Info on deployment after enlistment in New York in 1945

Discussion in 'USA' started by Deidre, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. Deidre

    Deidre New Member

    Hello all,

    Thru DNA evidence, I have recently discovered my grandfather was a soldier during WW2. However, I am trying to figure out the timing so that it makes sense. If someone's enlistment card says 1/2/1945, what would have been the time frame before they were actually sent overseas? I have heard sometimes they would take the boys immediately, but sometimes there would be a week or two lag, then a six week boot camp, then another week before deployment. Furthermore, his brother was KIA on 2/18/1945. To me, it makes sense that that would also delay his deployment. He would have to have been in country thru March 15th since my mother was born December 30, 1945.

    I have requested his military records, but I understand most of the files were destroyed in a fire.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

  2. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the forum Deidre.

    There are many helpful & knowledgeable folks on this forum who will assist you.

    There is also this forum that is more dedicated to US Servicemen in WW2:

    4jonboy likes this.
  3. Bin There

    Bin There Member

    Welcome Deidre,

    This is a partial answer, and doesn't quite address your deployment question. I'll follow up with a better answer if you can give me a bit more information, which I'll mention at the end. Hopefully you have his Enlisted Record and Report of Separation - usually called a discharge form or Honorable Discharge. That will contain the key info. Not sure if that was what you referred to as his enlistment card?

    You are correct about the time lag. Soldiers were not always immediately whisked off. The separation report lists three separate dates for a soldier's entering service, but in my limited research experience only two were typically filled out. The blocks were: Date of Induction (for draftees); Date of Enlistment (for volunteers); and Date of Entry into Active Service . So you would have either a date of Induction or Enlistment. And then you would have a date for Entry into Active Service. I have three separation reports in front of me. All happen to be draftees. One had a two week delay before entering into active service. One had a one week delay. And the last entered active service the day he was inducted. So you might, or might not have some delay between joining up and actually becoming a soldier. And again, you can find that data on his separation report, if you have it.

    What might happen after entering active service could vary widely depending on a number of factors. I'd have to know a lot more details before I can try to help you much. If you can provide his name and service number there's a good chance we can locate some files on him. If you can post a picture of his report of separation it can help a lot! If not, it would be good to know what his job in the Army was (his military occupation specialty), the unit he was assigned to overseas, if he deployed as an individual replacement, or deployed as a member of a unit. Anything will help. If you don't want to publicly post any of that info, you can PM me with anything you have.

    Good luck.
  4. Deidre

    Deidre New Member

    This is all I have been able to find so far. Thank you so much for your help. Some research I show is each soldier would have gone through an 11-17 basic training.

    Attached Files:

  5. Bin There

    Bin There Member

    Unfortunately that isn't enough info to turn up anything in the resources I have access to. Your best bet is to hope the records request produces his separation papers. I can, however, address in general terms the recruit training and deployment procedures in effect at that time.

    We can only guess how long it was between his enlistment and entry into active service, but the Replacement Training Centers had been working below capacity (despite the critical replacement shortage) due to a limit on inductions. So Eugene might have been placed on active service the day he was inducted and whisked to a Center to fill open slots. Or maybe not. We don't know. Let's factor in a 0-2 week delay. The Replacement Training Centers had a 17 week training program that combined basic training and some limited advanced skills training. But due to the critical need for replacements, that training had been cut back to 15 weeks by a decision reached on 21 Dec '44. This takes us up to a 15-17 week period (depending on what delay there was between enlistment and active service). In January, pre-embarkation furloughs were cut back to 5 days; I have no record showing this curtailment was later relaxed, so we'll just round it up to a week for these furloughs. Now we're up to 16-18 weeks between his enlistment date and possible overseas movement. Add in another 1 week or so for travel to and wait time in a Port of Embarkation marshalling camp, and we're up to 17-19 weeks. Based on these estimates he wouldn't have been able to board ship until about 27 Apr (for the 17 week window) to about 11 May (for the 19 week window). In other words, he probably would have missed the fighting in the European Theater of Operations. Do you know to which theater he was sent?

    However . . .

    As the way in Europe was winding down, Congress had passed an act prohibiting 18 year-olds from being deployed overseas until they had six months training. (The original idea was that they would get the additional training in their tactical units, but by Spring of 45, all divisions have gone overseas and the additional training had to be conducted by the training command.) In May 1945, almost half the graduates of the Replacement Training Centers were diverted to special centers so they could complete their 6 month training. Eugene would still have been 18 as of April/May 1945, and quite possible may have been caught up in this law. As a result, he could have been shunted off to a holding unit until 1 July 1945, and not deployed till sometime after that.

    But all of this is merely an educated guess and there could have been many exceptions or other factors affecting his particular fate. Hopefully you will be able to obtain his separation paperwork, which should clear things up.

    Again, good luck!
  6. Deidre

    Deidre New Member


    Thank you so much for the comprehensive information. It is more than enough to deduce my "grandfather" could have been in-country until mid-March 1945. In all the scenarios you discussed, it seems very reasonable. Since I was unfamiliar with the details, I was only going to be perplexed if it was standard practice to be shipped out pretty quickly.

    The DNA evidence is pretty conclusive, and you have further substantiated the likelihood that Eugene is my grandfather.

    Thank you again,

  7. Bin There

    Bin There Member

    You're quite welcome. Just keep in mind my input is merely circumstantial when it comes to the particulars of Eugene's relationship to you. Best wait till you get his records before embracing it too to much. Odd things did happen during that period and we can't exclude the possibility that somehow he shipped out early. I do hope you find what you are looking for.

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