Hamilton County

 

Albert Alvin McCollough

 

 

 

W. C. Soldier (Albert A. McCollough) Tells of Bitter Italian Action

Tuesday, the Freeman-Journal carried a report on the terrific fighting the Iowa National Guardsmen went through in Italy as members of the 133rd infantry division. That story was written by a Stars and Stripes correspondent. Wednesday, the Freeman-Journal received a copy of a letter sent by Sgt. Albert A. McCollough, member of the Webster City guard company with the 133rd to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph McCollough, in which the soldier, himself wounded during the campaign, describes the action in which two Webster City men—Capt. Kenneth Nichols and Sgt. Charles Meyers—lost their lives, several Webster City men were wounded and two were taken prisoners.

Portions of the letter follow:
“Yes, that was quite a blow to Webster City, but it was just one of those things—just a misfortune of war. We got ‘caught with our pants down that day.

“We started to attack at the same time the krauts were making a counter attack. We were almost on our objective but we didn’t stay long. You see, sometimes we get shoved back, too. But they wouldn’t have shoved us off if we would have had some tanks or T. D.’s (tank destroyers.) We only had our M-1 rifles, bazookas and machine guns and mortars, and you can’t stop tanks with small arms fire. The krauts had tanks and we didn’t.

“After a while our artillery got on them, and a few of our tanks came up and threw them back. It was a hell of a mess for a while—it’s hard to remember all that went on. That’s one day I’ll never forget.

“Also the day Jim Fye (of Woolstock,) got hit, they let us come in close, then pinned us down with machine gun fire, then threw mortars and 88’s at us. I lost my whole squad that day. Yes, the good Lord has surely been with us."

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, Webster City, IA – Sept. 6, 1944

OBITUARY:

Albert Alvin McCollough, 73, Webster City, died June 28, 1993 at his home. Graveside committal services will be 1:30 p.m. Thursday at Cass Center Cemetery with the Rev. John Grebner officiating. Internment will be in Cass Center Cemetery with a graveside flag presentation service by the American Legion Post No. 191 of Webster City. The body was cremated. There will be no visitation.

Albert Alvin McCollough, son of Ralph and Marie (Pinkele) McCollough, was born Dec. 12, 1919 at Webster City. He was educated at Webster City, graduating from Webster City High School.

On Feb. 10, 1941, he entered the U.S. Army with Company E 133 Infantry Red Bull Division and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart for the Rome-Arno Campaign. He was discharged May 12, 1945 and was employed at the Rossford Ordinance Depot at Toledo, Ohio before returning to Webster City where he operated a cement contracting business.

On Feb. 18, 1956, he married Dorothy Passwaters at Webster City. He was later employed as maintenance operator at Webster City Light and Power Plant and was then employed as maintenance operator for Farmland Industries in Fort Dodge, retiring in 1982.

He is survived by his wife, Dorothy; daughters, and sons-in-law, Miki and Art Tolle Jr. of Littleton, Colo. and Mindee and Mike Pruismann of Webster City; step-son, Gary VanWinkle of Des Moines, step-daughter, Linda Halligan of Stockton, Calif.; four grandchildren; 10 step-grandchildren; 14 step-great-grandchildren; brothers, Thyrol and Gail, both of Webster City, Carl of Frederick, Md.; and sisters, Pat Klaver of Kamrar, Phyllis Yoder of Woolstock, Carol Wenger of Timberville, Va., and Evelyn Timmons of Cambria, Ill. He was preceded in death by his parents, two step-grandchildren; one step-great-grandchild, five brothers and four sisters.

He was a member of the American Legion Post No. 191 of Webster City, Webster City Moose Lodge and the AARP.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given in his memory.

Source: Daily Freeman Journal, Webster City, IA – June 29, 1993

4 sons of Ralph and Marie Pinkele McCollough served in the U.S. Army in World War II. They are Melvin Arnold, Carl Arthur, Lyle Oscar and Albert Alvin.

Albert Alvin was a squad leader with Co. E, 133 Inf. "Red Bull Division." They were in the Rome-Arno Campaign where he was wounded Sept. 18, 1944 (in Italy). He received the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart for that campaign.

Younger brother, Thyrol Ralph also served in the U.S. Army. *YOUNGEST BROTHER, GALE D. ALSO SERVED IN THE U.S. ARMY.

Sources:
Daily Freeman Journal, Webster City, IA - May 16, 1945
ancestry.com