Posted by: notsofancynancy | March 27, 2014

Honoring Lieutenant Colonel Winquest

Honoring Lieutenant Colonel Winquest

Harold L. Winquest

Harold L. Winquest

 1912-1959

Lt. Col Harold L. Winquest was older than my father by seven years and attended the University of Nebraska-where he graduated in 1934. While there he enrolled in the Reserve Officer Training Corps training program. He arrived back in Holdrege, Nebraska where he continued his career in the National Guard and trained at Camp Ashland in Nebraska which is a National Guard training facility. Winquest did quite a bit of traveling as he received training visiting, Minnesota, Maryland, and Washington, DC.  In April 1940, Winquest was appointed Captain, 110th Quartermaster Regiment, Company A Commander.

On 23 December 1940, he along with my dad and most of the young men in Nebraska were mustered into the Army. They were induced in different communities around Nebraska such as Company A in the Holdrege National Guard Armory, and dad in Lexington.  As Dad, they signed for one year of service.

 Courtesy of the Cain Family

Courtesy of the Cain Family

It is here Captain Winquest and my dad’s stories meet. The 110th Quartermaster Regiment, which included both Winquest and Dad’s Company’s boarded trains and left small town Nebraska and were sent to Camp Robinson, Arkansas where they would begin training to go overseas. It is here that Cpt. Winquest meets his future wife where she worked in a civilian job at the camp. They married in 1941 and as Army wives do she would follow her husband around the United States when she could.

He went to all the training maneuvers Dad did, including the Tennessee and Louisiana maneuvers. Then after Pearl Harbor was bombed the 110th QM was sent to the coast of California where they spent 1942 and most of 1943 guarding the coast from Fort Ord all the way to Los Angeles. Winquest was promoted to Major on 29 May 1942.

28 September 1943 found the Major separated from the 110th QM and reassigned to the 1st Army Headquarters Staff and transferred to Governors Island, New York City. It is here Dad and Winquest would part ways. The later would take a very different path than my father did. Here I learned a little bit more about World War II. You see Dad followed Patton around south of France while Eisenhower to the north. His daughter Julie says:

 I think [what] is interesting about my dad is that he got to serve under General Eisenhower in the planning and implementation of the invasion of Europe.  I think it was because of his experience with the National Guard quartermaster that he served 1st army in the G-4 section.

On 12 October 1943 Winquest boarded the Queen Mary headed to England and was assigned to the 1st Army Headquarters as a supply and evacuation officer.

18 January 1944 he was sent on an inspection trip to Africa. While there he visited Algiers, Casablanca, Oran and Marrakesh. In January he was sent on another inspection trip to Italy. He visited the front in Italy, Naples and Pompeii.

D-Day (+3) he rode a Landing Ship Tank to Omaha Beach and was a part of the early days of the invasion.

An ourdoor office in a truck, with phones, typewriters, makeshift desks. The men in from, All of Company E, crowd about the first paper they have seen in days. Reading is Pvt. William Rovinson of Little Rock and, and on his left is Pvt. Gabriel Serois of Omaha. Second row, left to right, Pvt. Herman Poppe, West Point, Nev.; Pvt. James Glandon, Holdrege: Pvt. Le Roy Wirtz, Omaha: Pvt. William Ronk, Grand Island. Seated on the top step is Lr. Col W.H. Browne, Lincoln. At the phone is Capt. Harold Winquest and Typing is Pvt. Franck Boyle of Omaha. Courtesy of the Winquest-Johnson Collection

An outdoor office in a truck, with phones, typewriters, makeshift desks. The men in front, All of Company E, crowd about the first paper they have seen in days. Reading is Pvt. William Robinson of Little Rock and, and on his left is Pvt. Gabriel Serois of Omaha. Second row, left to right, Pvt. Herman Poppe, West Point, Nev.; Pvt. James Glandon, Holdrege: Pvt. Le Roy Wirtz, Omaha: Pvt. William Ronk, Grand Island. Seated on the top step is Lt. Col W.H. Browne, Lincoln. At the phone is Capt. Harold Winquest and Typing is Pvt. Franck Boyle of Omaha. Courtesy of the Winquest-Johnson Collection

From the “Chronology of Military Career” compiled by his daughter Julie:

July 21, 1944: Living in an apple orchard. Office in the command echelon is a blackout tent attached to the end of a truck fixed up like an office. It has four folding tables and chairs set up in the office tent with a large situation map at one end. There is a piece of air corps matting on the floor and regular telephones and electric lights operated by a captured generator. He is sleeping in a smaller 2-man tent. He has an orderly to wash his clothes. Sleeping on cots and rubber mattresses.

As near as I can figure out the 1st Army took a more northern route across Europe through Belgium and into Germany. As this time Winquest was still with the 1st Army command post which was where he was on VE-Day, 7 May 1945. Three days later he was transferred to the 2nd Army Group Headquarters, in Wiesbaden, Germany. Winquest would remain overseas until 11 October, when he returned to the USA aboard the same ship he came over on, the Queen Mary. He was discharged 12 February 1946 from Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

The men he lead, 110th Quartermaster, Company A, Camp Robinson, Arkansas

The men he led, 110th Quartermaster, Company A, Camp Robinson, Arkansas, about 1941

He was then promoted to Lieutenant Colonel effective 31 December 1946 in the Officers Reserve Corps. His wife tells us he was to be promoted while he was overseas but there was promotion freeze.

Lt. Col. Winquest was awarded the following decorations: Oversees Bars located on left sleeve, one bar for every 6 months. European Theater Operation ribbon contained 6 stars for campaigns, one for Italy, one for Normandy, one for North France, one for Germany, Ardennes, and Central Europe, Invasion arrowhead and Ribbon. He also received the European African Middle Eastern Service Medal, WWII Victory Medal and the American Defense Service Medal in 1947.

A true World War II hero in my book and it is my honor to write this in his memory.

Written with the help of Lt. Col. Winquest’s daughter, Julie

Reference: Harold Latham Winquest: chronology of military career, ROTC through WWII, by Julie Sand

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Responses

  1. A wonderful tribute and addition to your site. Great job Nancy.

  2. Hi Nancy,

    I wonder if you have a full roster of the 110th. I’m trying to get information on my father, Milton E. Buchholz. He was from Lexington and was at Camp Robinson where he was part of the “Yoo Hoo” incident.

    He passed away in 1976 and I didn’t get a chance to hear his reminisces about his service in WW2. Unfortunately, his service records were destroyed in the fire that occurred in the Army archives and all his personal records were wiped out in a flood at my sister’s house. I do recall a newspaper clipping he had about a small “Yoo Hoo”memorial installation at Camp Robinson. He was part of the dedication ceremony. The Camp Robison historian told me that the memorial no longer exists.

    I’d be grateful for any information you might have.

    Thanks,

    Bob Buchholz

    Sent from Windows Mail

    • Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I had to go out of town for a family emergency. I am just now able to get my email. If you look at the top of the page this article is on there is a 1945 VE-Day roster. I did not see your dad’s name on it but I am working on someone else’s computer. I have more records at home that I am not able to access until I get there. It will be a couple of days. Please send me an email at notsofancynancy916@hotmail.com

      I will check all the information I have to try to help. I have another roster but it is mostly Company A, from Holdredge and I do not have access to it. I also have lots of images I can check to see if I find any mention of him. I have them all on an online album that I can send you a link to when I am home. Please contact me at the hotmail email and I will contact you when I am home.

      God Bless and thank you for your father’s service

    • I have check all of the lists I have but did not find Mr. Buchholz’s name anywhere. I do have close to 1,000 images from the time they were inducted through training and finally overseas. There are many pictures with men who have not been identified. I would be love for you to look through them. I just need an email to send an invitation to.

      Take Care

  3. Wonderful effort, Julie and gpcox. It is stellar you are writing all this down for those following to read or stumble across years from now. I loved the precious photos, too. You don’t find them in the public domain easily.

    • Thanks my friend! I feel so blessed I found Julie and was able to honor Mr. Winquest


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