On This Day, 14-APR 1945, We Honor a Fallen Hero

Carl Haston Woods was born 20 SEP 1923 in Vandalia MO.  He later moved to St. Charles and lived in St Charles, Missouri at 916 Washington Street.  His mother was Mrs. Maud Ophelia Woods and his father was Mr. Ricks.  He had one, half-brother, James L. Brock.  Carl worked at Lindenwood College in St. Charles. Carl registered for the draft 30 JUN 1942.  He later enlisted in the Army. He had the rank of Technician Fifth Class or T5 (also called Tech Corporal).  He served with 647th Quartermaster Truck Company. 

Woods departed St. Charles for Jefferson Barracks with his friend, Eugene Edgar Iseman, who lived one block away.  The U.S. Army was segregated during World War II, and African American troops were most often relegated to service units.  Many served in the Quartermaster Corps. 

Almost everything a soldier wore, carried or ate on D-Day was supplied by the Quartermaster Corps.  Since an army without gas, bullets and food would quickly be defeated, the Army Transportation Corps created a huge trucking operation called the “Red Ball Express” in August 1944.  To expedite cargo shipment to the front, trucks emblazoned with red balls followed a similarly marked route that was closed to civilian traffic. The trucks also had priority on regular roads.  Supply trucks started rolling in late August and continued for nearly ninety days. 

Supplies were taken up to front lines and unloaded directly to user units, with the bulk of the missions being completed under shellfire and strafing. The trucks were sent out with Infantrymen aboard on spearhead thrusts, and when resistance was encountered, the truck drivers found themselves taking part in the fighting. Men of these companies performed guard with the line troops, in emergencies manned machine-guns and outposts, carried barbed wire and mines into positions forward of existing front lines, and shared the same rigors and dangers as did the divisional troops.  The Quartermaster Truck Companies played a major role in the Nazis’ defeat by ensuring U.S. and Allied warfighters had what they needed to sweep across France into Germany.  

Corporal Carl H. Woods was killed in action 14-APR 1945 in Germany.  He was 22.  Woods departed St. Charles for Jefferson Barracks together with his friend Eugene Iseman and was killed alongside him in Germany.  On the same day, the Battle of Berlin began on the outskirts of the city.  The war with Germany would end just three weeks later.

Carl H Woods is buried at Plot B Row 12 Grave 1 Netherlands American Cemetery Margraten, Netherlands. This is an American Battle Monuments Commission location.

Carl H. Woods is honored and remembered at the St. Charles County Veterans Museum.  Do you have more information or pictures of Carl?  Please contact the St. Charles County Veterans Museum.  

Please contact the St. Charles County Veterans Museum Oral History project at sccvetsmuseum@gmail.com or call 636-294-2657 for more information and lets’ talk. We want to hear from you because we know…Every Veteran has a story.