One of my favorite neighbors growing up was a member of the 31st Dixie Division and always took time to tell me about his experiences during the war. As I grew older, he told me some of the more intense stories of his time on Mindanao and of his being wounded while attacking a Japanese airport. Those memories have always stuck with me, and with those memories come an attachment to photographs from the 31st Division. It’s one of the hardest divisions to find on eBay and I was especially excited to find this set of 8 images listed as “(8) Vintage WWII photos / Happy American GI Soldiers with Names – Old Snapshots”.
My WWII patch radar went off when I recognized a portion of a 31st Division patch in one of the shots. I did quick searches on each of the soldiers and found a website for Mr. Fred B. Kearney of Kokomo, Indiana. The name matched with the town on the reverse of the photo and the writeup mentioned his service with the 31st Signal Company of the 31st Division during WWII. Bingo, my hunch was correct that this group was a portrait collection of soldiers of the Dixie Division.
Company members identified in the images include:
Fred Kearney of Kokomo, Indiana