Arthur C. Call
Biography: Arthur Cameron Call was born on July 3, 1919, in Conway, Pennsylvania. He was the son of Robert Call and Grace Belva Cunningham. His mother would later marry Harold Burton. Arthur attended grammar school before leaving to work and help the family.
The family was living in Medina, Ohio, and on April 1, 1940, Arthur married the former Esther Marie Schmidt. She was from Cleveland and was the daughter of Charles F. Schmidt and Mary E Fertig. His enlistment record identifies that he was some type of bus, truck or taxi driver.
Arthur entered the service on February, 28, 1941, at Cleveland, Ohio. He spent some period of time in California before shipping out to England where he served as a cook. He was transferred to North Africa and drove a motorcycle. It was there that he transferred to the Reconnaissance Company of the 899th Tank Destroyer Battalion.
The 899th was deployed in Tunisia with M10’s on March 16, 1943. They later arrived in the area of Naples, Italy, on November 10, 1943, and almost immediately shipped to the United Kingdom to prepare for the Normandy invasion. Liaison personnel accompanied the second glider lift of 82d Airborne Division personnel during the invasion. The rest of the battalion landed at Utah Beach on D-Day and then helped capture Cherbourg in late June. They then supported the Cobra breakout in late July and advanced through Mayenne, France.
The unit entered Belgium in early September and supported the 9th Infantry Division operations in the vicinity of Monschau and Hofen, Germany, and later fighting in the Rötgen/Hürtgen Forest region in October. Elements of the unit deployed in the first days of Battle of the Bulge to stop German advance, while others remained in the VII Corps area. They supported the attack to capture the Roer River dams in February, 1945, and converted to M36’s that same month. They crossed the Roer River on February 28 and advanced to the Rhine near Bad Godesberg and the first elements crossed into Remagen bridgehead on March 8. The 899th joined the attack on the Ruhr Pocket in April and then moved east into the Harz Mountains. They finally moved to the Mulde River, for link-up with Soviet forces on April 27, and began occupational duty in Bernburg on May 3, 1945.
Arthur was able to ship home on points and arrived back in the U.S. in June of 1945. He was then sent to Camp Atterbury, Indiana, where he was discharged. He received credit for three of the unit’s campaigns and was awarded the Distinguished Service Ribbon, the EAME Medal, American Campaign Medal, American Defense Medal and the Good Conduct Medal. He left the service at the rank of Private First Class.
Arthur returned to Ohio and to his wife Esther. The couple had two daughters, Claudia and Kathleen. The couple later divorced and Arthur married again on January 2, 1954, to Mable Davis. The new couple had three daughters, Colleen, Eileen and Lori. Arthur worked for the Middleton Roofing Company for 25 years before retiring. In his spare time, he enjoyed playing golf, bowling, fishing and camping. He was also a member of the Amvets #109, Sad Sacks Western Reserve #2009, Mentor on the Lake, Ohio, Cypress Moose Lodge #202, the Sheet Metal Local #65, Cleveland and the West Citrus Elks Lodge #2693 in Homosassa.
Arthur moved to Florida in 1982 and passed away on June 17, 1994. He was living in Homosassa at the time of his death and was buried in the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Sumter County, Florida. I want to thank Arthur’s daughter, Lori, and his grandson, Sean, for providing the materials and information for this tribute.