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Albert James Nevins, U.S.

Army 1943- 1946; WWII Service:

Service: 7 May 1943 to 25 September 1946


Serial #O 511 605
Commissioned as a First Lieutenant, January 20, 1943.
Promoted to Captain while on active duty, Unk date in 1945.
Promoted to Major (Temporary status) on 11 December, 1946.
Note: He was discharged on 25 September 1946, but stayed in
the Army Reserve. Designated: Major, Army of the United States
(A.U.S.)
Promoted to Major on November 12, 1952

Overseas Service: 2 Years, 1 month and 23 days. Authorized 4


overseas service bars.

Taken on July 7, 1945, Company Commander of C Co. 757th Railway


Shop BN., Kassel, Germany.

Service Locations:
Fort Slocum, NY
Camp Harahan, New Orleans LA.
Camp Joseph T. Robinson, Little Rock, AR.
Camp Shanks, NY
Caerphilly Glamorganshire, South Wales
Cherbourg, France
Kassel, Germany
The below information was sourced from a diary belonging to Albert
James Nevins

January 1, 1943 (Saturday) Sworn in as a First Lieutenant at


G.C. Palace, New York City
January 20th, 1943 Commissioned as a First Lieutenant (1LT).
May 7, 1943 First day on active duty in the U.S. Army at Fort
Slocum, NY. Officers Training School for four (4) weeks.
June 5, 1943 Graduated from Fort Slocum. Wife Pauline and
son, Tom in attendance. Given a 5-day leave.
June 1, 1943 First pay: $207.73
June 10, 1943 Left NY at 1855 hours from Penn Station.
June 12, 1943 (Saturday) Arrived New Orleans, LA at 0900
hours. Arrived at Camp Harahan at 1050 hours.
June 14, 1943 (Monday) Assigned to C Company, 757th
Railway Shop BN, NOSA, ASF, UTC, N.O., LA. Captain Ellis is the
Company Commander. 1LT Hearn was the acting Company
Commander when I arrived.
June 20, 1943 (Sunday) Battalion departed the Camp for
Slidell, LA. Rifle range.
June 25, 1953 Shot on the rifle range and scored 179 out of a
possible 200. Expert rifleman.
June 27, 1943 (Sunday) Returned from the rifle range.
June 28, 1943 Marched to bivouac area. We had a gas mask
test on the way.
July 11, 1943 Battalion marched to church with the band.
July 20, 1943 2LT Adams attached to C Company.
July 21, 1943 Captain Ellis (Co. Commander) in hospital for the
mumps. 1LT H. V. Allen appointed as the acting Company
Commander.
August 2, 1943 Spent the day instructing 45 men in rifle
marksmanship.
August 15, 1943 Battalion went to Slidell, LA.
August 22, 1943 Battalion returned from Slidell, LA.
August 31, 1943 Inspection tour, 100 men and 4 officers at
the Higgins Shipbuilding Corporation, New Orleans, LA. Two
plants.
September 5, 1943 Marched to church. Palmer and I went to
New Orleans and went to the movies and saw: Best Foot
Forward.
September 12, 1943 (Sunday) Attended church services at St.
Louis Cathedral in New Orleans. The Army, Navy, USMC and
Coast Guard each furnished 50 men and officers. LT Crowley
from B Co., 757th Shop BN was also in attendance.
September 19, 1943 Some of the men from 757th Railway
Shop BN under Captain Austin to meet movie stars this p.m.
September 20, 1943 757th Railway Shop BN attended the
funeral of Col. Rinze.
September 23, 1943 Went to Slidell, LA. rifle range. Qualified
11 men.
September 27, 1943 Issued .45 Cal. ACP. Serial #1077673.
Also issued a Waltham 9 jewel wrist watch.
September 29, 1943 At 1725 hours the 757th Railway Shop
Battalion departed Camp Harahan, N.O., LA. for Camp Joseph T.
Robinson, Little Rock, AR.
September 30, 1943 Arrived Camp Joseph T. Robinson at 1300
hours.
October 2, 1943 All officers visited the MissouriPacific Shops,
Little Rock, AR.
October 5, 1943 Marched to bivouac area.
October 7, 1943 Started working in the Missouri-Pacific Shops.
November 3, 1943 LT Shain and I went to a bingo party at the
Officers Club.
November 10, 1943 The Coach Shop Foreman invited Allen,
Midgely, Palmer and I to a fish fry. Swell dinner.
November 11, 1943 Marched in Armistice Day parade in Little
Rock, AR.
November 16, 1943 Second Lieutenant Wedding came to C
Company.
November 25, 1943 Turkey dinner for H&S Company.
Battalion had .50 Cal. Machinegun instruction and
demonstration.
December 27, 1943 Battalion on alert at 2300 hours.
Railroads taken over by the Government and to be operated by
the Army. Generals Somerville and Gross.
December 28, 1943 to January 2, 1944 Battalion on alert;
remained in Camp.
January 10, 1944 Started mine recognition school and booby
traps.
January 13, 1944 Finished school. Final exam was 96%.
January 19, 1944 LT Wedding transferred to HQ, Company.
January 24, 1944 (Monday) Captain Ellis sent to hospital.
Albert Nevins is made acting Company Commander.
February 10, 1944 Captain Ellis transferred to Memphis Gen.
Hosp.
February 13, 1944 Notes: Base pay: $175; Subsistence:
$40.60; Rental: $75.00; Total $290.60. Allotment to Pauline:
$210.30. Final pay due: $80.30
March 30, 1944 Captain Ellis returned to C Company, 757th
Railway Shop BN and took over command.
March 31, 1944 Shot Carbine. Qualified Expert.
April 21, 1944 Departed Camp Joseph T. Robinson, Little Rock,
AR.
April 23, 1944 Arrived at Camp Shanks, NY
May 1, 1944 Left Camp Shanks, NY. Boarded the U.S.S.
William Mitchell at Pier 12, North River.
May 3, 1944 Sailed from NY at 0230 hours.
May 14, 1944 Arrived Garnock, Scotland
May 15, 1944 Arrived Caerphilly Glamorganshire, South Wales
July 18, 1944 Left Carphilly, South Wales and arrived the same
day at Romsey, England.
July 23, 1944 Boarded ship HMS Empire Anvil at
Southampton, England.
July 24, 1944 Arrived Normandy, France at Utah Beach.
Landed on D+48.
July 25, 1944 Arrived Cherbourg, France. Billeted in Villa La
Tourelle. Advance Section, Com Zone.
August 30, 1944 Rode General Lees special train from
Cherbourg to Carentan, France on trial run. All was okay.
U.S.A. 2-8-0 Locomotive.
May 2, 1945 Departed Cherbourg France at 0230 hours for
Kassel, Germany.
May 4, 1945 Passed through our first German town
Hoftenbach at 0700 hours.
May 5, 1945 At 0925 hours we crossed the river Rhine at
Mainz via the Roosevelt Bridge.
May 6, 1945 Arrived Kassel, Germany at 1425 hours.
July 16, 1945 Made a test run with a diesel rail car for Major
General Harold B. Vaughn, Car # 137074.
July 19, 1945 Went on the maiden voyage of the Battalion
riverboat on the Fulda River.
October 22, 1945 I was transferred from the 757th Railway
Shop Battalion to HQ. 2nd M.R.S. in Frankfurt, Germany. Billeted
at Forsthaus Strasse, 42. Was assigned as the Superintendent
of Cars, U.S. Zone.
December 15, 1945 I was transferred to Military Government
as the Assistant Superintendent of Motive Power.

The remainder of this page has been intentionally left blank.


Photo taken in Kassel, Germany 1945.
By Max Nehrdich, Querallee, Kaiserstrasse 55, Kassel
Awards and Decorations:

American Campaign Medal / Ribbon

Criteria: Awarded to service members performing either one


year of consecutive duty between December 7, 1941 to
March 2, 1946 within the continental borders of the United
States, or performing 30 days consecutive or 60 non-
consecutive days of duty outside the borders of the United
States but within the American Theater of Operations. The
American Theater was defined as the entirety of the United
States to include most of the Atlantic Ocean, a portion of
Alaska, and a small portion of the Pacific bordering
California and Baja California. Service stars were authorized
to any service member who was engaged in actual combat
with Axis forces within the American theater. This primarily
applied to those members of the military which had engaged
in anti-U-Boat patrols in the Atlantic.

Attachments: Bronze Star Device, Silver Star Device

European - African - Middle Eastern Campaign Medal Ribbon


w/3 Bronze Stars

Criteria: Awarded for any service performed between


December 7, 1941 and March 2, 1946 provided such service
was performed in the geographical theater areas of Europe,
North Africa, or the Middle East. For those service members
who participated in multiple battle campaigns, service stars
are authorized to the decoration with the arrowhead device
awarded for any airborne or amphibious operations
performed. The Fleet Marine Force combat operation insignia
is also authorized for certain sailors. The following
campaigns are recognized by service stars to the European-
African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal: Egypt-Libya: 11
Jun 42 - 12 Feb 43; Air Offensive, Europe: 4 Jul 42 - 5 Jun
44; Algeria-French Morocco: 8-11 Nov 42; Tunisia: 12 Nov
42 - 13 May 43; Sicily: 14 May 43 - 17 Aug 43; Naples-
Foggia: 18 Aug 43 - 21 Jan 44; Anzio: 22 Jan 44 - 24 May
44; Rome-Arno: 22 Jan 44 - 9 Sep 44; Normandy: 6 Jun 44 - 24 Jul 44;
Northern France: 25 Jul 44 - 14 Sep 44; Southern France: 15 Aug 44 - 14
Sep 44; Northern Apennines: 10 Sep 44 - 4 Apr 45; Rhineland: 15 Sep 44 -
21 Mar 45; Ardennes-Alsace: 16 Dec 44 - 25 Jan 45; Central Europe: 22 Mar
45 - 11 May 45; Po Valley: 5 Apr 45 - 8 May 45. For those service members
who did not participate in a designated battle campaign, the following
"blanket campaigns" are authorized to the European-African-Middle Eastern
Campaign Medal, denoted by service stars: Antisubmarine: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep
45; Ground Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45; Air Combat: 7 Dec 41 - 2 Sep 45.
Attachments: Silver Star Device, Bronze Star Device, Bronze Arrowhead
Device.

World War II (WWII) Occupation Medal Ribbon

Criteria: Awarded for 30 days consecutive service while


assigned to: Germany (excluding Berlin) between 9 May 1945
and 5 May 1955; Austria between 9 May 1945 and 27 July
1955; Berlin between 9 May 1945 and 2 October 1990.
Service between 9 May and 8 November 1945 may be counted
only if the EAME Campaign Medal was awarded for service
prior to 9 May 1945; Italy between 9 May 1945 and 15
September 1947 in the compartment of Venezia Giulia E. Zara
or Province of Udine, or with a unit in Italy designated in DA
General Order 4, 1947; Japan between 3 September 1945 and
27 April 1952 in the four main islands of Hokkaido, Honshu,
Shikoku and Kyushu; the surrounding smaller islands of the
Japanese homeland; the Ryukyu Islands; and the Bonin-
Volcano Islands; Korea between 3 September 1945 and 29
June 1949. Other special scenario awards may be applicable.
Attachments: Berlin Airplane Device - Mounted, Japan Bar Device, Germany
Bar Device.

Note:

This service ribbon is issued by the military along with an accompanying


medal. Check the appropriate Branch of Service category for purchase of its
medal counterpart.
World War II (WWII) Victory Medal

Criteria: Awarded to any member of the United States


military who served on active duty, or as a reservist,
between December 7, 1941 and December 31, 1946. The
World War II Victory Medal was first issued as a ribbon, and
was referred to simply as the Victory Ribbon. By 1946, a
full medal had been established which was referred to as
the World War II Victory Medal. There is no minimum
service time limit for the issuance of the World War II
Victory Medal, and the National Personnel Records Center
has reported some cases of service members receiving the
award for simply a few days of service. As the Second
World War ended in August 1945, there are also cases of
service members, who had enlisted in 1946, receiving the
decoration without having been a veteran of World War II.

Attachments: n/a.

Army Meritorious Unit Commendation

Unit Award for Meritorious Service Against an Armed Enemy

Units are awarded the Meritorious


Unit Commendation for a minimum
of six months of extraordinarily
meritorious conduct in
the performance of outstanding
services during the time of military
operations against an armed
enemy.

The Meritorious Unit


Commendation award takes its
place in the order of precedence
between the Valorous Unit Award
and the Army Superior Unit Award.
It is the unit award that is the
equivalent of the individual Legion
of Merit.
Description of the Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbon

The Meritorious Unit Commendation ribbon worn to show award of the Meritorious
Unit Commendation is 1 7/16 inches wide and 9/16 inch in height. The Scarlet
ribbon is contained within a 1/16 inch wide Gold frame with laurel leaves. The
previously issued emblem was a 1 5/8 inch gold, embroidered laurel wreath on a
two inch square Olive Drab cloth.

Criteria for the Army Meritorious Unit Commendation

The services of units to be awarded Meritorious Unit Commendation have these


characteristics:

A minimum of six months of extraordinarily meritorious conduct


The service is during a time of military operations against an armed enemy,
either in a combat zone or involving the combat effort
The service cannot be in the continental United States or outside the area of
operation.
The service took place after January 1, 1944.

The unit receiving the award must have shown devotion and superior performance
of extremely complex tasks that set their unit above and beyond other units under
similar circumstances with similar missions.

The degree of accomplishment required is equivalent to that which would justify the
award of the Legion of Merit to an individual. Rarely will a unit larger than a
battalion meet the qualifications for the award of this decoration.

Awards are made to units for services conducted during World War II if performed
between 1 January 1944 and 15 September 1946.

The Meritorious Unit Commendation was authorized for units and/or detachments of
the United States military for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance
of outstanding services for at least six continuous months in support of military
operations. This service must relate to combat support activities and not be
activities performed by senior headquarters, combat, or combat support units.

Who Can Wear the Meritorious Unit Commendation Award?

All members of the unit cited for the award are approved to wear the emblem of
the Meritorious Unit Commendation. The emblem is thought of as an individual
decoration for those in connection with the cited acts and is approved to be worn if
they continue as members of the unit or not. Other personnel serving with the unit
are approved to wear the emblem to show that the unit is a recipient of the
Meritorious Unit Commendation.
Army awards and decorations are approved accordance to the guidance contained
in Army Regulation 600-8-22. Rules for the proper wear of Army awards and
decorations can be found in Army Regulation 670-1 . The policy for display of unit
awards on guidons and flags and supply of streamers is found in AR 840-10.

Background of the Army Meritorious Unit Commendation

The Meritorious Unit Commendation was originally established by War Department


Circular 345 on 23 August 1944, as the Meritorious Service Unit Plaque. This
circular provided that units which received the Plaque were entitled to wear on their
right sleeves of their service coat and shirt the Meritorious Service Unit Insignia. A
gold star placed on the plaque represented additional awards until War Department
Circular No. 54, 1946, provided that additional awards would be shown by placing a
golden numeral on the inside of the wreath.

In December 1946 the Meritorious Service Unit Plaque was eliminated, replaced
with the issue of the Meritorious Unit Commendation.

A new design of the Meritorious Service Unit emblem was approved by the D/PA in
April 1947. This replaced the sleeve insignia and was to be effective 1 January
1949. Stock levels of the insignia were such that the phase-out was delayed for
several years. Wear of the old one was prohibited after 30 June 1962. However, the
stock level was still such that it was not introduced into the supply system until 14
July 1966.

On 16 May 1947, AR 260-15 announced Meritorious Unit Commendation, granted


the wear of the Meritorious Unit Commendation emblem, and permitted the display
of the scarlet Meritorious Unit Commendation streamer, which displayed the name
of the applicable theater of operations in white letters.

Shoulder Patch: COMMUNICATIONS ZONE, EUROPEAN THEATER

This patch was worn by the 757th Railway Shop BN while serving in the European
Theater.