Sunday, November 29, 2015

Order for Shipment

My great-uncle was killed in action during World War II on 22 July 1944.  He was buried in an individual grave, uncasketed and in a poncho, in Guam No. 2 Cemetery, Plot C, Row 2, Grave 10.

The job of the Effects Quartermaster was to receive and safeguard thousands of' packages of personal property until they could be returned to the owner or forwarded to the Army Effects Bureau for disposition.  When a soldier became a casualty (either deceased, hospitalized, captured, interned, or missing), his unit commander collected all personal property, inventoried it, removed government property, and forwarded all the personal items to Q-290, marked with the owner's identification and status.  If the owner was deceased, the property was documented and forwarded immediately to Army Effects Bureau for transmission to the next of kin.

The detail involved in receiving, storing, safeguarding, and shipping personal property was immense.  Each package was handled separately in order that the name, status, and other pertinent data would be correctly recorded.

These are two different copies of an Order for Shipment that details my great-uncle's personal property that shipped to my great-grandparents.  There was one package that contained a water-soaked, moldy and rusty bag.  The personal items included a broken rosary and $4.07.









Monday, November 23, 2015

Photo of the Day

This is a photo of my maternal grandparents taken in 1963 in New Jersey.

Kathryn Bunting Branyan (1915 - 1998)
Paul Branyan, Sr. (1917 - 1986)

Friday, November 20, 2015

Battle Casualty Report

My great-uncle was killed in action during World War II on 22 July 1944.  He was buried in an individual grave, uncasketed and in a poncho, in Guam No. 2 Cemetery, Plot C, Row 2, Grave 10.

During and after World War II the Graves Registration Service was responsible for the identification and proper burial of American servicemen who died overseas. Policies governing this work were set by The Quartermaster General. The service was responsible for the identification and burial of all Army, Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard personnel who lost their lives as the result of service outside the continental United States. The American Graves Registration Service took charge of the remains and cemeteries.

After World War II, the U.S. Graves Registration Service began contacting the families of those who died overseas, giving them the option of having their soldier buried in a U.S. cemetery overseas or brought home.

This is a copy of the Battle Casualty report that was filed for my great-uncle.  It listed my great-grandmother as the Emergency Addressee.



Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Photo of the Day

This is a photo of my great-grandfather taken on Christmas Day 1971.  He is opening presents in his eldest daughter's living room in Wilmington Manor, Delaware.  He was 75 years old.

Hayward LeGates
1896 - 1978

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Report of Interment

My great-uncle was killed in action during World War II on 22 July 1944.  He was buried in an individual grave, uncasketed and in a poncho, in Guam No. 2 Cemetery, Plot C, Row 2, Grave 10.

During and after World War II the Graves Registration Service was responsible for the identification and proper burial of American servicemen who died overseas. Policies governing this work were set by The Quartermaster General. The service was responsible for the identification and burial of all Army, Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard personnel who lost their lives as the result of service outside the continental United States. The American Graves Registration Service took charge of the remains and cemeteries.

After World War II, the U.S. Graves Registration Service began contacting the families of those who died overseas, giving them the option of having their soldier buried in a U.S. cemetery overseas or brought home.

These are two copies of the same form, filed on different dates.  According to these forms my great-uncle's grave was marked with a cross and identification tags were buried with his body and attached to the grave marker.  On the form that was filed on 27 January 1945, it mentions a personal letter dated 17 March 1945.  Was this used as a form of identification?  Who wrote the letter?  On that same form, 23 July 1944 was used as the date of death and then corrected to 22 July 1944.  The forms  state the names of the two soldiers buried beside him.  On his right in grave number 11, James W. Beatty, and on his left in grave number 9, George Daniels.  The personal effects that were found on my great-uncle's body were two keys, one billfold, miscellaneous papers, and $4.07 (about $55.05 today).





Thursday, November 12, 2015

Photo of the Day

This is a photo of my great-grandmother taken outside of her home in Trenton, New Jersey in 1942.  She would have been about 53 years old.

Margaret McCartan Bunting

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Report of Death

During World War II, my great-uncle's division left Oahu and arrived in Eniwetok in the Marshall Islands by 1 July 1944.  He moved from Eniwetok on 18 July, aboard the transports of the Southern Attack Force, to arrive off Guam the morning of 21 July.  During his travels he was probably given last minute instructions and gave his weapon a last check as he prepared to disembark.

The battle began in the early morning hours of 21 July.  My great-uncle's division was called in for support that night and he was killed in the battle the following day.

In his Individual Personnel Death File (IPDF) there were three different Report of Death forms.  They all include basically the same information, but were filed on different dates.




Saturday, November 7, 2015

Photo of the Day

This is a photo of my aunt (age 14) and my uncle (age 10) taken at a beach in Delaware in the summer of 1965.

Diane Odgers (1951 - 2002)
James Odgers (1954 - 2007)

Friday, November 6, 2015

29 October 1946 Letter

My great-uncle was killed in action during World War II on 22 July 1944.  He was buried in an individual grave, uncasketed and in a poncho, in Guam No. 2 Cemetery, Plot C, Row 2, Grave 10.

During and after World War II the Graves Registration Service was responsible for the identification and proper burial of American servicemen who died overseas. Policies governing this work were set by The Quartermaster General. The service was responsible for the identification and burial of all Army, Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard personnel who lost their lives as the result of service outside the continental United States. The American Graves Registration Service took charge of the remains and cemeteries.

After World War II, the U.S. Graves Registration Service began contacting the families of those who died overseas, giving them the option of having their soldier buried in a U.S. cemetery overseas or brought home.

This is a letter from the Quarter Master General's office informing my great-grandparents they would be receiving information at a later date regarding the final interment of my great-uncle.  It makes me wonder if this was the first time my great-grandparents learned of where their son had been interred after he was killed in action.



Physician's Affidavit of March 30, 1893

This Physician's Affidavit is part of my 3rd great-grandfather's Civil War Pension File.  It was filed on March 30, 1893.  It was 28...