Heroes: the Army
"...He found a barn, but when he snuck into it a German soldier was also there asleep on the straw. Uncle Johnny knew he might be found by the German if he slept longer than the German. It was all that he could do, he had to stab the Nazi in the heart..."
John W. Cubine
- Branch of Service: Army
- Unit: 1st Battalion, Co. B.,
507th, 82nd Airborne Division
- Dates: 1942 - 1945
- Location: European Theater
- Rank: PFC
- Birth Year: December 1916
- Entered Service: Kansas City, MO
Image probably taken in 1944 while on leave in Kansas City, MO.
John William Cubine was in the 507th, 82nd Airborne 1st BN Company B. He was trained at Ft. Benning GA.
He missed the drop into Normandy. I was told by one of his comrades that he was in line to get on the plane, but was having severe pains in his abdominal region. They became so severe that he was sent to the hospital with an MP. It was appendicitis and he had to have emergency surgery to remove his appendix.
I have found out from his unit that he fought and was wounded in action on January 11, 1945. He received a bronze star and a Conduct in Battle award in 1945. He somehow ended up in another unit, probably due to injuries he received in Belgium.
He spoke to my brother Jim as Jim was headed off to the Korean War. He told of being dropped during a parachute mission far from others into enemy territory. He walked miles searching for American lines and became exhausted to the point of fearing he would collapse asleep where ever he was. He found a barn, but when he snuck into it a German soldier was also there asleep on the straw. Uncle Johnny knew he might be found by the German if he slept longer than the German. It was all that he could do, he had to stab the Nazi in the heart. He lay down beside the German Nazi and slept off his exhaustion.
He fought with a ground unit either defending or taking a bridge and he was one of the few survivors of that battle. He said there were many American casualties in mounds the other Americans had to crawl over in order to fight for this bridge.
Information and photographs were generously provided to World War II Stories -- In Their Own Words by Ms. Tanya Coons-Redig, niece of John W. Cubine. Our sincerest THANKS for allowing us to share this story!
Original Story submitted on 11 August 2003.
Story added to website on 18 August 2003.
Story updated on 23 August 2003.
Additional changes made on 27 August 2008.
September 5, 2002.
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Updated on 27 January 2012...0801:05 CST