Muscatine County

Pvt. Lawrence W. Flannery




Pvt. Lawrence Flannery Writes of Experiences In Battles In Africa

Actual battle encounters with Axis forces in the successfully completed war in Africa are described by Pvt. Lawrence W. Flannery, son of Mr. and Mrs. Michael W. Flannery, 109 Roscoe avenue, in a V-Mail letter just received by his parents.

Under date of May 27, his letter in part read:
“Well, I found out that I could tell you where I have been since I’ve been over here. To start it off, we landed in Safi French Morocco, where we fought the French. From there we hiked 240 miles to Port Lyautey. There we stayed for two months until we started for the front. We went through Fez, around Oran, and the city of Algiers.

“The first part of the battle we were in reserve at the Kasserine pass. From there we went to El Guettar. That is where we really did fight. I was at one time only 500 yards away from the German lines. They really threw the works at us: rifle fire, artillery, and mortar fire, besides being strafed by planes. After that battle, we went to Sedjenane where we fought in the mountains. Getting out of the mountains, we went towards Bizerte. We went into Bizerte and stayed there for about two weeks. Boy, that town is one big mess.

“I’m back near Oran now. I’ll write letters a lot more now and tell you some of the funny experiences I’ve had. I’m feeling fine.”

Pvt. Flannery serving with a combat team in an Army division, left Muscatine on June 29, 1942, and after training 14 weeks at Camp Wheeler, Ga., was sent to Africa from Fort Bragg, N.C., arriving in Africa the early part of November.

Receiving his issues of The Muscatine Journal fairly regularly despite the fact that he was on the move most of the time, he commented on seeing a picture of a cousin in one of the issues.

Pvt. Flannery was employed by the Huttig Manufacturing company before entering the service.

Source: Muscatine Journal News-Tribune, June 12, 1943