Chapter 10: Hq Det. Enlisted biographical information.

Enlisted biographical data for members of the 54th Repl BN.

The following is a very incomplete set of information concerning the enlisted members of the Battalion. The information has been gathered from many sources and I have tried to consolidate it in a sensible manner.

If you have any information that I could add please leave a comment below and I will update the page right away.’

Baker, Frank J.

“Yours truly, that’s water in the canteen. I’ll swear to it.” Frank Baker collection.

Frank Baker joined the battalion in Glastonbury and served as the Chaplain’s Assistant. He stayed with the Battalion until late in the European phase of the war when he transferred to an American Army college. While with the Battalion in France he also gave lectures on hygiene and dealing with the local population. At times he also helped drive trucks and transfer POWs to the port in Marseilles.  More information and photos will be added later.

Frank Baker has been very helpful in putting this project together and I am greatful for his help.

Ballard, Ollie Hill  Jr. (March 18, 1925 – December 17, 2005)

SSN: 34738534, Enlisted Selectee

Entered Service 6/30/43 in Ft. Oglethorpe Georgia.

County of residence: Davidson, TN

Education: 2 yrs high school.

Civilian Occupation: Undefined

Marital Status: single (single in records but was married.)

Residence: TN

I spoke with Mrs. Ballard, Myra Helen, on December 12, 2006. The timing of the call was bad as it was just about a year since he passed away, but she was gracious and talked to me some about Ollie.

He got his papers 3 days after they were married in 1943. She said when he returned home “they put the war out of their lives” and never really discussed it again. He did talk to one of his daughters some over the years. She remembers that he attended basic training in North Carolina and then went to England and France.

At some point, (probably in France) he was standing guard on top of a building. He saw something happening below and jumped down to take care of the situation. In the process he broke his foot and ankle. He was eventually sent home.

Ollie was a member of the Shriners in Nashville TN area where he and Myra Helen had been happily married for 62 years at the time of his passing.  His is survived by his wife, children and many grandchildren.

Black, Hollis (b. 1924, IN)

SSN: 35145620, Enlisted Selectee

Entered Service 6/1/43 in Indianapolis, IN.

County of residence: Cass, IN

Education: 3 yrs high school.

Civilian Occupation: Student

Marital Status: single

Residence: IN

I talked to Mr. Black’s wife on the phone (no name given) on 6/19/07. Mr. Black is deceased (no date given). They were married after the war in 1948 and he never said much about his time in the Army. She did say that she thought he was a bookkeeper and did payroll in England, France and maybe Italy.

Boughner, Harry E. (1923-?)

Pvt as of Jan 44

SN: 35755446

County of residence: Pleasants, WV

Entered Service:   5/28/43

Place of enlistment: Clarksburg, WV

Education:  4 yrs high school

Civilian Occupation:  Student

Marital Status:  Single, no dependents

A decendant of Harry Boughner told me that Boughner injured his foot after jumping off a building in England. She thinks he was sent home because of the injury. Boughner and Robert Butcher were from the same town and went to school together.

Harry Bougher during training in the US.

Butcher, Robert S. (1923-2001)

Pvt as of Jan 44

SN: 35755447

County of residence: Pleasants, WV

Entered Service:   5/28/43

Place of enlistment: Clarksburg, WV

Education:  4 yrs high school

Civilian Occupation:  undefined code on NARA records. Worked in his fathers auto mechanic garage prior to war and worked as an annealer in a steel mill for a few months before entering the army.

Marital Status:  Married

Information on Robert Butcher is listed throughout this site. Robert Butcher was my grandfather.

Robert S Butcher, taken at Bradley Beach NJ prior to shipping overseas.

Cross, Fred M.

S. Sgt as of Jan 44,  (cadre)

Service Number: ?

Entered Service:  ?

Education: ?

Civilian Occupation:  ?

Marital Status: ?

 Elliot, Roy M. (1916-?)

“Roy Elliot, sr noncom in personel section”, France 1945, Baker collection.

T4 as of Jan 44

SN: 34738464  selectee

County of residence:  Davidson, Tn

Entered Service:  6/30/43

Place of enlistment:  Ft. Oglethorpe, Ga

Education:  4 years high school

Civilian Occupation: cashier or stock record clerk, or bookkeeping, general

Marital Status: married

Fantone, Arnold (1914 – ?)

SN: 31344910, Enlisted Selectee

Entered Service 5/20/43 in Hartford CT.

County of residence: Hartford CT

Education: 2 yrs High School

Civilian Occupation: Millwright

Marital Status: single

I talked to a woman who was the niece of Arnold Fantone. She said the dates and locations sounded right but had no family information.

Felts, John R., Jr.

M(aster?) Sgt as of Jan 44.  (cadre)

Service Number:?

Entered Service:  ?

Education: ?

Civilian Occupation:  ?

Marital Status: ?

Geltmaker, Louis

T-5 as of Jan 44,  No NARA file located

SN: ?

County of residence: ?

Entered Service:   ?

Place of enlistment: ?

Education:  ?

Civilian Occupation:  ?

Marital Status:  ?

Hamilton, William M.  1918-?

“T5 Hamilton fills the Col’s recon”, France 1945, Baker collection.

PFC as of Jan 44

SN: 34738029

County of residence: Shelby TN

Entered Service:   6/26/43

Place of enlistment: Fort Oglethorpe Georgia

Education:  2 years high school

Civilian Occupation:  Laundry machine operator or receiving/shipping checker

Marital Status:  Married

Johnson, Ray E. (1923-?)*

Pvt as of Jan 44

SN: 34735221

County of residence: Cumberland, TN

Entered Service:   6/1/43

Place of enlistment:  Ft. Oglethorpe, Georgia

Education:  4 yrs high school

Civilian Occupation:  Student

Marital Status:  Single, no dependents

*More than one record in NARA was found for this name. This entry is the most likely entry to be the correct person based on place of enlistment and timing.

Kosciewicz, Gustav D. (1923-?)

S Sgt as of Jan 44, (cadre)

SN: 13127779

County of residence: Lackawanna, Pa

Entered Service:  10/29/42, voluntary

Place of enlistment: Wilkes Barre, PA

Education: 4 yrs high school

Civilian Occupation:  adressing-embossing machine operator, general clerk

Marital Status: single,  no dependents

Lapides, Edward F.

Cpl as of Jan 44

SN: ?

County of residence: ?

Entered Service:   ?

Place of enlistment:  ?

Education:  ?

Civilian Occupation:  ?

Marital Status:  ?

Levitt, Charles

T4 as of Jan 44 (cadre)

SN: ?

County of residence: ?

Entered Service:   ?

Place of enlistment:  ?

Education:  ?

Civilian Occupation:   ?

Marital Status:  ?

Liehr, Wilbur  (December 21, 1915 – March 6, 2006)

Sgt as of Jan 44

SN: 36047446, Enlisted Selectee

County of residence: Pike, IL

Entered Service:   8/28/1941

Place of enlistment:  Chicago IL

Education:  4 yrs college (University of IL)

Civilian Occupation:   Automotive Serviceman

Marital Status:  Single

 Obituary from Rux Funeral Home in Galva:

GALVA – Wilbur Liehr, 90 of Galva, died at 10:10 PM, Monday, March 6, 2006 at the Marigold Health Care Center in Galesburg.

Funeral Services will be held at 1:00 PM on Saturday, March 11, 2006 at the Rux Funeral Home in Galva. The Rev. Robin Faull will officiate. Visitation will be held fro 6-8 pm on Friday, march 10, at the Funeral Home. Burial will be in the Galva Cemetery.  Memorials may be directed to the Galva Lions Club or the Galva Sr. Citizens.

Mr. Liehr was born on December 21, 1915 in Perry, IL, the son of Ernest and Helen (Geisendorfer) Liehr. He married Mary E. Null on June 16, 1951 in St. Charles, MO. She preceded him in death on Feb. 20, 1992. He is survived by 2 daughters, Martha (Dennis) Stephan of Redondo Beach, CA, and Sarah (Dr. Ted) Stork of Raleigh, NC, 1 granddaughter, Amelia, 1 brother John David (J.D.) Liehr of Perry IL, and two sisters, Lois Liehr of Perry, IL, Amelia “Susie” Skouby of Rolla, MO. He was preceded in death by his parents and one sister.

Mr. Liehr was a graduate of University of Illinois. He served his country in the US Army during WWII. He was a vocational agriculture teacher at Galva High School and also worked for the IL Crop Development Association. He was a member of the 1st Congregational Church in Galva, the Galva Lions Club, the Henry-Stark Retired Teachers Association and the Galva Senior Citizens. This obituary may be viewed and private condolences left at

From conversations that I have had to date (7/30/07), Mr Liehr was a highly respected and well loved member of the Galva community.

Mello, Clifford J. (1924-?)

Pvt as of Jan 44

SN: 31357783

County of residence: Bristol, Mass.

Entered Service:   5/21/43

Place of enlistment: Boston, Mass.

Education:  grammer school

Civilian Occupation:  undefined code

Marital Status:  Single, no dependents

Rutt, Jack M. (1914-?)

T5 as of Winter 1945 in Marseilles France.

SN: 42011507

County of residence: Passaic New Jersey

Entered Service:   8/26/43

Place of enlistment:  Newark NJ

Education:  3 years of college

Civilian Occupation:  managers and officials, n.e.c.

Marital Status:  married

Jack is listed with the 54th in Marseille France, based on photos from Frank Baker.  Also, an ID tag connecting Rutt and the camp dog, Scampy, was found on site of the Calas Staging Area in 1973.

T5 Jack Rutt with Scampy, France, 1945, Baker collection.Scampi tag from Phillippe Baulard

T5 Jack Rutt with Scampy, France, 1945, Baker collection.

Stevens, Melvin E.  (1924-?)

T-5 as of Jan 44

SN: 34728009

County of residence: Shelby, TN

Entered Service:   6/26/43

Place of enlistment: Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia

Education:  3 yrs high school

Civilian Occupation:  Student

Marital Status:  Single, no dependants


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