504th PIR WW II
of Honor Recipient
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The 504th PIR in Italy, from
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Blocking Kampfruppe Peiper
The 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment
Dominic T. Biello, the story of the brave Molise boy fallen in Belgium
Geremia Mancini, MoliseNews24.it published 4 May 2017
TERMOLI. Still a reminder of an illustrious character from the Molisani births thanks to the cultural association "Ambasciatori della Fame" and to Jeremiah Mancini, Honorary President.
Dominic T. Biello: brave Molise boy dropped in Belgium during World War II. The mother, born in Filignano, who is now in the province of Isernia but at the time was province of Campobasso, on April 12, 1883, was identified (he had all the many children involved in the world conflict) as one of the "mothers symbol Of the sacrifice of war.
When Maria Anna Manzella left, together with her sister Jacinta, Filignano to run the "American dream" certainly did not imagine becoming, later years, one of the symbols of the "mothers symbol of the sacrifice of war."
Maria Anna was born in Filignano on April 12, 1883 by Giacomo and Antonia Franchitti. In 1901 he embarked, together with his sister Jacinta, who was born on October 1, 1881, on the "Gascogne" destination "Ellis Island". It's hard to trace a lot of data on her. Certainly married the Michele Biello (born in Monteroduni, CampoBasso, Italy) from which he had many children. At the outbreak of the Second World War, the Biello family had to offer an incredibly and painful contribution: all the children of "mum" Maria Anna (in the United States sometimes became Marion or Mariana or Marianne) were called to serve the army of United States. Filignano's brave mom saw his boys go one by one. Certainly he wept and prayed for them. Then the war ended. Maria Anna saw them coming back. All less one. Dominic T. was dead, serving the US military, at Rahier near Liege in Belgium. The boy was born in 1920 in Pennsylvania. On February 18, 1942, he joined "Fot George G. Meade" in Maryland for a hard training course. At the outbreak of the Second World War he was sent to Europe and framed in 2nd Battalion Company D, 504th Para Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division. He participated in the "Disembark in Sicily" and in those of Salerno and Anzio. Later he was also involved in the "Market Garden" Operations.
Then, on December 26, 1944, during the Arsenal offensive at Rahier, in a risky operation, he fell hit by an enemy sniper. The news was given by his Sergeant Harold N. Dunnegan and in the minutes written on 2 January 1945, it was stated that the body of poor Dominic T. had remained in the occupied area by the enemy. In a subsequent report we read "We believe we have found the remains of Dominic T. Biello. But definitive identification can not be done. Ask for comparison with fingerprints. " It was still some time before it came to definitive identification. The brave Molisano boy received the following awards: "Bronze Star"; "Purple Heart"; "Combat Infantryman Badge"; "American Campaign Medal" and "World War II Victory Medal". The body of Dominic T. Biello rests in the American military cemetery "Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery" in Belgium.
( The above story was translated from Italian using Google Translate, The original article in Italian can be found at MoliseNews24.it.
Submitted by Pvt Dominic T Biello's nephew and namesake -
Dominic T Biello. )
A P.O.W. Remembers
Pvt Archibald J. Chaska, 82nd Airborne Division, 504th PIR Company A
We went overseas about January 23rd, 1945 and landed at LeHavre, France about February 1st
and went directly to the front lines to relieve around the "Bulge" area. We made no combat
jumps overseas and I was in the hospital for hemorrhoids at that time. I think the hospital
was the 42nd General at Suisonne. My feet were starting to give me trouble and I reported
in to this hospital for some treatment about a week after hitting the front lines. I mentioned
my hemorrhoids at the same time and the doctor told me to forget my feet. He put me to bed
for the hemorrhoids and I was in the hospital for about two weeks. At that time they even
tried to give me a Purple Heart for the hemorrhoids. It was so silly that I refused.
I left the hospital to rejoin my outfit and we crossed the Rhine. Shortly thereafter, in
April, 1945, I was taken prisoner for nine days and we marched seven of these days. Along
with some of the others, my feet got so sore that I could not march as fast as the rest. The
Germans split us into two groups. Those of us with sore feet were picked up by a German
truck and rode about five miles at a slow rate before our planes came over and set it afire
by strafing. Everytime any of our planes came in sight, we were forced to jump out of the
truck and take cover in nearby fields. The time when the plane got our truck, my feet were
so sore that I couldn't even leap the ditch to get into the field but stumbled into the
middle of the ditch to take cover there.
With our truck gone, we had to start walking again. We walked until the ninth day when we
were liberated by some unknown outfit. At that time my feet were red, swollen and so blistered
that the skin just rubbed off. We were given first aid for our feet and made preparations
to be sent to England. However, one of the officers had to get some clean clothes before
he left and he told some higher officer in a nearby replacement area about the trip. They were
short of men and before we knew it all the enlisted men were assigned back to combat. The
officers told us that we were going to occupy a nearby town so we loaded our musette bags
with all our possessions. As I was the assistant machine gunner, I alternated carrying the
barrel and tripod of the light 30 caliber. Besides this I carried my M-1 rifle, 3 bandoliers
and ammunition belt. It turned out that we marched 3 straight days instead of just a couple
of miles. Toward the end of the march, my feet felt as if I were pounding along on the stubs
of my legs. I kept dropping behind the rest but would walk while they were resting and thus
managed to keep fairly close to them.
We ended up in a town that I think was Dormeits, immediately across the river from the Russians.
We were here when the war ended in May. A little while later my feet bothered me so much that
I was taken by ambulance to an unknown hospital in Reims, France. I was here just long enough
to get first aid as they were very busy. They gave me some combination arch supports and sent
me back to my outfit. The arch supports weren't much good but I didn't see much sense in going
back as we were soon to leave for the States. All of us P.O.W.'s left for the States in August.
I arrived in Minneapolis about the middle of September and didn't return to Texas to be
discharged until about February 1st. I relaxed and rested my feet during this time so they
didn't hurt too much.
( The above story was an excerpt from Pvt Chaska's compensation claim
and submitted by his granddaughter
Tia Wilke. )
Eddie Livingston - D-Day Pathfinder - POW
It is my sad duty to advise you of the passing of Pvt. Eddie H. Livingston I Co/504.
Eddie came to the 82nd by way of the AAF having served at Chanute Field in the parachute test facilities there. He told me that he was "the original test dummy". Anything they thought they could strap on to a man and deliver by parachute they strapped on him first. He had over 178 jumps not counting qualifying, training and combat jumps (3). His combat awards included an un-presented DSC, one Silver Star, two Bronze Stars and seven Purple Hearts.
(The above photo is of Eddie H. Livingston from the Pathfinder photo of Normandy stick #16, June 5, 1944.)
He also told me that in the big "Invasion Lottery" held by the 504 on the return trip to England from Italy, he spent three bucks and picked June 5, 6 and 7.
Eddie was a member of the 504 volunteer group which jumped in Normandy. He went in with the team of 2/508 on DZ N near Picauville, France. Eddie was captured on June 9, and spent the rest of the war in POW camps as a slave laborer--in the coal mines.
Eddie's Form DA 1577 reflects that he was awarded the DSC for the action in which he was captured. It was never presented. Research on my part through several archives has failed to locate any reference as to the citation.
I had the distinct honor to meet Eddie in November of 2000. He was a "Devil" through and through. Immensely proud of his service with the 504.
Word of Eddie's passing was received from his niece Pam Baker, with whom he had been living for the past three years.
David R Berry
R E L A T E D B O O K S
Ambrose, Stephen E D-DAY June 6,1944:
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Burriss, T Moffatt
Strike and Hold: A Memoir of the 82nd Airborne in WW II Brasseys, Inc, 256 pp August,2000 ISBN: 1574882589
Decision in Normandy William S Konnecky Assc(P), 560 p. ISBN: 1568522606
Patton: A Genius for War 1024 pp ISBN: 0060927623
De Trez, Michel
At the Point of No Return : Pictorial History of the American Paratroopers in the
Invasion of Normandy 7/98, D-Day Pub, 200 p. ISBN: 2960017617
Falerios, Kenton J.
Give Me Something I Can't Do: The History of the 82nd Military Police Company, WW 1 to Iraq
Nov 2007, Authorhouse, 192 p ISBN: 1434337197
Gavin, James M.
On to Berlin : Battles of an Airborne Commander, 1943-1946 ISBN: 0670525170
Golden, Lewis Echoes From Arnhem Penguin
MacDonald, Charles B A Time For
Trumpets: The Untold Story of the Battle of the Bulge Wm Morrow & Co
(P), 720 p. ISBN: 068151574
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A Paratrooper at War in Europe 336p., Presidio Press, March, 2003. ISBN: 0891417842
Nigl, Dr Alfred J & Charles A Nigl
Silent Wings - Savage Death Santa Ana, CA: Graphic Publishing, Dec 3,2007. 288 p. ISBN: 1882824318
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We Wore Jump Boots and Baggy Pants Willow House, 1977. 118 p. ISBN: 0912450150
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HarperCollins, 10/21/2003. 388 p. ISBN: 0060088753
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Touchstone Books (P), 350 p. ISBN: 0671890913
A Bridge Too Far 670p. ISBN: 0684803305
Tucker, William H.
Parachute Soldier: From the Diary of William H. Tucker, 1942-1945 ISBN:1884540015
Tucker, William H.
"Rendez-vous at Rochelinval" Battle of the Bulge International Airborne Books,Harwichport, MS, ISBN:0-9647683-2-1
van Lunteren, Frank Blocking Kampfgruppe Peiper: The 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment in the Battle of the Bulge Casemate, Sept 19,2015. 368 p. ISBN: 1612003133
van Lunteren, Frank The Battle of Bridges: The 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment in Operation Market Garden Casemate, June 1,2014. 336 p. ISBN: 1612002323
van Lunteren, Frank Spearhead of the Fifth Army: The 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment in Italy from the Winter Line To Anzio Casemate, Sept 16,2016. 320 p. ISBN: 161200427X
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Airborne. Meadowlands Militaria, 6/83 ISBN:091 208 1007
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