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Avalon, California
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September 22, 2017     The Catalina Islander
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September 22, 2017
 

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Combat From page 12 convoy within the next two days. Another situation occurred when we were disembarking from another ship. In Naples, Italy, we were near- ly strafed by two German fighter planes. Fortunately, two Italian stu- dents guided us down into the basement of their college build- ing which was also used as a bomb shelter. My earliest battle began as our crew of seven men laid many miles of communications wire across many parts of Southern Italy. We were exposed to enemy shrapnel even when our crew had to go out many nights in pitch-black darkness to find the damaged wires and repair or replace some of the wire. Communications are an absolute and integral necessity to all units of any organization. Our 938th Field Artillery Battalion consisted of three "Firing Batteries," which fired a six-inch diameter, 155 mm artillery shell through a long tube to destroy a selected tar- get. Each battalion also included a Headquarters Battery, a Fire Control Battery, etc. Our battalion was an artillery unit not directly connected to any specific Infantry Division, but when the 45th, 3rd, and/or the 36th Division(s) were ordered to advance against the enemy, . our 938th supplied the additional firepower. In Italy, we were all part of the Fifth Army. Combined with our Allies, at times, we fought our way up to Mont Casino but the German Army had so well pro- tected themselves that we could only advance a few thousand yards in a month or so. To overcome the enemy, an amphibious beachhead landing was established in January 1944, to come up behind the enemy forces. Our 938th went ashore at H+4 on Jan. 28. ("H+4" meant our landing was four hours after the paratroopers went in.) Our surprise landing had caught the enemy completely off guard. A few days later, the enemy brought in more of their troops to take the high ground, which created a very difficult defensive position for us. Both sides fought so vigor- ously, especially during the 75 to 80 hours when the Germans were determined to drive us off the beachhead, back into the ocean. We counter-attacked relent- lessly, and eventually went on the offense and fought our way all the way until we liberated Rome on June 4, 1944. Away from war acti~,ities, we were allowed time to visit the ruins of the Coliseum. Also, we observed the inte- rior of St. Peter's Cathedral and climbed the winding staircase to the Dome at the top of the Cathedral. One of the Catholic bish- ops told us we were able to see objects as far away as eighty miles through the peep-holes in the Dome. My buddies and I vis- ited many other historical sites in and around Rome. A few days later we were back into training for another amphibious landing "somewhere." Bill Thomas of Rowntree Gardens in Stanton, California. He is a Veteran of World War 11, and Past Commander of VFW Post 4048, and American Legion Post 85Z Contact Bill by email at vvbthomasvets@gmail.com. Half-ton silicon bronze slotJflathead wood screws from #20 .................... :... $5/Ib. Two tons Stainless Steel 304 & 316 Screws-nuts-bolts-washers, U-sort....$511b. Half ton SS & Bronze used turnbuckles, toggles, etc. U-sort. ...................... $1/lb. One ton.used galvanized steel Danforlh anchors to 200 pounds ................. $11ib. Misc. fiat top sheet winches, MerrimanlBarlow, etc. Parts too! .................... $2/Ib. 500 Kevlar/Carbon fiber racing sails ................ 33% OFF Mr mllsitllmMllwylll 200 symmetrical spinnakers (both luffs the same) 33% OFF Imr, klVlallerllll Two tons new surplus solid core braid, various sizes & colors .................... $2/Ib. These prices good thru Janua7 1, 2018 Qr stock on hand is SOLD B R.A,N D A.PPAR EL PROTECTION 1500 New )ort BlVd. Costa Mesa CA 92627 (949) 548-4192 ~ fax (949) 148-1075 o m in neys @ aol.com 100-Ton USCG License cuptdnvaughndlen@gmail.com 310"505-8146 - Serving All of Sotrther, ~lifornkl .OM VINI) .. ~i. 7 CIMC's Emergency Department is rated one of the best experiences for patients in the United States. FALLPROOF SPECIALIST Safety Installations & Handyman Services ALLEN LAMBERT 0 wn e flirts taller 657-237-501 4 Em3iI: FallProof y,~tToo.con7 EXCELLENT CIMC's ER team is consistently rated highest by patients for prompt service, professionalism, communication, concern and compassionate care. Catalina SHORT SLEEVE OR LONG free delivery in southem califomia September 23 through September 28 Shows Nightly at 7:30 Rated R Admission:Addt $15.00 Senior & Child $13.00 Every Tuesday $10.00 Admission For More Information Call 310-510-0179 THE CATAUNA ISLANDER Friday, Sept. 22, 2017 i 15