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Name: Maurice Noble Pelton Rank: Private Service Number: 31339644 Service: 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, US Army Date of Birth: August 19, 1919 Place of Birth: Langdon, Sullivan County, New Hampshire Height: 5 feet, 6 inches Complexion: Ruddy Hair Color: Brown Eye Color: Hazel Occupation: Mechanic Marital Status: Married Next of Kin: Mildred Mae Pelton (Wife) Date of Death: April 6, 1944 Age: 24 Cemetery: Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, Philippines Reference: Tablets of the Missing Maurice Noble Pelton was the son of Frank Noble Pelton (1884-1937) and Frances Estelle (Robinson) Pelton (1886-1966). He was the brother of Lawrence W. Pelton, Kenneth S. Pelton, Arthur H. Pelton, Dorothy E. Pelton, Roger C. Pelton, Bernard W. Pelton, Bernice F. Pelton, Marion L. Pelton, Caroline M. Pelton, and Frank N. Pelton. Maurice’s father was a farmer; born in Coldbrook, Kings County, Nova Scotia. His mother was born in Lewiston, Androscoggin County, Maine. Maurice’s brother Roger Pelton served in the 133th Construction Battalion (Seabees), US Navy, at Iwo Jima during WWII. Maurice married Mildred Mae Wright (1921-2013) in Keene, Cheshire Co., New Hampshire on September 15, 1940. Mildred was born in Westminster, Windham Co., Vermont (after the loss of Maurice in 1944, Mildred remarried Theodore George Vaine (1916–2004) on April 3, 1945). A month after marriage, Maurice listed his residence as Putney, Windham Co., Vermont and registered for the US Draft on October 16, 1940, in Langdon, Sullivan Co., VT. He was working for the Howard Hardware Company at the time at 8 Square, Bellows Falls, Windham Co., VT. Maurice and Mildred had one child, a daughter - Ramona Mae Pelton born December 23, 1942, in Bellows Falls, Windham, Vermont. After enlisting in the US Army, Maurice joined the 5th Cavalry Regiment of the 1st Cavalry Division. After the outbreak of war in 1941, the 1st Cavalry Division was a part of the forces guarding the Mexican border. In February 1943, the entire 1st Cavalry Division was alerted for overseas assignment. An impatient 1st Cavalry Division was dismounted and they were processed for movement to the Southwest Pacific theater as foot solders. The Division arrived in Australia on July 11, 1943, and was in training until July 26, 1943, when it left for New Guinea to stage for the invasion of the Admiralty Islands in the Bismarck Archipelago. At the end of July, the division arrived at Brisbane and travelled to their new temporary home, Camp Strathpine, Queensland, Australia. The division received six months of intense combat jungle warfare training at Camp Strathpine in the wilds of scenic Queensland and amphibious training at nearby Moreton Bay. In January 1944, the division was ordered to leave Australia and sail to Oro Bay, New Guinea. After a period of staging in New Guinea, they were assigned to their first combat operations. February 27, Task Force "Brewer", consisting of 1,026 troopers, embarked from Cape Sudest, Oro Bay, New Guinea under the command of Brigadier General William C. Chase. Their destination was a remote, Japanese occupied island of the Admiralties, Los Negros, where they were to make a reconnaissance of force and if feasible, capture Momote Airdrome and secure a beachhead for the reinforcements that would follow. Landing occurred February 29, 1944 and Momote was secured by March 3, 1944, after bitter fighting and counter attacks. The 5th Cavalry Regiment was relieved on March 4 after 4 days of continuous combat. By March 6, the 5th Cavalry went back into action to occupy Porolka and the first American airplane landed on the Momote airstrip which had been repaired by the Seabees. The next day the 5th pushed south and overran Papitalai Village after a short amphibious landing assault. By March 10-11, mop-up operations were underway all over the northern half of Los Negros Island and attention was being given to a much bigger objective immediately to the west; Manus Island. By March 16, 1944, Momote airstrip was in use and the airdrome well on its way to completion. The airstrip was quickly repaired so that by May 18, fighters could operate from it. Private Maurice Noble Pelton died April 6, 1944 during the fighting at Los Negros. He has no known grave but he is remembered on the Tablets of the Missing at the Manila American Cemetery and Memorial in the Philippines. He also has a memorial marker at the Lower Langdon Cemetery in Langdon, Sullivan Co., NH.
Maurice Noble Pelton
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