The  Official Electronic Newsletter of the Veterans and Descendants of the
U.S. 17th Airborne Division, WWII 
The mission of the "Scions of the 17th Airborne" is to honor the service of all veterans of the 17th, and to educate others about the history and sacrifices made by the troopers who served in this division during WWII.

We strive to accomplish these missions by holding regional gatherings where troopers and their families can gather, and by sharing their recollections.  We communicate with our membership using this "Thunder From Heaven" newsletter, through our website, and on our Facebook page. Additionally, we collect documents related to the history of the 17th and make them available to our membership.
Issue # 86 - December 2020
Please send us your 17th related news items, stories, questions etc., so that we can share them with the entire group. You may direct your mail to the Scions at:
Carolyn Tuttle, Adam Coolong, Ed Siergiej Jr.- Editors
Visit our Facebook page at:

17th Airborne Division Scions (Descendants)

Post your 17th related photos, stories and questions.
In This Newsletter
- Message from President Jeff Schumacher

Scions trip to Europe Update - Jeff Schumacher 

- Memorial to General Miley Installed at A&SO Museum

- Zero On Me - The Story of Charlie Jones

- 17th Veterans Needing Your Calls - by Ed Siergiej, Jr.

- Veterans Outreach Committee - by Patricia Bowers, Chair

- Membership Renewal Information - by Secretary Ed Siergiej, Jr.

- New Book about the 17th Airborne Division 

- Saving Our History - by David Shortt

- Donations to Memorial & General Funds

- Welcome New Members

Thunder Mail Call in memory of Editor Bill Tom
- Letters From Home and Abroad

- Sick Call


- 17th Airborne Online Store

- Become a Member of the Scions of the 17th Airborne
 President's Message
by Jeff Schumacher


Happy New Year to all Veterans and Scions! 
It is 2021, finally, and from most accounts, we are all glad to put 2020 behind us and get about the business of making 2021 much better. 
The holidays are a special time when we also pause to recollect and think about our veterans. Whether they are in the same room, across the continent or have made their final landing, they remain always in our thoughts.
Some talked about their service and experiences, some did not. But, we know they remain our heroes, one and all, each having done their part so together they could – and did – stop the evil march of tyranny. For some, we know what that part was, where they were, and perhaps we even know from their first-hand recollections. For others, we may not have had that privilege. But we know they each did their part. Those "devils in baggy pants" were the good guys.  
My thoughts turn now to the present, and how we carry on the mission to honor our troopers, preserve their history and continue to spread the word – to keep the legacy of 17th Airborne Division troopers alive. In short, to do our part.  
Alarming as it may seem, the teaching of history in many of our schools is making a pronounced shift which may or may not even include WWI, WWII and other conflicts as part of the curriculum. These periods of our nation’s history get squeezed out to make room for other narratives. My point is this: it is quickly becoming clearly incumbent on us – and groups like ours – to preserve and educate others on this history, lest it be lost.
To that end, we need your support now more than ever. As our veterans age – and pass – let us commit and demonstrate that commitment to our ongoing mission. We need your involvement as active members, telling the story and making connections, participating as you can in events, reunions and representation at gatherings and ceremonies – local or elsewhere – and yes, we need your financial support. 
Consider the alternative….nobody to recall and tell the story of the 17th Airborne Division troopers. It’s almost inconceivable, isn’t it? 
I’d like to briefly relate thoughts from a recent experience that reemphasizes the importance of our mission. 
We recently hailed "farewell" to 17th Airborne veteran Wayne DeHaven, Sr.  A number of Scions were present to show the family that their loss is shared, as is the respect for this man. The family was so gracious, and I know they appreciated having others there to remember Wayne, the trooper and family man. Many of you have had this same experience. It underscores the importance of what we are doing, and in continuing to do so far into the future. 
What a privilege to know these men, spend time with them and their families, and to show them in their hour of need that they are part of an extended family who cares, will honor and will remember their loved ones, always
In closing, let me request this of you all: when that renewal reminder arrives in the mail, please return it promptly with your dues, and whatever else you can contribute to continue our shared and important work. 
It’s up to us. Thank you for your continuing support.


December ETO Trip Update

 2020 Remembrance Trip to the ETO
by Jeff Schumacher 

New Year Greetings, fellow Scions and honored Veterans! So long 2020, and good riddance! 

For reasons clear to all and as announced here in November newsletter, we’ve rescheduled the ETO Trip for a targeted travel schedule in the Autumn of 2021.

We have once again coordinated with our European hosts and providers to identify a suitable set of prospective trip dates, and those dates are (drumroll, please):
Monday, October 25th, 2021 through Saturday, November 6th, 2021. 

Those are the “ground package” dates, meaning departures from the US must be arranged for arrival in Brussels no later than the morning of Monday, October 25th, and returns to the US scheduled for Sunday, November 7th (or thereafter).

The 2021 itinerary will be very much as arranged previously for the 2020 trip.  We feel very fortunate and excited to have 17th Airborne veterans still ready, willing and able to make the trip! 

OK everyone - keep doing all you can do to stay strong and remain optimistic that continued developments through mid-year will pave the way for another fantastic trip abroad to retrace the footsteps of the 17th Airborne Division. Know that we are committed to doing our very best to arrange for a safe and enjoyable travel experience for all.

Thanks for your continued interest and support in honoring our veterans.
Our Veterans Outreach Committee organized a Holiday package to all the known veterans of the 17th Airborne Division. Included were a 17th Airborne Challenge Coin, and a 17th Airborne Division flag. Trooper Harold Snyder (681/HQ) is looking great at age 97 with his gift from our membership. Thank you to Harold's daughter, Jan for the photo.
Welcome to two recently found 17th Veterans 
We recently became aware of two 17th veterans that were previously unknown to us:

Jerry Knittle served in the 517th Signal Company and is a good friend of 17th Veteran Charles Davis. 

George Isaacs served in the 464th Parachute Field Artillery Bn. 

Welcome Jerry, and George !
 Scions Install Memorial to Maj. General Miley
The Scions of the 17th Airborne Division are proud to announce the installation of a Memorial Paver at the entrance to the Airborne & Special Operations Museum in Fayetteville, NC. The text of the memorial was developed with the help of General Miley's son Jack Miley, who is himself a combat paratrooper veteran. The 24" x 24" paver is installed at the entrance to the museum, where many visitors will be able to view it. We are looking forward to having a dedication ceremony in the future, when our members can travel more easily.
"Zero On Me" - The Story of Trooper Charlie Jones
by Charlie Jones

It was late November 2000 when my dad, Charles H. Jones, discussed his episode with me from The Battle of the Bulge. He hesitated to tell me the full story for years, and I think if I hadn’t asked, he never would have gone into the details. As we sat together in his dining room, I remember him looking out the window at the colorful leaves, many having fallen to the ground, now dry and distorted, having made their final appearance. 

Dad was a captain in the 17th Airborne, a member of the infantry parachute regiment but reported to the artillery unit near Flamierge, Belgium that day.  

“The Nazis were relentless in their efforts to stop our forces from advancing into Germany. They wanted to retake the city of Bastogne, a prized transportation hub next to Germany’s border,” Dad said. 

His assignment called for him to investigate our observers who were signaling they had spotted something, but their radio wasn’t working. He took Sergeant Earnest Carr, his communications sergeant, with him, trudging through the snow, through the ice-freezing cold that claimed the lives of so many of our soldiers. They met two observers who had spotted Nazi tanks through the heavy fog. 

Suddenly they realized the tanks were barreling straight at them. With no other options, they squeezed into the observer’s small foxhole, Dad on top, as he scuffled with his white cape to help conceal them. They were King Tiger tanks and stopped on both sides of their foxhole. One was close enough that my dad could reach out and touch it.  

“Each one was equipped with a five-man crew and had enough firepower to obliterate an enemy a half-mile away with their long-range accuracy,” he said. But he told me he realized that the tankers knew they had four men trapped below them and by simply spinning around, they would be ground to death. 

At one point, the terror was bursting in my head. “You must have been horrified, Dad!”

He looked down for several seconds. “My family–my life–had just started, and I knew I was going to die… alone, no family to say goodbye to… to say goodbye to me.” 

As a man comes to grips with his impending demise on the ungodly stage of war, what rushes through his mind: total fear, anger, a miracle, unfulfilled dreams that weren’t to be… imminent death? 

Amid this horror, Captain Jones closed his eyes. As he began accepting a fate beyond his control, he felt this bondage of tension draining from his body–a paralysis of absolute fear melting into an astonishing peacefulness. Accepting his fate, an unusual, but distinct thought flooded his mind.

“Carr, radio headquarters.”

He didn’t respond. He didn’t move.

“Sergeant, call headquarters–now!”

Jones lifted his head, stunned to face a clenched jaw and glassy stare. Without a shot being fired, the sergeant was gone–claimed by war’s deadly appetite.

But the captain had to have the radio and now found himself in a battle to pry it from his sergeant’s deadly grip. 

At headquarters, Private Bill Smith received a call. He listened. For several seconds he looked straight ahead, and without writing anything, he set his pencil down and turned to his superior officer.  

Colonel Couts had been fervently watching the young private. With shoulders slumped, he inhaled a puff as he shifted his body toward Smith. The dirt coated floor creaked below him, adding to the muffled conversation from the officers huddled around a table, while cigarette smoke inched its way to the ceiling, as though escaping this sphere of uncertainty. 

“Now what?” the colonel asked.    

“It’s Captain Jones,” Smith answered, catching the other men’s attention as they looked up from their maps. The young private’s voice held a strange shift in tone from his earlier revelations of incoming messages.

Smith cleared his throat and pushed his finger back and forth across his lower lip. “He said, ‘Zero on me,’ Colonel.”

Officers encircling the table paused to grasp these words. They knew what “zero on me” meant; a command none had ever heard given before.

“This can’t be right. Get confirmation!” the colonel shouted. Pushed beyond his usual imposing stature, he fiddled with his lighter, forcing it to respond–opening and closing at his unspoken command.  

“Captain Jones, repeat your instructions.”

The private’s request added to the room’s tacit uneasiness. As a heightened tension engulfed those in the room, all eyes were on him, waiting for clarification to this incoming message.

Private Smith shifted his head away from the radio, pulled his headset off, pushed his notepad aside, and scooted his chair back. Following this volley of procrastination, he turned to a gathering of vacant stares.

“He said the same thing, Colonel: ‘Zero on me.’ Then he added, ‘Fire for effect and commence firing now.’ That’s what he said. That’s what he said,” Smith repeated, his voice tapering to a whisper as he turned back to his radio.

The table of officers stood locked in deadly silence. But the unspoken brotherhood uniting these warriors transformed their emotions into an uproar. 

“We can’t do that!” 

“We can’t shoot at our own men!” 

“It could kill him– kill all of them!” 

But as fast as their upheaval rose, it subsided. Eyes darted from face to face, thoughts coated with the fears that define war’s cruel mandate. Their focus soon dropped to the floor, away from the moment, away from their comrades–but not from the demands of combat. 

They all knew the next step.  

Headquarters fired on Captain Jones’ position, which immediately convinced the Nazi tanks to retreat into the misty fog. 

As I listened to Dad describe his ordeal, I wondered how he could recall this nightmare from over half a century ago? Some experiences are never forgotten. 

In the above, I included selected portions from my description of his bone-chilling event. I hope to find an agent who will work to have my manuscript published. It follows an entertaining story of my topsy-turvy youth after my dad returns from combat in WW II and subtly leads to his detailing the ordeal he had kept secret from his children–his willingness to sacrifice his life. His was one experience encountered by our veterans. Many never talked about it, feeling it wouldn’t be understood by those who hadn’t traveled that road. Dad led a celebrated life: war hero (two Purple Hearts, Bronze and Silver Star), business executive, State Representative and State Senator in Ohio, retiring from the Army National Guard a Major General, and started a law firm. He died at 93 in 2011. 

I plan on submitting my story with the title: Once Upon a Time in the Midwest

Charlie Jones
Please Help Us to Keep Tabs on Our Veterans
Time is taking its toll on our 17th Airborne veterans. Each month, we send a hard copy of this newsletter to over seventy 17th veterans, but every month we get some back notifying us that the address is no longer current. Sometimes they have relocated to be closer to family, or to a nursing facility. We do our best to track them down, but it can be challenging and time consuming.

We are asking for your help. If you are aware of one of our veterans who has moved, please let us know by emailing us at

If you become aware that one of our veterans has passed away, we would ask you to notify us immediately at Our Veterans Outreach Team will work to arrange to ship our replica  of the Division Flag to the Memorial Service, and also to arrange for one of our members to attend if at all possible. The sooner that we know of a veterans passing the better. Thank you for your help in honoring our honored Troopers.
Please take some time to reach out to these
17th Airborne Veterans

By Ed Siergiej Jr, Secretary
Our Veterans outreach team has been sending cards to the seventy three 17th Airborne veterans for whom we have contact information, as well as to some of the widows of our troopers. The current health crisis has had a tough impact on many of our veterans, who in some cases are not allowed to leave their homes, or even rooms. As tough as it is for all of us, it is much harder for our veterans. The following veterans have specifically reached out to ask us to share their contact information. A call from you would make a great difference in their lives right now.

In addition, we would like to find volunteers to stay in contact with our remaining veterans on a regular basis. In some cases they have moved, or are having health issues, and we are not notified in time to be of some comfort. If you are willing to be a part of this effort, please contact us at and we will pass on a few of their names to you. Remember how much we owe them!

Lynn Aas
2905 Elk Drive, Unit 320
Minot, ND  58701

Leo (Marty) Schlocker 513 Co D
118 47th Street
Newport Beach, CA. 92663-2506

Paul A Wilson  193rd / 194th
Norman Veterans Center
1776 E Robinson Street Room D207
Norman, OK 73071

Sidney Levit
3675 N Country Club Drive Apt 2602
Aventora, FL 33180

Peter Piergiovanni
Canfield Place 
2300 Canfield Road 
Youngstown, Ohio 44505

Charles Davis
585 Shelbourne Land, Apt 103
Centerville, OH 45458

Membership Renewal
 By Ed Siergiej

Our membership year runs from March 1 to February 29th of each year. We will be mailing dues renewal notices out in February. 

If you can send your dues in early, it will save us the postage and printing costs.
This newsletter, and all the activities of our Scions organization are supported by our membership. 

We mail hard copies of this newsletter to all of our 17th veterans, at no cost to them. 

If you are unsure of your dues status, please email us at 

Yearly Membership is $35 for a Regular Membership or $50 for a Family Membership

Our mailing address is: 
Scions of the 17th Airborne
62A Forty Acre Mt. Rd.
Danbury, CT 06811-3353

If you use Paypal, you can pay your dues that way. Please use the Paypal Calculator to add the Paypal fee.

As Jeff mentioned in his letter, if you would like to make an additional contribution to support our General Fund, Memorial Fund, or the Dead Mans Ridge Walk Fund, it would be most appreciated. Additional donations will be acknowledged for tax purposes.

We thank you for your support of our missions, to honor the men of the 17th, and to keep its history alive.
 Educate Your Children and Grandchildren About the Airborne With These Fun Coloring Book Pages
Scion Patty Bowers put these fun pages together that  you can print out to teach our young folks a bit about Airborne. Perhaps some of our youngest members can color these in and send to our veterans? Just click on the link below to open the document.
New Book about the 17th Airborne Division

Diary of a WWII Gliderman 263 pages indexed with numerous pictures. Jack and Betty Ogden letters (1940-1945) from 17th AB 194th HQ,  Camp Mackall, Camp Forrest, Battle of the Bulge, Operation Varsity, plus letters from family and friends in other theaters of operation. 

Limited copies $40.00, checks only.
John Ogden
102 Adams Avenue
Woodsfield, OH 4379

For orders outside of the USA, contact John for postage.

Editors note: This book gives a great insight into what was going through the mind of one trooper in the 17th during training, combat, and after the end of the fighting in the ETO. Information from the division historical record gives context to the bigger picture that was unknown to the men in the front lines. A great book for anyone who wants to know more about what it was like to be "Airborne" in 1944 - 45. Thanks to Scion John Ogden for making this limited edition book available.  (Ed Siergiej, Jr.)
Saving our History #31
by David Shortt

Greetings, Troopers and Scions! The 17th Airborne Division is generally recognized by historians as not having liberated a German concentration camp, such as other allied divisions may have experienced in the waning days of the Third Reich.

However, after "Operation Varsity,” the 17th troopers did encounter the massive German industrial complexes of the Ruhr Valley which were manned with thousands of forced laborers from all over western and eastern Europe, with a few sporadic concentration camp inmates who possessed technical specialties; all forced to work under harsh, unbearable, and inhumane conditions. Forced laborer camps were scattered all over Germany.

On April 10, 1945, the 17th was involved in the attack on Essen, Duisburg and Mulheim, with German resistance crushed by 11 April; then followed Allied Military Government Duties (de-Nazification, policing, infrastructure development and other sundry duties) being tasked. The 194th Glider Infantry Regiment encountered a Nazi atrocity in Mulheim where the troopers were informed that the Mulheim GESTAPO (Geheimestaatspolizei- Secret State Police) had murdered Russian men and women forced laborers just days before the arrival of the 17th. This type of activity was common all over Nazi Germany in the death throes of the evil empire, and thousands of innocents were murdered by the SS and police before the allies could intervene.

The seven men and women who were considered “security risks” by the GESTAPO were shot and buried, to hide their bodies. The 194th GIR as well as the 17th’s own CIC (Counter Intelligence Corps) detachment and the military police platoon would all have been involved in the investigation of this atrocity. The 17th subsequently forced captured German police and GESTAPO personnel to dig up the remains of the Russians and rebury them with appropriate honors and dignity.

An investigation determined that Gestapo Agents Karl Burlet and Franz Poske were responsible for the murder of the Russians. It is unknown what became of these two murderers but hopefully they were tracked down and given due justice.

Incidentally, the 194th also encountered a larger massacre of slave laborers in Duisburg (a future "Saving Our History" article) and there may be a lesser-known atrocity that occurred in Oberhausen (more research needed). While not actually liberating a concentration camp, our fathers and uncles of the 17th encountered, liberated, and cared for thousands of forced laborers, and  they saw first hand the horrors perpetrated by the Nazi regime against humanity.

The attached photos are from the personal effects of LT. Robert Easterbrooks (his own typed captions), Company E and Verne Ross, Regimental Headquarters Company, 194th Glider Infantry Regiment.

As a former war crimes investigator in the US Army CID, the author would be interested in any additional information, any Scions may possess on the 17th's involvement in bringing light into this dark part of WWII.

David Shortt/Curator
CWO, US Army Retired
Veterans Memorial Museum Foundation
123 S. Main St.
Germantown, OH 45327
Scions Memorial Fund
by Scion Secretary Ed Siergiej Jr.

The "Scions of the 17th Airborne Memorial Fund" is an account with the specific purpose of supporting activities that honor the memory of our veterans who have passed on.
Some examples of how these funds will be used are as follows:
  • Providing wreaths for our annual ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.
  • Providing wreaths for the four Medal of Honor recipients on Memorial Day.
  • Funding for the cards sent to the families of veterans who have passed on.
  • Shipping our Division Flag to funerals for 17th veterans.

Contributions in memory of a 17th Veteran, or any group of 17th Veterans (Such as Co F, 513th, for example)
may be made to this fund by so designating.

Contributions can be made to:
Scions of the 17th Airborne Memorial Fund
62A Forty Acre Mt. Rd.
Danbury, CT 06811

Generous Donations to our Memorial Fund have been made by:

Jeff Schumacher
Jerry and Pat O'Brien

Donations to Scions General Fund
by Scion Secretary Ed Siergiej Jr.

Trooper Ray H Brown  (193/A & 194/B)
Ray Sindoni
Kathy Gault

Donations to Dead Mans Ridge Walk Fund
by Scion Secretary Ed Siergiej Jr.
None this month
Welcome New Members

Ray Sindoni
Grandson of John Sindoni (194/D)

Wayne DeHaven
Son of Wayne DeHaven (513/F)

Randi & Todd Goldman
Gold Star Scions of George H. Goldman 513/I KIA


Thunder Mail Call

For many years, Trooper Bill Tom (194/C) was a major contributor to the original hard copy newsletter of the 17th Airborne Division Association, "Thunder From Heaven." After the dissolution of the Association in 2007, Bill began an email version of the newsletter, and continued that publication, "Thunder Mail Call" until the formation of the Scions Organization in 2011. With Bill's help, we integrated his newsletter into this publication. We were saddened to hear of Bills passing on September 10, 2019. We dedicate this portion of our newsletter to Bill.
We were recently contacted by the family of Trooper George H. Goldman, who served in Company I of the 513th PIR. He was KIA on January 7th, 1945. The family generously allowed us to share these photos from their collection. The photo on the bottom left was most likely taken during training in the US. 


Have a request to make for information, or for research help?  Send us an email and we will post it in a future edition of the Thunder From Heaven newsletter, in this section!


by Isaac Epps (RIP)

   The ones who went
   Were truly sent
   To do a Noble Deed;
   When evil showed
   They took the load
   In Justice, they believed.
   They heard the call
   And gave their All
   And some did not not come back.
   They knew the chance

   But took the stance
   When Liberty was attacked.
   It Speaks of Duty, Faith; and Love;
   It speaks of a respect
   for Country; For Others,
   For the Right of Man;
   To forget would be neglect.
   On this Their Day

   We stop to pray
   Their Memory shall live;
   The sacrifice they made was Life.
   What more can someone Give?
17th Airborne Memorial
Fort Benning, Georgia
Standing Guard

Submitted by Dominic Biello
If you become aware of the passing of one of our 17th Airborne veterans, please notify us immediately. We will make every effort to locate a member of the organization to attend the funeral and support the family in any way possible. Often, by the time an obituary is posted, little time remains to make these arrangements. Send an email to
Our Veteran Outreach Team will also contact the family. 
Peter C Covich
193/HQ2 & 194
Life Member of the 17th Airborne Division Association


The Scions have been informed of the passing of Trooper Peter C. Covich on April 25, 2020.

Aged 95. Husband of 64 years to Molly L. Covich (nee Boyle, deceased). Father of Kevin J. Covich (deceased), Anne M. Haight (James) and Kathryn E. (K.C.) Covich. Grandfather of Matthew Covich and Jessica Covich Southwick. Great-Grandfather of four. Brother of Clara Walsh (Richard, deceased) and Donald Covich (Ann, deceased). Uncle of several nieces and nephews.

US Army WW II Veteran, Glider Trooper European Theater. Worked 38 years with Sylvania, GTE and North American Phillips as a salesman, District and Area Manager. Was active in Serra Downtown Cleveland. Little Brother of Holy Family Home, Parma. Volunteer (Pastoral Care) at St. John Westshore Hospital.

Private services will be held at McGorray-Hanna Funeral Home of Westlake, with private burial to follow. Memorial contributions can be made to Holy Family Home, 6707 State Rd., Parma, OH. 44124 or St. Mary's Seminary- Vocation Office, 28700 Euclid Ave. Wickliffe, OH. 44092.
Wayne DeHaven
June 15, 1923 - December 23, 2020

WWII Army Veteran Paratrooper 17th Airborne

​Aged 97 of Roseville, Minnesota passed away on December 23, 2020. 

Survived by wife, Delores; children, Sharon (Ken) Rutford, Gloria, Wayne Jr (Kathy); several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and step-grandchildren. 

Graveside service 12 Noon Wednesday, December 30 at Elmhurst Cemetery, 1510 N. Dale St., St. Paul, MN.

Scion President Jeff Schumacher, and Past President Adam Coolong represented the 17th Airborne Division family at the funeral for Trooper DeHaven.

William T. Fulton
Life Member of the 17th Airborne Division Association


William T. Fulton, Jr. 96, of Oxford, loving husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather went home to be with his Lord on December 19, 2020 at Reading Hospital.

He married Ella E. Melrath Fulton on June 18, 1947 with whom he shared 73 years of marriage.

Born in Colora, MD, he was the son of the late William T., Sr., and Helen McVey Fulton.

Bill graduated from Oxford High School, class of 1943.

A proud U.S. Army veteran, William served in central Europe during WWII as a member of the 17th Airborne Division.

Bill was employed with NVF, Kennett Square for 42 years.

In his younger days, Bill would rather play baseball than eat or sleep. His love for baseball and football continued all his life.

He enjoyed following his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in all of their sport endeavors. Listening to Blue Grass music and watching NASCAR were other enjoyments in his life. He loved working on the family farm.

Truly he was a part of the Greatest Generation, passing on his work ethic and love for family to all of us. He will be greatly missed and will always be in our hearts.

To cherish his memory, Bill leaves his wife; four children, Joan Baker, Ronald Fulton (Tammy), Sandra Hall (David), and Bethany Freeman (John); he will be missed by 10 grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by a son-in-law, Ronald Baker.

Friends and family may visit from 9:30 – 10:30 am Monday, Dec. 28, 2020 at the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc., 86 Pine St., Oxford.

Services and interment are private.

Please be sure to wear a mask and follow social distancing protocols.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to Union Fire Company No. 1, 315 Market St., Oxford, PA 19363.

Arrangements are being handled by the Edward L. Collins, Jr. Funeral Home, Inc. Oxford, PA.

Online condolences may be made at

Scion Patricia Bowers represented the 17th Airborne Division family at the funeral for Trooper Fulton. 

John J. Hinchliff, 99, most recently of Robbinsdale, MN, passed away peacefully from complications of COVID-19 on November 17, 2020. Preceded in death by his wife, Muriel Hinchliff (nee Claflin), son, Kevin (Pat) Hinchliff, and granddaughters, Megan Hinchliff and Ann Wright. Survivors include his four children: Sherrill Ostergren (Wayne), Jon Hinchliff (Cindy), Timothy Hinchliff (Pam), Jacqueline Evers (Patrick), 9 grandchildren, and 9 great-grandchildren.

John grew up in Park Rapids, MN. He joined the National Guard at age 16. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, he volunteered for service with the newly forming Airborne Corps. Before leaving for Europe, he married the love of his life, Muriel, in 1943. After discharge from the Army in 1945, he settled in Minneapolis where he and Muriel raised their 5 children.

John was a long-time member of Teamsters Local 546 serving as Vice President of his Local. He retired in 1984. After his military service, he was a life-long member of the 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment Association. John was an avid sportsman.

John’s exploits during World War II are legendary. He served as a machine gunner with the 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment, earning three Bronze Stars. He was awarded the French Legion of honor. John fought with distinction, parachuting into Normandy the night before D-Day. He fought in the Battle of the Bulge. He participated in Operation Varsity, a daring daylight jump into Germany and the largest Airborne operation in history. His heroics played a part in many books, articles, and recordings. He was featured in several documentaries including “D-Day Down to Earth: Return of the 507th” and Tom Brokaw’s Dateline NBC episode “Eyewitness to History.” His story has been preserved by the Minnesota Historical Society and remains on display at the Minnesota History Center as he narrates his D-Day experience inside a C-47 exhibit. John was the LAST surviving member of the 2,004 men of the 507th who parachuted into Normandy on D-Day.

To his family and friends, John was larger-than-life, a true hero of World War II, and an exemplary member of the greatest generation.
The family requests condolence messages be sent to the funeral home:
Washburn McReavy
1827 Coon Rapids Blvd NW.
Coon Rapids, MN 55434
Paul W. Mostoller
Life Member of the 17th Airborne Division Association

We have been informed of the passing of Trooper Paul W Mostoller on May 23, 2010. No obituary is available.

17th Airborne Division "Online Store"
Click here to be directed to the store
Below are some of the items in our "Online Store"

All items include S&H in the USA. Mail your check to:

Scions of the 17th Airborne
62A Forty Acre Mt. Rd.
Danbury, CT 06811

Or use Paypal by sending your funds to us at
This 280 page collection of stories from Troopers of Company A of the 513th PIR is reformatted for easier reading. Includes many photos, maps and diagrams from the troopers of Co A.

$35 Includes S&H in the USA. Mail your check to:

Scions of the 17th Airborne
62A Forty Acre Mt. Rd.
Danbury, CT 06811
 Show your 17th Airborne pride with this new cap made only for the Scions of the 17th Airborne Division.
Made in the USA !!!

$25 each, includes S&H in the U.S.A.
 These new 22 oz. stainless steel water bottles are made in the U.S.A, and feature the 17th Talon on one side, and the Scions logo on the other.

$17 each, includes S&H in the U.S.A.

Scion Coffee Mugs
These new 15 oz. mugs are made in the U.S.A., and feature the 17th Talon on one side, and the Scions logo on the other.

$20 each, includes S&H in the U.S.A.

Become a Member of the
Scions of the 17th Airborne!

Our mission is to ensure that the sacrifice and history of the 17th Airborne Division is not forgotten.

Distinguished Honorary Members 
All veterans of the 17th are considered as "Distinguished Honorary Members" of the Scions.  We exist to honor you, our veterans.
We do not ask for dues from our honored veterans, as we exist to honor you!

Regular membership in the "Scions of the 17th Airborne" is open to any descendant or family member of any trooper who served with the 17th during its existence.

Associate Membership is available to individuals who have an interest in the history of the 17th Airborne, but are not related to a veteran of the 17th. Associate Members do not have voting rights.

.Scionsofthe17thAirborne@gmail.comTo join our growing organization, contact the Scions at: 

Our website contains a wealth of information on the 17th Airborne and its history, and our Members Section (open exclusively to dues-paying Scions) contains hundreds of pages of documents obtained from the National Archives!  Check it out at!

We also have a great Facebook page, where there are lots of great posts by friends of the 17th in the U.S. and in Europe. Check us out on Facebook at: 
17th Airborne Division Scions (Descendants).

Please consider passing this on to your children and grandchildren, if they are not already members. As our membership grows, we can take on new projects of value.

Jeff Schumacher, Son of John Schumacher (194/D & HQ)
Vice President
Skip Greeby, Scion of William Smith ( 466HQ)
Ed Siergiej Jr., son of Edward J. Siergiej (194/C)

Michael Beard, Son of Daryl A. Beard (513/G)
Past Presidents
Adam Coolong, grandson of Charles E. Booth (680th/HQ)
 Melanie Sembrat, daughter of Harry Sembrat (513th)
Rose Friday, daughter of Edward Friday (194th)

 Committee Chairs

Michele Smith , Sandy Remes, and  Patricia Bowers - Veteran Outreach / Family Liaison Coordinators
Advisory Committee - Melanie Sembrat - daughter of Harry Sembrat (513th)
Legal Council - Chuck Katz - son of John Katz (194th) 
Historian - Paul Madden - son of Harold Madden (680th/A)

Membership Committee  - David Shortt & Tom Chipego
Memorial Committee - Jerry and Pat O'Brien

Scion Facebook Page
Scion Facebook Page
Scions Website
Scions Website
Copyright © *|2013|* *|Scions of the 17th Airborne, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Scions of the 17th Airborne
62A Forty Acre Mt. Rd
Danbury, CT 06811
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