Warren Muck

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Warren Muck
Sgtwarrenskipmuck.jpg
Nickname(s) Skip
Born (1922-01-31)January 31, 1922
Tonawanda, New York
Died January 10, 1945(1945-01-10) (aged 22)  
Foy, Belgium
Place of burial Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1942–1945
Rank US Army WWII SGT.svg Sergeant
Unit 506 patch.jpeg Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment,
US 101st Airborne Division patch.svg101st Airborne Division
Battles/wars

World War II

Awards
Relations Elmer Muck (brother), Ruth Muck LaFleur (sister), Eileen LaFleur O'Hara (niece)

Sergeant Warren H. "Skip" Muck (January 31, 1922 – January 10, 1945) was a non-commissioned officer with Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, in the 101st Airborne Division during World War II. Muck was portrayed in the HBO miniseries Band of Brothers by Richard Speight, Jr. Muck's life story was featured in the 2010 book A Company of Heroes: Personal Memories about the Real Band of Brothers and the Legacy They Left Us.[2]

Youth[edit]

Muck was born and raised in Tonawanda, New York.[3] His family was German and Muck was fluent in German, although he might have been quiet about it in the service.[4] When Muck was a young kid, he skipped whenever he moved. That is why he got his nickname 'Skip'. [5] Muck's father was a traveling musician who virtually abandoned his family. Muck worked part-time jobs to earn extra money for his family.[6] Muck was a man of sincere faith. He was an altar boy growing up. He went to Mass regularly, even in the service.[7]

Muck attended St. Francis of Assisi Elementary School, and graduated from Tonawanda High School in 1942. Muck once swam across the Niagara River as part of an initiation to get into a fraternity.[8] After working briefly for the Remington Rand Corp, he enlisted on August 17, 1942 in Buffalo, New York.[3]

Military service[edit]

Muck was assigned to Easy Company in Camp Toccoa, Georgia, and received training under Captain Herbert Sobel. There he befriended Donald Malarkey, and they were in the same mortar squad, and would often run Currahee side by side. During the 120-mile march the Second Battlion of the 506th regiment made from Toccoa to Atlanta, Malarkey's legs hurt so bad that he had to crawl to the mess tent on all fours. When Muck saw that, he stopped Malarkey, and said, 'No friend of mine crawls anywhere.' He filled their mess kits with food and returned to the tent to eat with Malarkey.[9] While some soldiers were unfriendly to replacement soldiers, Muck was kind to everybody. He befriended replacement soldier Alex Penkala, who joined Easy Company at Fort Bragg, and Joseph Lesniewski, who took a real ribbing from a few guys after joining Easy Company in Aldbourne.[10]

Muck made his first combat jump on June 6, 1944 (D-Day) as part of the Battle of Normandy in Normandy, France. In September 1944, he jumped into occupied Netherlands as part of Operation Market Garden, which eventually failed. For his action in defending the Island, Muck received the Bronze Star.[11]

After being pulled off the line, Easy Company returned to France, where they were transported to Bastogne, Belgium to fight in the Battle of the Bulge. Muck and his friend Penkala were killed from a direct hit in their foxhole from German artillery just outside the Belgian town of Foy. His best friend Malarkey was deeply traumatized from his death. [12]

Edward 'Babe' Heffron remembered going to the Mass held by Father Maloney with Muck and some other soldiers a few weeks before Muck's death. He said to Muck, 'At least if we die, we're going to die in a state of grace.' Muck replied, 'You're right, Heffron.'[13] Heffron said that he still thinks of Muck every time he takes communion.[14]

Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers[edit]

The main character of Saving Private Ryan, Private First Class James Francis Ryan portrayed by Matt Damon, is based on Sergeant Frederick 'Fritz' Niland, Company H, 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, Muck's best friend in high school.[15]

Medals and Decorations[edit]

Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze Star with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster
Purple Heart BAR.svg Purple Heart
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Presidential Unit Citation with one Oak Leaf Cluster
Arrowhead
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with 3 service stars and arrow device
Croix de guerre 1939-1945 with palm (France) - ribbon bar.png Croix de guerre with palm
French Liberation Medal ribbon.png French Liberation Medal
Belgian World War II Service Medal
Combat Infantry Badge.svg Combat Infantryman Badge
Cp2j.jpg Parachutist Badge with 2 combat stars

References[edit]

  1. ^ DeAngelis, Frank. "Muck's shadowbox". Retrieved 2009-10-14. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ a b WWII Army Enlistment Records: on-line NARA Archival Database
  4. ^ p.271, Brotherton
  5. ^ p.270, Brotherton
  6. ^ p.270, Brotherton
  7. ^ p.272, Brotherton
  8. ^ p.271, Brotherton
  9. ^ p.275, Brotherton
  10. ^ p.64, Brotherton, 2011
  11. ^ p.275, Brotherton
  12. ^ Ambrose, p.205.
  13. ^ Location 2325, Heffron
  14. ^ Location 2652, Heffron
  15. ^ Brotherton, p.273

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]