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12th Armored Division >> General Discussion >> Looking for Info on my Great uncle, David Merwin from Phoenicia/Shandaken
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Author Topic:  Looking for Info on my Great uncle, David Merwin from Phoenicia/Shandaken
Dan Simone Alex and Baby x
Junior Member
Member # 164

Posts: 2
From: Olympia, Washington
Registered: 8/1/2006
posted 8/1/2006 2:23:07 AM    Click here to view the profile for Dan Simone Alex and Baby x  Click here to email Dan Simone Alex and Baby x  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
I'm looking for info on David Merwin, my great uncle. He was from Phoenicia/ Shandaken N.Y. I heard a family rumor that he may have been in one of the "F" companys, and maybe served as a tank driver.

What info I have found from war dept documents sent to relatives is that he was wounded on March 1, 1945. The vehice he was in was "hit" and the fuel tanks caught fire. He died as a result of wounds on March 20, 1945.

I'd like to find out whatever info there is about him. If anyone knows/heard of him, the unit he was assigned to, job/mos, or anything else about him during his service that would be great.

I'm also interested to know what (and where!)combat action took place on March 1, 1945. I don't know if this was a formal action or ambush---again, I don't know his unit yet either.

Thank you for reading this, and I hope someone has some info!

Dan Simone Alex and Baby x
Junior Member
Member # 164

Posts: 2
From: Olympia, Washington
Registered: 8/1/2006
posted 8/1/2006 2:46:16 AM    Click here to view the profile for Dan Simone Alex and Baby x  Click here to email Dan Simone Alex and Baby x  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
By way of this site, I was able to find out he was in the 17th A.I.B!

Ken
Junior Member
Member # 9

Posts: 156
From: NH
Registered: 4/29/2004
posted 8/2/2006 10:37:21 AM    Click here to view the profile for Ken  Click here to email Ken  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Hi Dan,

I am a Legacy member of the 12th Armored Association and will try to help you.

If your uncle was in F Company, he was not in the 17TH AIB, since AIB's only had A, B, and C company's until the army was partially integrated late in the war, then D company's were added. AIB's did have a HQ Platoon, a smaller unit which makes up a company, which did have a M-8 assault gun, which is a tank.

In my limited, Army non-combat (1964-1966) experience, there is no distinction between formal action versus an ambush. My uncle was killed during a planned attack, but there are those who say the unit was ambushed. Poor intel, and a lot of other things which went wrong.

This is the link to David's enlistment record from the National Archives. If you can't get it to work let me know and I'll email the pages to you.

http://aad.archives.gov/aad/record-detail.jsp?dt=893&mtch=1&cat=WR26&tf=F&sc=19685,19709,19686,19687,19688,19753,19696,19698&bc=sl,fd&txt_19685=32576659&op_19685=0&nfo_19685=V,8,1900&rpp=10&pg=1&rid=3214620

Looking at David's E record I would guess, since his enlistment was in 1942, he was in the 17th AIB from beginning to when he died.

Also contact George Hatt, A-17th AIB, at 817-732-2925. George will give you additional info, he was there.

Regards,

Ken Klinedinst

MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 859
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 8/4/2006 9:01:27 PM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Dear Dan, In the column to the left, click on "Books and Written Experiences". Then
click on "Journal of Operations of the 17th
AIB." Then click on March. From March 1-7
the 17th was resting and reorganizing in Zimming. As you read, week by week, you
will see for March 20 the names of several
towns. On March 23 the 17th was told their
objective was Speyer. The lead half track
received a direct hit, and caught on fire.
One man was killed.

I suspect, but can not prove, that the dates
that you have may not be accurate, since
there were no engagements in the first couple of weeks in March. Note that your
great uncle may have been a half track driver, rather than a tank driver. As far as I know, there were no tanks in the 17th.
The tanks were in tank battalions.

Also, read the other account of the 17th,
written by George Hatt.

It would be a good idea to contact George
Hatt as Ken suggested. He was once the
Historian of the Division.

Mike Woldenberg, Legacy member.