David Gerry Connally, Jr. in his
Senior Year photo. He was an accomplished
musician and a member of the Honor Society.
Connally showed up next on October 16, 1940
filling out his
registration card for the draft.
Connally was a
self-employed Architect in his hometown of
Tyler, Texas at the time he
entered into active service with the
Army, March 5, 1941. He entered as an
Enlisted man as a Private. (Now Officer)
First Lieutenant David Connally, Jr. next
showed up February 28, 1943,
coming into Company B 307th
Airborne Engineer Battalion (Combat), 82nd
505th Parachute Infantry Regiment
came into the 82dn Airborne Division
February 12, 1943. Company B 307th
Airborne Engineer Battalion (Combat) was
attached with the 505th Parachute
Regiment for the rest of the war.
The pictures below were
taken at different time periods. The first
was taken March 1943 at
Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The next
picture was taken in
Naples, Italy October 1943 with the
other Officers of Company B. Connally is on
the bottom right of the picture.
The next picture was
taken with the
Officers of Company B, March 1944 in Burbage,
England. Connally was standing to the left
of Captain (center) (second from the end).
The last picture showed
marching in Burbage, England in the
spring of 1944. On the far right is Company
Commander Captain Johnson followed by
Executive Officer First Lieutenant
Connally. Behind him was the First Platoon
of Company B.
What was interesting is
the two soldiers behind on the left side.
The first is First Lieutenant Alfred Cappa,
then directly behind him is
Private Carroll Rumbaugh. Private
Rumbaugh will be mentioned again in this
Connally took a
7 day Leave of Absence as he went to
North Ireland to get
married to Miss Norah Christie a Nurse
who served in London, England. The
newlyweds went to Scotland for
their honeymoon. Lieutenant then went
back to Company B.
Connally was the
Jump Master for the first plane for the
Third Platoon for the jump into Normandy.
The Third Platoon jumped with the 505th
Parachute Infantry. For this jump the First
and Second Platoons went with the 508th
Captain Johnson was
promoted June 6th to Major as the Battalion
Commander had been captured.
Connally was promoted to Captain and
becomes the next Company Commander for
Company B. He was promoted on July 1, 1944
to Captain of Company B.
When the 307th Airborne Engineer
Battalion come back to England Captain
went on a 5 day Furlough to Edinburgh,
August 16, 1944
Captain Connally had written a letter to
a Lieutenant. That was Second
Siddall the brother of Elmer Siddall who was
a member of Company B and was
Action at that time. Sadly
finally caught up to Company B November 1,
1944 stating Corporal Siddall had been
killed June 6, 1944.
The jump into Holland
was next on September 17, 1944 as then
Captain Connally was the Jumpmaster for
one of the First Platoonís Sticks. No
paperwork showed up again until January 31,
On the morning of
January 29, 1945 the 505th
Parachute Infantry including Co B had
moving from Meyerode, Belgium towards
Honsfeld, Belgium. It had been
cold, and the snow was deep making it hard
to walk as it snowed on and off all that
The advance for Company B reached a
crossroad about a mile south of Wereth,
west of the German border.
Artillery came in and
the men hit the ground. They all got up
except for the Captain. Private Rumbaugh
rolled Captain Connally over and at first
there were no obvious wounds. One of the
Medics removed the Captainís helmet and in
doing so it revealed under his
hairline that a small piece of shrapnel
had hit his temple killing him
His body was removed to the Collecting Point
Graves Registration back at Meyerode.
Captain Connellyís body was removed to Henri
Chapelle #1 Cemetery. His effects were
cataloged and the
Captain was buried at 1500 Hours January 31,
It was interesting to
see that Graves Registration Form #1 only
had spoken of Shrapnel in his legs. When a
body is brought into a Cemetery there is a
Medic for each Graves Registration Platoon.
They obviously didnít see the head wound as
it was under his hairline. The Morning
Report for the 307th Airborne
Engineer Battalion was very thorough.
Private Rumbaugh had seen the wound and
recounted that years later. The Morning
Reports verified that fact as well.
David and Norah
Connallyís daughter Gerry was born
February 22, 1945 less than a month after
Connallyís death. He had been married for a
little more than 10 months.
mother Frankie was a very determined
woman. She was able to reach out to her
Congressman. Shortly after in March of 1945
his mother Frankie Connally received
detailed information about her sonís
death. A General sent the letter to the
family in Tyler, Texas. They had the
location where he was killed spelled
slightly wrong Wyeth when the spelling was
actually Wereth, Belgium.
All of Captain
Connallyís belongings was sent to his mother
in Tyler, Texas because she had been the
contact on his Dog Tags.
The Tyler Courier-Times
ran an article on November 18, 1945.
Captain Connally was awarded the
Bronze Star for his service with Company B
of the 307th Airborne Engineer
Battalion (Combat). The Bronze Star was
usually for a specific action which made
this very unusual.
Mrs. Norah Connally and her daughter Gerry
came to visit the family in the summer of
411 wives of men Killed in Europe came
On April 10, 1947
Form 347 was sent back to the Army that
wanted Captain Connally buried overseas.
November 15, 1947 he was reinterred in the
Henri-Chapelle Permanent American Cemetery
Just one of the 410,000
United States of Americans who died in WWII.
August 25, 2022