Archive for May, 2020

Seventy-five years ago tonight, the men of the 111th could wait no longer. The news was out that the war was over, and the official declaration would be made the next day.  On orders from Captain Art Brooks, Lt. Fred Kent had managed to procure the necessary ingredients for their cooks to make a potent alcoholic beverage. The night of May 7, 1945, was a wild and crazy night, as we have described in previous VE Day posts.

In his monthly report, company clerk Frank Sossi described it like this:

“By 7 May it was quite apparent that the war was over. After being on the Continent for 11 months and during that time only 31 men and 1 officer out of the whole company receiving official rest passes, the company was really ready to let itself go in an all-out celebration. The men couldn’t wait any longer for the official announcement of cessation of hostilities, so they broke out the 50 gallons of whiskey that had been acquired for the occasion and started celebrating on 7 May, the night before official VE Day. It will be an occasion the men of this organization shall never forget.”

They were camped out in a cement plant in Freidrichshorst, Germany (near Neubeckum), at the time. They had arrived there the day before, after a long’s day’s convoy of 194 miles from Salzwedel. img_2178-1

As we remember our fathers, grandfathers, and uncles on this VE Day 75 years later, we should vow to pass on their story to our children and grandchildren and to never forget the sacrifices they made for us.