Joseph A. Macaluso (#0-446460) - July 10, 2003

Place of Birth
Date of Birth

New Orleans, Louisiana
September 23, 1919

83rd Infantry
Combat Infantry Badge, Silver Star, Bronze Star with V device, Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster, European African Middle-Eastern Campaign Medal and WWII Victory Medal.

Joseph A. "Joe" Macaluso, from New Orleans, Louisiana, was born on September 23, 1919 to the late Joseph and Mary Crusta Macaluso. He received his ROTC commission from Louisiana State in 1941 and joined the 83rd Infantry Division after his initial training. 

Joseph A. "Joe" Macaluso, also now as "Captain Mac" was a platoon Executive officer (XO) and later, when Captain Bill Waters moved up in the regiment, the Company Commander of G Company, 331st Infantry and well respected by the men that served with him.

Morning Report of July 6, 1944 lists 0-446460, Macaluso Joseph A., 2nd Lt. as Duty to SWA (Seriously Wounded in Action) to transferred to 96th Evacuation Hospital Cir 69 Hq ETOUSA dated June 13,1944.
Morning Report of July 11, 1944 lists 0-446460, Macaluso Joseph A., 2nd Lt. as
assigned and joined from 96th Evacuation Hospital to G/331.
Morning Report of August 18, 1944 lists 0446460 Macaluso Joseph A., as Assumes command as of August 17, 1944.

After the war, he married his wife, Wilhemena "Mena" (Tonnar) Macaluso, who was a 1st Lieutanant Army nurse with the 110th Evacuation Hospital. They met in Esch, Luxembourg during the Battle of the Bulge. He settled in New Orleans where he joined the Army Reserve as the Commandant of the 4152nd Reserve School.  He retired with the rank of Colonel from the U.S. Army Reserve in 1974. Joe was also a very active member of the 83rd Division Association, conducting the memorial service at the reunions.

One of the only army photo's of Joe Macaluso. Date unknown, but obviously during his army days. 

Nurse’s portrait of Wilhemena "Mena" Tonnar before she went off to the war.

Thanks to his granddaughter Laurie Brown Kindred for sharing the photos about her grandfather.

In his civilian life, Joseph A. Macaluso was the president of Macaluso Construction Company (started by his father)and Macaluso Realty Company.

Joe and Mena raised 5 boys and 3 girls.  Four of them have served in the military.  One son was a supply clerk in the Army in the late 1960s,  another son served a tour as an intellegence specialist in the Marines (Vietnam and Okinawa) in the early 1970s, and a third son went into the Army Reserves, was activated for Desert Storm and retired as a Lieutenant Colonel.  His daughter Kathleen (Macaluso) Powers served 11-1/2 years on active duty and retired from the Army Reserves a Lieutenant Colonel.  Additionally, 1 grandson served in the Marines with two tours in Iraq and 1 granddaughter (a daughter of Kathleen Powers) graduated from West Point and has served two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan and is still on active duty.  So there has been a Macaluso serving continuously in the military (on active duty and reserve status) since 1942. RESPECT!

Joseph A. Macaluso died on July 10, 2003 at East Jefferson Medical Centerat, after a recurrence of kidney cancer,on the age of 83 and is buried in the Madrrend Cemetery which is located in New Orleans, LA.

Tony Vacaro said:
"Joe was there ahead of his men in France, Luxembourg, Belgium and Germany. All the way to the Rhine River I saw Captain Mac arriving among the first troops to the river. He never revealed his emotions. I never saw him scared or running away from the front, though he was wounded various times. His soldiers had faith in him by his very presence, dignity and cool. By the end of the war his troops had become all his friends. After the war he took various trips back to Normandy, Brittany, Luxembourg all the way to beyond Zerbst. He went back because he wanted to see the places where his men were wounded or had lost their life and did not want to forget them."


Most of the photos of Joe Macaluso were destroyed in Hurricane Katrina (2005). Fortunately, a few years ago,  Bob Waters (son of Cpt. Bob Waters who was Joe's first company commander in G Company), contacted Joe's daughter Kathleen and, through the next years, has emailed her photos as he finds them in going through his parents' things.  His dad had the presence of mind to write information on the backs of these photos.

Thanks to Bob Waters and Kathleen (Macaluso) Powers for sharing this photos about her father.

Taken at Verne (near Rennes), France, August 19, 1944.
L to R: Lt. Macaluso (G/331), Cpt. Cryst (Med. Det.), Cpt Patterson (HQ/331), Mj. Lalibert (XO), Cpt. Waters (2nd Bn. S-3), Ltc. McDonald (2nd Bn. CO), Cpt. Oliver (E/331), Cpt. Mitchell (F/331)
Taken in 1944, location unknow.
Standing L to R: Clopton, Boldizar, Cryst, Mitchell, Patterson, Waters, Proper.
Kneeling L to R: Cebula, Fleming, Lalibert, McDonald, Macaluso, Story, Flahaven.


May 1945, G Company officers from left to right:
Becker, Graff, Macaluso, Burlett, Baird, Vollmer.

From left to right, Captain William Waters, S-2 of 2nd Battalion, Major Lawrence A. Lilibert, 2nd Battalion, Captain James Patterson, S-1 of 2nd Battalion with a captured flag at Remich, September 1944.
G Company captured this flag. Lt. Macaluso's name on lower left of the Swastika and names of G Company, Third Platoon members on right.

This flag was kept in the attic in New Orleans and survived Hurricane Katrina.


This picture was provided by Bob Waters, son of Cpt. Bob Waters, Company Commandr of G/331 and 2nd Battalion S-3.
On the back of the picture, Waters had written:
Macaluso - Wiseogle. Ready to greet the Russians, May 1945.
The officer on the left is Joe Macaluso, who was my Executive Officer at St. Malo, and is mentioned in the article. He later bacame the company commander when I left to become the battalion operations officer.
The officer on the right, dressed up in captured German winter clothing, is Lt. Chandler "Barney" Wiseogle, our battalion intelligence officer.
I thought that either all of the picture could be blanked out accept that of Macaluso, or the whole picture might be used in connection with that part of the biographical sketch concerning the Russians. Our job on the patrol was not only to contact the Russians, but also to bring some of them. The sign had been prepared to welcome them.

Battalion Commander at parade, July 6, 1945.
Staff, Cpt. Patterson, Cpt. Donahy (Chaplain), Cpt. Macaluso.
Pocking, Germany, date unknow. From left to right:
Macaluso, Barney, Wiseogle.

Berchtesgaden, Germany, August 19, 1945


Joe Macaluso, lookout at Eagle's Nest,
1st Lt. Dorothy Wilhemena Tonnar and Cpt. Macaluso.
Cpt. Macaluso, 1st Lt. Tonnar, Cpt. Waters

1st Lt. Dorothy Wilhemena Tonnar (later Macaluso)
and Cpt. Bob Waters.

Joe Macaluso at top on tank (photo by Tony Vaccaro), date and place unknow.

This is a photo of a charcoal portrait that George Friedberg (who was Artist-Sgt. with the 331st/83rd) did of Joe Macaluso in 1945.  He apparently did several portraits (one I know of CPT Waters) that were published with biographies in the Thunderbolt Newspaper when they were still in Germany.  After dad died, one of my brothers (who works at a newspaper in Baton Rouge) had someone make reproductions for each of the kids.  I took a photo of it that you might be able to use for his bio picture.

Thanks to his daughter Kathleen (Macaluso) Powers for sharing this photo about her father

My mom talking with Kathleen (Macaluso) Powers at the train station in Washington DC. Left on the picture, Kathleen's daughter.

Kathleen Powers (left) and her sister Kathryn Brown with a framed picture of their father Captain Joseph Macaluso
at the 68th Annual Reunion in New Orleans (2014)

Kathleen Powers, then president of the 83rd association, and me at the 69th Annual Reunion in Louisville (2015)