World War II Project: LaBarbera – Phipard

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LaBARBERA, CHARLES (or SALVATORE) (1913-1996). Sergeant, United States Army. Usually referred to as Charles, but sometimes called Salvatore Jr., he was born in Brooklyn to Salvatore and Rosina. According to census records, both of his parents were born in Italy; his daughter details their place of birth as Palermo, Sicily. His father worked as a soap maker and bricklayer, as per census records of 1920, 1925, and 1940. Charles had five siblings, Frank, Frances, Rosetta (Sadie), Dominic and Marie and the family lived at 553 Pine Street, Brooklyn, from 1925 to 1940. The 1940 census reports that he was working as a truck driver, delivering lumber.

As per his World War II Army enlistment record, LaBarbera had one year of high school and was unemployed. He enlisted on April 30,1942, at Fort Jay on Governors Island, as a private. He may have served in the Army Air Corps: as per the Department of Veterans Affairs, he was enlisted in the Army, but his daughter reports that he was involved with airplanes; there was no Air Force at the time. She further states that he rose to the rank of sergeant (confirmed by the photograph of him in uniform).

There is no record of what LaBarbera did for a living after the war. New York City marriage records and his obituary reveal a marriage to Josephine Imbriale in 1954. Charles and Josephine had one child, Rosemarie. According to his obituary, Josephine predeceased Charles, dying in 1990. She is also buried at Green-Wood. His obituary indicates he was survived by his daughter, Rosemarie D’Amario, her husband Vincent, grandchildren Vincent and Gina, and four siblings, Frances, Sadie, Dominick and Marie. Crestwood Mausoleum, Crypt #506E.

Charles LaBarbera

LABATE, JOSEPH (1917-2009). Private, United States Army. When the 1920 census-taker reached the Labate household, they were living in District 20 of Manhattan, an area which was made up of the blocks south of 5th Street and north of Rivington Street, and east of Columbia Avenue (which is now Avenue D) to the waterfront. At that time Joseph was three years old and the youngest of seven children who were born to his Italian immigrant parents Frank and Carmella. The entire page of the 1920 census that recorded the Labate family is filled with families who were parented by men and women who had been born in Italy, and whose mother tongue is listed as Italian. This sense of community must have enfolded young Joseph in its embrace and he spent all of his youth and much of his early adulthood living in this neighborhood. By the census of 1930, his father is no longer listed, and his mother has taken over the role as head of the house. We can track Joseph in these censuses, see that he finished two years of college, still lived in the old neighborhood, and then, on December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor was attacked. A little more than a month later, Joseph enlisted in the Army, on January 9, 1942. His records indicate that he served until October 5th, 1945. Less than a month later he and his bride-to-be, Rosaria Leonardo, registered for a marriage license in Brooklyn. Section 39, lot 38325, grave 2283.

Joseph Labate

LANE, LORING (1916-1944). Lieutenant, 60th Regiment, 9th Infantry Division, First United States Army. The only son and eldest of three children, Loring Lane was born to Alfred Loring Lane and Emily Aldrich Lane. The well-to-do family lived at 395 Washington Avenue in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, according to state and federal census records through 1940. At various times the household included Loring’s maternal grandmother, Susan Aldrich; his aunt, Alice Aldrich Barnes; and a live-in servant.

The house at 395 Washington Avenue has its own Brooklyn history. The original owner in 1872 was Freeborn G. Smith, owner of Bradbury Pianos, a manufacturer in the city. Smith was a self-made business success and community benefactor who dabbled in Brooklyn politics. In 1906, the house was purchased by Dr. William Blythe Lane, a Civil War surgeon, who made his fortune in the insurance business.  It’s possible that Dr. Lane is related to the Lane family that became the next owners of this home, still standing in the Clinton Hill Historic District. Both Freeborn Smith and Dr. Lane are buried in Green-Wood.

Loring Lane attended Brooklyn Polytechnic Preparatory Country Day School (now Poly Prep Country Day School), graduating in 1936. During his school years, he was involved in theater, stage-managing a Christmas play at a neighborhood church, as reported in the Brooklyn Times Union, in 1933. He received an athletic award as captain of the school’s rifle team in his senior year, according to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

At Lehigh University in Pennsylvania, Lane pledged Alpha Kappa Pi fraternity in his freshman year, and eventually served as vice president of the chapter. In 1938 he was a member of the Engineers rifle club, eventually becoming captain. He appears in group photographs in the Lehigh University 1937 and 1938 Yearbooks. He graduated from Lehigh University in 1940. After serving with R.O.T.C. during his college years, he received his officer’s commission at that time,.

In September 1940, Lane became engaged to Kathryn Rafetto of Nazareth, Pennsylvania. Kathryn attended Moravian Seminary and College for Women in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; the couple likely met at inter-college social events. Loring and Kathryn married in October, 1941. By then, Lane was working at R. H. Macy. The couple took up residence on East Tremont Avenue in New York City, according to their wedding announcement in the Allentown Morning Call. Lane entered the service in January 1942. He went on to further training at Camp Breckenridge, Kentucky, and at Camp Van Dorn, Mississippi.

Second Lieutenant Loring Lane was sent overseas in August 1944. In October, he was wounded in action and received a Purple Heart. Upon recovering, he was sent back into action. From December on, his division was engaged in defensive action in western Germany at the onset of the Battle of the Bulge. Lane died in Germany on December 23, 1944, at the age of 28.

The circumstances of his death are unclear, which is not surprising, given the chaos and confusion of war. He was initially listed as missing in action in early January 1945. In early February, Kathryn Lane was informed that Loring had been killed in action the previous December. However, he was also listed by the International Red Cross among prisoners of war in Stalag 12A-9b in Limburg, Germany. This listing status means he may have been executed or killed while trying to escape.

Kathryn Lane eventually remarried in 1948. Loring Lane is buried at the Netherlands American Cemetery in Margraten, Netherlands. There is also a cenotaph to his memory in the Lane family plot at Green-Wood.  Section 124, lot 14488 (cenotaph).

LANZARO, JOSEPH (or JOE) SALVATORE (1906-2000). Captain, 14th Regiment, Company I, New York Guard. Joseph Lanzaro was born in Brooklyn, along with his sister, Alma, and brother, Dominick. His father and mother, Salvatore and Maria (Bellavigna), were both born in Italy, according to the 1910 census.

Lanzaro’s father, Salvatore, served in the 2nd Infantry Regiment in Italy during the Italo-Ethiopian War of 1895-96. His survival, as happens so often in war, was due to a quirk of fate. The day that his outfit was to be shipped out for a battle, he was too ill to accompany it and was left behind. The entire outfit soon was wiped out. After his discharge from the army as a corporal, Salvatore worked as a blacksmith in Naples before emigrating to the United States in 1896.

Salvatore Lanzaro died of influenza in 1914, leaving Joe’s mother, Maria, as head of household, as listed in the 1925 New York State census. Her eldest brother, Edmundo Bellavigna, moved in to become the father figure in the family. Maria continued to operate the “soda water” business—S. Lanzaro & Company Mineral Waters—started by her late husband, according to the Lanzara-Lanzaro Family Webpage. 

Lanzaro, whose occupation is listed as “ship caulker” in the 1925 New York State census, later worked for many years as foreman in a print shop. He married Helen Cascone (born in Palazzolo Acreide, Sicily) in June 1933. They had one son, Douglas, born in 1942.

He registered for the draft on October 16, 1940, when he was 34 years old. Sixteen months later, on February 9, 1942, and just a month before his son’s birth, he enlisted as a private in Company I, 14th Regiment, of the New York Guard, a replacement force for the federalized National Guard units in the state. He served until he was honorably discharged on February 8, 1944, with the rank of sergeant; on July 22, he re-enlisted, accepting a commission as a second lieutenant and moving among assignments in Brooklyn. By the time of his second discharge, in March 1948, he had achieved the rank of captain; he was then 42 years old. He appears to have continued serving with the Guard when the State Guard units were reactivated in response to the Korean War in 1951, according to his military service card, finally retiring in 1960, at the age of 54.

In retirement, Lanzaro received an award of a non-military nature: in 1998, at the age of 93, he won the All-Maryland Angler Award for catching and entering six different trophy-size fish in a state contest, the Maryland Sport Fishing Tournament. His winning entries were a 22-inch flounder; 38-inch bluefish; 44-inch striped bass; 15-inch white perch; 16-inch spot; and 20-inch croaker. This rare feat was reported in the March 31, 1999 issue of the Washington Times.

He died at the age of 93, in Fairfax, Virginia, about a year after the death of his wife, Helen, and three days after his brother, Dominick’s, according to the Lanzara-Lanzaro Family Webpage.  Section 97, lot 40748, grave 1.

LARNED, JR., EDWARD PENNIMAN (1918-1944). Private first class, Coast Artillery Corps, United States Army. Larned was born in San Antonio, Texas. His father, Edward Sr. was an officer in the United States Army. His mother’s maiden name was Leslie Fuller. As per the 1920 federal census, the family lived in Summit City in Union County, New Jersey.  The household consisted of Edward, his parents, two older sisters (Lesley and Katherine), and four servants: Julia Smith (nurse) from Ireland, Kate Hanlon (cook), also from Ireland, Harriet Kerswell (waitress) from England, and Rose Brady (nurse) from Ireland.  As per Find A Grave, Larned’s father passed away in 1927 in Miami, Florida, and is buried in Green-Wood Cemetery.

In 1927, Edward’s mother married John Nelson Borland in New York City. His mother’s first name is listed as Caroline in the New York, New York Extracted Marriage Index; according to Find a Grave, her name was Leslie Caroline Fuller Borland. As recorded in the 1930 federal census, Edward, his mother, stepfather, two sisters, and a stepbrother, John, resided at 135 East 94th Street in Manhattan. His stepfather was a stockbroker and had a seat on the New York Stock Exchange. Four servants also lived in the household: Mary McNicholl (waitress), Margaret O’Neill (chambermaid), Margaret Kerooin (cook), and Agnes Quinn (nurse). 

As per the 1940 federal census, Larned’s first name is recorded as Edwin. He was single, twenty-one years old, and lived in Bedminster, Somerset, New Jersey with his mother, stepfather, two sisters and stepbrother. His stepfather was an executive in the brokerage industry. The family had three servants: Mary Duinn (cook), Samuel Burrell (handy man), and Husin James (caretaker).

According to his World War II draft card, Edward was 21 years old, resided at 135 East 94th Street, and was unemployed. His stepfather was named next of kin. The registrar’s report, dated October 16, 1940, describes him as 5′ 7″ tall, 155 pounds, with gray eyes, black hair, dark complexion, and with a scar on his second right finger. His New York National Guard service card indicates he enlisted on August 28, 1940 and was assigned to the Battery H, 207th Coast Artillery Unit. The history of the 207th, as shared by his niece, Susan Borland, indicates that “originally known as the 107th Infantry Regiment, the 107th consolidated with the 7th Infantry in 1940, which was soon designated the 207th Coast Artillery (Anti-Aircraft) Regiment.” As per his enlisted men’s card, he separated from the National Guard on November 2, 1940.

Larned re-enlisted on February 10, 1941 in New York City. His army enlistment card states he had four years of high school and his civil occupation was as a semiskilled engineer. He was assigned to the National Guard with the branch documented as “Coast Artillery Corps or Army Mine Planter Service.” The World War II Navy muster rolls indicate he was on board the Chateau Thierry (AP-31) on April 7, 1942. Following is the Chateau Thierry’s war history, as per the Naval History and Heritage Command website, during the time Lanard was in active service from February 10, 1940 to August 28, 1944:

Chateau Thierry played a part in the assumption by the United States of responsibilities in the western Atlantic in the period before entrance into World War II as she carried Army and civilian personnel and cargo from Brooklyn, N.Y., to ports in Greenland, Iceland, and Nova Scotia between 13 September 1941 and 2 January 1942. With the entry of the United States into the war, she sailed from Brooklyn 15 January carrying some of the first American troops to cross to Northern Ireland. Chateau Thierry sailed on to Scotland to embark British troops and sailors for transportation to Halifax and New York City. Two more voyages with soldiers from New York to Argentia, Newfoundland followed, and on 19 May, she got underway for Charleston, S.C., to embark Army and civilian passengers. She sailed on by way of Bermuda for a round of calls at African ports, sailing south around Cape of Good Hope for Eritrea, where she landed the last of her passengers and took a new group on board. On her return passage she picked up Navy gun crews and other survivors of two merchant ship sinkings, at west African ports.

Chateau Thierry resumed her transport duty to the North Atlantic until 29 April 1943, when she cleared New York for a voyage to North Africa, well escorted in a safe passage. Returning to New York, she embarked soldiers and sailors, and cleared 10 June for Oran, arriving 21 June. Here she prepared for the invasion of Sicily, for which she sailed 5 July. Assigned to the floating reserve, Chateau Thierry lay off the hotly contested Gela beaches 10 July as the assault began, and late in the day began landing her reinforcements, continuing into the night. She remained off Sicily for 2 days, firing to aid in turning back the heavy German air attacks, and taking on board Italian prisoners of war. Returning to Bizerte 13 July, she landed the Italians, then returned to Sicily to embark members of naval units not needed ashore now that the landings had succeeded. Laden with German prisoners of war at Oran, Chateau Thierry sailed 9 August for New York which she reached 22 August. Sailing on to Boston, she was decommissioned there 9 September 1943, and returned to the Army who used her as a hospital ship for the remainder of the war.

According to the World War II hospital admissions card files, Larned was admitted in August 1944. The causative agent for his admittance is listed as “bullet, rifle.” He suffered a non-battle, in-line-of-duty injury. He passed away on August 28, 1944, having served four years in the military. (Note that the photo below spells his surname as Larna and lists a date of death as August 26, 1944.) He is listed in the “WW II Honor List of Dead and Missing: New York State.” According to Honor States.org, “During his service in World War II, Army Private First Class Larned experienced a critical situation which ultimately resulted in loss of life.” The website listed the following commendations he was awarded: World War II Victory Medal, American Campaign Medal, Army Presidential Unit Citation, and Army Good Conduct Medal.  Section P, lot 28818.

LASSEN, JR., WILLIAM L. (1919-2004). Sergeant, 15th Air Force, 714 Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group, United States Army, Army Air Corps. Born in Brooklyn, his parents, William and Marie, had also been born in New York. His maternal grandparents were born in Austria, his paternal grandfather in New York, and his paternal grandmother immigrated from Norway. According to the 1920 census, he lived with his parents on 61st Street in Brooklyn; his father was a paper goods salesman.  The New York State census from 1925 reports a family house number (7919), but no street number. The 1930 census records that the eleven-year-old Lassen attended school and lived with his parents in the Carmel Apartments at 8632 Fort Hamilton Parkway. By the 1940 census, Lassen was twenty-one years old, single, had finished one year of high school as his highest grade completed, and was working as a stock clerk. He and his parents lived at 536 Ovington Avenue in Brooklyn.  

Lassen’s World War II draft registration card states that his mother was designated as the contact person and that she resided at the Ovington Avenue address. Lassen initially reported the Ovington Avenue address as his residence but crossed it out and changed it to 7919 10th Avenue. His employer is listed as Wm. W. Fitzburgh at 49th Street and 2nd Avenue, Brooklyn. Lassen’s registrar’s report describes him as 5′ 8″ tall, 145 pounds, with brown eyes and brown hair, and a sallow complexion. As per his Separation Qualification record, he enlisted on December 26, 1942, entered basic training with the Army Air Corps as a private, and was honorably discharged on December 1, 1945. According to his neighbor, he served in Bari, Italy, and in Africa. His main responsibilities were typing military correspondence and making war bond reports. His neighbor relates that Lassen was awarded a Good Conduct Medal and two Battle Stars. As per his neighbor, “The Air Force did not exist at the time of Lassen’s service. He was in the Army Air Corps.” Personal information shared by his neighbor relates that Lassen attended Manual Training (now John Jay) High School, class of 1937, his primary employment was clerk/typist, and he had no children. Section 6, lot 39340, grave 262.

Lassen is holding the flag.

LEE, JOHN E. (1921-1995). Corporal, United States Army; unit unknown. Born in Brooklyn, the 1930 census reports that the three-year-old John lived with his parents, Bernard and Edna; his older stepbrother, Roy Van Glahn; his older stepsister, Evelyn Van Glahn; two older sisters, Emily and Mary; and, his maternal grandmother, Amanda Ogle. The family resided at 226 Schenectady Avenue in Brooklyn. His father is listed as an office manager. According to the census of 1940, the family was residing at 1209 St. John’s Place, Brooklyn. This census states that both parents were born in New York and his father worked as a clerk at a broker’s office. His grandmother no longer resided with them. By the 1940 federal census, the family had moved to 182 East 31st Street. His sisters, Emily and Mary, were part of the household and were working. Lee was attending school.  

He registered for the draft on February 15, 1942. His registration card states the East 31st Street address as his place of residence, that his mother was his contact person, and that he was unemployed. Lee’s registrar’s report describes him as 5′ 6½” tall, weighing 225 pounds with grey eyes, brown hair, and a light complexion. Under “obvious characteristics,” he is reported as wearing glasses.  His World War II enlistment record details that he enlisted in the United States Army on September 25, 1942, at Fort Jay, Governors Island.  According to his father’s obituary, published on September 5, 1945, Corporal John Lee was reported as one of his survivors.  Section 17, lot 17245, grave 299.

LIAN, JAMES J. (1919-2004 ) Private, United States Army. James was born in New York to parents George and Rebecca Lian, Syrian immigrants who had arrived in the United States in 1904 and 1909/10 respectively. As per the 1920 census, his father was 35 years old and a retail merchant in the lace industry; his mother was 30 and could not read or write. The couple owned their home and had four sons: Fred (8 years old), Joseph (6), Charles (3 and a half), and the youngest James (who was 4 months old).

The 1925 New York State census reports the family as living at 511 8th Avenue in Brooklyn. George Lian was 39 years of age, had become a naturalized citizen, and worked in art embroidery. Rebecca Lian was 35 and a housewife. They had four sons and a daughter: Frederick, Joseph, Charles, James, and Virginia. The first three children attended school and the couple also had two cousins living with them: Saleeba Ferris who was also Syrian, 40 years old and a salesman and Edward Lian, born in the United States, 24 years old and a lawyer.

The family continued to live at the same address, according to the 1930 census. George Lian was 45 and a proprietor. Rebecca Lian was a homemaker and still had an alien immigrant status. Their five children were listed with them. The family’s cousin, Saleeba Ferris  who was 45 years old and a linen salesman, continued to be a member of the household. As reported by Lian’s daughter, James attended St. Saviour Elementary School and Manual Training (now John Jay) High School, both in Park Slope. He grew up in the Park Slope and Windsor Terrace area along with his brother-in-law Charles Azrak (see), also a World War II veteran. The Lian family has owned and lived in their apartment building in Park Slope for almost 100 years.

According to the National Archives, Lian had completed one year of college and worked as a stenographer and typist before joining the United States Army. On January 19, 1942, he enlisted at Camp Upton in Yaphank, New York, and served in the European Theater in Italy.

In 1952, Lian married Josephine née Azrak and they had three children: Regina, Marguerite, and Anissa. He also had four grandchildren: Gregory, Jonathan, James, and Charles. Lian’s career began at the White Rose Restaurant Chain in New York and then he worked for a family business that imported and sold fine linens. He was also a staff accountant at J. Ebb Weir/ McGovern Florist and retired as partner of West Potato, Inc., a wholesale produce business at Hunts Point Terminal. His daughter Regina describes him as being very devoted to his community; he ran for City Council in 1952. In 1981, as listed in a Bridgeport, Connecticut Directory, Lian lived at 4 3rd Avenue #4A, Stratford, CT. Lian died in Brooklyn, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease and a brief hospitalization for pneumonia. He was described in his obituary as caring and loving and one who touched many lives. Section 56, lot 12512, grave 355.

James Lian

LICKEL, CHARLES FREDERICK, JR. (1924-1988). Staff sergeant, United States Army. Lickel was born in Woodhaven, Queens,to Charles Frederick Lickel Sr. and Pauline Irene Visco, whose birthplace is listed as Bulgaria in genealogy records. By the time of the 1930 census, Charles had a younger sister, Barbara. Charles Sr. died in 1938. In the 1940 census, Pauline and her children were living in Brooklyn with her father and step-mother: Salvatore Visco, born in Italy, and Anna Visco, born in Austria.

Lickel attended Fort Hamilton High School and Brooklyn Academy, according to his wedding announcement. At the age of 18, according to official records, on February 19, 1943, he enlisted in the United States Army and was discharged on May 20, 1946. But his son reports that he joined up before graduating high school, at the age of 17. The draft card on record may be a replacement for a lost card, and Lickel took the opportunity to make a correction. His draft card lists his workplace as New York Port of Embarkation, known today as the Brooklyn Army Terminal, at 58th Street and 1st Avenue.

Although Lickel’s military unit is not known, he was involved in the Battle of Okinawa, according to his son as well as his postwar wedding announcement. The Battle of Okinawa (April-June 1945), a nearly three-month-long action meant to launch the ground invasion of Japan, was perhaps the costliest battle of the entire war in terms of human lives.

After his military service, Charles married Barbara Elizabeth Kilduff on July 13, 1947. They settled in Flatbush and had three sons and three daughters. His son writes that his working life was spent with the Amtico Flooring Company. He died in Freeport, Long Island. Section C, lot 35781, grave RLC.

LICKEL, WILLIAM (1925-1944). Rank unknown, unit unknown, United States Army. The New York State birth index states that Lickel was born on July 12, 1925 in Rockville Centre, New York. According to the 1930 census, his parents, Charles and Lauretta, were born in New York and resided at 134 Hempstead Avenue, Rockville Centre in Nassau County, New York. Also in the household were the four-year-old Lickel, his fifteen-year-old sister, Muriel, and a servant, Binchem Schafer. Lickel had an older half-brother, Charles F., who died in a plane crash. According to the newspaper article from the Evening Star, dated May 25, 1938, Charles F., thirty-four years old, had boarded a United Airlines twin motored airliner in Newark, New Jersey, on a business trip for Barbour Welding Company. The plane was bound for Chicago, Illinois, via Cleveland, Ohio. Failure in both engines caused the plane to crash eight miles from the Cleveland airport. Ten people on the flight were killed. As per the 1940 census, the family resided at 174 Hempstead Avenue in Rockville Centre. Lickel, now fourteen years old, had completed eighth grade and was still attending school. His sister still resided at home, and the family had a maid, Lena Probst.

Although there are no official World War II papers documenting Lickel’s service history, his nephew relates that Lickel served in a tank corps unit under General George Patton, on the move from France through Belgium. As per his nephew, Lickel gave the ultimate sacrifice and died on November 20, 1944, in Eschweiler, Germany, at the age of nineteen. Given the date and location of his death, he may have taken part in the Battle of Hurtgen Forest. Hurtgen Forest, located at the border of Germany and Belgium, was to be used as a conduit for the Allies to advance into Germany.  According to the Olive-Drab website:

The Hürtgen Forest battle area was about 50 square miles that became a chamber of horrors in the late fall of 1944. The forest lies on a plateau adjacent to the Ardennes, cut through in the center by fast running Kall River and Weisser Weh Creek, with the Roer River as its southern and eastern boundary. It begins a few miles southeast of Aachen, Germany lying in a triangle defined by Aachen, Düren and Monschau. Its 100-foot high, closely spaced fir trees created the equivalent of a twilight jungle in Europe where the enemy could not be seen or attacked until far too late. Large units could not operate cohesively among the deep gorges, high ridges, and narrow trails. Small unit patrols were routinely cut to pieces by machine guns and mortars firing from well-hidden German bunkers or were ambushed by mines, booby traps, and trip wires. The well-built and dug-in defenses included elements of the Siegfried Line that ran through the forest. The winter of 1944 was cold and wet keeping the rugged terrain covered with snow or mired in mud while sleet, snow and fog obscured the scene.

The Battle of Hurtgen Forest, September 19, 1944, to February 10, 1945, was the longest battle ever fought in the history of the United States military. At least 120,000 troops took part and an estimated 24,000 men either killed, wounded or captured. An additional 9,000 soldiers suffered from combat fatigue, pneumonia, and trench foot. Sadly, Lickel’s body never returned from Europe. A memorial was erected in the Lickel family lot at Green-wood Cemetery. He is also memorialized at Veterans Memorial Park in Rockville Centre, which lists all local residents killed during both World Wars, and in Korea and Viet Nam. Section C, lot 35781.

LORDI, WILLIAM PAUL (1924-1989) Tech sergeant/waist gunner,  18th Army Air Force, 3rd Bomb Division, 92nd Wing, 487th Group, 839th Squadron, United States Army. Born in Brooklyn, Lordi was the third child of Italian immigrants Vito and Katherine Lordi. When William was six years old, he lived with his parents and siblings George, Rosie and Alice at 578 16th Street, as per the 1930 census. The census of 1940 indicates that Lordi’s siblings were George, Rose, Anfrio, and Joseph; he was then 16 years old and had completed either the third or fourth year of high school, depending of the record relied upon.

On October 21, 1942, at 18 years of age, Lordi enlisted in the United States Army in New York City. His  World War II enlistment record describes him as single, white, 6′ 1″ tall, 149 pounds and lists his occupation as airplane mechanics and repairman. He lived at 540 4th Avenue in Brooklyn and worked for Clermont Machine Company on 129 Wallabout Street, as per his draft registration card.

His son-in-law reports that Lordi was stationed in Lavenham, United Kingdom. As a member of the 487th Bombardment Group (Heavy) based at Army Air Force Station 137, Lordi fought in the air war over Europe which involved the strategic bombing of Nazi manufacturing, transportation and military targets by the American Air Force by day and the Royal Air Force by night (487th bg.org). On September 28, 1944, Lordi’s aircraft was shot down while on a bombing mission over Germany. He suffered the loss of an eye and shrapnel wounds and was taken as a prisoner of war. The following is a narrative of the event by Lordi’s son-in-law, as published in The History of the 487th Bomb Group (Ivo de Jong 2004):

Here is my wife’s father’s story: William P. Lordi (pictured top row left) was a waist gunner in the Army Air Corps 8th Air Force, 487th Bomb Group stationed in Lavenham in Suffolk, England. On September 28, 1944, while filling in on a B17 #44-6463 from his regular B24 crew, they were on a mission to bomb an enemy oil refinery in Meersburg, Germany. On the way to the target between Coblenz & Wiesbaden they encountered intense flak which scored a direct hit on the plane, immediately dropped out of the formation and the crew started to bail out. A large hole was bored into the aircraft behind the number 3 engine and blew out the waist windows. The aircraft continued under control, three chutes came out, two opening and the third was temporarily caught on the ball turret with a man dangling from it. Co-pilot Kelvin Pierce recalled, ‘It was our 14th mission, the approach to the target was at 27,000 feet and the anti-aircraft flak was extremely heavy. We had just released our bombs and turned away when we were hit. The plane was riddled and filled with smoke. A severely injured radio operator was treated in the Leipzig-Warren Reserve Hospital but later died of his injuries. The pilot Clarence Lamason gave his account after the war. Crew member & hero waist gunner Sergeant William Gaucheness assisted in pushing out the radio operator and other injured crew members, roused the lower ball turret gunner, fought fire in the radio room until all extinguishers were empty, returned to flight deck to help all abandon ship. My wife’s father, William Lordi, was blinded by the flak hit and was pushed out of the plane by Sergeant Bauchens. The plane crashed near Naherstille; nine of the ten crew members survived.

Lordi was captured by the Germans and was held as a prisoner of war until his return to United States Military Control at the end of hostilities in May 1945, as per records in the National Archives. In April 1945, he was admitted to a German hospital where he was diagnosed with the osteomyelitis. His medical treatment, after his release, involved a bone graft for a fracture; he was discharged in early 1947 for disability from the loss of an eye and defective hearing due to injuries caused in the line of duty, as per his WWII Hospital Admission Card. For his service, Lordi was given two Bronze Battle Stars, a  Purple Heart, the Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the European Theater ribbon, and the Victory Ribbon, as per his son-in-law.

On July 18, 1947, at the age of 23, Lordi married Alice M. Corrigan. They had one son, William R. Lordi, who died in 1975, and two daughters, Dolores and Joan. Lordi died in Brooklyn from natural causes at age 65.  Section R, lot 43043.

Lordi is at left in top row.

LUCCHESI, JR., ELISEO (or LEWIS, LEW, LEEZIE) MARIO (1920-1996). Corporal technician, Headquarters Battery, 68th Armored Field Artillery, United States Army.  According to the Social Security Applications and Claims Index (1936-2007), Lucchesi was born in Brooklyn to Eliseo Lucchesi Sr. and Antoinette Mianile Lucchesi. The claim also makes note of three name listings: November 1937: name listed as Lewis Mario Lucchesi; February 1942: name listed as Eliseo Mario Lucchesi, Jr.; and January 1996: name listed as Eliseo Lucchesi. Familiarly, he was known as Leezie and was called Lew by his friends. Lucchesi had six siblings, three brothers and three sisters. He attended Our Lady of Perpetual Help High School in Brooklyn completing grades 1-8. Upon graduation, he enrolled in the Central Needle Trade High School. After completing his studies there, he worked at Berkshire Tailors, at 5917 8th Avenue in Brooklyn, not far from his family home.

His draft registration card, likely dating from 1942, records his age as 21 years old and reports that he was residing at 869 60th Street, Brooklyn. His place of business was still Berkshire Tailors. Lucchesi designated his father, living at the same address, as the contact person. His army enlistment data states that he was single with no dependents, 5′ 8″ tall, weighed 154 pounds, and had completed two years of college. His civil occupation is listed as tailor.

Enlisting at Fort Jay on Governors Island on July 17, 1942, his rank at that time was private. According to his daughter, Carol Lucchesi, he also served as an interpreter and saw action in Italy (Naples-Foggia, Rome-Arno, North Apennines, and the Po Valley) and Africa (Tunisia). She also shares that Lucchesi was awarded the European-African-Middle Eastern Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and the GO3 HQ68 QPM FA BN 10/17/43 Lapel Pin. His daughter relates that at the time of his enlistment, he was engaged to his sweetheart Rosa (Rose) Anna Richichi.

Lucchesi entered service with two of his brothers, Anthony (Tony) who is also buried at Green-Wood, and Arthur who was laid to rest at Resurrection Cemetery on Staten Island. All three brothers returned home safely and started families of their own.

Upon his return from service, Eliseo applied for a marriage license in Brooklyn on October 8, 1945, and married Rosa on October 21, 1945. The couple had two children, Annette (Palumbo) and Carol, and four grandchildren: Jennifer, Stefanie, Andrea and Matthew. Eliseo was also happy to be a great-grandfather. His daughter relates, “My father was a tailor and ran the Valet Service in the hotel industry in Manhattan.” Among the celebrities who Lucchesi serviced were Paul McCartney and George Segal. According to the Social Security Death Index, Lucchesi’s last place of residence was in Brooklyn. His wife and loving in-laws, Frank and Jenny Richichi, are interred with him. Section 88, lot 44332, grave 2.

Family photo at Lucchesi’s 70th birthday.

LUTKINS, JR., THEODORE LaRUE (1924-1970). Private first class, 13th Armored Division, United States Army. Born in Brooklyn, he shared the same first name, middle name, and surname with his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. The Brooklyn Blue Book and Long Island Society Register of 1910 list his great-grandparents as Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Larue Lutkins at 568 Carlton Avenue and his grandparents as Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Larue, Jr. at 369 Washington Avenue. However, his father’s wedding notice in The Brooklyn Daily Eagle, September 16, 1923 edition, refers to his father as Theodore La Rue Lutkins, Jr. Records from the 1925 Kings County census report that he resided at 68 Montague Street with his parents, Theodore LaRue Lutkins and Virginia W. Sells Lutkins. His father’s occupation was leather merchant.  The 1930 Nassau County census relates that Lutkins and his parents were living at 215 Schenck Avenue in North Hempstead. The census taker added the suffix “3rd” to the young Lutkins. Additional household members were William, his younger sibling; Annie Giffords, an Irish servant; and piano teacher Mary Collins, a lodger. This census reports that both parents were born in New York as well as his maternal and paternal grandparents. As per the 1940 Putnam County census, the family had expanded to three children with a daughter, Virginia, born nine years earlier. The family then resided in Towners in Putnam County, New York.

The United States National Archives and Records Administration reports that Theodore Lutkins had completed two years of high school. His service registration card shows that he printed and signed his name with the suffix “Jr.” The card also details his place of residence as Towners, Putnam, New York, that he was 18 years old, and designates Theodore LaRue Lutkins as the contact person. He was inducted into the United States Army on October 21, 1943, and his active service started on November 11, 1943. He was assigned to the 13th Armored Division, known as the Black Cats. According to his daughter, he saw action in Central Europe and the Rhineland with 1 year, 11 months, and 3 days of Continental Service and 6 months and 8 days of Foreign Service. His military occupational specialty was classified as a Rifleman 745. As per his daughter, “He handled all types of light infantry weapons, such as the automatic rifle, light machine bazooka, and grenade launcher(s).” She also relates that he was honorably discharged on April 21, 1946, and received the following awards: American Campaign Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern (EAME) Good Conduct Medal, World War II Victory Medal, the Bronze Battle Service Star for the Rhineland and Southern Germany Campaigns, the Presidential Citation and a Holland Campaign Medal, for his service with the Second Armored Division.

After the war, Lutkins worked as a stockbroker. He may be the Theodore La Rue Lutkins V cited in the April 29, 1953 edition of the Los Angeles Times as being engaged to Marie Antoinette Mathis. The announcement states, “Mr. Lutkins attended Pawling School in Pawling, N.Y. He served with the Army in World War II.” There was a second engagement announcement in the May 1, 1953 edition of The New York Times. This article also cites that “Her fiancé (Lutkins) was graduated from Pawling (N. Y.) School and belongs to the St. Nicholas Club of New York. He is with the New York Stock Exchange firm of Hayden, Stone & Co.” The couple is listed in the 1953 California Marriage Index. There is no information detailing how this marriage ended. However, according to the September 16, 1957 edition of The Berkshire Eagle, Lutkins married Frances Crane Colt of Massachusetts on September 9, 1957. The announcement reports that Lutkins was associated with the New York Stock Exchange firm of Hayden Stone & Co. and that he “graduated from Trinity-Pawling School, and served overseas with the 13th Armored Division in World War II.”

There is a discrepancy pertaining to his schooling. The three newspaper announcements document him graduating from Pawling School, but, according to his daughter, he graduated from Carmel High School, located in Carmel, New York, in 1943. The couple had three children, Cynthia, Virginia, and Marshal and divorced a few years before he passed away. His daughter Virginia shared this memory of Lutkins: “He was a devoted serviceman during WW II and a lifelong patriot. The only time I saw him cry was watching Eisenhower’s funeral on t.v. Sadly, he died soon afterwards when I was nine.” Lutkins is interred next to his brother, William B. Lutkins, a Navy veteran of World War II. Section 142, lot 34027, grave RLC.

Theodore Lutkins, 1946.

MANOS, JAMES (1925-1975). Aviation cadet, 3701st Army Air Force Unit, United States Army.  Manos was born in Brooklyn to John and Agnes Manos, according to the 1930 census. His parents were from Greece and were naturalized citizens of the United States. His father worked as a restaurant chef. The Manos family consisted of four children: Stella, George, Manuel, and James. The family resided at 364 60th Street, Brooklyn. According to the 1940 census, his family’s address was 314 85th Street, Brooklyn, and his father owned a restaurant.

As per the United States National Archives and Records Administration, Manos enlisted in the Army on November 22, 1943, at Fort Dix, New Jersey. He was assigned to the Air Corps as a private. According to his daughter, Joanne Manos Gully, Manos served at Amarillo Field, Texas, and remained in the United States through the course of his enlistment. His two brothers, George (see) and Manuel (see), also served in World War II and are interred at Green-Wood Cemetery. His daughter related that he was the recipient of the American Theater Ribbon, the Good Conduct Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, and the Army Air Forces Certificate of Appreciation for War Service. As per the Enlisted Record and Report of Separation document, Manos was honorably discharged on November 8, 1945.

His daughter also shared that he graduated in 1950 from the Polytechnic Institute of New York with a Bachelor of Aeronautic Engineering degree. He married Zographia Nicholson on September 13, 1953, and the couple had four children, three daughters and one son. He worked as an aeronautical engineer at Fairchild Hiller, Republic Aviation for twenty-five years. His primary residence was 314 85th Street, Brooklyn. Section N, lot 43002, grave 1.

James and Zographia Manos, husband and wife.

MARCOTRIGIANO, CARMINE MICHAEL (or ANTHONY) (1924-1995). Master sergeant, 4420th Quartermaster Depot Company, United States Army. Marcotrigiano was born in Brooklyn. As per the 1925 New York State census, his father Donato Marcotrigiano was a shoemaker from Italy who had been living in the United States since about 1909 ( a year that varies by census), but was not yet a citizen. His mother, Mary, was a homemaker from Italy; her year of immigration differs by census. They had five children: Grace, Thomas, Elizabeth, Anthony, and Carmine (who was the youngest of the siblings and less than a year old at the time of the census). All of the children were born in the United States and the family lived on 473 6th Avenue in Brooklyn.

As per the 1930 census, Marcotrigiano’s family had moved to 528 11th Street in Brooklyn. At this time, his father was the proprietor of a shoe repair shop and had submitted a petition for naturalization. His sister Grace, who was 15, worked as a clipper in a newspaper office; Carmine, who was 5 years old, and the other children were in school. As per the 1940 census, all the children, including Carmine who was 15 at the time and still in school, were living with their parents.

Marcotrigiano’s World War II draft card, dated December 23,1942, describes him as 18 years old, 5′ 7″, with brown eyes, black hair and a light complexion. His home address was still 528 11th Street in Brooklyn and he was working at Wright Aeronautical Company in East Paterson, New Jersey. According to his enlistment records, he enlisted on April 19, 1943, in New York, was 104 pounds, single with dependents, a private, and had four years of college education. Marcotrigiano served in Rhineland, European Theater of Operations. For his service, he received the American Campaign Medal, European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, Good Conduct Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.

In 1947, Marcotrigiano attended the Manhattan Technical Institute, a trade school for technical education, as per his daughter. He married Josephine Miscione onJanuary 8, 1948, in Brooklyn and the couple had two children, Donna and Michael.

On March 15, 1995, Marcotrigiano passed away at the age of 70. His wife, who passed away in 2015, is buried with him. Section 149, lot 44608, grave 398.

MARRA, NICHOLAS (1924-2019).Water tender petty officer 3rd class, United States Navy. Nicholas Marra was born in the United States to Vincent and Theresa Marra, immigrants from Boscotrecase, Italy. He was less than a year old, with seven older siblings, when the 1925 New York State census recorded the family living at 186 Conover Street in Red Hook, Brooklyn. By 1930, the federal census added a ninth sibling (a younger brother) to the Marra family, now living next door at 188 Conover Street.

In 1942, at age 18, Nicholas Marra registered for the draft. He was at that time employed by Tollefson Brothers in Red Hook, and still living at 188 Conover Street, according to his draft card. On March 6, 1943, government records show that Marra enlisted in the Navy with the rank of seaman 2nd class. Soon he was mustered aboard the minelayer USS Terror, the only ship built specifically for that purpose during World War II, and trained with the crew in Chesapeake Bay. In October 1943, Terror departed for the Panama Canal Zone to San Francisco, and from there to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

Marra was promoted to fireman 1st class in 1944. His duties would have included operating electrical equipment and completing repairs, as well as watching over engineering systems. During Marra’s time on board, according to the official United States Navy record, Terror was involved in some of the major campaigns in the Pacific Theater, including the Battle of Iwo Jima (February-March 1945) and the Battle of Okinawa (April-July 1945). On May 1, Terror was hit by a Japanese kamikaze plane; the toll was 171 casualties. She returned to San Francisco for repairs, and then set out for Korea. In September and October of that year, Terror weathered two “furious” typhoons.

Marra left the Navy on March 1, 1946, with the rank of water tender (WT) petty officer 3rd class (a position concerned with the ship’s engines). The war was over. Terror received four battle stars for her service.

He returned to civilian life in Brooklyn. On May 21, 1949, he and Carmela T. De Cola, known as Millie, applied for a marriage license. They went on to raise four children. Marra worked for many years at the New York City Department of Sanitation and was a member of the Knights of Columbus. He died at the age of 95, and was interred with Naval military honors.  Snowberry section, lot 44706, grave 9.

Marra going to enlist in red Hook, Brooklyn.
Marra at right ,with brother, Vincent.
Marra, right, with brother Fred at Pearl Harbor.
Marra family photo, circa 1962.

Marra with family circa 1991.

McGUGART, LEO HAMMOND (1921-1978). Private, United States Army. Leo Hammond McGugart was born in Pennsylvania to Leo M. and Marie H. McGugart. He spent his early years living in Queens, New York, but by 1940, according to the federal census, the 18-year-old Leo was living with his parents and younger sister, Marie R., on Knickerbocker Avenue in Bushwick, Brooklyn. He had finished high school and was working as a messenger.

His draft registration card lists the 20-year-old McGugart as working for F.W. Woolworth on Fulton Street in Brooklyn. At the end of September 1942, he was inducted into the Army at Fort Jay, Governors Island, New York, as a private. He served in the Army through the rest of the war, and was discharged on March 12, 1946, according to government records.

On May 5, 1948, McGugart and Celeste Pace applied for a marriage license in Brooklyn.  In the years that followed they had two children, Leo and Linda. Section 56, lot 43749, grave 2.

MONTALTO, JOSEPH FRANK (1918-1990). Sergeant, 130th Infantry, 33rd Division, K Company, United States Army National Guard. Born in New York, Montalto was the first son of Italian immigrants Luigi Montalto and Anna Perri. Luigi Montalto immigrated to the United States in 1912 and worked as a laborer in the paper and rags industry, and Anna Perri immigrated in 1915.

As per the 1930 census, at the age of 12, Montalto was living in Brooklyn, at 38 Henry Street with his parents, two younger brothers, Nunzi and Frank, and his paternal grandmother Philamena. By the 1940 federal census, Montalto had completed his first year of high school, was 21 years of age, and was living with his parents, two younger brothers, and two younger sisters, Lena and Fanny, at 100 Washington Street in Brooklyn. His father worked as a junkman while Montalto worked as a commercial printer with an income of $624.

Registered on October 16, 1940, Montalto’s World War II draft card describes him as white with a light complexion, brown hair and blue eyes, 5′ 5 ½” tall, and 164 pounds. He was 22 years old and employed by Keller Printing Company at 297 Lafayette Street in New York City. Montalto’s mother, Anna, was listed as his next of kin. On March 9, 1942, Montalto entered into service as a private at Fort Dix, New Jersey, as per his enlistment records; that same document describes Montalto as single without dependents, a pressman and plate printer, and 155 pounds.

Montalto served as a sergeant in the infantry, 33rd Division, K Company. As reported by his son, he trained in Hawaii and fought through the South Pacific. Montalto was a rifleman. He departed for service on June 19, 1943, and on November 8, 1945, to the Western Pacific Theater of Operations. Montalto’s company helped liberate the Philippines (fighting in Luzon) and New Guinea and went on to occupy Japan at the war’s end.

In January 1945, at age 26, Montalto was admitted to hospital, after suffering a blast injury to his ear from an artillery shell, according to World War II hospital admission card files. As per his son, he was treated for perforated ear drums suffered as a result of being blown out of a foxhole and was diagnosed with otitis media. He was discharged in February 1945.

On September 2, 1945, Montalto received his lapel button. He was honorably discharged on December 2, 1945, at Fort Dix, New Jersey. The discharge document describes him as white with blue eyes and brown hair, 5′ 5”, 145 pounds and lists 100 Washington Street, Brooklyn, as his address. It also indicates that Montalto received $216.58 in payment, had four dependents, had completed two years of high school, and was a printer machine operator.

For his service, Montalto was given the Asiatic-Pacific Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, World War II Victory Medal, and the American Service Medal. His son reports that the Purple Heart Medal won in the battle for Luzon, is not included in his father’s records because the hospital in which he was treated was destroyed by the Japanese Army; his Purple Heart was awarded many years later.

After the war, Montalto was a printer for the United States Post Office for over ten years, as per his son. On September 29, 1990, he died at the age of 72 at West Hudson Hospital in Kearny, New Jersey. He suffered from hypertension and the immediate cause of death was acute myocardial infarction due to arteriosclerotic heart disease. His home address at the time was 169 Minna Avenue, Brooklyn. However, the New Jersey Death index lists his residence as Kearny, New Jersey. The funeral services were held by Cerasso-Generalli Funeral Home in Brooklyn. His wife Marie, who died 2005, is buried beside him. Section 6, lot 39340, grave 588. 

Joseph Montalto

MONTEMARANO, CHARLES A. (1918-1981). Staff sergeant, 301st Bombardment Group, 419th Squadron, United States Army.  Born in Brooklyn, the 1930 federal census reports that he resided with his parents, Gaetano and Angelina, at 6204 10th Avenue in Brooklyn. Both parents were born in Italy and his father worked as a superintendent of apartments. He was the sixth of eight children. The family’s last name was recorded in that census as “Monternarano.” An article published in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle on July 6, 1932, reported that graduation exercises were held on July 5, 1932, at Public School 176; Montemarano was one of the listed graduates. On June 26, 1936, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported that 970 students graduated from New Utrecht High School. The article, “970 Diplomas Are Awarded to New Utrecht Graduates: Members of Outgoing Class, One of the Largest Classes in History of Institution, Are Addressed by Dr. Vittorio Ceroni of Hunter College,” listed Montemarano among the 970 graduates. 

According to the 1940 census, the family’s residence was 6404 10th Avenue. This address might be incorrect, as the prior census recorded the street number as 6204 and Charles entered 6204 10th Avenue as his residence on his draft card. The census taker also listed him, incorrectly, as “Charlie Montemavano.” The census records that he had completed four years of high school, was working as a checker in a cotton mill, and his income was $364.00. His draft registration card records his age as 22 years old. His employer was James Colt, and his place of employment was at 360 Furman Street, Brooklyn. Montemarano designated his father, residing with him, as the contact person. His registrar’s report, dated October 16, 1940, describes him as 5′ 8″ tall, 154 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes, and light complexion. His World War II Army enlistment record reports that he enlisted in the Army on October 10, 1941, at Camp Upton in Yaphank, New York. His civil occupation conveys that he was skilled in the manufacture of textiles. His rank was private, and he was single with no dependents.

According to his eldest son, “My father was a waist machine gunner on a B17 Bomber.” His son also shared that Montemarano engaged in battles in the Italian, North African, and German campaigns.  According to a notification to his commanding officer, he was assigned to the 301st Bombardment Group, 419th Squadron. As indicated on the Army Air Corps Museum website, the 301st Bombardment Group was comprised of four bomb squadrons: the 32nd, 352nd, 353rd, and 419th. Given his unit, Montemarano is likely to have taken part in bombing raids on docks, shipping facilities and railroad yards in Tunisia, Sicily, and Sardinia. Another website, Faces Beyond the Grave, describes his bombardment group as follows: “The 301st Bombardment Group was a highly decorated groups of B-17 Flying Fortresses that served primarily in Africa and Italy.” A war diary of a veteran of the 419th Bomb Squadron, 301st Bomb Group, described the raid of January 7, 1944, in which Montemarano took part and was wounded:

Eleven crews and nine planes of the 419th Bomb Squadron plus two planes borrowed from the 352nd Squadron participated in a mission to bomb Montpellier/Frejorgues A/D, France with the other Squadrons of the 301st Bomb Group. The bomb load of 12 – 500 lbs. each plane was dropped from an altitude of 23,500 feet with very satisfactory results. Heavy moderate flak was encountered but no enemy fighters. Three planes received minor damage and one major damage. First wave was led by Lt. Col. Barthlemess with planes from our Squadron with Lt. Markel as navigator and Lt. Wallace, bombardier (Group). The second wave was led by Major Neal with Lt. Silberman, navigator, and Lt. Anderson bombardier. Plane #3166, Lt. Graves and crew completely disappeared. Plane #0347 and crew reported down safely at Naples. Plane #7964 landed at Sardinia with waist gunner Sgt. Montemorano [sic] injured. Sgt. Montemorano [sic] was taken to 60th Station Hospital with the loss of right eye by flak.

As per the World War II Hospital Admission Card Files, he was admitted to the hospital in January 1944. The diagnosis was: “First Location: eyeball, generally; Second Diagnosis: contracture, other; Second Location: Eye, not elsewhere classified.” His medical treatment was: “Enucleation, simple, eye (removal).” He was discharged from the hospital in October 1944. Montemarano would be readmitted to two additional World War II hospitals for follow-up treatment on his eye. The first re-admittance was in December 1944 and the second was in May 1945. On March 1, 1944, his Commanding Officer was notified that “Under the provisions of par 3, Cir No 126, NATOUSA, dated 2 July 1943, a Purple Heart is awarded to Sgt CHARLES A. MONTEMARANO, 32175668, 419th Sq, 301st Bomb Group, for wounds received as a result of enemy action (German) over France on 27 January 1944. Number of medal: 431944. SO #37, Headquarters 60th Station Hospital, APO 763, 6 February 1944.” As per the March 7, 1944, issue of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, he was promoted to the rank of staff sergeant in the 15th Army Air Force. In addition to the Purple Heart, he was awarded the Air Medal Decoration and Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster on March 13, 1944.

According to the New York Marriage License Bureau, he married Betty Walker on October 26, 1944. The couple had three children: Thomas, Carole, and James. As per the Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS (Beneficiary Identification and Records Locator Subsystem), his discharge date was June 4, 1945. In civilian life, he worked for the United States Postal Service for twenty-six years. Section 39, lot 38325, grave 2387.

Charles Montemarano in uniform.

MORABITO, DAMIAN A. (1926-2014). Rank unknown, unit unknown, United States Army. Born in Brooklyn, the 1930 census reports that the four-year-old Morabito lived with his parents, Vincent and Maria, at 176 18th Street in Brooklyn. His father was born in Pennsylvania and his mother’s birthplace was Italy. The census taker recorded his name as “Damiano Marakto.” He was the sixth of seven children. As per the 1940 census, the family still resided at the 18th Street address. His name was recorded as “Domano Morabit” and he was in the seventh grade. He was now one of eight siblings. As per his niece, Morabito graduated from Brooklyn Technical High School on January 25, 1944. He briefly attended Cornell University before his military service. 

His World War II Army enlistment record notes that he enlisted on June 20, 1944, at Fort Dix, New Jersey. He attended four years of high school and was single, without dependents. According to his niece, he was called to active duty on June 20, 1944, and arrived in Europe on February 8, 1944. He served in the Central Europe Rhineland Campaign and took part in the occupation of Germany. As per his niece, “He crossed into Germany in a tank destroyer in the final campaign. He was in Germany at the time of the surrender and remained there for the next year with the Army of Occupation.” Morabito departed Europe on May 20, 1946, and was discharged from the United States Army on June 4, 1946. He received the Army of Occupation Medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. On September 19, 1950, he enlisted in the United States Air Force. His niece states that he was “an Air Force career man and retired as a sergeant.” Upon his retirement from the Air Force, Morabito served as a government employee at the Fort Hamilton Army Base in Brooklyn. Section 31, lot 44902, grave 26.

Morabito, shipping out.
Morabito, left, with family.
Morabito in Europe.
Morabito’s patch.

MORENO, SALVATORE JOSEPH (1922-2015). Sergeant, 590th Maintenance Division, Army Air Force, United States Army. According to Ancestry.com, he was born in Manhattan to Nicola and Maria Moreno, and was one of six siblings. The family lived in Brooklyn as early as 1930. In 1933, his mother gave birth to a boy, but the child passed away the same day. As per the 1940 census, the seventeen-year-old Moreno lived with his family at 2714 Glenwood Road in Brooklyn. He was an apprentice and his income was $600 for the year. He had completed two years of high school and had six siblings. In the transcription, his first name is spelled “Salvadore” and Leroy Concert, age 47, is listed as a sibling.  

Moreno registered for the armed forces on June 30, 1942, at the age of 19. As per that registration, he was 5′ 11″ tall, 160 pounds, with brown eyes, brown hair, and a dark complexion. His place of residence was 2006 60th Street, Brooklyn. He listed his sister, Antoinette Massa, as his contact person. His employer was Mapleton Park Moving Van, located at 6324 20th Avenue in Brooklyn. According to his granddaughter, he served in England from October 1943 to January 1946. She shared that, “While serving in England, he met his future wife, Winifred, at the Plaza Dance Hall in Manchester. They married at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church of England on October 13, 1945, and traveled to Kendall, Scotland, for their honeymoon. Thereafter, she traveled with him.”

No documentation can be located regarding the Army Air Force 590th Maintenance Unit. In fact, Moreno might have been assigned to the Royal Air Force Burtonwood/United States Army Air Force Station 590. If so, his duties were likely the maintenance of aircraft needed to attack German cities and industry. A notation on his draft card records that he was honorably discharged on February 1, 1946. As per his granddaughter, he received the World War II Victory Medal.  

Moreno and his wife had three children. According to his obituary in the Asbury Park Press, he was the proprietor of Oscar’s Restaurant at the Golden Gate. Upon his retirement, he moved to Holmdel, New Jersey. His last place of residence was in Edison, New Jersey. Section 135, lot 42699, grave 7.

Moreno on right.
Salvatore and Winifred Moreno.

MULIA, NUNZIO (1923-2010). Private 1st class, 452nd Ordnance Evacuation Company, United States Army. Nunzio Louis “Prep” Mulia was born in New York to Stephen Mulia and Genevieve di Somma, immigrants from Italy, according to the 1925 New York State census. He was the fourth of what would be seven siblings, and may have been the first one born in the United States. The family lived in the neighborhood of Rosebank, Staten Island, which was then a destination for Italian immigrants. His father worked as a hotel cook. By the time of the 1930 federal census, the family was living at 529 Carroll Street in Brooklyn; seven-year-old Nunzio attended Our Lady of Peace Grammar School nearby. By 1940, according to that year’s census, the family lived at 282 Fourth Avenue; sixteen-year-old Nunzio worked as a stamper, probably in a metal fabrication factory, having left school after the seventh grade. His father was no longer with the family, but his maternal grandmother, Nunzia Somma, had moved in.

At the age of 19, in 1942, Nunzio Mulia registered for the draft. He listed his address as 158 Garfield Place and the person who would always know where he was as Jerry or Terry Pepe of 290 Third Avenue (perhaps a relative of his future wife, Minnie Pepe). His employer, according to his draft card, was Benny Orowitz at 528 Carroll Street; interestingly, that address was right across the street from the Mulia family residence of the 1930 census.

Mulia served in the 452nd Ordnance Evacuation Company in the European Theater of the war, placing him in the campaigns of Northern France, the Rhineland, and Central Europe (July 1944 to May 1945). According to Army documents of the time, the Ordnance Evacuation Company “ … is designed to transport tanks forward to the combat zone and to evacuate unserviceable tanks from the combat zone to repair shops.” For his service, Mulia received the American Service Medal-World War II Victory Medal; the European-African-Middle Eastern Service Medal, and the Good Conduct Medal.

After the war, Mulia worked as a truck driver in the vending industry for 35 years. He married Philomena (“Minnie”) Pepe in New York City on January 12, 1947. They had three children in the succeeding years—Stephen, Michael, and Marianne—according to his obituary. He died at the age of 87. Section 126,lot 38812, grave 2.

Philomena (Minnie) Pepe Mulia
Nunzio and Minnie Mulia

NEALE, III, JOHN HENRY (1927-2006). Technician, 4th Grade, United States Army. A native of Brooklyn, Neale’s address at the date of his birth was 435 Hancock Street. His father, who bore his name, served in World War I and was the American director of the Ellerman shipping line, a British steamship company. The son was raised in Larchmont, New York.

As per his son, John A. Neale, the subject of this biography served as technician, 4th grade, in the United States Army during World War II. He also served as a postal clerk and was awarded a World War II Victory Medal for service in the Pacific Theater. His Enlisted Record and Report of Separation indicates that he lived on Maple Hill Drive in Larchmont, New York, was 6′ tall with blue eyes, brown hair and weighed 160 pounds. That record confirms his son’s information. An undated newspaper article, source unknown, reports that Neale’s parents watched from a tug boat as their son, Private First Class Neale, sailed off from New York Harbor. He was honorably discharged on August 3, 1947. As per his father’s Wikipedia biography, John Henry Neale III was married at the Plaza Hotel, a premier wedding venue. He last lived in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, where he died. Section 45, lot 31351.

John Neale III

NEHEMIAS, JOSEPH EDWARD (1922-1988). Rank unknown, unit unknown, United States Army. Nehemias was born in Brooklyn. As per the 1925 New York State census, he lived with his parents, Abraham and Mary, and three siblings, in Brooklyn. His father worked as an export packer. The 1930 federal census records that the family resided at 463 17th Street in Brooklyn. Both parents were reported as born in New York and his father’s occupation had not changed. With the birth of two siblings, Joseph was the second oldest of six children. In the transcription, his middle initial is recorded as “G.” However, according to other documents, his middle initial is “E” for Edward. The 1940 census records the eighteen-year-old Nehemias as having completed two years of high school and documents him as “a new worker.” The census lists seven children in the family and his father’s occupation as a department head in the paint manufacturing industry. The transcription erroneously spelled his last name as “Nachmias.”

His draft registration card notes that he was twenty years old and lived at 506 Prospect Avenue. His contact person was his mother who resided at the same address. The Atlantic and Pacific Manufacturing Company, located at 124 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, is listed as his employer. The registrar’s report, dated June 30, 1942, describes Nehemias as 5′ 10″ tall, 140 pounds, with brown eyes, brown hair, and a ruddy complexion. As per his World War II enlistment record, his date of enlistment was November 14, 1942. He was assigned the rank of private, was single, without dependents, had completed two years of high school, and his civil occupation was a shipping and receiving clerk. A notation on his draft card states that he was discharged on January 11, 1946. According to the Social Security Death Index, his last place of residence was in Brooklyn. Section 72, lot 44602, grave 1.

NOVAK, MICHAEL (1919-2020). Private, United States Army. Michael Novak was born in Franklin, Pennsylvania. His father Daniel, a coal miner, and his mother, Tessie, were both immigrants from Czechoslovakia. Novak had three sisters, Anna, Tessie and Martha, and four brothers, John, Nick, Joseph and George.

Novak lived in Pennsylvania until at least 1930 before moving to New York City. He worked as a busboy alongside his siblings at the restaurant in Manhattan. On his draft registration card, he stated that he was a busboy at Sieburg’s Restaurant at 33 Maiden Lane in Lower Manhattan. He listed his sister, Catherine, as the person who would always know his whereabouts. He was 5′ 6″tall, 145 pounds, with brown eyes and hair, and a light complexion.

After his service, he attended New York University, from which he graduated in 1946. Novak married Barbara Danatsko in New York City in 1950. They had two children. For thirty-seven years, he worked at Texaco. His wife passed away in 2007 and is interred with him. Section R, 43538.

Michael Novak in uniform.

PALMER, II, LOWELL MASON (1921-1959). Junior lieutenant, United States Navy. Lowell Palmer was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Carleton Humphreys and Winthrop Bushnell Palmer. Lowell’s paternal grandfather had co-owned E.R. Squibb & Sons, the Brooklyn-based pharmaceutical company, and by the time of the 1930 census, Palmer’s father was the company’s president. The family (including younger sisters Winthrop and Rosalind, as well as a servant) lived in Fairfield, Connecticut. By 1940, according to that year’s census, 19-year-old Lowell was living at home in New York, with his mother and father, his two siblings, a cook, and a maid. 

In 1939, Palmer had entered Yale University and appeared in the school’s yearbook, where the Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity counted him as a member, class of 1942. Later in the decade he earned an MBA from Harvard, according to his daughter.

After graduation, at the end of 1942, with the war ongoing, Palmer joined the Naval Reserve as an ensign, earning a promotion to lieutenant junior grade, according to his daughter: “Initially assigned to the Pacific, my father later became captain of a PT boat [Torpedo Boat Squadron 15] and ran intelligence missions in the Mediterranean, for which he received [a] commendation.”

On Valentine’s Day in 1948, Palmer married Margaret Helen O’Dowd, a Boston nurse, in Manchester, New Hampshire, her hometown. By then, he was working in business management and lived at 35 East 72nd Street in Manhattan.

From 1951 to 1959, Palmer worked at American Metaseal Corporation. He died of cancer at age 37, at his home in Old Westbury, Long Island. Sadly, he didn’t live to see his family’s later notable accomplishments: his mother, Winthrop, became an important leader of Long Island University, where the School of Library and Information Science on the C.W. Post campus carries the family name. His sister Rosalind (who, during the war, was the inspiration for Rosie the Riveter) was an early supporter of public television, through the Rosalind P. Walter Foundation. Section 125, lot 26169.

Palmer in civilian attire.

PASTORE, JOSEPH (or GIUSEPPE) ANTHONY (1916-2009). Corporal, 187th Field Artillery, United States Army. Born in Brooklyn, the United States birth index records his first name as Giuseppe. Records from the 1920 Kings County federal census report that he resided on 21st Street with his parents, Nicholas and Josephine, and a younger sister, Louise. Both parents were born in Italy and his father was a tailor in a factory. Pastore’s first name is recorded there as Joseph. The 1930 census relates that he and his parents still resided at 156 21st Street and his father was a tailor in a tailor shop. Pastore was thirteen years old, attended school, and was the oldest of six siblings. As per the 1940 census, Pastore was twenty-three years old, had completed four years of high school, and worked as a laborer in a bottle cap factory. His parents and their eight children, namely, Joseph, Louise (recorded as Luisa), Thomas, Michael (see), Celeste, Nicholas Jr., Eugene, and Anthony resided at 595 3rd Avenue.

His U.S. World War II enlisted men’s card records his name as Joseph A., and his enlistment as on June 12, 1939, in Company H, 14th Infantry. His residence was 733 46th Street, Brooklyn. The card also reflects that on February 3, 1941, he enlisted in the 187th Field Artillery. His draft card is dated February 3, 1941. He printed his name as “Joseph Anthony Pastore” but signed it as “Joseph A. Pastore.” His residence was 595 3rd Avenue, and his mother was listed as the contact person. His employer was Ferdinand Gutman & Company, located on 14th Avenue between 36th and 37th Streets in Brooklyn. The registrar’s report, dated October 16, 1940, notes he was white, 5′ 5½” tall, weighed 136 pounds, had blue eyes and brown hair, and a dark complexion. Pastore’s World War II Army enlistment record indicates that he was single and his civil occupation was plasterer. His rank was private first class, and he was assigned to the field artillery. As per his obituary published in the Staten Island Advance on April 25, 2009, he achieved the rank of corporal, served in the war from 1941 to 1945, and participated in the Battle of the Bulge. The Harry S. Truman Library and Museum website provides detailed information about the Battle of the Bulge with access to a map (https://www.trumanlibrary.gov/maps/m639-map-187th-field-artillery-group) illustrating the route of the 187th Field Artillery. He separated from active service on September 28, 1945. 

According to the marriage license records, Pastore married Helen Dominski on July 5, 1941.  Pastore continued his military service after the war by serving in the Army National Guard from February 1949 to August 1950. NPastorePenrod posted a copy of Joseph’s Staten Island Advance obituary on Ancestry.com on April 27, 2009. The obituary gives insight to Pastore’s life after the war: “A Brooklyn native, Mr. Pastore moved to Huguenot in 1977…Mr. Pastore was a letter carrier along Brooklyn routes for 38 years. After retiring in 1972, he worked another 10 years as a security guard at U.S. Trust in Manhattan. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Mr. Pastore enjoyed reading, solving crossword puzzles and visiting Atlantic City.” Section O, lot 42391, grave 1.

PASTORE, MICHAEL J. (1923-1998). Rank unknown, unit unknown, United States Army. Born in Brooklyn, the 1925 New York State census reports that the one-year-old Pastore lived with his parents, Nicholas and Josephine, and his three siblings, Joseph (see), Louisa, and Gaetano.  His parents were from Italy and his father worked as a tailor. The family resided at 213 22nd Street, Brooklyn. The census of 1930 records that Pastore and his family moved to 156 21st Street in Brooklyn. With the addition of Celeste and Nicholas, Jr., the family grew to six children. His brother, Gaetano, was listed as Thomas. As per the 1940 federal census, the family’s residence was 595 3rd Avenue, Brooklyn. His parents had had two more children, Eugene and Anthony. The census notes that his father’s occupation was a tailor and three of his siblings were working – Joseph (see) in a bottle cap factory, Louisa (listed as Luisa) in a flower factory, and Thomas in an undesignated factory.

Michael Pastore registered for the draft on June 30, 1942, at the age of eighteen. His draft registration card details that he lived at the 3rd Avenue address, and he named his mother as the contact person. His employer was Paulson Electric Beauty Repair Company located at 48 Smith Street, Brooklyn. His registrar’s report describes him as white, 5′ 3½” tall, 135 pounds, with brown eyes and hair, and a dark complexion. It also notes he had a scar on his right leg. In an article from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, dated November 4, 1951, Pastore and other veterans were thanked for making an event for the Army & Navy Union a success. Section 106, lot 36368, grave 2.

PAYNE, JR., ROBERT W. (1927-1999). Sergeant, United States Army. Robert Payne was born in Brooklyn to Robert, a brokerage clerk, and Vera Payne. According to the 1930 census, the family included younger brother Jack. By the time of the 1940 census, the family had moved to West 107th Street in Manhattan.

Payne did not become eligible for the draft until June, 1945, by which time the war was almost at an end. His draft card describes him as 6′ 4″ tall, 180 pounds, with blue eyes and blond hair, living on Cortelyou Road in Brooklyn. He lists his grandmother, Mrs. Lavinia Payne of Dahill Road, as his contact, and his employer as Antin Press of 82 Beekman Street in Manhattan.

According to his daughter, Payne was in the very last draft of World War II. “While his troop transport was going through the Panama Canal it developed a serious leak, leaving the vessel not seaworthy. It was repaired on the Pacific side of the canal.” In August 1945, while the ship was being repaired, two atomic bombs were dropped on Japan, ending the war.

“You don’t get sent home, though,” continued his daughter. “You serve out your time. Dad guarded Japanese prisoners of war in New Guinea. He finished his hitch in California, where he was on “The Rock” (Alcatraz) during the [May 1946] prison riot.”

On February 11, 1956, Robert married Anna Hughes of Brooklyn. Together they raised four children, and by the 1990s were living at the same Dahill Road address given for Robert Payne’s family on his draft card. He worked for 15 years at the Bayside Fuel Company. He is buried next to his wife, Anna. Section 168, lot 39160, grave 2.

Payne with his grandmother, Lavinia Payne.

PERGOLIZZI, JOHN (1912-1944). Private first class, 60th Engineer Combat Battalion, Company B, 35th Division, United States Army. John Pergolizzi was born in New York to John Pergolizzi, Sr., and Anna Pergolizzi, immigrants from Italy. By the time of the 1930 federal census, seventeen-year-old John was living with his parents, three sisters, and a brother in Brooklyn, and working as a helper in a machine shop. According to a 1948 notice in the Brooklyn Eagle, he graduated from Manual Training High School (now John Jay Educational Campus).

John married Helen E. Aanouse on July 12, 1934, according to the state marriage index. He registered for the draft on October 16, 1942. His draft card records Anchor Lumber, at 5th Avenue and 38th Street, as his employer.

Pergolizzi was inducted into the United States Army in February 1943, according to a 1948 notice in the Brooklyn Eagle. By the autumn of 194, he was overseas with Company B, 60th Engineer Combat Battalion, 35th Division, 3rd Army, in the European Theater. An engineer combat battalion is responsible for construction services, including laying and clearing mine fields, building pontoon bridges, and repairing roads, to support front line troops. It was also required to fight as infantry soldiers when necessary.

Pergolizzi’s platoon served in France as part of the Allied advance across Europe in 1944. On the night of October 10, his unit was north of the town of Ajoncourt, laying an anti-tank mine field, when an unexplained series of explosions blew up the mines in the field as well as the trucks carrying the mines. Forty-seven soldiers died; John Pergolizzi was among them.

On December 6, 1944, the battalion commander wrote to his father, describing the incident. He stated that John had been buried at a United States Army cemetery in Lorraine, France. There now seems to be no record of that burial, according to his granddaughter.

But on December 12, 1948, a notice in the Brooklyn Eagle announced a memorial service conducted by the local American Legion post for Pergolizzi, “one of the European war dead recently returned to Brooklyn,” as well as a requiem mass the next day at St. John’s Roman Catholic Church, followed by private interment. Soon after, John’s father applied for a military veteran’s headstone for his son’s grave in Green-Wood. Section H, lot 37867, grave 1.

PHILLIPS, KIRIAKOS (1923-1999). Private, unit unknown, United States Army. As per the 1930 census, Phillips lived with his parents, James and Mary, and his older brother, Philip, at 1561 67th Street in Brooklyn. The census indicates that his parents and brother were born in Greece, and he was born in New York City. His father worked in the ice cream industry. In October 1933, his father applied for naturalization. The process took years, and his father was accorded “lawful entry for permanent residence” on September 29, 1937. According to his father’s United States petition of naturalization papers, the family resided at 1620 66th Street. The documentation, in contrast to the 1930 census, states that both his parents were born in Constantinople (now Istanbul), Turkey, his older brother was born in Greece, and his father’s former name was Demetrios Phillipon. His parents were married in Turkey on November 4, 1919, and his father worked as a production manager. His family entered the United States either on the 18th or 19th of December in 1920 on the ship Leopoldina. The 1940 federal census notes that the seventeen-year-old Phillips and his family still resided at the 66th Street address. His father and brother were machinists in the dairy and ice cream industry and his mother worked as a finisher in the garment industry.

Phillip’s World War II registration card records that he was nineteen years old, resided at the 66th Street address and his father was named as next of kin. The card states that he was self-employed at J. Phillips and Sons, a tool and die maker located at 1558 63rd Street in Brooklyn. Due to its name, J. Phillips and Sons, it may have been the family business. The World War II Army enlistment records indicate that Phillips enlisted on December 24, 1943, had completed four years of high school, and was a machinist. There is no record of the unit he served in during the war, nor a discharge date from the Army. The only wartime record located was a World War II hospital admission card. Phillips was admitted in January 1944 with a diagnosis of “reaction to drugs, vaccines, serum; typhoid and paratyphoid vaccine.” There is no specific date for his discharge from the hospital other than the recorded year “1944.” According to his daughter, he married Mildred A. Trimboli on November 30, 1944. The couple had two children. Section 8, lot 44609, grave 73.