As told by his Son, Martel

Grandfather, Wesley Ames Poore Father, Wesley Ralph Poore
Son, Glen Edward Poore
Grandson, Martel Edward Poore

Glen Edward Poore was born on August 13, 1921. He was the first son of Wesley Ralph and Goldie (Bryant) Poore of Beaconsfield, Iowa. Glen was raised and educated in Beaconsfield, Iowa. Glen later attended Simpson College. My grandmother's family, the Bryants, had a section or so of land and they helped many of their neighbors. It is hard to put it all together because as a child I didn't really think about it. I just lived it. I do remember that several Sunday afternoons we would all get together. The four Poore brothers, Orville, Alvin, Franklin Pearley and my grandfather, Ralph, had a quartet and sang 'Blackwood Brothers' type of music. My aunt would play the piano and I remember them specifically singing "On the Jericho Road" and songs like that. Orville Poore later sang at the Iowa State Fair on senior citizen's day when he was in his 90's.

I remember many family sayings growing up like: "If you don't believe you can, nobody else will"; "Many hands make light work"; and, "If you take care of the corners, the middle will take care of itself'. My favorite is: "Smile and make somebody wonder what you are up to."

My mother, Maurine (Overholtzer) Poore, born May 22, 1920 to Walter and Gladys (Boles) Overholtzer, was raised in the neighboring community of Grand River, Iowa, and received her education through high school in the Grand River school. During the summer of 1938, Maurine attended Iowa State Teacher's College which is now UNI (University of Northern Iowa) in Cedar Falls, Iowa. This education qualified her to teach in country schools. Maurine and Glen began dating in 1940, and were married on December 26, 1941, at the Methodist Church in Beaconsfield, Iowa. (Their marriage ceremony was planned in Grand River, but had to be moved to Beaconsfield because the license was purchased in Ringgold County and at that time marriages in Iowa had to be perfoimed in the same county as the license purchase.)

Glen enlisted in the Army in the fall of 1942. In the same year, he was sent to Brookings, South Dakota, to be taught German with the idea that if we defeated the Germans, we would have enlisted men trained and educated in the German language.

From Glen's military documents, we know that he served in the 387th Infantry Regiment. His MOS (military occupational specialty) was Heavy Mortar Crewman, his military qualification was Expert M1 Carbine, his battles and campaigns included Rhineland, Central Europe and we do know that he was in the Battle of the Bulge, which other sources told was one of the worst and most defining battles of WWII. In the Hopeville/Murray veterans' book, Olin Reasoner describes it in detail, as does John Saatorffs story in the second Osceola book with the information taken from the internet. Byron England, in the first Osceola veterans' book tells what happened the next day at Echternach when the Germans captured 9,000 Americans on the extreme left flank of the "Bulge."

The account of what happened on Saturday, December 16, 1944, given in the "Chronolgy of World War II" compiled by Christopher Argyle, reports: "Rundstedt and Model, under Hitler's direct command, launch surprise counter-offensive into the Ardennes on the weakest sector of the Allied line, held by the 9th Corps, U.S., 1st Army. Germans employ 5th, 6th & 7th Pz Armiest. Appalling weather virtually grounds Allied Air Forces and the weight of the German onslaught ensures rapid progress. Paratroops and SS men disguised as American MP's (military police) add to the confusion."

Glen's military service years were rarely discussed. One memory I recall was a conversation between Glen and our neighbor, Ross. Ross and Lena See lived next door to us in Osceola. Lena was a nurse for many years and Ross was in the insurance business. Ross had been gassed in WWI when he served in France and had a lot of health issues. This was the only time I can recall that I ever heard Glen talk about the war and Glen told Ross about living in a German basement for two weeks and all they survived on was a crock of dill pickles. Since that time Glen hated dill pickles. One of Glen's military documents told about the nature and duty of a Heavy Mortar Crewman, a member of a Heavy Weapons Infantry Company. Glen said he was in the mortar team and served as both ammunition bearer and gunner in combat.

Glen spent four months in Central Europe in combat as a crew member of an 81mm mortar crew. Glen set up, aimed and fired mortar according to directions of section sergeant, emplaced gun in combat according to advantages of cover and camouflage. Three were on this assignment and stationed for the setup in a trench. Glen started to move out, bombs landed and the trench was hit. The other two crewman were killed. He had been with them only moments before. I know it was pretty rough and I can understand why it was difficult for him to talk about it. The war was completely against his nature. I remember Glen wouldn't go rabbit hunting with me after the war. He said he would never kill something unless he had a reason.

I have some items that Glen gave me from this period of his life. Glen met up with the Russians in Germany and a Russian soldier wrapped a 25-caliber handgun in a red hanky and gave it to him. It is a very small weapon which I can place in the palm of my hand. I also have a knife, bayonet and a German officer's side arm. Glen also had a German flag that was signed by all the guys in his unit. I clearly remember one time when I was a young kid and thinking this flag was really cool. I wanted to see what it looked like opened up so I spread it out on the front lawn as he pulled in the driveway. I got in more trouble over that than anything I ever did. It somehow got lost through the years. Glen also had his helmet and the metal outside liner of the helmet was used for everything -- shaving, washing, cooking, eating, whatever. Anything that reminded Glen of the war -- medals, papers, items, anything, were always packed away. Glen rarely spoke of them.

Glen has a palm tree patch that I believe was from the African Campaign — March 3, 1945. There is also a European-African Campaign medal, WWII Victory medal, Good Conduct medal and the American Campaign medal. Glen had also earned the Bronze Star but he never picked it up. (I found out about the Bronze Star from a newspaper clipping and when I asked about it, I was told, "other men deserved it more, I just didn't want it.")

I was born November 7, 1944. Glen left Europe for Iowa on February 19, 1945, arriving on June 23rd. Glen was discharged from the military on the 4th anniversary of Pearl Harbor bombing, December 7, 1945. When Glen returned home, he worked with his father-in-law, Walter Overholtzer, in Hastings, Nebraska, at a depot which stored military materials. The depot had several miles of bunkers with items shipped in by rail.

My family then returned to Beaconsfield and we lived on a farm that later became the Iowa State University Shelby-Grund Experimental Farm a mile from town. We lived on this farm about a year. The next place we lived for 11 years was the Bill Campbell farm, 1/2 -mile south and 1/2 -mile east of Grand River. Glen was in partnership with the owner, State Senator Bill Campbell. The Senator was in his 80's when Glen went into business with him and I can remember Glen laughing and saying it probably wasn't the smartest move he ever made, going into business with an 80-year old man. The Senator lived to be over 100 years.

I can remember the house on this farm. It had many rooms. There was a living room with a fireplace, formal dining room, family room, music room, four bedrooms with lots of storage and a kitchen that probably would seat 20 people. It had big white columns in front and a large lawn. It was beautiful and I have heard that it may now be changing into a Bed and Breakfast.

My sister, Marleta, was born March 29, 1951 and my youngest sister, Marcia, was born December 8, 1953. In 1958, Glen went into the construction business with Ralph Andrew and we moved to Osceola. In 1963, Ralph and Glen dissolved the business and sold the equipment. That year Glen was visiting with Cliff Underwood at Underwood Auto Supply and Cliff said he needed some help. Glen said, "Are you serious?" Cliff replied, "Yes, do you know of someone?" Glen said, "Yes, me." Cliff asked Glen when he could start and the following Monday Glen started working at the store and later as an outside salesman until he retired in 1985.

Glen and Maurine enjoyed many retirement years traveling to Florida and also to several parts of the United States with a group from the Methodist Church. Glen did reconnect with several men from his unit traveling to San Francisco and Phoenix and in 1989, to a WWII military convention in New Orleans. On September 10, 2006, Glen passed from this world and his interment was at the Grand River Cemetery.

Glen Edward Poore
A man of honesty, always trustworthy and he deeply cared about people.

I will conclude with the following from Glen's youngest granddaughter, Alisha Jean, when she interviewed Glen for a college course. The following is her story:

It was kind of weird to do this interview because this was my grandfather, but still, I really didn't know him and he didn't talk much when I was a little kid. When I questioned my grandfather about the war and why he never collected any of his medals, he replied he didn't feel like he deserved them. According to him, there were a lot of men who did what he did and more. What my grandfather felt was more of an award to him was that he actually went through it and survived.

I remember him as being so quiet, but at the same time he had a strong presence about him. I remember thinking, 'I can tell he definitely fought for what he believed in'. My grandfather was very kind. He never got angry with any of us grandkids. He would be concerned at times and show a little frustration but he wasn't angry about it. My grandfather had his own convictions and believed very strongly about them.

One of the things I find interesting that there was a correlation between my dad marrying my mom and leaving almost immediately for Thailand during Viet Nam and almost the same situation when my grandfather and grandmother were married and he had to leave for Germany during WWII. It puts it all in perspective for me and my generation. We have a choice whether or not to be in the war and they didn't. That may be another reason why no one cares to speak of it. To be there wasn't something they wanted to do but was something they had to do, whether they wanted to or not. They both loved their country and served it well.



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Last Revised June 12, 2015