Guth, Forrest Leroy, born 06-02-1921, to John Henry Richard and Mayme Laura Guth in the small district of Lehigh County, Pennsylvania. He is a direct descendant of the original German settlers who established themselves in the inland counties of eastern Pennsylvania in the 1700s. These early colonizers were known as the Pennsylvania Dutch, although they were not Dutch, but rather of Germanic origin and German-speaking heritage. Forrest was brought up in Fogelsville, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Allentown, in Upper Macungie Township. Guth was fluent in the Pennsylvania Dutch language and would speak it with his best friends, Carl Roscoe Fenstermaker
who died age 82 on 22-12-2003 and Staff Sergeant Roderick Strohl , he is still alive. In 1941, Guth was working for Bethlehem Steel making armor plates for the Navy when the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor occurred. At that time, working for the defense industry meant that he was advised not to join the army as he was needed back at home producing steel plates. But Guth chose to enlisted with Strohl and Fenstermaker, and volunteered for the paratroopers in 1942. The three became part of the original Easy Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment “The Band of Brothers”, although later Carl Fenstermaker volunteered for the Pathfinders and was transferred from ‘Easy”. Forrest went to basic training at Camp Toccoa, Georgia where the Regiment’s motto was born: “Currahee,” named after the mountain where the regiment were forced to run the 6-mile round trip up and down daily. After parachute training at Fort Benning, Guth made his qualifying jumps and received his Jump Wings. Easy Co. embarked on 05-09-1943, and arrived at Liverpool, England. Guth was stationed in Aldbourne, Wiltshire. Training was carried out according to the later Invasion of France, and numerous full equipment nights jumps were made. He and his unit were also involved in the pre D-Day Exercise Tiger at Slapton Sands, Devon. Guth made his first combat jump into Normandy in June 6, 1944.
He met Walter Scott Gordon who died age 77 on 19-04-1997, John Eubanks and Floyd Merrell “Tab” Talbert after landing in a meadow. Talbert died young, age 59 on 10-10-1982. The group found the remains of the crashed plane which contained Easy Company members including Lieutenant Thomas Meehan.
Meehan was killed on “D-Day” when the aircraft he was aboard was shot down by ground fire. The group fought alongside with a group of paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne division before joining their own unit to fight in Carentan. On 17-09-1944, he jumped into the occupied Netherlands as part of Operation Market Garden. Guth was injured while landing because of parachute malfunction. He was taken to an army hospital in England. He rejoined Easy Company in Mourmelon, France, before the 101st Airborne Division were transported to Bastogne to fight in the Battle of the Bulge in December 1944. In January 1945, Easy Company moved to Haguenau. Guth was selected for a patrol mission across the Moder River led by Sergeant Ken Mercier because of his German speaking ability. In March 1945, Guth won a thirty-day furlough to return to the States in Mourmelon, France. The war ended before Guth could rejoin his unit. Guth was discharged in mid-October 1945. Guth was appreciated for his ability to keep all his weapons in prime condition, and his ability to repair and modify weapons. He became the armorer for his comrades. Guth even knew how to make an M-1 rifle fully automatic. Richard “Dick” Winters got one of Guth’s modified weapons, and took it with him when he set off for the Korean War. Guth enrolled at Millersville State Teacher’s College in Millersville, Pennsylvania. He then went to New York University to obtain his master’s degree. He became a teacher in Norfolk, Virginia. He met his wife Harriet ( 1926-2007) there and they married in 1949.
The couple moved to Delaware to work and continued to live there after their retirement. I met Forrest twice in St Mere Eglise, Normandy, for the D-Day remembrance festivities.
Death and burial ground of Guth, Forrest Leroy “Goody”.
“Goody” Guth died in 09-08-2009, age 88, in Hockessin, Delaware and is buried on Arlington National Cemetery in Section 60.
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