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Remembering World War II
Name: Fred Eugene Dodge Rank: Sergeant Service Number: 39195070 Service: 714th Tank Battalion, 12th Armored Division, US Army Awards: Purple Heart Date of Birth: November 1, 1920 Place of Birth: Trail, Kootenay County, British Columbia Date of Enlistment: November 17, 1942 Place of Enlistment: Tacoma, Pierce County, Washington Address at Enlistment: Taylor, King County, Washington Age at Enlistment: 22 Height: 6 feet, 1 inch Complexion: Fair Hair Color: Light Brown Eye Color: Blue Occupation: Teamster Marital Status: Single Religion: Catholic Date of Death: March 20, 1945 Age at Death: 24 Cemetery: Acacia Memorial Park, Lake Forest Park, King County, Washington Grave: Crypt 117 Fred Eugene Dodge was the son of Frank Farin Dodge (1879-1957) and Helen Marguerite (Wiesenthal) Dodge 1898-1964), and the brother of Frank Victor Reuben Dodge (1917-1988), Fairn Catherine Dodge [Chambers] (1919-1987), John Bent "Jack" Dodge (1922-1994), Mary Helen Dodge (1929-1930), and Robert Leander "Bobby Lee" Dodge (1933-2009). His father was born in Belleisle, Annapolis County, Nova Scotia, and his mother in Rossland, British Columbia. Fred himself moved from BC to Washington State in 1924. In 1935, the family resided in Spokane, Washington. By 1940, Fred was working as a furrier in fur store. The family was living in Taylor in Kings Co., Washington. Three of Fred’s brothers also served with US Armed Forces in WWII. His brother Frank served with the US Army Air Force in Texas, Jack served in Germany, and his brother Robert served in the US Army from 1950-1955 including the Korean War (awarded the Bronze Star). Dodge was assigned to the 714th Tank Battalion, 12th Armored Division of the US Army. By the end of January 1945, the Seventh Army was once again on the attack. General Brooks’ VI Corps was ordered to eliminate the Gambsheim, France bridgehead. He sent the 36th Infantry Division, supported by Combat Command B of the 14th Armored Division, to clear the zone. Miserable weather restricted the armor to a few good roads, and strong German defenses delayed the advance repeatedly. Nevertheless, the bridgehead was cleared by February 11, and American troops finally occupied Herrlisheim, France. “The Hellcats” (the 12th Armored Division) went on to take part in the clearing of the Colmar Pocket in February with the French First Army and then attacked through the lines of the 94th Infantry Division in March 1945, reaching the Rhine north of Mannheim, Germany, on March 20th. Sergeant Fred Eugene Dodge was killed in Germany that same day on March 20, 1945. Fred E. Dodge’s family chose to repatriate his remains rather than having him interred at an American Battle Monuments Commission cemetery overseas, and he is entombed at the Acacia Memorial Park in Lake Forest Park, King County, Washington. Of note: Walt Disney created a cartoon; a ‘mascot’ of sorts for the 714th Tank Battalion of the 12th Armored Division. His tin can-armored caterpillar stands in front of the 12th Armored Division’s insignia with clubs in hand – ready to attack and was drawn during WWII sometime in 1944 or 1945.
Fred Eugene Dodge
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Sources: findagrave Speed is the Password: The Story of the 12th Armored Division Backgound photo: M4 Sherman medium tanks of the 714th Tank Bn., 12th Armored Div. advance warily across the snow-covered landscape toward enemy positions near the town of Bischwiller, France, on January 8, 1945
Book Cover of the 12th Armored Division, known as the Hellcats.