|Guy Moore, 404th MP, 69-70 and the 404th MP poem|
|1. The first sink in our latrine leaked hot water constantly. Steam would rise
from it and it could not be shut off. I would use that sink to make instant coffee and
actually had to wait for it to cool before I drank it.
2. Bruenger was a fan of Edith Piaf, Ms. Piaf was a French singer who sang
only in French as far as I know and was around in the 40's or 50's. Haven't done
any internet research on Edith, that's just what I remember him telling me.
Bruenger told me and a couple other guys one time that he had been a Colorado
Highway Patrolman before the Army. He had stopped a young lady for speeding and
when he approached the vehicle her boyfriend, who had just escaped from jail, rose up
from the floor of the backseat and emptied his .32 pistol into him. He did something to
make me believe that this was true. Either my rolling up a sleeve or unbuttoning a
shirt button to show us the old wound, or something. I do not recall now.
My other Bruenger story, although far from an amusing anecdote, is just my best
memory of him. Me and J.D. Force and Larry Ramey used to visit a bar owned by a
German couple (middle-aged) and their young and very attractive daughter Gabriella.
We called her Gabby. I don't remember where this place was. A fairly easy drive from
Cooke but still somewhat remote. We were very often the only Americans in the bar.
Probably because of that, we were treated exceptionally well. I was married at the
time but Gabby sort of flirted with J.D. and Larry. In retrospect she probably did that
with a number of tables that had single guys spending money.
Anyway, we wanted to do something nice for the couple so we decided to get
them a bottle of liquor from the U.S. that you couldn't get in West Germany.
Enlisted men could not buy hard liquor at the PX for some reason but NCOs could.
You couldn't approach Axel with a request like that so we went to Gary. Went to his
apartment and asked the favor. He did not want to make a special trip to the PX for us
but gave us a 3/4 full bottle of Southern Comfort.
We later gave the bottle to Gabby's father who seemed unperturbed that it was
partially empty. He tipped it up and took a drink and then passed it to each of us to do
the same. I believe that is the first and last time that I have ever tried Southern Comfort.
I have another story about this bar that I will send to you later. I suspect that none of
the NCOs or officers of the 404th would remember me, but if they do it would be for an
incident that happened there.
Received your email regarding the extent of your injuries and some vivid memories
that you do retain. I have some surprising (albeit not enlightening) comments and
recollections, or lack thereof, to share with you. More later.
Kind regards, Guy
|And another event told by Guy:|
|My only claim to
fame (or infamy) at CB. J.D. Force (Memphis, TN) and Larry Ramey (Clinchport, VA)
and I frequented a bar about five miles from Goeppingen. I learned the distance
from a recent reading of a letter that I had written to my father in 1970. If you went
even that short distance from town, GIs were well like and accepted. Downtown
Goeppingen was another story - much bad blood and resentment, although most
still wanted our money. (Ma Weigle's was the exception as far as resentment).
Anyway, the three of us were in the bar owned by the much beloved Gabriella
and parents. I don't know if this law was all of West Germany or just local, but bars
could stay open quite late, but there was a cut -off time where patrons could no
longer enter, but those already inside could remain until official closing time. Being
summer of 1970 the windows were open for ventilation. Three young Italian guys,
probably in their mid 20s, having found the main entrance locked, climbed in by
the open windows near the billiard table. Very shortly they were confronted by
Gabby and very shortly thereafter by her mother. This was quite near to the table
where we were sitting. An argument ensued (in German) as we watched. One of
the Italian guys shoved Gabby's mother and I jumped up and punched him. I guess
not hard enough though, he didn't go down, but started scuffling with me. The other
two guys jumped in also but J.D. and Larry came to my rescue. I lost track of what
happened to my buddies as I was preoccupied with my Italian opponent. It sort of
turned into a wrestling match but we exchanged a few blows. He eventually got on
top of me but one of the barmaids dragged him off long enough for me to escape.
While I was scuffling, Larry's opponent had grabbed a pool cue from the billiard
table and gave him an uppercut with the thick end that split his lip (inside and out)
almost up to his nose. After being dragged off of me, my guy ran to the billiard
table and picked up a couple of billiard balls. He stood between me and the exit
door where J.D. (unscathed) and Larry (bleeding profusely) were waiting. All the
balls were at his end of the table and he was holding two of them. I decided to make
a dash for it, running just past him. He tossed the 6 ball at me and I ducked - but not
quite far enough. It caught the top of my scalp, tearing the skin somewhat (even with
all the hair I had then). I was bleeding a lot too, but not really hurt badly.
The Italian guys climbed out the window they had entered and took off. The
three of us met in the parking lot and decided not to wait for the Polizei. Larry was
bleeding badly and needed some medical attention. We went back to CB and
went to the (dispensary?) There was a medic on duty who called a doctor who
was "on call" for the night who happened to be out drinking with the dentist who
was "on call" for the evening. They arrived shortly and the MD began stitching up
Larry's lip. I was holding a compress on my head to halt the bleeding and after a
few minutes the dentist said to the MD. "Do you mind if I do this one?" Pointing to
me. The MD said "Sure, go ahead" I was a bit taken aback at first but even
pretty well drunk I figured a dentist uses sutures in even more hard to reach places
than the top of one's head. So while Larry was being worked on a half drunk dentist
put seven stitches in the top of my head.
The next day the commander heard about our encounter and sent Axel to call us
together. Because of the bad blood between the German locals and the GIs at that
time, he was considering recommending us for the Army Commendation Medal.
Thought it might put all of us in a good light you know "American GIs come to the
aid of a local German family" blah blah blah. Axel had each of us write a complete
report of every detail that we could remember and submit it to the Captain for
review. I was told that it was submitted for review by the Command, but rejected.
At any rate, we never got the medal. Essentially we got our butts kicked and Larry's
lip was swollen for weeks. My scalp wound healed pretty well though.
My next project is scouring through letters I have written to my Dad looking for
references of you or Weiss. Why he saved them, I am not sure, and why I have
some of them here on Maui, I am even less sure. Will keep you posted.
|Below follows a portion of an email from Ray Moore (forgive me, but I *think* Ray is Guy's father):|
I regret to inform you of the death of Guy H. Moore formerly of the 404th MP Co. 1969-1970. While going through his papers I found his photographs that were submitted to album #4 collage style. Also was a typed poem that is not 100% readable. Here is what I can read or is obvious, perhaps you or someone else knows the missing line or words?
We patrol the old streets
We stand on that gate
We check guys for passes
And bring 'pee' when there late
We check out the accidents
and frauleins as well
If 'lifers' don't like it
The can all go to hell
We cover the fighting
And knock a few heads
With nightsticks a raging
The ends filled with lead
When charged with brutality
There's nine of us who'd swear
That we were all watching
He fell down the stairs
We stand in formation
Our heels locked in place
**? **? **? **? **? **? **?
We laugh in his face,
As he tells us with pr***
That we all shall be known
Each and every one
By our deeds alone
We all keep our chins up
When shit's getting high
And keep on enduring
Till DEROS in nigh
This is the story
We're known south and north
For we are the men
Of the fighting 404th.
Guy, was a wonderful person with a big heart and a unique sensitivity. He is, and will be, very missed.
With fondest memories,
--david wisniewski, founder, cookebarracks.com