Marvin Steitle - Infantryman - Texas 36th Division
I met Marvin at a 36th Division reunion. He is a very kind and interesting man. As many of the oringinal 36th boys, Marvin speaks German as his mother tongue. The Texas hill country was settled by Germans from 1849 on. It just reinforces the irony of war, Marvin fighting his kinsmen. After 2+ years of training, Marvin hit the beach at Salerno. Before midday on D-Day, he was already a casualty, having been hit by a German machinegun while crossing a rail road embankment. He carries at least one bullet in his shoulder to this day. It tore his hand up also. He knew not to take cover in the ditch along side the tracks, fearing that German mortors would have it zeroed in. He took cover and speaking German, tried to call the machine gunners out of their position so he could exact his revenge. He could hear them speaking but was not able to coax them away from their emplacement. So before noon on his first day of combat, Marvin had already received the "million dollar wound."
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