Wojciechowski, Edward S. (Unknown)

Edward S Wojciechowski 2Edward S. Wojciechowski

Biography:  Edward Stanley Wojciechowski, “Ed” was born on February 1, 1923, in Detroit, Michigan. He was the son of Stanislaw Wojciechowski and Victoria Kulik and graduated from local schools in Detroit. He then worked as an automatic milling machine operator. 

Service Time: Ed entered the service on April 2, 1943, at Fort Sheridan, Illinois. At some point after his basic training, he was sent to college, which may have been part of the ASTP (Army Specialized Training Program) which provided soldiers with technical skills. His time there was cut short due to the need for soldiers to fill vacancies within units.

He was sent to Camp Bowie, Texas, which would also serve as a training facility for some tank destroyer units.  Unfortunately, we do not know which unit he was assignedto. During his training, he qualified as a sharpshooter with the Carbine. 

He was ultimately transferred to the 776th Field Artillery battalion and his discharge identifies his military occupation was Scout. Ed shipped out with the unit from the New York port on September 27, 1944. They arrived in England on October 3rd but I do not believe they got off the ship, instead continuing on to France, arriving there on the 9th. The battalion was equipped with the M114, 155mm howitzers, which were medium towed artillery guns, normally pulled by a tracked vehicle.

The 776th participated in campaigns in the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe, which Ed received credit for as well. He didn’t speak much about the war but did relate to his family how cold the the winter was. He also told them about the time he was lost behind enemy lines with another soldier. They were missing for 30 days and a telegram was sent home to the family identifying that he was MIA (Missing in Action). He may have been scouting or out in a forward position directing artillery fire when he and the other soldier were separated from the rest of the unit. A local farmer hid the pair in his barn and provided them with bread, which had some fat spread on it along with water. The men were eventually able to rejoin their unit. On another occasion, he was injured when he was hit by shrapnel in the back of his right leg. For those wounds, he received the Purple Heart.

Ed would spend time on occupational duty and ship home on December 11th, arriving back in the U.S. on the 17th. He left the service on December 22nd at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, at the rank of Pfc. In addition to the Purple Heart, he was awarded the EAME, American Theater, WWII Victory and the Good Conduct Medals.

Honorable Discharge

Edward S Wojciechowski 1After the war, Ed returned to Detroit and continued his education at the University of Detroit. He and his brothers changed their last name to Walters, due to the prejudice they encountered against Polish people which made finding a job difficult. He did find work with the City of Detroit as their Personnel Director. In August of 1951, Ed married the former Patricia A. Urban, who was born in Detroit and was the daughter of Louis and Irene Urban. The new couple would have six children, Barbara, John, Joseph, David, Nancy and Andrew. In his spare time, Ed enjoyed playing handball, tennis, golf and spending time with his family.

Ed passed away on July 7, 2012, and was cremated. The family plans to bury his remains in a local veterans cemetery. I want to thank Ed’s son, Joseph, for providing the information and photos for this tribute.