Woodbury County

Sgt. Royle C. Clausen

 

 

 

Royle C. Clausen was born 12 April 1921, Jackson County, Minnesota, to Claus and Elsie (Christensen) Clausen. His siblings are Arnold, Gail, Richard, and Larry. He graduated East High School in 1939. He married Marjorie A. (Alberts), on 20 October 1941 in South Sioux City, Nebraska.

Royle joined the 133rd Infantry in Sioux City Iowa on 10 February 1941.

They were called to active duty after December 7, 1941. Company L, 133rd Infantry became a part of the 34th Division. Royle trained one year in Camp Claiborne Louisiana, then sent to Northern Ireland, 19 February 1942, for another year of Commando training. He was stationed in Castle Rock, Northern Ireland. Royle eventually became a Sergeant. The 34th took part in the invasion of North Africa, Hill 609 in Africa as well as the invasion of Salerno, Italy, Monte Casino in Italy. Royle was wounded twice, the first time in North Africa.

Royle joined the Iowa National Guard for the money; he received $1.00 for each drill, which was one drill a month. He recalls training in the mud at Camp Claiborne. He enjoyed Northern Ireland. It was the first time in a foreign country.

The 34th Division served over 600 days in combat with the AEF (American Expedition Forces). He was a Squad Sergeant. His division was replaced 2 1⁄2 times because of casualties. He writes, “On May 6th, 1943, I was wounded and was evacuated to a British Hospital (they must of thought I was British!). I raised Hell until they sent me to an American Hospital.”

“We were at a place called Fondurk, North Africa (Tunisia) in a battle with Italian soldiers. We were dug in on a hard surface road because of heavy tank fire, 88 mm guns. All of a sudden, there was General Patton remoitering for his tanks. He said, “Sergeant, why in the Hell are your men dug in here?” Just then the enemy let loose with a barrage of shell fire. General Patton had his nose in the dirt as far as I did!” The African Campaign ended May 8th, 1943.

Battle of Salerno, “We were circling the bay of Salerno before the invasion. A buddy of mine had just gotten his false teeth in Africa and he got sea sick and lost his new teeth in the Bay of Salerno.”

“We were pinned down under machine gun fire, and then they opened up with artillery fire. I got hit in the pelvis. I still carry some shrapnel today. I was helped back to battalion aid center where they performed emergency care, and then was sent to the British Hospital in Algiers. I was then evacuated to an American Hospital in Rabat, Morocco.”

Royle received two purple hearts, 6 May, 1943 and again December 1943, one Bronze Star Medal, three Campaign medals for Tunisian, Naples-Foggia, and Rome-Arno, and the Good Conduct Medal. Royle is entitled to wear the Lapel Button, the American Defense Service Ribbon, European-African Middle Eastern Theater Campaign Ribbon, and four Overseas Bars.

Royle arrived back stateside on 13 March 1944. He remembers being at Jefferson Barracks, Missouri, the day the war ended. Royle came home to his wife, went to Electrician school in Sioux City on the G.I. Bill, retiring as an electrician for Casler Electric in 1982. Royle and Marjorie have been married for 61 years, have four children, Gary, Linda Camarigg, and Kathy Bates of Sioux City; and Carol Culver of Longmont, Colo., and 11 grandchildren. Royle joined the American Legion – D.A.V. Chapter 54 of Sioux City. He has been a member for 30 years.

Submitted by Royle C. Clauson.