Written by Chapter Secretary & Newsletter Editor, Frank Febus
McAuliffe’s Eagles Newsletter, August 2014
EAGLES WHO HAVE SOARED
Werner J. Meier, 94, of Norwood, NJ, died peacefully on June 12, 2014. Born in Germany, he came to this country at age 9 settling in New York City and became an American citizen. He served our country during WWII, with the Screaming Eagles of the 101st Airborne Division, dropping behind enemy lines at Normandy Beach on D-Day. He served 5 years with the U.S. Army attaining the rank of Captain. He returned home after being wounded at Bastogne, receiving the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star. Shortly thereafter he met his loving and devoted wife, Helen, and was happily married for over 68 years. He was a member of the VFW, the General Anthony C. McAuliffe Chapter of the 101st Airborne Division Association, and member of the Trinity Reformed Church.
Kenneth G. Johnson, 92, of Brick, NJ, died on Memorial Day, May 26, 2014, in the Ocean Medical Center. During WWII, Ken served with the Screaming Eagles of the 101st Airborne Division, Company H, 3rd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment from its inception in September 1942 to the end of WWII in 1945. He reported to Camp Toccoa, GA and was one of 2,100 trainees (out of 7,000) to qualify as a paratrooper. Ken was wounded in action on June 6, 1944 in Normandy and on January 5, 1945 in Bastogne. He participated in the invasion of Normandy on D-Day, the invasion of Holland (Operation Market-Garden) and siege of Bastogne in the Battle of the Bulge. Ken received three battle stars from each campaign. His military awards include: Combat Infantryman Badge, Good Conduct Medal, Presidential Unit Citation with Oak Leaf Cluster, Bronze Star, Victory Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, three Bronze Service Stars and one Arrowhead. He also received the Orange Lanyard of the Royal Netherlands Army, the French Croix de Guerre with Palm, the Belgian Fourragere, and most importantly, the Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster. Most recently, Ken received the French Legion of Honor, and the Distinguished Member of the Regiment Award (506th). He was a life member of the 101st Airborne Division Association, the General Anthony C. McAuliffe NY-NJ Chapter, the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment Association and the Blind Veterans Association.