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Former member rejoins

Former member rejoins

     My name is William H. Barker. The purpose of this message is to understand what the dues are should I elect to rejoin. In the 1960s I was a member of the 99th Infantry Association. At that time I was #327 after sending in dues for 1962-1963 (#619 for 1959). I have several older copies of the Checkerboard which I saved. I apparently moved around too much since I dropped paying dues somewhere along the way. While I was attending Indiana University, I received correspondence from General Lauer dated 25 Jan. 1949. These mementos were kept by me as an emotional response to my experiences in Europe.

     I joined the 99th at Camp Maxey TX in August, having been assigned from infantry basic at Camp Wolters TX. I was assigned as a bugler-messenger for Company B, 324th Combat Engineer Battalion and stayed with that company while in Europe until July 1945, when I was transferred to Company B of the First combat Engineer Battalion of the 1st Infantry Division. I served in various capacities as an EM earning the battalion personnel post when I was discharged in May 1946. While with the 324th Combat Engineers we supported the 394th Infantry Regiment most of the time, except during the Bulge. The battalion functioned as any infantry battalion in stopping the Sixth Panzer Army thrust toward Antwerp.

     Grant Yager sent me a detailed map concerning the Battle of the Bulge since I was now (in retirement) retracing my steps using information from the Internet, etc. This led to a request by a man from the Netherlands who asked for my Bulge experiences. I had no heroics to offer; however, I finished my Army story. It covers where I came from and how I got involved in the largest land battle in U.S. history, the aftermath and drive to victory and occupation events. It primarily serves as a story for my children and grandchildren.

     In using the web for resources, your site came in handy as did General Lauer's book and Dr. Cole's history of the Bulge. I feel guilty that I have dropped my membership and wondered if you could send me information to establish a re-connection. In retirement, I have more time and haven't recognized anyone from my company while reviewing your site. I primarily have names related to the headquarters platoon of Company B. As a jack of all trades, I spent a lot of time riding supply trucks never knowing what was happening or where I was going. It seems like the roads were made in circles.

Bill Barker