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Photo of Floyd Calvin Freeman
         
Floyd Calvin Freeman
 

War: WWII
Service Dates: July 1943 - August 1946
Branch: United States Army
Unit: Co. I/275 Reg/70th Inf. Div.
Service Location:
France
Germany
Highest Rank: T/5
Medals/Special Service Awards: 
American Theater Ribbon
European-African-Middle Eastern Ribbon
Good Conduct Medal
Victory Medal
Combat Medical Medal
Army of Occupation (Germany) Battle: Rhineland Central Europe
POW: No
Birth Year: 1925
Place of Birth: Anoka, Minnesota

Mr. Freeman also also provided the following information about his military service:

"I have been a travel agent for 40 years and have arranged and escorted our 70th Infantry Veterans on 16 Return to Europe Tours."

How I Won World War II

"In August, 1944 I was stationed in Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri and was in I Company of the 275th Infantry Regiment of the 70th Infantry Division. I had been in Camp Adair, Oregon for a year before we went to Missouri.

"All of the time I was in the army, as I had done before I went into the service, I was active in our church. I continued attending church services at the Military Chapel. It was a Sunday evening in early December that I went to Chapel #5 for the evening Vesper Service. There was about 15 GI's up in the balcony with the chaplain. They were doing their best to sing without any organ accompaniment. It was not very good singing without any music. The chaplain kept asking if any one of us could play the organ. I had never attempted this instrument, but I had taken piano lessons. I could play almost any hymn by ear. I stepped forward and the chaplain turned on the big electric Hammond Organ. I was surprised how good it sounded. After the evening the chaplain asked my name and company and wrote it down.

"The next morning I was called into the office as a chaplain wanted to talk to me. This was Chaplain Ronald E. Hubbard from the 370th Medical Battalion. I was transferred out of the infantry and was now a medic, as the chaplain's assistant. We went to France a month after the infantry companies sailed to Europe. When we got into the battle area, a "Chaplain's Kitchen" was set up for me. Every day a large truckload of French bread was delivered to me and it was stacked like wood in the back of my working table. I had many 5 gallon drums of peanut butter and strawberry jam in the kitchen. It was now my job to cut the French bread in slices, be very generous with the peanut butter and jam and make open faced sandwiches. I served them from a large tray to the wounded men, the American Soldiers as well as the German Prisoner Soldiers who had been hurt. The government told me when I asked why we did not serve a good bowl of hot soup that this would make men sick, as they had been eating only C or K rations, and the bread with peanut butter and jam was most healthy.

"This was my daily job, when we were not out in the field attending church services. I was working making the sandwiches 24 hours. When I was giving them to the wounded men I asked about my friends in I Company, 275th Infantry, and was told that many had been killed or captured or were in bad shape with trench foot. Finally I told the chaplain that infantry replacements were needed, and I was a qualified infantry soldier and would he release me from my job so I could go to the front battle area. He took me down stairs to a small room in the school at St. Avold, France that we had converted into a hospital. He locked me in the room and told me to go to sleep and rest. Later he came and had a long talk with me and explained to me that I had the most important job in the U.S. Army and should stay and continue making the peanut butter and jam sandwiches.

"I know that God was watching over me, and I am alive today because I stayed with my job as a chaplain's assistant.

"Yes, I still like peanut butter and jam sandwiches."

 

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