Sunday, November 20, 2011

Military Monday - T/5 Norman Falish, A Casualty of WWII

Green Bay Press-Gazette
Norman enlisted (according to WWII Enlistment records on on December 1, 1942 from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  He enlisted to be a Warrant Officer and his rank in the database for "US Rosters of WWII Dead" is Technician Fifth Grade.  His service number was 36287378 and before enlisting he was a Machinist.  He is listed as being single with dependents (according to Ancestry enlistment records).  Perhaps his parents were considered his dependents?

While conducting some research on Norman in order to find a year of death for him, I was able to connect with a fellow researcher that had Norman in his family tree.  He was able to relate to me the information on Norman's tombstone and that he is buried in Robinsonville Presbyterian Cemetery, Champion, Brown Cty, WI.  Norman was born on September 22, 1922 and died on December 13, 1944 in France.  His tombstone reads, "In memory of our son, T/5 Norman Falish, gave his life in defense of his country in France" and then there is a veteran marker that gives his unit as, "411 Infantry, 103 Infantry Division, WWII".  His parents are also listed on his tombstone as Mr. and Mrs. John Falish (just like in the obituary).  Thank you, Bruce for all the great information!

His obituary states that he had five brothers.  Looking at the 1930 census his parents were John and Minnie Falish and his brothers were Charles, Goldie, Alvin, Clarence, and John.  On this census there were 3 cousins living with the family at that time with a last name of Laurent.  Seeing that I think that perhaps Norman was a distant relative of my husband's since the hubby's paternal grandmother was a Laurent and she was the initial clipper of all these newspaper articles I have.  Now I just have to figure out the family connection!

Want a wrench thrown into the research works?  When I was searching Ancestry to see which of his brothers were also serving (and if any were casualties as well), I came across a card in the "AJHA WWII Jewish Servicemen Cards" for a T/5 Norman Falish with a next of kin listed as Minnie Falish from Wisconsin.  The inquiry date would have been after his death.  I'll need to look into these cards some more, because on first glance I'm told that they were for Jewish-American Soldiers that served, but Norman was listed on his enlistment papers as Protestant.  Interesting.  Perhaps a parent/grandparent was Jewish.  Unfamiliar ground to me, but isn't that what makes all this research interesting!?!  Anyone with Jewish research experience that may be able to shed the light on any of this.  Granted, I have conducted a reasonably exhaustive search, but so far I'm fairly certain that these Normans are the same person.

Onward to the obituary!

"Memorial Services for Norman Falish Sunday

Special to Press-Gazette

NEW FRANKEN, Wis. - Memorial services for T/5 Norman Falish, who died Dec. 13 from wounds received in action in France, will be held at 10 o'clock Sunday morning at the Robinsonville Presbyterian church, with the Rev. Marvin Kruse in charge.  Two young ladies of the church will sing special humans.

Born Sept. 24, 1922, in the town of Scott, T/5 Falish entered the Army Dec. 12, 1942, and had been overseas only a few months before being fatally wounded.

Survivors include his parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Falish, New Franken, and five brothers, two of them in the Army."

The two brothers that served?  Charles (enlisted 04JUN1942) Alvin (enlisted 19NOV1942).  Something not mentioned in the article?  Another brother, John Falish (Jr.), enlisted after his big brother, Norman, died.  His enlistment date was 26JUN1944.  They all survived the war.

[This clipping was one of many passed on to me by my mother-in-law from Green Bay, WI.  There is no date on the clipping.]