Cletus J. Unterberger, son of John and Elizabeth Unterberger of Waterville, Iowa was drafted and

inducted into the U.S. Army May 29, 1941 in Des Moines, Iowa. He served in 168th infantry 34th

Division (Red Bull Division). His basic training was at Jefferson Barracks, MO. He then received

training as a medic. On April 30, 1942 he left New York on S.S. Santa Rosa and arrived on May 11 in

Larne, Ireland. He left for Scotland on August 23; Sept 25, left on USS Brazil to Lugton and Oct. 15

boarded Otranto in Liverpool, England for North Africa. On Nov 8 he arrived to serve in the invasion

of North Africa. Feb.1, 1943 left El B'iar and arrived on the front Feb. 8th. Nine days later, on Feb. 17,

1943 he was captured at (Faid Pass) Sidi Bousid and arrived at Sfax on Feb. 18th. On Feb. 22 he

was at Sousse and Feb. 23 arrived in Tunis, leaving on March 3 for Naples. On March 13 Clete left

Naples and arrived in Mossberg, Germany on March 16 via Breneer

Pass. On March 27 he left Stalag VII A (Stalag 7a) in Bavaria, Germany.

On March 29, he arrived at Stalag III B on the Odor Canal near

Furstenberg, Germany. “April 29, 1945 LIBERATION”. He arrived in

South Hampton, England on May 23. Finally on June 3rd, 1945 Clete

arrived in the U.S.A. at Staten Island, NY. Eventually he got to

Marquette, Iowa and hitched a ride on county road (Hwy 76), being

dropped off at the Sixteen School road. Walking a mile to his parent’s

farm, he quietly announced his arrival at the doorstep of the family

farmhouse, with his Mother and sisters in the kitchen. Together, they

walked out to the field greeting his Father and brother. None of his

family was aware of his pending return home. Clete farmed the family

land and on October 19, 1947 married Bernadette Eschweiler of New

Hampton, Iowa. He passed away in 1982. The following is a digital

copy of his personal diary written during the war. This testimony

Personal Diary of

WWII Prisoner,

Cletus Unterberger

Kept throughout WWII these notes

describe the military service of

Cletus Unterberger, as a Private

First Class Medic and Prisoner of


This collection was respectfully prepared in tribute to

Clete on behalf of his wife, Bernadette and niece,

Mary Lynn.