PFC. Cecil Painter
I just recently made contact with the wife and son of PFC. Cecil
Painter. Little would I know the surprise that was in store for me in
the days that followed!
was performing one of my annual internet searches for information and
possible contact with a veteran from H Co or the 16th when I managed to find a
hit on Cecil Painter in a online database. So, because it was
a Saturday late night for me, I figured that there may be a good
chance of someone being home.
Jo-an (yes Jo Ann) picked up the phone and I proceeded to
explain who I was and what I was trying to accomplish. She was overjoyed
and began to speak about her husband. One of the first things that she said
struck me hard, it was especially the way she described it all the
while talking about was how Cecil wouldn't talk
about the war except for when he spent time with his friend Woodrow
Culp who was very active in the regimental association.
used to talk about the war with Woody but he never went to the reunions. He
used to speak about how he got wounded on D-Day and that the guy in front of
him stepped on a land mine and that "I got some of the blast but
I kept on going. They patched me up a little later but I stayed. It was only a
scratch nothing to get all upset about."
key thing in the statement was the man being killed in the minefield, which I
know that the beach and swamplands going in were all mined.
grandfather also commented on the first man to be killed under
his command "was a real goldbrick. He shouldn't have been in the
Infantry he caused us some trouble in training in England. One time on a live
fire exercise he put the aiming stake of the 81mm Mortar in the tube
and then proceeded to drop a live round in the tube getting it stuck.
SSGT. John Daioczok had to remove the round using the standard procedure
we were not happy."
D-day going in this guy dropped the base plate of the 81mm on a Mine and blew
himself up." Because 7 men were killed from H Company it is pretty easy to deduct that this poor soul
was the first man from H Company to give his life for his country on
the 6th June of 1944. I will probably never know for sure who the first man was
because of the time that has gone by and that in some ways it should be kept
private out of respect for the soldier and his family.
amazing thing that happened is that in this exchange Mrs. Painter gave me her
sons home number, and because he had a computer we would be able to
email photos and information. I received a very exciting and eventful
first email from Barry Painter.
Barry's First EMail to me.
Enjoyed our conversation as well. I have scanned some photos that you might enjoy. These are copies of my Mother's originals, and the scanning process always takes something out.
Scan = Woodie Culp (Left), Cecil E. Painter (Right)
Scan0001 = 2 GI's posing with cycle and sword
Scan0002 = Cecil E. Painter (Left), Woody Culp (Middle), Unknown (Right)
Scan0003 = Cecil E. Painter, Standing and Facing
Scan0004 = Cecil E. Painter, Top Left and Woody Culp, Bottom Left (other two unknown)
Hope these are what you're looking for.
They were the 2 men on the motorbike photo being my grandfather up front and Lt. Sam Haley back! I was very excited the photo was a mind blower!
(More coming Later)