Louis F. Phillips
Biography: Louis Franklin Phillips was born in Newburn, Tennesse, on December 15, 1918. He was the son of William Nathaniel Phillips and Susie Etta Parnell and attended Glendale school, completing the 10th grade. He married the former Mary Lydia Huffine, who was the daughter of Wess Huffine of Dyer County. The couple had one child, Betty Nell, in 1940, but they divorced soon after. During this time, he worked as a farm hand.
Service Time: Louis entered the service on April 2, 1942, at Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia. He was assigned to the Reconnaissance Company of the 894th Tank Destroyer Battalion. The 894th saw action in North Africa where they were equipped with M3s. After landing in Italy, they were converted to M10’s. At one point during their time in Italy, Louis was on a reconnaissance mission and was unable to return to his unit. An Italian family took him in, hiding him until it was safe to leave. Sometime later, the town was captured and he was able to return to thank the family.
Louis was honorably discharged, receiving a Purple Heart for shrapnel wounds, the EAME Medal, WWII Victory Medal and Good Conduct Medal. He left the service at the rank of Technician 4th Class. Throughout his time in the service, he sent money home to his parents to support his daughter who had been left with them during the war.
After Louis returned to the U.S., he ended up in the San Diego, California, area starting his own moving business. On January 19, 1947, he married the former Paula Franceschi who was the daughter of the family that hid him while he was in Italy. Together Lois and Paula had two more children, Anthony and later Vincent.
After retiring from the moving business, Louis and family moved back to Tennessee, settling in the Paris area. It was there that he joined in with some of his extended family to buy land and build homes. In his spare time, Louis enjoyed hunting, fishing and working on old cars. Louis passed away on November 26, 1990, and was buried in Dyer County, TN.
I want to thank Nathe Ozment, and his mother, Betty, for providing this information and photo of his grandfather and her father.