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Infantry Division
Historical Society
general malony Major General
Harry J. Malony
Commanding General 
94th Infantry Division
9/15/1942 - 5/21/1945
TAPS 2017
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Passing of RICHARD J. FABER, JR.  A/376 Inf

91 of Lancaster, died on Monday, February 27, 2017 at Arbor View at Willow Valley Communities.

Born in Philadelphia, he was the son of the late Richard J., Sr., and Loretta Leonard Faber. He was the husband of the late Nancy H. Ferber Faber. Survivors include his children; Jane "Terri", wife of Edward "Butch" Wilson, II of High Point, NC and Ann, wife of Tim Malinak of Mechanicsburg, PA; grand-children, Lynn Malinak, Eric husband of Nicki Malinak and Edward "Chuck" Wilson, III; and a great granddaughter Maelynn Malinak. Interment will be private and at the convenience of the family at the burial grounds of Abington Meeting of the Society of Friends, Jenkintown, PA. 

Leon Pate Johnson

Col. Leon Pate Johnson, U.S. Army retired, died May 12, 2008, at Fort Walton Beach Medical Center.

He was the only son of the late Leon P. and Berta P. Johnson of Clio, S.C. Born in Fayetteville, N.C., he grew up in Clio. In September 1940 he entered The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina, in Charleston. Called to active duty with his class in June 1943, he was commissioned a second lieutenant of infantry at Fort Benning, Ga., in November 1944. He joined the 94th Infantry Division in Europe in January 1945 as a platoon leader and served with the Division until October 1945. Assigned to the 1st Infantry Division in Nuremburg, Germany, he was on duty at the Nuremburg War Crime Trials. Returning to the United States in July 1946, he reentered The Citadel, from which he was graduated in June 1947.

While employed as a salesman in Charlotte, N.C., he met and married his loving wife, Betty Moose, on Sept. 10, 1949.
Recalled to active duty as a captain in December 1950, he served on active duty with tours in Korea, Japan, West Germany, the U.S. and two tours in South Vietnam. He retired in January 1973. Following retirement, he was an Executive Director with the for 13 years.

He was an active member of Shalimar United Methodist Church, and past commander of the Fort Walton Beach Chapter of Military Order of the World Wars. Other memberships include his being a life member of The Citadel Alumni Association, life member of the 94th Infantry Division Association, member of the Fort Walton Beach Kiwanis Club, Post 7674 of the VFW, Association of the U.S. Army, and the Retired Officers' Association. In 1996 he was elected as an honorary life member of the Florida Division of the ACS.

He is survived by his wife Betty; and three children, Mary Jane Robertson of Shalimar, Fla., Michael Eric of Golden, Colo., and Margaret Ann of Chantilly, Va.

Services will be held at Shalimar United Methodist Church at 2 p.m. Thursday, May 15, with the senior pastor officiating. Burial will be in Beal Memorial Cemetery.

James G. Edelen Jr., furniture company executive, HQ 94th

James EdelenJames G. Edelen Jr., a retired furniture company executive who enjoyed working as an extra in television shows, died Jan. 18 of heart failure at his Mount Washington home. He was 94.

The son of James G. Edelen Sr., founder of the J.G. Edelen Co., and Genevieve Hilton Edelen, a homemaker, James Gough Edelen Jr. was born in Baltimore and raised on Eldorado Avenue.

A 1940 graduate of Polytechnic Institute, Mr. Edelen was attending the Johns Hopkins University when he was drafted into the Army, where he served in intelligence with HQ 94th Infantry Division in Europe. He was discharged in 1946 with the rank of technician third grade.

After leaving the Army, he joined his father's furniture and hardware business, which was founded in 1923 and was then located on Commerce Street in downtown Baltimore. The business later moved to Erdman Avenue and is now located on Kelso Drive.

Michael John Romanelli B/301
of Aberdeen died Thursday, January 19 at Perry Point VAMC. He was 94.

romanelliFormer chief of the Computation Branch at Aberdeen Proving Ground and a decorated World War II veteran, died of cancer Thursday at Perry Point VA Medical Center. He was 94.

The son of Joseph Romanelli, an anthracite coal miner, and Carmela Mente Romanelli, Michael John Romanelli was one of 14 children and was raised in Tresckow, in the coal fields of eastern Pennsylvania.

After graduating in 1941 from West Hazleton High School in Hazleton, Pa., he took a railroad job in New Jersey.

He was drafted into the Army Signal Corps in March 1943. After completing basic training, he was promoted to sergeant and joined the 94th Infantry Division, B/301st Infantry Regiment. He was sent to Europe, arriving in Scotland in 1944 after a voyage aboard the Cunard liner RMS Queen Elizabeth.

"Unlike others, he found Army chow to be great," said his daughter, Carmella Walls, who lives in Bel Air.

Mr. Romanelli fought in the Battle of the Bulge and, in January 1945, he and his unit were surrounded by the enemy at the heavily fortified city of Orscholz, Germany. This proved to be a tactically important battle for the Siegfried Line, which Gen. George S. Patton Jr., who commanded the 3rd Army, sought to penetrate.

Mr. Romanelli was shot in the arm and was in a pillbox with three other wounded soldiers, unable to break out of the trenches and retreat into the nearby forest. German medics carrying machine guns approached the group the solders wanted Mr. Romanelli to close the door but he was afraid they would open fire if he did and kill them all.

"He was the only one ambulatory, and when he stood up, he collapsed from loss of blood," his daughter said.

He and his fellow soldiers were marched to a farmhouse. He took off his boots, and the next day his feet could not fit back into them. Mr. Romanelli was taken to a hospital, where they placed his feet in water and wrapped them in paper bandages.

"I am forever grateful to the German doctors and nurses for saving my feet," he told The Morning Call in a 2006 interview.

After a week in the hospital, he and hundreds of other prisoners of war began a more than 300-mile, two-month trek that took them from Belgium to southern Germany during one of the worst European winters in memory.

They walked in single file on either side of the road, endured strafing from Allied aircraft and the unrelenting snow and bitter cold, subsisting on daily rations of a single slice of dark bread. At night, they slept in open snow-covered fields without blankets or shelter.

In "We Regret to Inform You The Stories of Twelve Former Prisoners of War," published in 2006, Mr. Romanelli told author William F. Rutkowski that the men slept together in the fetal position to keep warm.

"It's amazing what the human body can endure," he told the author.

He was liberated in April 1945 and discharged at the war's end.

"It's unbelievable what he went through, but he told me he always remained positive and said he knew God would send him home," his daughter said.

Returning to Pennsylvania, he learned that his family had been notified by the War Department that he was missing in action.

"I know my mother and family prayed hard for my safe return," he told The Morning Call. "But many other mothers and families prayed just as hard for their sons' safe return and they didn't make it. Why I was spared, I don't know."

In 2014, Mr. Romanelli and three other World War II veterans were awarded the Order of St. Maurice, presented by the Georgia-based National Infantry Association and the U.S. Army Chief of Infantry.

Other decorations included the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star, the Combat Infantryman's Badge, Expert Infantryman's Badge, POW Medal, European-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal with four Battle Stars and the Good Conduct Medal.

As a consequence of exposure to the cold during the war, Mr. Romanelli suffered for the rest of his life from the effects of frostbite.

"I remember when I was a teenager we were shopping one day and I said my feet were cold," his daughter said. "He said he couldn't feel the cold in his feet."

Mr. Romanelli met and fell in love with Antoinette Catino. They married in 1946.

"His older sister worked with her in a shirt factory and set him up on a blind date," his daughter said. "It was a blind date that worked."

Mr. Romanelli enrolled at Penn State University on the GI Bill and earned a bachelor's degree and master's degree in mathematics.

"He graduated on Saturday and started work on Monday at Aberdeen Proving Ground," his daughter said.

He began his career at APG as a mathematician and later was promoted to chief of the Computation Branch of the Ballistics Research Laboratory.

He worked on the development of the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer � ENIAC � one the country's pioneering computers.

He retired from APG in 1980, and continued to live in Aberdeen after his wife's death in 2008. In 2012, he moved to Glen Meadows Retirement Community in Glen Arm.

He was a member of Toastmasters International. He coached youth sports and was a longtime board member of the John Carroll Athletic Association.

He was an avid reader and enjoyed bowling, golfing and "walking miles through Aberdeen," his daughter said. He also was a fan of the Orioles and the Washington Nationals.

He was a communicant of St. Joan of Arc Roman Catholic Church for 64 years, serving as an Eucharistic minister and as a member of the Welcoming Committee.

A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at his church, 222 Law St., Aberdeen.

In addition to his daughter, he is survived by three sons, Richard Romanelli of White Marsh, Dr. Ralph Romanelli of Falls Church, Va., and Dr. Michael Romanelli of Rancho Mirage, Calif.; a brother, Joseph Romanelli of Belleville, N.J.; a sister, Mildred Domin of Harrisburg, Pa.; eight grandchildren; and 15 great-grandchildren.

Robert L. Prokopec K/302 passed on 25 December 2016

The 94th ID HS received a call from Roger Prokopec advising of that his uncle Robert Prokopec K/302 passed on 25 December 2016 in Big Flats, NY. Robert was a LIFE member of the 94th ID Assn.

PROKOPEC , ROBERT age 92 formerly of Elmira Heights , NY and Big Flats , NY passed away on Sunday December 25 , 2016 at The Chemung County Nursing Facility.

Robert was born November 19,1924 the son of the late James and Anna Stejskal Prokopec. He was a graduate of Thomas A. Edison High School .

Robert was a Veteran of World War II serving his country with The U.S. Army and a longtime member of The Clarence R. Oliver American Legion Post # 154 in Elmira Heights, NY .

In addition to his parents , Robert was pre-deceased by his brothers and sister-in-law Charles & Evelyn A. Egan Prokopec and James Prokopec.

He received his Bachelor's Degree in Ceramic Engineering from Alfred University . Robert was employed by Ball Brothers in Muncy , Indiana prior to working for Corning Glass Works where he travelled world-wide for Corning . He was an avid golfer and bowler for many years.

Robert is survived by his sister-in-law : Roseanna (Mrs. James) Prokopec of Danville , Kentucky ; nephews and nieces : Robert C. Prokopec of Colorado Springs , Colorado , Gary B. & Inas Prokopec of Wellsburg , NY and their children Michael & Jennifer Prokopec and Christy Prokopec Sabback & Raul Ortiz all of Elmira , NY , Randy Prokopec of Lexington , KY , Richard Prokopec of San Diego , CA , and Diane Prokopec ; several grand nieces , grand nephews , cousins , and many friends. It was Robert's wish that there be no prior calling hours . Mr. Prokopec's Gravesite Services will be held on Thursday December 29 , 2016 at 11 AM at Woodlawn Cemetery 1200 Walnut Street Elmira , NY where Full Military Honors will be accorded to Mr. Prokopec.

The family would like to thank the entire staff of The Chemung County Nursing Facility 6th Floor for their excellent care and the kindness and compassion given to their uncle during his stay.

In Memorium
George J. Morris F/302
Saratoga Springs, NY

gmGeorge J. Morris passed away on Monday, January 9, 2017. He was 91. Born in Pittsburgh, PA on September 12, 1925, he was the son of the late Albert R. Morris and Mary (Pfirrmann).

George attended Taylor Allderdice High School and graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Business Administration.

gmHe served in World War II as a mortar man with the F/302 of the 94th Infantry Division. Earning the rank of Staff Sergeant, George received  the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart for service during the Battle of the Bulge.

After his honorable discharge, George was employed by Alcoa Aluminum as a District Sales Manager in Washington, DC, Boston, MA and Hartford, CT. In his retirement, he and his wife Norma, settled in Conneaut, OH where they enjoyed growing fruits and vegetables, and for a while, beef cattle.

George also enjoyed playing golf and was an avid reader. He was a member of the United Church of Christ in Conneaut and was a member of Lodge 45 of the Free and Accepted Masons of Pittsburgh, PA.

In addition to his parents, George was predeceased by his wife Norma, his brother Robert P. Morris and his sisters, Mary Louise Morris and Elsa M. Cameron. Survivors include his three Sons, Richard C. (Margaret) Morris of Saratoga Springs, NY, Jeffrey D.(Susan) Morris of East Stroudsburg, PA and Ronald E. (Susan) Morris of Saratoga Springs, NY; 6 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Memorial services will be held in Conneaut, Ohio at a later date(May) at the convenience of the family.
In lieu of flowers, donations in George’s memory may be made to the Conneaut Public Library 304 Buffalo Street, Conneaut, OH 44030.

Arrangements are under the direction of the William J Burke & Sons/ Bussing & Cunniff Funeral Homes of 628 North Broadway, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 (518-584-5373) On line remembrances may be made at www.burkefuneralhome.com

In Memory of
William L. Bird Sr. K/376
July 14, 1925 - December 24, 2016

Bill BirdWilliam L. (Bill) Bird, Sr., 91, an engineer who worked for the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) from 1949 until he retired in 1991 as Telephone Program Director, died December 24.

Mr. Bird, who lived in Galesville, Maryland, was born in Greenup, Kentucky on July 14, 1925. At age 2 months he moved with his family to Washington, D.C. where he attended public schools and graduated from Theodore Roosevelt High School in 1943.

Following graduation, Mr. Bird enlisted in the Army and was inducted at Fort Meade, Maryland. After training at Fort Benning, Georgia he was assigned to the 94th Infantry Division, landed at Utah Beach in September 1944, and subsequently saw combat action in France and Germany. Mr. Bird was captured in the Battle of the Bulge and held as a prisoner of war until the American forces liberated him. He was awarded the European-African-Middle Eastern Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, among other military honors.

Soon after his return home to Washington, D.C. following V-E Day, he entered The George Washington University School of Engineering from which he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering in 1949. While in school, Mr. Bird was inducted into the Sigma Tau Honorary Engineering Fraternity. After graduation, he began a 42-year career in government service with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s REA. He was active in the 94th Infantry Division Association, which he served as both National President and President of the local Chesapeake Chapter.

Mr. Bird was a man of strong faith and an active member of the United Methodist Church. He was a Charter Member of Christ United Methodist Church in Landover Hills, Maryland, where he held many administrative positions and taught Sunday School. More recently, he was a member of Galesville United Methodist Church.

A devoted husband, father, and grandfather, he was thoughtful, caring, and precise. He enjoyed spending time outdoors, whether bicycling through Rock Creek Park as a boy or camping with his children and grandchildren. He was known for his endless ability to build, repair, or improve any item in the home.

He is survived by his loving wife of 66 years, Lois Ann (Ehlers) Bird, in addition to four children: William Lawrence Bird, Jr. (Mary) of Bethesda, Maryland; Janice Bird (Scott Eden) of Edgewater, Maryland; Mark Bird (Susie) of Annapolis, Maryland; and Jeanette Curry (Matt) of Catonsville, Maryland. He is also survived by eleven grandchildren: Katherine, Emma, Caroline, Natalie, and Billy Bird; Suzanne (Jon Schnaars), William, and Andrew Eden; and Daniel, Christian, and Molly Curry, in addition to two great-grandchildren, James and Lucy Schnaars.

A memorial service will be held on Sunday, January 8, 2017 at 2 p.m. at Galesville United Methodist Church at 4825 Church Lane, Galesville, Maryland 20765. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in his name to West River Center, 5100 Chalk Point Road, West River, MD 20778 or Galesville United Methodist Church.

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