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12th Armored Division >> General Discussion >> Seeking Information Regarding Robert Louis Marchik
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Author Topic:  Seeking Information Regarding Robert Louis Marchik
Guest
Unregistered

posted 2/1/2019 8:37:47 AM  Reply w/Quote
I'm hoping you can help me. The War Dept says my Dad's service records were lost in a warehouse fire in the 70's so they have no information regarding his service. I recently came across a "studio photo" of his whole company (?) taken at Fort Knox in November, 1942. The caption appears to read "Co. B 12th Armored Replacement Battalion". The first part is rather faded, so it might be Co. D -?

I know he was at Gardelegen in April, 1945, but I don't have any information on what happened to him between November 1942 - April 1945.

Can you help me verify what Company, etc., he was in? I'd also appreciate any other information or resources you might have or could suggest where I might be able to find out more about his service.

Thank you.

Guest
Unregistered

posted 2/1/2019 8:37:47 AM  Reply w/Quote
I'm hoping you can help me. The War Dept says my Dad's service records were lost in a warehouse fire in the 70's so they have no information regarding his service. I recently came across a "studio photo" of his whole company (?) taken at Fort Knox in November, 1942. The caption appears to read "Co. B 12th Armored Replacement Battalion". The first part is rather faded, so it might be Co. D -?

I know he was at Gardelegen in April, 1945, but I don't have any information on what happened to him between November 1942 - April 1945.

Can you help me verify what Company, etc., he was in? I'd also appreciate any other information or resources you might have or could suggest where I might be able to find out more about his service.

Thank you.

MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 1050
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 2/1/2019 9:52:16 AM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Dear Guest, You said that your father was in Gardelegen, the site of an infamous concentration camp. Thus, I would start investigating the history of the
102nd Infantry Division which liberated the concentration camp at Gardelegen on April 14th,
1945. Look at the following website:

https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/massacre-at-gardelegen-april-1945

If you Google the 102nd Division you will find several websites that might help. Try an contact
a unit historian; that person might have a roster with all the names. For instance there is one
website: http://www.lonesentry.com/102thrugermany/



This website is just one of the sources to consult.


MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 1050
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 2/1/2019 10:25:21 AM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Additional comment: Your Dad was most likely
not in the 12th Armored Division. He was trained
in the 12th Armored Replacement Battalion. This
battalion was not part of the 12th Armored Division. The name is a coincidence. A few replacements for the 12th Armored Division did train with the 12th Armored Replacement Battalion. Your comment on Gardelegen in April is a very important clue. After reading about the divisions that may have passed through Gardelegen in April, 1945, you
might find that your Dad was in one of those. But I would start with the 102nd Infantry Division. That one is the most likely. The 12th Armored Division was not in Gardelegen. Regards, Mike Woldenbrerg

MikeWoldenberg
Junior Member
Member # 16

Posts: 1050
From: University at Buffalo (NY)
Registered: 6/1/2004
posted 2/1/2019 1:26:03 PM    Click here to view the profile for MikeWoldenberg  Click here to email MikeWoldenberg  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Was your Dad an Officer? If so, he will be mentioned in the Roster of officers for his battalion each month. We could possibly find
monthly After Action Reprots for each battalion in the 102nd Infantry Diviision.

Also, if your Dad received the Silver Star or Distinguished Service Cross, there are lists of these medal winners and they give the name of the Division.

Bob Scherer
Junior Member
Member # 119

Posts: 74
From: Yardley, PA
Registered: 10/11/2005
posted 2/1/2019 9:02:23 PM    Click here to view the profile for Bob Scherer  Click here to email Bob Scherer  edit/delete post  Reply w/Quote
Hello,
Mike Woldenberg has given you good advice. Id like to add a few things and ask some questions. When was the last time you checked on your Dads records? The War Department changed to the Department of Defense in 1947. Sometime after the 1973 fire the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) assumed responsibility for Military Personnel Records of separated veterans. For the last decade or so NARA has been working on reconstructing those records. Only @ 75% of the records were destroyed or damaged. Also, some medical and finance records were not stored with the personnel records and survived. NARA has been collecting all those records as well as obtaining copies of some records from the Veterans Administration and other sources. I requested my fathers records in the 1990s and nothing was there. A request in 2011 revealed six of his documents were available. Also, many returning veterans provided copies of their discharge papers to their local county tax offices to receive a break on property taxes if they owned a home. I would recommend you check with your state Veterans Administration and county administrative offices. I would also recommend you request his records from the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St Louis. Google it for requesting instructions. If his file has no information the search is free. At last report, if it has 5 or less documents it will cost $25.00. If it has 6 or more documents it will cost you $70.00. It can take several months, probably longer now based on the government shutdown. Once you have some documentation on his service please contact me and Ill assist you further in your search. You ask about finding your fathers company. First we have to find what division he was in, then the Regiment or Battalion, and then the Company. A company has less than 200 men in it. There were @ 16 million men in uniform during the war so you can see the challenge. Mikes idea of the 102nd Infantry Division based on being in Gardelegen in Apr 45 is a good assumption, but without some more concrete documentation, tying your Dad to the 102nd is not certain. As Mike said, the 12th Armored Replacement Battalion was not tied to the 12th Armored Division. Hundreds, maybe even thousands of men passed through Replacement Battalions. Rosters were not maintained. Soldiers were assigned to them for training or sometimes only while in transit waiting for a permanent assignment. Sorry I cant be more help. Let me know if you can locate any of your Dads personnel files. Good luck! Bob Scherer