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Minnesota Office of the Secretary of State

In honor of Thomas Black, US Army - Served in World War II
Hometown: New York City
(Submitted August 21, 2008 by Bert Black)

I almost always vote anyway, but this year I'm voting in honor of my father, Thomas Black, a veteran of World War II from 1942 to 1946. My dad was in the tank corps, but he started his training on horses in North Carolina because there were no tanks available for training yet.  Once overseas he was part of the D Day invasion. It was literally a case of 'bringing coals to Newcastle,' as he grew up on the northeast coast of Britain (near Newcastle!).

His father, a shipbuilder, moved the family to New York in 1931 during the Great Depression looking for work. There wasn't any.  My dad spent some time with General Patton and survived. Patton was notorious for the way he used his tank corps hard.  My dad won a Bronze Star for his actions in the taking of Hitler's Eagles Nest, the Berchtesgaden. He was also part of the second unit to find the Dachau Concentration Camp. He never talked about either of these events or much about the war at all, although we did get a few stories about D-day.  

My dad passed in 2000 at the age of 82, taking most of his stories with him. But after his service he always voted too. I'm glad that his children and grandchildren are carrying on that family tradition.

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Last updated: 7/20/2009 9:35:55 AM