Woodbury County

Pvt. Joe F. Hayes



Private Hayes Held By Nazis

Correctionville Man Had Been Reported Missing in Africa

Private Joe F. Hayes, reported missing in action February 17 by the war department, is a prisoner in a German Camp, according to a letter received by his mother, Mrs. Margaret Hayes of Correctionville.

Private Hayes was serving in Africa with an army medical unit.

The letter to his mother, dated March 22 and written on what appeared to be an official German form is stamped by both United States and German censors and is marked post free.

Private Hays wrote, in part, as follows;

“I still go to mass and communion every morning and say the rosary every night. Be sure to write often. I can receive as many letters as all of you can write and as for packages, mother is the only one who can send me parcels and I prefer plenty of those big quarter-pound Hershey candy bars***** We get treated well, so please don’t worry about me.”

Private Hayes is a brother of Mrs. Walt Hickert, 903 Eighth Street.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, April 28, 1943

Correctionville Soldier On Way Home After Two Years in Germany

Good news, a telegram from the adjutant general, Washington, Friday informed Mrs. Margaret Hayes of Correctionville, that her son, Pvt. Joe F. Hayes, a German prisoner since February 17, 1943, has been repatriated and will return to the United States soon.

Pvt. Hayes was held in prison camp Stalag 3-B, about 60 miles south of Berlin, his mother said. The War Department telegram informed Mrs. Hayes that she might send her son a 25-word message to be delivered if possible to him and that he will communicate personally with her immediately on his arrival in this country.

One of a medical detachment, Pvt. Hayes was inducted April 18, 1941, and went overseas in February, 1942. With the national guard from Sioux City, he was stationed in Ireland and Scotland and participated in the African invasion. He as captured at Faid Pass, Africa. His last visit home was in November, 1941.

Pvt. Hayes has received regular mail and packages from during his imprisonment, his mother said. Her latest letter from him bore the date November 26, although two cards, dated earlier, arrived on the day that the War Department telegram came.

He has a sister, Mrs. Walt Hichert, living here at 903 Eighth street.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, February 10, 1945 (photo included)

22 Iowans Home from Nazi War Prisoner Camps

Des Moines—Thursday was homecoming day for 22 Iowans who have been released by the Germans after many months in war prisoner camps.

All of the men were from medical detachments, which, according to Pfc. Robert J. Houghton, Des Moines, probably figured in the explanation of their release. None was wounded.

“We were just 75 lucky men the Germans said could go home.” Houghton said. “I don’t understand it myself.”

He said the Iowa men who returned with him were Melvin Owen, Tipton: John Ondrejka, Fort Dodge; B.K. Smokstad, Monroe; H. Bilterman, Aver; Benjamin Salvetore, Fort Dodge; Marion DeVries, Orange City; Dale Reichert, Fort Dodge; Verne Seidel, Waterloo; Avron Gaulke, Dows; Joe Hayes, Correctionville; Charles Slavens, Cincinnati; John Terris, Dubuque; Russell Sparks, Maxwell; Charles Minor, Lamoni; Vincent White, Marshalltown; Morris James, Newton; John Spiegel, Sioux City and Clifton Warner, Des Moines.

Delayed but on the way home, he said, were Robert Tadewald, Muscatine and Ansel Maughler, Troy. The group also included Richard Clarke, who entered the army from Des Moines but who now lives at Millersburg, Ind.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, March 9, 1945

Correctionville, Iowa, War Prisoner Home

Correctionville, Iowa—Special: Joe Hayes, son of Mrs. Margaret Hayes of Correctionville and formerly of Danbury, who has been a prisoner in a camp near Berlin since the African drive, arrived home Thursday. He was born and reared in Danbury and received his basic training at Camp Claiborne, La. Overseas he served in the Medical Department of the Army.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, March 11, 1945