Hellcat News, (Kingman, Ariz.), Vol. 52, No. 10, Ed. 1, June 1999 Page: 5 of 20
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17TH ARMORED INFANTRY BATTALION
William "Bill" Funke, 1312 Alford Street, Ft. Collins, CO 80524
Phone (970) 482-0255
June is upon us, but it is unlikely any of you are planning a June
wedding unless it be for a grandchild. Of course, in this day nothing
would be surprising.
June doesn't offer a lot of opportunity for celebration days except
for Father's Day. Do you think Father's Day was invented by a
It is alright for you to take vacations now, but save a few coins
for the trip to Covington, and we hope you have followed the order
printed in the May HCN. The order was to contact a buddy you
haven't seen for a long time and make plans to meet at the reunion.
Let me tell you - the committee is working overtime to get the
attendance up and to provide a fine time for all. Now we need to do
our part and show up.
Walter Gaines [D] wrote Paul Strate [A], recalls first seeing
Company D on 17 February 1945. Walter recalls they left the train-
ing center in Noyon, France, went to Paris and then to Lunerville.
While there, they were met by someone from the 12th and they rode
around for about a week. As Walter puts it, "After that there were
no more pleasure rides."
Paul Strate informed us Ed Bernstein was in A Company in
March and April of 1944, then he was sent to Division Headquar-
ters Intelligence because he spoke fluent German. Ed and Bob
Stanton were from the Philadelphia area and were good friends.
Answering the phone these days is cause for hesitation because
it is usually a siding salesperson, or news about the passing of a
buddy, but last week a "good news" call came from good 'ole
Howard Gillard [C], He is on the mend from surgery but has not yet
hit the golf course. After his surgery he was administered "executive
chemo." It is administered on the top floor of the hospital. OK, so
it was a bad joke. Actually it is, as Howard explained it, given by
shot after which he was able to go home immediately. Our friendly
Floridian said he is feeling fine and plans to meet about 120 of you
Howard was not looking "too good" when John and Francis
Finley [C] stopped by to see him, but now he is handsome again.
Glenn and Donna Cleland [HQ] are back in Indiana. Glenn
misses the golfing in Florida, but surely there are some places for
"pasture pool" in other states. Don't let weeding the garden keep
you from important things, Glenn. Let Donna attack the weeds.
This one is for all the golfers in the outfit. Joe sliced a shot into
a deep wooded ravine, so he grabbed the eight iron, slid down the
bank, and searched for the ball. He spotted something, and found
a skeleton with an eight iron in his hand. "Bring my wedge," he
The 17th is looking better all the time. Trudy Goeppinger and
Pat Hanion [B-17] at the Western meeting.
Photo by Ed Goeppinger [B-17]
One of America's great families. 50th anniversary celebration
for Sal and Lu Ignatti [B-17]. Granddaughters Gina and
Gabrielle enhanced the party. Photo by Ignatti [B-17]
shouted. "You can't get out of here with an eight iron."
Congratulations to George and Jacque Hatt on their 50th wedding
anniversary. The actual date is June 4, but since George will be in
Germany with his grandson, the celebration date will be June 12.
Welcome please, two new life members in the association ranks,
Jim and Marvena, son and daughter of Marvin Cousins [A], Marvin
died March 28 in Colby, KS, at the age of 74, and is survived by his
wife Mary, son Jim, and daughter Marvena Chance. Marvin went
to Europe on the Queen Mary to Glasgow, Scotland, and was with
the Division to the end. He was awarded the Silver Star at Wein-
heim, and the Purple Heart in Austria, and was discharged 23 Jan-
uary 1946. Jim mentioned his father's war service and the 12th
were a great source of pride, and his children's membership would
be pleasing to him.
Ed Goeppinger [B] wrote about the fine time he and Trudy had
with their friends at the Western Chapter meeting. Ed had told
Captain Ebbage [B] the party was in his "back yard" and Ed's
encouragement roped him in. Rumor has it the Goeppingers are
moving around visiting here and there. Hope they move to visit us
Another snowbird who flew north in April is Jim Christopherson
[B]. Jim and Helen spend the winter months in Lakeland, FL, but
like the geese, head back to MI in the spring. Don't know when they
go south, but maybe we can persuade them to stop off in Covington
late in October.
Our best to Joyce Bernhard [B] who is fighting a heart problem.
John wrote about a new treatment she is on that is very expensive
and is a treatment she will continue from now on.
Nice to hear from Barbara Wilsey [B] who is spending some
quality time with grandchildren Helen and Ian in Raleigh, NC. Barb
wanted to make sure John is remembered on the POW list. Be
assured he will be there. Jim and Hazel LaFond [B] were good
friends and stay in contact with Barb who reminds us the 12th was
very important to John.
My apologies to Geza Evan [B] for misplacing his December
card and letter. Buddy Geza is sticking close to home because of a
nasty argument with arthritis. Geza's grandson is in the army in Ft.
Banning and provided the Evans' with a great-granddaughter. He
must have had some help, Geza. We would all like to see the picture
of five generations of your family.
Howdy buddy time. Helios to [A] men John Cozzie, Bill
DiTomassi, Leroy Folsom; [B] Byron Campbell, Stanley Gitt,
Edward Grant; [C] Bob Bassett, Herman Ernspiker, Peter Helman;
[D] Ben Johnson, Clifford Sneed, Stanley Shrom; [SV] Bill Stowe,
Jim Bosworth, Andrew Felix; [MED] the whole bunch; [HQ]
Doloris Miller, Eugene Marsella, Ann Gesin. So there now! How
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Twelfth Armored Division Association (U.S.). Hellcat News, (Kingman, Ariz.), Vol. 52, No. 10, Ed. 1, June 1999, newspaper, June 1999; (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth410331/m1/5/: accessed August 10, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting The 12th Armored Division Memorial Museum.