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Erichsen, Wallace (Interviewer)

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Gerber, William

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William Gerber was born in 1921 in Menominee, Michigan. He grew up there and attended high school there until he graduated in 1939. In the summer of 1938 he trained with the U.S. Citizens Training Corps in Fort Brady, Michigan for four weeks which would later count towards basic training in the Army. After completing high school he went to Houghton, Michigan as part of the National Youth Administration and received radio training. This led to his getting involved with the National Park Service and his working at Isle Royale National Park starting on December 6, 1941 and being relieved from that duty in May 1942. After Isle Royale he worked briefly as a medical technician and as an ambulance driver for Marinette General Hospital in Marinette, Wisconsin. In July 1942 he was drafted into the U.S. Army and in August 1942 he reported for basic training. He was sent to Fort Story, Virginia and because of his prior military training he was quickly promoted to the rank of corporal. He went on to receive radio training at Fort Story and Fort Monroe in Virginia and he was later attached to the 663rd Field Artillery Battalion as a radio operator. In spring 1944 his unit was deployed to Europe. They would go on to participate in the Battle of the Bulge and supporting Allied infantry in Bastogne, and the 663rd was one of the first units to cross the Rhine River into Germany to begin the Allied invasion of Germany. He was discharged in February 1946, but remained in the reserves and was called up during the Korean War and served in Japan at that time.

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Veterans History Project collection, (RHC-27)

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