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My 29ers from Brest and Normandy


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#1 yannick

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 01:26 AM

Hello all,

Well, for my first post here, I have decided to send photos of my 29ers helmets found around Brest in Brittany, Fr. The 29th division is by far my favorite and I've been collecting stuff from that unit for more than 15 years (dug up stuff and other battlefield material). Hope you enjoy!


From left to right:

The dug up 29er with bullet hole was found on Hill 108 North of St Lo one year ago. it belong to a 1/175th soldier. I'll post later some of the amazing relics we found in that area...

The second 29er is named to Lee S. Smyth and was found around 2001 next to Brest. I have Smyth's record but never found his name in any 29th roster. The liner has no insignia but same serial number stamped.

Third (my favorite :love: ) is named to Joseph D. Downs. It is an NCO helmet found at Recouvrance in the western part of the Penfeld river, liberated by the 29th division in sept 44. Helmet was found in the late seventies. S/Sgt Joe "Red" Downs was from NY an was an Irish native. He was 38 years old in 44. He served in I company 175th. landed June 7th on Omaha Beach, received the Bronze star medal and Silver Star medal for actions in Normandy in June. He was later WIA in Germany in Oct 44. He died in the 80ies. I met one of his vet buddy who sent me lots of info and also a photo of Downs while his unit was stationned in Penzance Cornwall. I also have a photo of Downs taken at Brest just after the battle... A long story.

The helmet liners: First on left is the helmet found in the steel dug up pot. Second was found North of Brest in the 80ies. It is named to Paff. Sergent Robert Paff was from 175th Regiment; he was KIA August 27th at Plouzane being one of the first 5th maryland soldiers KIA at Brest There is a trace of the NCO white bar that has ben scratched ,probably during the war. Paff is buried at Saint James Brittany American Cemetery. Third liner was found with Downs's helmet. It is named to Wyland but I've never been able to identify the soldier in any 29th roster.


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regards to all, Yannick

#2 Johan Willaert

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 02:06 AM

Nice Yannick!

Maybe we should do a 29th related topic here....

Sorry for the small image, I will try tu put all of my 29th stuff online...

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M41 Camo'ed jacket , two liners and an M1 shell

Johan

#3 yannick

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 02:23 AM

Thanks for your comments Sebas and Johann. I have one of my helmets shown in Pete's great website. And the finding of the dug up one has been shown recently. I also have recognized your superb 28th helmet.

Thanks so much for the photo you sent Johann. I allready know your website with your amazing collection. I must tell you how I am envying your camo Jacket. I'll have to show you another camo material (and identified!) found in a 29th foxhole a few months ago in Normandy. Dug up stuff otfen reveals good surprises. Looks like we have a lot in common!! Your 29ers are just superbs. Are they identified?

Yannick

#4 Johan Willaert

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 02:28 AM

Your 29ers are just superbs. Are they identified?


No, sadly they are not.... :(

#5 Allan B

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 03:17 AM

Hi Yannick,

Really nice helmets. Loved seeing them!!!!

Cheers

Allan

#6 yannick

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 04:36 AM

Thanks Allan, I am also amazed with your terrific collection. I have seen that you also have a 29er, and terrific 2nd division helmets!!

Here are some more 29ers found in farms. They all are very rusty because they all were found in attics or old barns but allways have kept a few traces of the unit insignia. Note the shell fragment or bullet holes. They are less beautyfull than the others but I just like them because of their historical interest, location of finding and because they are just very emmotionnal relics...


first row left to right: Helmet found in Tremen Farm, Locmaria plouzane, west of Brest. Scrapnell hole. Area liberated by 116th regiment. Second helmet NCO found in Normandy and offered to me by one of my best friends.

second row from left to right: Helmet with a schrapnel hole (the schrapnel did not penetrate) found in Plouzane in the Ilioc farm. Ilioc is the place where S/Sgt Sherwood Hallman from F/175th made his heroic action for which he was awarded the Medal of Honor (he was KIA three days after his action and is buried at St James US cemetery.). Hallman is one of the two MOH recipients in the 29th. Second helmet was found in Kerespern farm in Bohars, North of Brest. The battle is known in historical books as "Kergonant Battle" involving the 2/115th. According to the farmer who gave me the helmet, he found it in a middle of a field. Next to the helmet was the bloody havresack. I have some ID material from this farm that I will put later. third helmet was found in the Keriel farm, situated North of Ilioc farm. The farm was liberated by 3/175th.


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Regards, Yannick

#7 bfryar44

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 06:45 AM

Fantastic 29er helmets Yannick! http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/thumbsup.gif

Here is one of those guys that wore a 29th ID helmet.

Russell Pickett was a 19 year old replacement with the 29th ID in Dec. of 1943. He was assigned to A Co., 116th Rgt., 29th ID and was made a Flamethrower operator for the D-Day Assault (A Co., 116th was decimated at the Vierville draw). Mr. Pickett was slightly wounded on D-Day and evacuated to England. Seven days later he joined up with his old outfit and again was wounded outside of St. Lo. After three weeks in the hospital he again returned to his unit and fought in the Brittany Campaign. He was severely wounded during the fight for Brest, France and was taken out of combat for good. He served the rest of the war working in a US Military hospital in England. Mr. Pickett currently resides here in Tennessee.

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/qmjones/Russell%20Pickett/MVC-104S.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/qmjones/Russell%20Pickett/MVC-109S.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/qmjones/Russell%20Pickett/BAR007.jpg

Edited by bfryar44, 24 January 2007 - 06:46 AM.


#8 bfryar44

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 08:55 AM

29th helmet from my collection. Unfortunately no history with this one.

Bfryar44

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/My%2029th%20Helmet/vest20002.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/My%2029th%20Helmet/MVC-040S.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/My%2029th%20Helmet/MVC-041S.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/My%2029th%20Helmet/29thpotpics006.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/My%2029th%20Helmet/MVC-037S.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/My%2029th%20Helmet/MVC-035S.jpg

#9 ccmax

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 09:39 AM

Great helmets everyone. Interesting to see how the dimensions and color of the insigne are similar between them.

#10 Allan B

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 05:31 PM

Hi,

These are my two 29th Infantry Division items. The helmet has seen better days, but is original. I would like to get more items from this division.

Cheers

Allan
29thInfDiv1.JPG
29thInfDiv2.JPG

Edited by Allan B, 24 January 2007 - 05:34 PM.


#11 yannick

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Posted 25 January 2007 - 10:45 PM

New addition: My digger friend's 29er. Found in an attic at Guilers, North of Brest, One year ago. It has not been cleaned. The liner is a white rayon type. It is the same as my 29th liner named to Sgt Paff. On the four complete dug up 29ers found recently at St Lo, two are rayon type...

Unfortunately, no name or SN.

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Regards, Yannick

#12 BrianMcC

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 04:01 PM

I can only echo Allens' sentiments about really enjoying this topic.

Every one of these helmets looks fantastic! Yes, even the ground dug lids too.

It's nice to know that helmets of this caliber are still being "rescued" from further deterioration and given a good home.

Thanks for the look at some killer lids gentlemen.

Brian

#13 EasyRed1944

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 06:23 AM

I believe this would do no harm to make it as an addition .

A 29'er found in Bretagne ( FR ), place is unknown and yet i'm unable to find out but i won't give up.
It has a bullet hole at the front.
Blue color has faded sadly.


http://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg67/RobinV101/IMG_9085.jpg

http://i245.photobucket.com/albums/gg67/RobinV101/IMG_9084.jpg

#14 ClaptonIsGod

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 05:58 PM

Fantastic 29er helmets Yannick! :thumbsup:

Here is one of those guys that wore a 29th ID helmet.

Russell Pickett was a 19 year old replacement with the 29th ID in Dec. of 1943. He was assigned to A Co., 116th Rgt., 29th ID and was made a Flamethrower operator for the D-Day Assault (A Co., 116th was decimated at the Vierville draw). Mr. Pickett was slightly wounded on D-Day and evacuated to England. Seven days later he joined up with his old outfit and again was wounded outside of St. Lo. After three weeks in the hospital he again returned to his unit and fought in the Brittany Campaign. He was severely wounded during the fight for Brest, France and was taken out of combat for good. He served the rest of the war working in a US Military hospital in England. Mr. Pickett currently resides here in Tennessee.

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/qmjones/Russell%20Pickett/MVC-104S.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/qmjones/Russell%20Pickett/MVC-109S.jpg

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c309/qmjones/Russell%20Pickett/BAR007.jpg


What's the story behind the Bronze Star I see?

#15 bfryar44

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 06:20 PM

Found this picture tonight, note the Infantry crossed rifle on his helmet similar to the 29ers found.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/WW2%20Photos/Christoff.jpg

#16 yannick

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 10:28 AM

Found this picture tonight, note the Infantry crossed rifle on his helmet similar to the 29ers found.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v110/bfryar44/WW2%20Photos/Christoff.jpg


Superb! the first time I see it on a photo!

Thanks a lot

Yannick

#17 Cottonbalers

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Posted 02 February 2010 - 10:39 AM

Hi,

They are magnificent relics of the 29th!!!

#18 Buckshot

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 03:19 PM

Awesome helmets and stories. Thanks for sharing.

#19 kenneth508

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Posted 13 September 2013 - 11:30 PM

hello Yanick

 

very good collection 29th  .

un plaisir pour les yeux :love: 

ken



#20 David D

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Posted 08 February 2014 - 07:14 AM

Really nice helmets everyone! I am really wishing I had one right now.

 

-Dave 




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