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Joerg Wood Guice

Wood Guice Joerg
Lieutenant Colonel
Serial Number:
551st Parachute Regiment
Date of Death:
Fairview Cemetery, Eufaula, Alabama
Silver Star, Purple Heart, and Croix de Guerre with Palm

Wood Guice Joerg was born on December 14, 1914, in Eufaula, Alabama. He attended the Georgia Military Academy and went to high school in Puerto Rico before entering the United States Military Academy. After graduating from West Point in 1937, Joerg was sent to Texas to train with several infantry units before being ordered to Fort Benning, Georgia, for airborne school. He deployed to North Africa in April 1944, and fought throughout Italy and Southern France. He was transferred to the 551st Parachute Infantry Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, with whom he fought in the Battle of the Bulge. As the commanding officer of the 551st, Joerg was loved by his soldiers for his leadership style and upstanding character. He was killed during the unit's notable capture of Rochelinval, Belgium, on January 7, 1945.

His citation reads "For gallantry in action against the enemy on January 7, 1945. Lieutenant Colonel Joerg was in a forward position observing the assault elements of a unit as they moved to the attack on the village. His position during this phase was continually under extremely heavy and accurate mortar and observed artillery fire. When the fire fight was joined, Lieutenant Colonel Joerg saw that his left flank company had been purposely permitted to advance into open ground which was covered by a tremendous volume of machine gun fire. Without regard for his own safety, and in order to extricate the company from its position. Lieutenant Colonel Joerg advanced through intense enemy fire toward the unit's extreme front line. Lieutenant Colonel Joerg's heroic action and unselfish devotion to his command were an inspiration to the entire unit and aided materially in preventing elements of the company from moving into an enemy trap. During this action Lieutenant Colonel Joerg was fatally wounded."