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Biography of Clinton Howard Greene

Ennis, Texas

Howard Greene enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Forces at Sheppard Field in Wichita Falls in January of 1942.  In March he entered the primary training phase of pilot training at Bonham, Texas, and in June began basic training at Randolph Field in San Antonio. He completed advanced training at Kelly Field in San Antonio in October where he was awarded his wings, and commissioned a second lieutenant. 

In April of 1943 Howard was promoted to first lieutenant, and in May deployed to North Africa. He was a pilot of a Douglas C-47 cargo plane serving in the 32nd Troop Carrier Squadron, 314th Troop Carrier Group, and assigned to the XII Army Air Force for the invasion of Sicily. 

Lieutenant Greene flew from Berguent, French Morocco on the night of July 9, 1943 with his C-47 loaded with  paratroops of the 82nd Airborne Division. The 32nd Troop Carrier Squadron was assigned to drop paratroopers behind German lines near Gela to provide support for General Patton's Seventh Army to advance inland.

Lieutenant Greene's plane was shot down  on July 10, 1943, and reported missing from that date.

Howard was the only son of Junius W. and Ada Scotto Greene. He was born March 27, 1919 at Peeltown, Kaufman County, Texas. He was the youngest of six children.

Howard graduated Ennis High School in May of 1937. He was president of his Junior and Senior classes, acted in his Junior and Senior class plays, and was an excellent athlete playing football for the Ennis High Lions. Following graduation he worked at Ennis Tag & Salesbook Company, and later for an oil company at Wichita Falls before enlisting in the U.S. Army Air Forces. 

Lieutenant Greene was awarded the Air Medal, Purple Heart Medal, "Certificate of Grateful Memory" signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, "Certificate of Grateful Memory" signed by President Harry S. Truman, and "Certificate of Highest Service, the State of Texas" signed by Governor Coke Stevenson.

Lieutenant Greene is listed under Gold Star on Tabernacle Baptist Church Honor Roll in Ennis, listed on the Memorial Monument to Ennis War Dead, and listed on the Ellis County Veterans Memorial.

Note: Lieutenant Greene's sister Ermine (Greene) Johnson lived in Germany for a time with her husband Major Carl Johnson and son Carl Jr. Ermine visited the U.S. Graves Registration office in Rome and started the process that identified Lieutenant Greene's remains, and returned them to the U.S. for burial at Myrtle Cemetery in Ennis in April of 1949.

Lieutenant Greene's last entry in his diary read, "Reckon the big push is tonight. Spent 18 months training and I'm ready. No doubt of the success and I'm confident of the paratroop job. The chance is inevitable but the thought doesn't enter my mind that we won't get back so I'm not preparing a pretty speech for it sounds foolish."

Jack Lummus Memorial Park   Ellis County Veterans Memorial

"We Were Soldiers Once, and Young" by Perry Giles

Bio info and picture are courtesy of Perry Giles, Giles Monument Company, Waxahachie, Texas.

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