Max L. Noe

BRANCH OF SERVICE
U.S. Army

HOMETOWN
Uvalde, TX

HONORED BY
John C. Burkhardt AAG MOPH Chapter 1919 Austin, Texas, Patriot

ACTIVITY DURING WWII

WAS AN EXPERIENCED POSTAL CLERK AND ENTERED THE ARMY ON JANUARY 29, 1943. WENT TO BASIC TRAINING AT CAMP ROBINSON, LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS. HE WAS ASSIGNED TO THE 28TH DIVISION AT CARRABELLE, FLORIDA WHERE HE ATTENDED ADVANCED TRAINING. ON OCTOBER 18, 1943, HE AND HIS UNIT SAILED FOR TENBY, WALES, UNITED KINGDOM. TEN DAYS AFTER THE U.S. INVASION AT OMAHA BEACH THE 28TH INFANTRY DIVISION WENT ASHORE. THEY TOOK THEIR FIRST CASUALTIES AT AVARANCHES AND CONTINUED TO FIGHT ACROSS FRANCE TAKING OVER 4,000 THOUSAND CASUALTIES. WHEN PARIS WAS LIBERATED THEY WERE 20 MILES OUT AND SELECTED AS ONE OF THE COMPANIES TO MARCH IN THE PARIS LIBERATION PARADE. THEIR NEXT MAJOR BATTLE WAS AT THE HUERTGEN FOREST ON THE GERMANY/BELGIUM BORDER. FOLLOWING THAT THE UNIT WENT TO THE ARDENNES. THE DIVISION WAS SPREAD OVER AN AREA OF 25 MILES. THE WEATHER TURNED BITTER COLD AND THE GERMANS LAUNCHED A SURPRISE ATTACK, SENDING IN NINE DIVISIONS. THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE HAD BEGUN. HIS UNIT WAS THEN ORDERED TO TAKE UP A DEFENSIVE POSITION. THEIR ORDERS WERE TO 'FIGHT TO THE LAST MAN, GOODBYE AND GOOD LUCK.' HE WAS ASSIGNED TO THE NEW PROVISIONAL COMPANY, MADE UP OF OFFICE CLERKS, APO CLERKS AND MEMBERS OF THE ARMY BAND. MAX WAS THE ONLY ONE TRAINED IN THE USE OF A MACHINE GUN, SO INSTANTLY HE WAS A MACHINE GUNNER. WHEN THE FIGHTING BROKE OUT MAX TRIED HIS BEST TO USE THE MACHINE GUN EFFECTIVELY, USING AN APPLE BOX FOR HIS GUN SUPPORT, AS A TRIPOD WAS NOT AVAILABLE. AFTER 18 HOURS OF HEAVY FIGHTING MAX AND TWO OTHERS WERE ALL THAT WAS LEFT THAT WERE ABLE TO FIGHT. THEY TRIED TO MAKE IT TO THE AMERICAN LINES BUT WERE CAPTURED. THEY WERE THEN FORCE MARCHED 200 MILES BACK TO GERMANY, CROSSING THE RHINE RIVER AT KOBLENZ. AFTER MORE THAN FIVE MONTHS IN CAPTIVITY HE LOST OVER 60 POUND. HIS CHRISTMAS DINNER THAT YEAR WAS A CRACKER AND A SMALL SPOONFUL OF SYRUP. ON APRIL 11, 1945 THERE WAS HEAVY BOMBING NEAR THE PRISON. DURING THE NIGHT THE GUARDS FLED THE PRISON AND AT DAYBREAK THE AMERICAN TANKS ROLLED THROUGH THE PRISON GATES. HE AND THE OTHERS ALL AGREED THAT WAS THE BEST DAY OF THEIR LIVES. AFTER TWO MONTHS IN THE HOSPITAL AT NANCY, FRANCE HE WENT HOME FOR TWO MONTHS FOR CONVALESCENT LEAVE. WHILE AT HOME VICTORY OVER JAPAN WAS DECLARED. HE WAS WELL ENOUGH TO GO DOWNTOWN TO JOIN IN THE CELEBRATION. HE WAS DISCHARGED OCTOBER 1945. FOR HIS GALLANT SERVICE TO HIS COUNTRY HE WAS AWARDED THE COMBAT INFANTRYMAN BADGE, WWII VICTORY MEDAL, EUROPEAN-AFRICAN-MIDDLE EASTERN CAMPAIGN MEDAL AND RIBBON WITH 4 BRONZE SERVICE STARS, THE PURPLE HEART MEDAL WITH OAK LEAF CLUSTER AND THE GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL.