The Christy Collection

Military Stories and Articles

Service Reflections of Sgt Ralph Hammer, U.S. Marine Corps (1972-1978)

Service Reflections of Sgt Ralph Hammer, U.S. Marine Corps (1972-1978)

Growing up as a child, and since my first memory that I can remember, I always heard my Mother who had Served in the United States Marine Corps and the Great Pride of being a “MARINE” during service and after; she had started as a Model in Hollywood and was contracted for Billboard Pictures for WOMEN to Join the Marines allowing Men in Desk Jobs to Go out and fight the Japanese. My Mother was SO Proud of the Uniform that she Enlisted before going home.

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U.S. Military Rank Insignia

U.S. Military Rank Insignia

The U.S. Military Rank Insignia has a long and proud history. Many of the ranks adopted by the United States military at the start of the Revolutionary War in 1775 are still in use today. The early military took a lot of inspiration from the British and French forces. Over time, the military rank insignia has come to represent American valor. These emblems, worn on the uniform to denote rank, help people identify military personnel’s rank and pay-grade at a glance. Evolution of U.S. Military...

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Cpt Humbert Roque “Rocky” Versace, U.S. Army (1959–1965) – Medal of Honor Recipient

Cpt Humbert Roque “Rocky” Versace, U.S. Army (1959–1965) – Medal of Honor Recipient

Captain Humbert Roque Versace, affectionately called "Rocky," was an officer of the United States Army. He went on to receive the Medal of Honor-the greatest military decoration of the United States-for the heroic actions he undertook as a prisoner of war in the Vietnam War. Puerto Rican-Italian by descent, he was the first member of the U.S. Army to have ever received such a distinction. Born on July 2, 1937, in Honolulu, Hawaii, Humbert Roque Versace was the eldest of five children....

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PFC Shizuya Hayashi, U.S. Army (1942 – 1945)

PFC Shizuya Hayashi, U.S. Army (1942 – 1945)

During the Italian Campaign of World War II, German troops were faced with a sight they had never expected: Japanese-American soldiers. These troops were members of the 100th Infantry Battalion, which was comprised entirely of Nisei (children of Japanese Immigrants) troops. What makes this story all the more amazing is knowing how these troops, and their families, had been treated by a scared and hateful populace at home. Their families, friends, and neighbors were being imprisoned by the...

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PFC Sixto Escobar, US Army (1941-1945)

PFC Sixto Escobar, US Army (1941-1945)

Sixto Escobar, of the United States Army between 1941 and 1945, was Puerto Rico’s first world boxing champion, and International Boxing Hall of Fame member. Remembered today with the Estadio Sixto Escobar, the San Juan home of River Plate Puerto Rico, as well as many buildings, roads, and statues, he is a favored son of the island territory. Not as many people know, though, that he served in the military during the Second World War as an Army PFC. Remembering Sixto Escobar Escobar was born in...

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Sgt Alvin York – An Unlikely Hero

Sgt Alvin York – An Unlikely Hero

Alvin Cullum York was one of the most decorated United States Army soldiers of World War I. He received the Medal of Honor for leading an attack on a German machine gun nests, killing at least 25 enemy soldiers, and capturing 132 during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. He was also a conscientious objector. Biography of Alvin Callum York York was born on December 13, 1887 to William and Mary York of Pall Mall, Tennessee and raised in a two-room log cabin in a rural backwater in the northern section...

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The Second Most Decorated Soldier of WWII

The Second Most Decorated Soldier of WWII

The 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division (known as "The Cottonbalers" from their use of a cotton bale breastworks during the Battle of New Orleans under Andrew Jackson), has served in more campaigns than any other infantry unit in the United States Army. In World War II, the regiment fought German forces on three fronts, North Africa, Italy, and Northwest Europe, quite probably serving more time in combat than any other regiment in the U.S. Army during the war. The regiment's numerous...

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The Fighting Arkansans

The Fighting Arkansans

Lloyd L. "Scooter" Burke - the most highly decorated soldier in Arkansas' history - was born in Tichnor (Arkansas County) on September 29, 1924, one of five children of A. D. Burke, a foreman at a lumber mill in Clarendon (Monroe County) and his wife, Belly Burke. In 1942, Lloyd Burke graduated from Stuttgart High School and enrolled at Henderson State Teachers College, now Henderson State University. In 1943 when Burke was 18-years-old, he dropped out of Henderson State College and joined the...

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Ghost Soldiers by Hampton Sides

Ghost Soldiers by Hampton Sides

In August 1944, the War Ministry in Tokyo had issued a directive to the commandants of various POW camps, outlining a policy for what it called the 'final disposition' of prisoners. A copy of this document, which came to be known as the 'August 1 Kill-All Order,' would surface in the war crimes investigations in Tokyo.  The document read in part that POWs are to be destroyed individually or in groups and whether it is accomplished by means of mass bombing, poisonous smoke, poisons,...

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