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43rd Infantry Division

From the rock-bound coasts of Maine to half the islands in the Pacific and to Japan itself—that is the war record of New England’s 43d Division. The veterans of the 43d, drawn from Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont and Connecticut, wear the black grape leaf on a red quatrefoil as a shoulder patch, and are qualified to wear four campaign stars on their Asiatic ribbon.

The “Winged Victory’’ Division, which was organized shortly after World War I, has many units which date back to the Revolution. Reactivated early in 1941, the New Englanders have been almost constantly on the go ever since.

The 43d’s first assignment overseas was a tour of duty in New Zealand, when it appeared likely that the Japanese might invade that country. It then shipped for a brief stay in New Caledonia. Early in 1943 the New Englanders reached Guadalcanal before that campaign had ended and aided in the mopping up of isolated Japanese units.

A month later the New Englanders began the war in earnest. Their first mission as a unit was the invasion of the Russell Islands, and the men with the twang were disappointed when they took the islands without opposition. But they were soon to long for this quiet invasion. With elements of the Army, Navy and Marines, the 43d, in late June of 1943, assaulted New Georgia, landing on Rendova Island.

For 35 days of what many authorities believe to be the dirtiest, roughest campaign of the early war in the Pacific, the 43d fought for Munda airport. As yet inexperienced in the ways of jungle fighting, the 43d was opposed by some of the crack elements of the Imperial Japanese Army. All the tricks of the jungle which eventually became old stuff to our troops were strange to the men of the 43d in the fight for Munda. They had to learn the hard and bloody way, and they did. On August 5 the 43d broke the Japanese resistance and seized its prime objective—the vital Munda airstrip.

New Guinea’s stinking hell was the next stop for the men from the land of the fir and pine. They joined other forces at Aitape and had a share in the bloody battle of the Driniumor River. It was there that the Japanese, in an effort to break through the encircling American forces, were slaughtered by the thousands as they attempted a crossing of the swift-flowing Driniumor.

The 43d drew a mean assignment in the invasion of Luzon. Landing on D-day on January 9, 1945, at Lingayen Gulf, the 43d’s mission was to take the left flank and secure the hill masses and road network in order to block off the strong Japanese forces in the mountains at Baguio.

The Japanese defenses of the island were such that the 43d bore the brunt of the fighting in securing positions on Lingayen Gulf. While other assault divisions were moving south over comparatively flat terrain, and over highways, the New Englanders were deep in the hills. There they encountered heavy mountain guns and deep cave positions, and were forced to move their supplies up trailless slopes. For the first 30 days the 43d was in constant battle with the enemy.

Later the 43d moved to the east of Manila and helped clear the Nips from the hills near the city. One of the most brilliant campaigns in the fight for the liberation of Luzon was staged by the 43d when, working with guerrilla forces, it took a mountain dam which was vital to Manila’s water supply.

From Fighting Divisions, Kahn & McLemore, Infantry Journal Press, 1945-1946.

43rd Infantry Division World War II Missing in Action

There are 100 soldiers of the 43rd Infantry Division World War II still listed as missing in action.

Private LaVerne M. Anderson 169th Field Artillery Battalion 01/10/1945
Captain Rollo C. Andross 169th Infantry Regiment 07/13/1943
First Lieutenant David S. Atkinson 43rd Reconnaissance Troop 01/09/1945
Corporal Philip C. Barach 118th Medical Battalion 06/23/1943
Second Lieutenant Joseph F. Barrett 169th Infantry Regiment 05/09/1945
Private First Class James C. Bigger 169th Infantry Regiment 01/21/1945
Corporal Alexis J. Bissonnette 169th Infantry Regiment 07/16/1943
Private First Class Kenneth F. Blinkhorn 43rd Reconnaissance Troop 01/09/1945
Private Isiah Bradley 169th Infantry Regiment 05/08/1945
Private First Class Harold W. Brown 103rd Field Artillery Battalion 03/31/1945
Private First Class Loyd A. Byler 169th Infantry Regiment 07/21/1945
Private Robert F. Carlson 169th Infantry Regiment 05/09/1945
Staff Sergeant Walter P. Casey Division Artillery 07/18/1943
Private William H. Corriveau 169th Field Artillery Battalion 07/18/1943
Private First Class Walter F. Debrecht 103rd Infantry Regiment 02/07/1946
Private First Class George A. Dillingham 103rd Infantry Regiment 01/09/1945
Private First Class Raymond Dopakowski 103rd Infantry Regiment 01/25/1945
Private George D. Drake 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Private Dale W. Dubois 172nd Infantry Regiment 06/30/1943
Corporal Dominique G. Dutil 103rd Infantry Regiment 05/29/1943
Private George C. Engel 169th Infantry Regiment 04/28/1946
Captain Elwood J. Euart 103rd Field Artillery Battalion 10/26/1942
Private First Class Joseph F. Furtado 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/27/1943
Technician Fifth Grade Alfred J. Gauthier 43rd Signal Company 01/09/1945
First Lieutenant David Goudge 172nd Infantry Regiment 09/20/1944
Major John M. Haffner Headquarters 03/20/1944
Private First Class William E. Hall 172nd Infantry Regiment 03/31/1946
Private Robert P. Hinson 169th Infantry Regiment 07/14/1943
Private Forest S. Hoocks 118th Engineer Combat Battalion 07/02/1943
Technician Fourth Grade Jesse J. Jacoma 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1943
Second Lieutenant Edward C. Jankowski Headquarters 07/18/1943
Technician Fifth Grade John G. Johnson 172nd Infantry Regiment 09/22/1944
Private First Class Joseph E. Jones 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Private First Class Vance Justet 169th Infantry Regiment 01/18/1945
Staff Sergeant Michael J. Kudej 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1943
Sergeant Lawrence La Croix 43rd Signal Company 01/09/1945
Corporal William J. Lane 43rd Military Police Platoon 06/23/1943
Private First Class Frank Lastrina 169th Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Private First Class Ralph R. Lazazzera 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Private First Class Sulo K. Lehtinen Headquarters Company 01/09/1945
Technician Fourth Grade Charles P. Leo 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1943
Private First Class Evans C. Lister 103rd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1943
Private Otto Lovett Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Fidel B. Lucio Headquarters Company 07/02/1943
Technical Sergeant Eugene Luzietti 118th Medical Battalion 06/23/1943
Private First Class Mark Mamagona 172nd Infantry Regiment 02/18/1945
Private Emmett E. Mayberry 172nd Infantry Regiment 08/06/1943
Private First Class Marshall McCarson 169th Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Technician Fifth Grade Robert E. McKean 118th Engineer Combat Battalion 07/02/1943
Corporal Matthew A. Melone 103rd Field Artillery Battalion 07/18/1943
Private Edward M. Mikan 169th Infantry Regiment 07/16/1943
Private Marvin E. Moore 169th Infantry Regiment 08/12/1943
Private Valentin Moya Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private James C. Munn 103rd Infantry Regiment 01/27/1945
First Lieutenant Lawrence S. Myers 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Second Lieutenant Karl A. O'Brien Headquarters 07/18/1943
Private First Class Anton A. Olejniczak 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1943
Private John C. Oliver Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Edward W. O'Neill 169th Infantry Regiment 03/12/1945
Private John A. Paetz 43rd Reconnaissance Troop 01/09/1945
Private Jason F. Park Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private John H. Parker Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Keith E. Paterson Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Marlin H. Patisaul Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Corporal Mack L. Pearson 169th Infantry Regiment 07/16/1943
Private Roy M. Peavler 103rd Infantry Regiment 07/25/1943
Private Elmer W. Pennington Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Carlie E. Perry Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Austin C. Peters Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Carl A. Peterson Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private First Class Arnold N. G. Phaneuf 103rd Infantry Regiment 01/25/1945
Private Paul D. Pittser 172nd Infantry Regiment 08/05/1943
Private William O. Prescott Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Preston L. Price Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Harvey Prince Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private George L. Proctor Headquarters Company 07/18/1943
Private Aubrey J. Prudhomme 169th Infantry Regiment 07/13/1943
Private First Class John Quinta 118th Medical Battalion 07/18/1943
Private Raymond D. Ready 169th Infantry Regiment 07/14/1944
Private First Class Kenneth O. Rector 103rd Infantry Regiment 01/15/1945
Technical Sergeant Jessie A. Reynolds 169th Infantry Regiment 04/12/1946
Private Theodore M. Rosovich 169th Infantry Regiment 02/02/1945
Private Robert Rowell 169th Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Private William C. Salter 169th Infantry Regiment 07/19/1943
Technician Fourth Grade Sebastian F. Santostefano 169th Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Staff Sergeant Lloyd A. Sears Headquarters Company 01/09/1945
Sergeant Leslie B. Sessoms 192nd Field Artillery Battalion 09/06/1945
Private Joseph E. Stay 169th Infantry Regiment 07/18/1943
Private Vernon W. Taylor 172nd Infantry Regiment 06/10/1946
Private First Class Clyde R. Tobin 169th Infantry Regiment 01/19/1946
Private First Class Herve J. Valliere 103rd Infantry Regiment 07/23/1943
Private First Class William J. B. Walls 169th Infantry Regiment 01/17/1945
Second Lieutenant Eugene W. Walton Headquarters 07/18/1943
Private Andrew H. Watson 103rd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1944
Private Edward W. Whalen 103rd Infantry Regiment 01/19/1945
Private First Class Maurice Whatley 169th Infantry Regiment 07/08/1943
Private Tom C. White 172nd Infantry Regiment 07/02/1943
Private First Class Norman Wickstrom 169th Infantry Regiment 01/21/1945
Private First Class Milford G. Wiggins 172nd Infantry Regiment 12/29/1945
Technician Fifth Grade Salvador M. Ybor 43rd Reconnaissance Troop 01/09/1945

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