RIP Walter Ehlers

Discussion in 'The Bar' started by Stew Nod, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. Stew Nod

    Stew Nod Hello VIP

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    I watched numerous films of this guy's story on and after DDay....incredibly humble, decent guy

    The best of the best. They should make every fucking kid in the country watch this in school tomorrow....soon they'll all be gone

    [video=youtube;QBJ6BOEb-aI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBJ6BOEb-aI[/video]
     
  2. Stinkypussy

    Stinkypussy New Member

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    Rip..
     
  3. Stew Nod

    Stew Nod Hello VIP

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    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/22/u...-role-in-normandy-attack-dies-at-92.html?_r=0

    [h=1]Walter D. Ehlers, Honored for Role in Normandy Attack, Dies at 92[/h]By RICHARD GOLDSTEINFEB. 21, 2014



    [​IMG]Launch media viewer

    Mr. Ehlers, a Medal of Honor recipient, was greeted at a Hall of Heroes ceremony at the Pentagon in March 2011. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images





    Walter D. Ehlers, who received the Medal of Honor for his exploits as an Army sergeant in the D-Day invasion of France and came to personify the heroism of the G.I.’s who stormed the beaches of Normandy on June 6, 1944, died on Thursday in Long Beach, Calif. He was 92.
    The cause was kidney failure, his wife, Dorothy, said.
    Mr. Ehlers was the last survivor of the 12 soldiers who received the medal for actions in the Normandy campaign. Nine of the medals were awarded posthumously.
    When the 50th anniversary of the D-Day invasion was commemorated in Normandy, Mr. Ehlers gave an address there, and he walked along Omaha Beach, the bloodiest of the five Allied invasion beaches, beside President Bill Clinton. He also spoke at the dedication of the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, Va., in 2001, at ceremonies attended by President George W. Bush.
    Mr. Ehlers was awarded the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest award for valor, for his courage “in the face of overwhelming forces” during firefights near Gonville, France, on June 9 and 10 of 1944.
    Beyond Sergeant Ehlers’s actions, the story of the fate that awaited him and his older brother Roland, who came ashore in a different landing craft at virtually the same moment, spoke to the randomness of combat.
    Walter David Ehlers was born on May 7, 1921, in Junction City, Kan. He and his brother pitched hay on their uncle’s farm during the Depression. They joined the Army together in November 1940 and fought side by side in North Africa and Sicily.
    In the spring of 1944, they were training in England with the 18th Regiment, First Infantry Division, for World War II’s long-awaited Allied invasion of northern France. Both were assigned to Company K, its men destined to be in the second wave hitting Omaha Beach.
    Anticipating heavy casualties, their company commander transferred Walter Ehlers to Company L, promoting him to sergeant and designating him a squad leader, so that he and Roland would not have to fight alongside each other once more.
    The Ehlers brothers were several hundred yards apart when they approached Omaha Beach in their boats, facing machine-gun, mortar and rifle fire from Germans on the cliffs.
    Walter Ehlers led his 12-man reconnaissance team onto the beach through water nearly over the men’s heads, and they made it to the heights through a breach in German minefields without a single casualty. The next day Walter learned that Roland was missing in action.
    On June 9, Sergeant Ehlers single-handedly killed four German soldiers while on patrol amid the Normandy hedgerows, then destroyed three machine-gun nests and a mortar position, at one point leading a bayonet charge. The day after that, firing away while in the open, he enabled his men to withdraw when they were surrounded. He was shot in the back, but he managed to carry a wounded comrade to safety.
    On July 14, he was told by his brother’s company commander that Roland had been killed by a shell that had struck the ramp of his landing craft just as he was stepping onto Omaha Beach. Sergeant Ehlers received the Medal of Honor on Dec. 11, 1944, and was promoted to lieutenant. He was then granted a leave to Manhattan, Kan., where his family was living. When he rejoined his unit, he was wounded three more times fighting with the First Infantry Division through the end of the war in Europe.
    Mr. Ehlers, who received the Silver Star and Bronze Star in addition to the Medal of Honor, moved to California soon after the war. He lived in Buena Park and worked as a counselor for the Veterans Administration. He died at a V.A. hospital.
    In addition to his wife, Mr. Ehlers is survived by a son, Walter Jr., a retired lieutenant colonel who also served in the First Infantry Division; his daughters, Catherine Metcalf and Tracy Kilpatrick; his sisters, Leona Porter, Marjorie Gustin and Gloria Salberg; 11 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
    For all the plaudits Mr. Ehlers received, the loss of his brother haunted him.


    “I used to have nightmares every night,” he told The Orange County Register after the 60th anniversary of D-Day. “Nightmares about my brother coming home. He always showed up immaculately dressed, and he had that beautiful smile, and we’d talk. I’d go get something and come back, and he’d be gone. Then, I’d wake up.”
    What “broke the cycle,” he said, was when he spoke at Omaha Beach, telling of how he had waved to Roland as they prepared to board their ships to cross the English Channel. “My knees were trembling when I stood before the audience that day, with 14,000 vets and 17 heads of state,” he said. “But after that, the nightmares went away. I came to grips with his death. They say when you talk about something you finally let it out.”
    His thoughts of Roland, and the distance between them at the shores of Omaha Beach, never left him, however.
    “I still can’t talk about him without bringing tears to my eyes,” he told The Register. “I felt like if we’d been together, that wouldn’t have happened. But God sent us in different ways. He was a great soldier, a fantastic soldier, who got wounded in Sicily and died in Normandy. He was my hero until the day
     
  4. beatlejaws

    beatlejaws nowhere poster

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    he died with shrapnel from a German hand grenade in his leg.
     
  5. doughhead63

    doughhead63 OD'd on life itself Staff Member

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    He was a year younger than my dad, who was a USAAF vet...hard to believe.

    They should teach the youth of our nation about these men...
     
  6. Stew Nod

    Stew Nod Hello VIP

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    In contrast...these days we have men like Mr Castillo

    [video=youtube;rPOKm20wP4s]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rPOKm20wP4s[/video]
     
  7. Lemmy

    Lemmy Douchebag Extraordinaire Gold

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  8. ice cream

    ice cream Well-Known Member

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  9. VarmintSam

    VarmintSam Well-Known Member VIP Gold

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    I saw that vid a couple of months ago, made my blood boil how these fuckers continue to game the system and nothing is done. Total piece of shit this Castillo and good for Duckworth for tearing into his ass :owned: