Roland E. Smith (#39393751)

Place of Birth
Date of Birth

Santa Clara, California
November 22, 1920
First Lieutenant
324th FA
83rd Infantry
Bronze Star Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster

Roland E. Smith was born on November 22, 1920 in Santa Clara, Califirnia to the late Albert John (1872-1933) and Ednah Martha (Powers) Smith (1887-....). Roland E. was the youngest of for children.

He enlisted (#39393751) on August 11, 1942 in Sacramento, California. Roland was proud of his service, but had a very hard time speaking about it. Roland E. Smith was awarded with two Bronze Star Medals for valor in combat. He served with both the 324th Field Artillery Battalion and the Divisional Artillery Headquarters of the 83rd Infantry Division. He was proud of his service but, as many veterans, had a very hard time speaking about it. For some of the time he was an aid to a general. Since he was with Headquarters of the Divisional artillery I’m thinking this might mean he was an aide to Brigadier General Montague, the 83rd Division Artillery Commanding Officer.

Roland E. Smith in Nurenberg, 1945

After the war Roland Smith married Eleanor M. Messinger in 1947 at Mt. Hermon, California and they had three children. He went into the reserves and was called up for the Korean conflict.  By that time he had graduated from college and three years of seminary and so went back to Korea and served as an Army protestant chaplain. His youngest son Douglas K. Smith was born shortly after his return from Korea.  He was told that he was not expected, Roland and Eleanor were actually in the process of adopting a Korean girl because their first two children were boys which resulted in Doug having a pink baby book!

Roland E. Smith died from a heart attack, on December 26, 1975 in Concord, Contra Costa County, California at the young age of 55.

If somebody has some more information on Roland E. Smith, please don't hesitate to contact me!!

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