Raymond Donald Zomerfelt

By KBJR News 1

Raymond Donald Zomerfelt

May 16, 2014 Updated May 16, 2014 at 1:23 PM CDT

On April 27, 1943, Raymond Donald Zomerfelt joined the U.S Army at Ft. Snelling, Zomerfelt served as a technician fifth grade and low speed radio operator and minefield clearer with the 158th Combat Engineers in Normandy, France, Rhineland, Ardennes, and Central Europe.

On February 28 and 29, 1943, his battalion was engaged in an assault crossing of the Red River.

On March 16th, Zomerfelt left for Camp Shanks, N.Y., where gas masks were issued and tested in gas chambers. At 0550 hours boarded the USS Thurston and began a 212 mile journey across the ocean which took 13 days to reach Cardiff, Wales.

On May 17th. Zomerfelt took a train to an area near Strood, England, to train in firing tommy guns, bazooka, and grenades.

On June 24, 1943, at South Hampton, England, the unit boarded the SS Robert L.Vann setting sail for France, landing on Utah Beach at 1950 hours on June 26th. The unit cleared a four mile area of mines, grenades, and booby traps, most were in the hedges, for the Third Army going through St. Lo to Paris. At one point in France, Companies A, B, and C were together with the headquarters in a local castle.

Near the castle was a garage with a room upstairs with his radio. That night a German plane flew over and strafed the motor pool and his sergeant in the legs. Received a message on the transmitter indicating that the Germans had broken through the American lines.

Zomerfelt ran the message to the castle and gave it to the captain who said that he had to write urgent on the message.

Zomerfelt was awared the Good Conduct Medal, European-African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, and three overseas service bars. Zomerfelt was honorably discharged October 31, 1945.