 325th Glider Infantry is represented with 9 pages containing both well-known photos and some photos I have never seen before.

D-Day

The 325 is well-covered and of course features prominently in the coverage of the attack on the La Fiere causeway. The Americans on D-Day is an over-all good photographic history which would be a welcome addition to anyone’s library. Although my copy has a price of $45 on the inside of the dust jacket, I looked this book up on Amazon just prior to writing this review and it is available for $33. You can’t go wrong for that price!

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The photograph of Fred Jaster was sent to us by his widow, Jo Jaster:

Dear Sir; by way of introduction. My membership name is Josephine S. Jaster, 3518NW Shoreview Loop, Waldport, OR 97394. My husband was Fred Jaster, 82nd Airborne, 325 Glider Infantry, Inducted at Indiantown Gap, in 1942, I believe it was March 26 or thereabouts. Then he did Basic in Alexandria, Camp Claiborne, Louisiana. I visited him there that year and went to work at Esler Field.

And when the young men became finished with their basic training they were sent to Ft Bragg, North Carolina for Glider training. A place called Maxton Air Base. I wish I’d kept notes of all the places he was sent to, we tried to see each other between different training. He left for Europe on the Elisabeth and came home on the Augusta.

He was a wonderful correspondent, most about a caterpillar that lived in his pocket, he called it Algernon. It was through the life of his pocket companion that I sort of kept in touch. When Fred was out of the country, I stayed just long enough to put fuel in our car and drive back to Ohio and resume my work as a dental Tech. That’s the work I did at Fort Bragg Hospital too, But that’s my story and not Fred’s. I recall writing to George Fisanich and to the Ko fellow when Fred passed away.

Then just yesterday I was deciding it was time to make things simpler for my family by tossing and shredding and you did say the numbers by which we are losing our veterans from WW II, and in the box with Fred’s memorabilia was this fading photo taken in Louisiana and written on the back was the last name of the members. About that time the trainees were informed that henceforth they were 82nd Airborne and would be sent East for Glider Training, I was standing in the field with the soldiers, they were excited, cheering – didn’t they know there was no motor on a glider, and they stayed with the plane till it was stopped. Ground, lake, tree, fence. They were young...

I have correspondence from Fred, Big Box, and photos, some have names on the back, I can’t shred those, Anyway the group photo was printed for me at our one village SKINNY advertising print shop, the last names of the young men, It was taken at Camp Claiborne, I recognize several men and last names. Well if you can’t use the photo, please don’t throw it away. The civilian techs wore the blue uniform and carried an I.D., I was a civil Service employee. I worked with 1O1st Paratroops, They were my brothers - I felt safe.

Of course I responded to Josephine:

Ma'am,

I am so happy to hear from you. PLEASE do not throw any wartime items away - I will buy them all from you if you can't decide what to do with them. I am thrilled to hear of the photo - rest assured I will never throw it away. Every 325 item I own will eventually be donated to the 82nd Airborne Museum at Fort Bragg. Your story of Fred and yours wartime experiences and relationship is touching - and should be remembered.

You're right - they were so young and had their whole lives ahead of them. Some were cut tragically short - others have lived long and happy lives well deserved. I can only do my part to make sure they are never forgotten...

I called the other night and will try to call again soon. I would love to hear more and perhaps acquire more photos if you have them.

Thank you again,

rick erny

In addition to the photo of Fred on our cover page Josephine kindly sent me copies of a number of other photos, including herself:

Jo Elser

‘Jo’ Jaster - Elser Field, Louisiana

And amongst other photos Fred took is a series of 37mm anti-tank gun training:

training

training2

training3

I believe by the time the 325 deployed overseas the anti-tank units would have used 57mm guns (copied from the British 6-pounder AT gun). However, they might have had them at the time of the Torch landings in North Africa. Let’s hear from our vets – do any of you remember when the 325 switched from 37 to 57mm guns?

And a huge THANK YOU to Josephine for sending and sharing Fred’s photos with us! As soon as I find a scanner big enough the company photo will be appearing in a future Tow Line! Thanks again Josephine!

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If you hear of any other fellow 325 vets or spouses who have passed, please share with us whatever information you have so we can allow our fellow members updated.     Thank you!

Letters and questions can be sent to:

Richard C. Erny

8030 Clayburn Court

Indianapolis, IN 46268

(317) 228-9141

erny325@sbcglobal.net