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See and Hear Veterans' Stories (Veterans History Project)
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Staff Favorites

A showcase of our most treasured collections selected by VHP staff members. The written descriptions of these veterans’ stories highlight the diversity and dramatic content of our holdings. View additional staff favorites.

Image of Julius SiefringJulius J. Siefring

Go to Julius J. Siefring's Collection

For veterans who participated in beach landings in WWII’s Pacific Theater, images of horror and feelings of disbelief are common memories. This was true for Julius J. Siefring, a staff sergeant serving with the 24th Infantry Division. Siefring took part in several landings, including Leyte Island in the Philippines, where he watched from a distance as U.S. planes bombed and strafed the island before his unit received the go-ahead to invade. Siefring witnessed unimaginable horrors: soldiers under fire jumping from the landing craft only to be weighed down by their heavy packs, some of them drowning before they could reach land; while on land others scratched at trees, the stress finally breaking them. On another island, Siefring’s unit was ordered to take out artillery on a hill, and he and his buddies fought their way through booby traps to the top, only to realize they were now easy targets for the Japanese. Siefring gave medical aid to those he could, and in the process, he probably saved at least one man’s life. He remembered vividly so many men he served with and the close bonds they forged through war.

Chosen by Stephanie A. Weaver, Processing Technician. Stephanie received her B.A. degree in History from the University of Dayton and her M.A. degree in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester. She came to the Veterans History Project in November 2005.

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  The Library of Congress >> American Folklife Center
  April 3, 2009
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