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On This Day in Chaplain Corps History

On 6 June 1944, the largest amphibious combat assault in history took place as Allied forces landed in Normandy by air and sea. Among them were 13 chaplains who parachuted in with the airborne troops and many more who landed on the beaches. In this episode of “On This Day in Chaplain Corps History,” the stories of some of those chaplains are told.

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Chaplain Death Toll Is 24; 3400 Serving Overseas

31 July 1944: Twenty-four Army chaplains have been killed to date, the War Department announced yesterday and 33 have been taken prisoner. Some 3,400 chaplains are now serving overseas.

Meanwhile SHAEF announced the names of 13 chaplains who jumped with the paratroopers in Normandy on D-Day from four to six hours before the first seaborne unit landed. They were:

Capts Raymond S. Hall, Episcopalian, the first jumping in the U.S. Army, who was injured; George B. Wood, Episcopalian; Matthew J. Connelly, Catholic; Robert H. Hennon, Baptist; John J. Verret, Catholic; James L. Elder, Baptist; Ignatius P. Maternowski, Catholic; killed in action; Kenneth M. Engle, Methodist; Francis L. Sampson, Catholic; Joseph Andrejewski, Catholic; Tilden S. McGee, Baptist; John S. Maloney, Catholic, awarded the DSC; and William Reid, Methodist.

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“The Stars and Stripes,” Vol. 4, No. 231, July 31, 1944, pg. 5.

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Original, from The Stars and Stripes, 31 July 1944 (TCK Archives)

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