Home  
Home 1289 N. 2nd St., Abilene, Texas 79601
 
12th Armored Division Message Board
register | search | profile
12th Armored Division >> General Discussion >> 23rd tank Battalion Co B
7 posts total   
Author Topic:  23rd tank Battalion Co B
Robert Brinker
Junior Member
Member # 36235

Posts: 3
From: Eureka, Missouri
Registered: 7/14/2018
posted 7/14/2018 10:59:11 AM    Click here to view the profile for Robert Brinker  Click here to email Robert Brinker  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
I am seeking any information about .my father Sylvester Henry Brinker of Washington, MO. He was a 1st Sergeant in the 23rd Tank Battalion Co B. Later commissioned to 2nd Lt. on Jan.21,1945 in France as Tank Unit Commander. He was wounded on Feb.4,1945 in Colmar, France.

MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 985
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 7/16/2018 6:37:49 PM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Hello, I have looked at the After Action Report for the
month of January, 1945. Sylvester Brinker was
promoted on January 21st, just as you said. The
23rd was in a terrific battle from the 16th to the 20th.
It is a complex story. On this website, go to
BOOKS AND WRITTEN EXPERIENCES. Go to the 23rd
Tank Battalion and read the book by Jim Francis. See the chapter on Herrlisheim.
Also, go to the 17th Armored Infantry Battalion and find the essay on HERRLISHIEM by George Hatt.

I am leaving for the 12th Armored Reunion in Atlanta.
Let me know what else you might want to know.

Mike Woldenberg



Robert Brinker
Junior Member
Member # 36235

Posts: 3
From: Eureka, Missouri
Registered: 7/14/2018
posted 7/17/2018 6:15:29 PM    Click here to view the profile for Robert Brinker  Click here to email Robert Brinker  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Mike
Thank you for responding to my message. I read the information you suggested and that gave me a better understanding about the 23rd tank battalion. As I mentioned in my post,my dad Sylvester Henry Brinker became a 2nd Lt. on Jan 21, 1945 in France as tank unit commander 23rd tank battalion Co b. He was severely wounded on Feb. 4, 1945. According to his medical paper it was in Colmar. My family and I are hoping to track his movements on Feb. 4th. We would like to know if there is any report for that day that would include details about where dad's tank was at the time he was wounded? What happened after the tank was hit? Was he the first tank? Were other tanks hit? Was anyone else wounded of killed? What happened to dad after he was hit? How long did it take to get to him after he was wounded? I just don't know what is available out there or where to find it. I would be grateful for any information you might have access to.

Bob Brinker

MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 985
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 7/18/2018 10:01:14 PM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Bob, I will look into it. I am now at the annual reunion of the 12th Armored Division. I knew one of the doctors
who would have taken care of your Dad. His name was
Dr. Vincent Cotroneo. Just maybe one of his medics
will be here, and I will see if he remembers anything.
I have a feeling that the medics were very much on
the ball. They took chances and the first medical
care was always close to the fighting. Then they
moved the men to real hospitals when they were stailized. Evidently you Dad did very well earlier during the fighting near Herrlisheim or they would
not have promoted him. Do you have any facts about
what he was doing the dates January 16-21??
I am in Atlanta and will not see my reference books
until I get back. And my grandchildren and my daughter and her husband arrive on Saturday.

Mike



Robert Brinker
Junior Member
Member # 36235

Posts: 3
From: Eureka, Missouri
Registered: 7/14/2018
posted 7/24/2018 12:22:58 AM    Click here to view the profile for Robert Brinker  Click here to email Robert Brinker  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Mike
I hope you enjoyed the reunion in Atlanta. For many years my dad and the men under his command would get together and have their own yearly reunion. Dad always looked forward to seeing his buddies every year. I was fortunate to be able to meet them when the reunion was held in my dad's home town. They always had a great time together.

Thank you for taking the time to help as I try to piece together my dads military service.

Sylvester Henry Brinker
Born 2/25/1911 and Died 1/24/1990 in Washington, Franklin County, Missouri.
Serial Number 0-2006408
Sergeant, 23rd Tank Battalion, Co B.
Commissioned to 2nd Lt 1/21/1945 in France
as Tank Unit Commander.
Wounded 2/4/1945
Promoted to 1st Lt date unknown

I looked through the papers that dad kept but they do not shed any light as to where or what he was doing in France during the dates in January 1945 that you mentioned. I have one medical report that describes his injuries and states he was wounded in Colmar, France. Can you confirm this? While looking through dads papers I found his "MILITARY RECORD AND REPORT OF SEPARATION CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE" WD AGO FORM 53-98 but his discharge papers are missing. My mother would have needed them when my dad died. I have no idea what happened to them. I don't have his medals either. I know he received the Purple Heart and several others.

My dad was proud of his service. He suffered from his injury all his life. There were times when I saw my mother remove pieces of shrapnel from his leg. Sometimes he would get blood poisoning from the shrapnel requiring a trip to the doctor for antibiotics. However, his leg injury never kept him down. He was Postmaster for the Villa Ridge Post Office in Villa Ridge, Mo. and drove a bus for Mid American Coaches when needed. He continued to farm and enjoyed spending time with his family. I would like to get a copy of his discharge papers and get his medals replaced. Can you help with that or direct me to the right place?

I hope you will be able to find the answers to my questions that I posted in my previous message. My goal is to get enough information about his Army days to create a history of his service. I want to include some history of the 12th Armored Division, his discharge papers and medals and pictures of my dad in his uniform to share with my children and grandchildren.

Thanks again Mike

Sincerely,
Bob Brinker

Bob Scherer
Junior Member
Member # 119

Posts: 59
From: Yardley, PA
Registered: 10/11/2005
posted 7/24/2018 3:29:10 PM    Click here to view the profile for Bob Scherer  Click here to email Bob Scherer  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Bob, I sometimes work with Mike Woldenberg on message board inquiries. Many of the questions you have listed in previous posts were probably not recorded. There just wasn't the time to record the detail down to individual tank in unit reports, nor for the most part was it significant to unit operations. I have many of the same questions about my Dad but have not been able to get answers. My Dad was also born in 1911 and died about the same time as your Dad...1987. I wish I lived where you do...it looks like you are a half hour from the National Personnel Records Center in St Louis. Have you visited there to request your Dad's records? It's a very easy process especially as close as you are. If you would like more information please email me at rwscherer@verion.net. I find email much easier to work with and share documents. Good luck! Bob Scherer

MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 985
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 7/24/2018 9:45:35 PM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Bob Brinker and Bob Scherer, In the rush before the
reunion, I neglected to tell Bob Brinker to read the
History of the 23rd Tank Battalion. It is on this website, under BOOKS AND WRITTEN EXPERIENCES.
Scroll down to the 23rd. This gives a day by day
history of the events in early February. On Feb. 4
the 23rd was fighting in Herrlisheim pres (near) Colmar. In fact, this Herrlisheim was a detached small town
just a couple of miles south of Colmar a larger city. I believe that the records stated Colmar because Herrlisheim was so very close, and the 12th Armored
came from a terrific battle in the area around Herrlisheim north of Strasbourg.

I want to take a look at the After Action Report for February and I will report back.

I have been to both Herrlisheims and to Colmar. The
fight in Herrlisheim near Colmar lasted only 2 days,
but the first day was not easy.

Also, Bob Scherer and I may be able to reconstruct
the medals that your Dad earned.

Mike