Church, John Huston, born in the town of Glen Iron, Pennsylvania, on 28-06-1892. From 1915 until 1917, he was a student at New York University. When the United States entered the First World War, Church joined the Army and was given the commissioned rank of second lieutenant. In France with the 28th Infantry Regiment, 1st Division, American Expeditionary Force, Church fought valiantly and was wounded twice, earning a Distinguished Service Cross for heroism in action at Cantigny. After the war, Church decided to stay in the army. He instructed National Guard members in both Maryland and Arizona, and also served in the Philippines from 1933 to 1936. When World War II broke out, Church became the assistant Chief of Staff for operations, and then Chief of Staff of the 45th Infantry Division, nickname “Thunderbird” , under Troy Houston Middleton.
Casualties of the 45th Infantry Division during their European campagn: total battle casualties: 20,993, killed in action: 3,547, wounded in action: 14,441, Missing in action: 478 and prisoner of war: 2,527.
. Before the 1930s, the division’s symbol was a red square with a yellow swastika, a tribute to the large Native American population in the southwestern United States . Church served with the division from 1943–1944 in Sicily, southern Italy. Anzio, and Operation Dragoon, the invasion of southern France. In September, 1944, having been promoted to Brigadier General after being commanding the 157th Infantry Regiment for a time, he was sent to the 84th Infantry Division, their motto “Strike Hard “, nicknamed “the Railsplitters” , to be the assistant division commander. Casualties of the 84th Infantry Division total battle casualties: 7.260 and total deaths in battle: 1.468. Church was wounded again as his division, along with several others, led the way from the Netherlands (see About) to the Elbe River towards the end of the war . A year after the war ended, Brigadier General, John Church became the commander of the Infantry Replacement Training Center at Fort McClellan, Alabama. He was given the same post at Fort Jackson South Carolina, where he was soon given command of the 5th Infantry Division `Red Diamont` . From 1948 until 1949 Church served as the deputy chief of army field forces in Fort Monroe, Virginia. In 1950, Church was serving in General Douglas MacArthur‘s headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. The 24th Infantry Division, which was stationed in Japan as part of the U.S Eight Army, was the first army unit sent over from Japan under the command of Major General William F. Dean. Church remained in command of the 24th until early 1951. Lieutenant General Matthew Bunker Ridgway, commander of the U.S Eight Army following the death of General Lieutenant, Walton Harris Walker in December 1950, replaced Church with Brigadier General, Blackshear M Bryan Bryan died age 77, on 02-03-1977, in Silver Spring, Maryland. Church subsequently was appointed commandant of the Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia and he served in that capacity until his retirement in June 1952.
Death and burial ground of Church, John Huston.
Major General, John Huston Church died on 03-11-1953, age 61, in Washington D.C. and is buried with his wife Regina Haller, who died age 87, in 1987, on Arlington National Cemetery, Section 2. Also in Section 2, Major General, Commander van Haiti, Julius Adler, 3* Army Lieutenant General. Commander 92nd “ Negro Division”, Edward “Ned” Almond, 2* Major General. Commander 8th Bomber Command Europe, Frederick Anderson and 1* Rear Admiral, Commander Destroyer Greyson, Frederick Bell, Lieutenant General, Commander 86th Infantry Division, Ridgely Gaither, Major General, Commander 29th Infantry Division, nicknamed “Blue and Gray” , D-Day, Charles Gerhardt. During World War II, the 29th Infantry Division suffered 3.720 killed in action, 15.403 wounded in action, 462 missing in action, 526 prisoners of war, and 8.665 non-combat casualties, for a total of 28.776 casualties during 242 days of combat. This amounted to over 200 percent of the division’s normal strength. The division, in turn, took 38.912 German prisoners of war. Soldiers of the 29th Infantry Division were awarded five Medals of Honor, 44 Distinguished Service Crosses, one Distinguished Service Medal, 854 Silver Star Medals, 17 Legion of Merit Medals, 24 Soldiers’ Medals, 6.308 Bronze Star Medals, and 176 Air Medals during the conflict. The division itself was awarded four distinguished unit citations and four campaign streamers for the conflict. Also buried in this section Admiral, U.S. Chief of Naval Material, John Gingrich, U.S. Brigadier General, “ Merrills Marauders “ in Burma, Frank Dawn Merrill, U.S. 4* Navy Vice Admiral. Commander U.S.S. Hornet, Doolittle Raid, Marc Mitscher.