Gerard F. O'Connor

15. April 1945 Wuppertal

My uncle, Gerard F. O'Connor served in the 309th. He was killed at Wuppertal on 15 April 1945, the day before the town fell to the 78th Division. He served from 1942 until April 1945. He enlisted in 1942, served in the Pacific and then to OCS. He was commissioned a 2nd LT. He is buried at the American Cemetery near Margretan in the Netherlands.

311th Infantry Regiment 78th Infantry Division


On April 12, the 78th Division was on a line running roughly from Drabenderhohe through Gummersbach. The 97th Division on their left started at Drabenderhohe and extended westward. The 78th Division's history records a heavy firefight at Drabenderhohe on the 12th and the capture of a German General and his staff at Lindlar (due north of Darbenderhohe) on the 13th, by the Division's 309th Infantry Regiment. Apparently several German hospitals were in Lindlar as well. The 310th Infantry Regiment of the 78th Division was at Wipperfurth, farther to the east and the 311th was between the two. The Division history lists action, primarily mopping-up and prisoner-taking at Lennep and Wipperfurth on the 14th. By April 15th, all three regiments of the 78th Division had converged on Wuppertal, farther to the northwest.

On 8 March 45, they crossed the Rhine at Remagen's Ludendorf Bridge. They crossed the Reichsautobahn on 28 March 45 from Holtdorf to Ober Pleis. They then continued on through Wissen at the Sieg River, to Morsbach, Denklingen crossing the Agger River 11 April 45, to Gummersbach, Berghausen on to Wermelskirchen and Ronsdorf on 16 April 45 to end "awaiting orders" in Wuppertal.





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