Vincent J. ''Vince'' Speranza

''Courage is not a mindset of fearlessness but an attitude of doing the right thing in spite of fear'', he said.
World War II veteran Vincent J. Speranza is familiar with this definition. He received a brown star and purple heart for his service as a paratrooper in the 101st Airborne Division. His division went into Bastogne on truck in December when the ground was frozen. German troops surrounded the division on all sides, outnumbering it seven to one. Because of the weather, the men could not be resupplied and started running out of food and ammunition. The division could not safely evacuate its wounded and had to wrap soldiers in whatever was available. Finally, on Dec. 26, the division was resupplied by the Third Army.

''Any combat veteran will tell you it’s not the number of troops you have or the weather conditions'', Speranza said.
''It’s in the heart of the trooper. The Germans couldn’t believe seven of their troops couldn’t get past one of ours''.


I met Vince at Bastogne, Ardennes, Belgium, December 12, 2010