Heroes: the Army


"...Company F was soon pinned down by heavy fire coming from Korrezig within the zone of the advance of about five hundred yards..."


image of american flag

 Julius S. Hass

  • Branch of Service: Army
  • Unit: Co. F., 407th Regiment,
    102nd Infantry Division
  • Dates: 1943 - 1945
  • Location: European Theater
  • Rank: PFC
  • Birth Year: 17 May 1924
  • Killed in Action: 24 February 1945 Vicinity of Glimbach, Ruhr area (Germany)
  • Entered Service: Arlington, NE



The Search for Julius S. Hass

Killed in Action on 24 February 1945

The Day Following the Roer River Crossing

In the Vicinity of Glimbach, Ruhr area (Germany)


"...D Plus 1

    The 2d Battalion (407th), on the left, attacked at 0930 hours, without armored support, from Glimbach toward Kofferen and Dinguchoff with the intention of seizing the high terrain west of Kofferen. Company F was soon pinned down by heavy fire coming from Korrezig within the zone of the advance of about five hundred yards..."

From: With the 102nd Infantry Division Through Germany by Maj. Allan H. Mick, pp. 145.




    The above exerpt from the history of the 102nd Infantry Division is from the section of the book entitled "Clearing the Path to the Rhine, 24 February - 1 March 1945". The date of 24 February 1945 is the day following the harrowing attack made by the 102nd Infantry Division across the swollen Roer River in the early morning hours of 23 February 1945 after months of preparation.

    It would appear as being highly likely that the above exerpt from the 102nd Division history, that the death of PFC Julius S. Hass occured in the time frame where Co. F. of the 407th Regiment was pinned down by heavy fire coming from Korrezig which is in the vicinity of Glimbach in western Germany.

    The map depicted below indicates the approximate position of the 2nd Battalion of the 407th Regiment as being deployed along a road leading from Linnich, across the Roer and past Glimbach enroute to Kofferen.

    This information is only an educated guess.


The map above depicts the locations of the units in the 102nd Division and their attack on the morning of 24 February 1945. The position of the 2nd Battalion, 407th Regiment is depicted by the uppermost arrow pointing to the vicinity of Glimbach.

The map caption reads:
Map. 14: Early morning of 24 February saw the bridgehead firmly established. Enemy units are shown in black; the black arrows indicate the couterattacks pressed against Boslar.

Map from: With the 102nd Infantry Division Through Germany, pp. 134



    Today, the final resting place of PFC. Julius S. Hass is the pristine American Cemetery located in Margraten, The Netherlands.

    The following images were taken recently at the 2004 Memorial Day services at Margraten where a large gathering of former American Veterans, their families and friends met with local townsfolks to pay tribute to the American dead buried at Margraten.

    The images below are all courtesy of Rick Mommers.


Former members of the 82nd Airborne Division
pay their respests to a fallen comrad.
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.


A flyover at the Memorial Day 2004 ceremony of F16s.
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.


Many of the former veterans and family in attendance
at the 2004 Memorial Day Ceremony.

The obelisk's simple but eloquent inscription reads:
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.


A military parade paying tribute to the many American dead at Margraten.
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.

The contributor, Rick Mommers, his mother and a former member of the 82nd Airborne.
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.


Additional image of a former member of the 82nd Airborne Division taken at the 2004 Memorial Day Ceremony.
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.


Additional image of former veterans taken at the 2004 Memorial Day Ceremony.
Image courtesy of Rick Mommers.


  PFC. Julius S. Hass is laid to rest at the following grave coordinates:

    Grave:  Plot  G  Row  10  Grave  3

    The cemetery at Margraten is the final resting place for hundreds of Americans who died during these engagements in the late days of 1944 and early days of 1945 and as is in the numerous American cemeteries located around Europe, this one is maintained in pristine condition to honor the memory of the fallen heroes.

    What a lot of Americans do not know is that there is something very special about this particular American cemetery.

    The local townsfolks of the Margraten area still remember their fallen liberators. And they express their fondness for these young heroes in a truely special way.

    The townsfolks have taken upon themselves the loving task of thanking the fallen American heroes by adopting a grave of a soldier. They care for the grave by visiting that grave regularly and placing flowers on the grave each week in rememberance of the brave young men who gave their lives in helping to free this small country from the hands of Hitler's death grip.

    The folks of Margraten have been adopting and caring for these hallowed resting places since the cemetery was established. The most wonderful part of these deeds is that the care of a grave is passed on from generation to generation.

In a world where Americans are now looked upon in hatred by many around the world, it is a wonderful sensation to know that in the Netherlands, the care of fallen heroes is still being practiced to this day, some 60 years since many of these young men fell in combat.


    One such care taker is a young 17 year old student in Margraten named Rick Mommers.

    Rick had taken it upon himself to care for the grave site of Julius S. Hass. He has also taken on the task of caring for three additional grave sites. They are the final resting places of CPL. Francis Fernan and PVT. Adrian Hoskins and recently, PFC Alfred G. Corgan.




    We, at World War II Stories In Their Own Words were contacted recently by Mr. Rick Mommers.

    He was seeking information on PFC. Julius S. Hass and was getting desperate for help in locating information about him, especially his service and his days serving as a soldier in Co. F., 407th Regiment, 2nd Battalion, 102nd Infantry Division.

    Rick had managed to locate a younger brother of Mr. Hass (Mr. LeRoy Hass) recently and had exchanged some information. The information was meager for the brother was younger and had few if any recollections of his brother who went off to war back in 1943.

    We were asked to assist in helping Rick to help fill in the gaps in his research into just who Julius S. Hass was.

    Here is how Rick became a caretaker of three American gravesites in Margraten.


    "...Three years ago my friend and I went with my brother's school journey to the military cemetery in Margraten and heard that it was possible to adopt the graves. After the guide showed and told us some things about the cemetery we asked him the necessary person to contact to receive a grave, he gave us the address. When we came home we direct took our ballpoints and started to write. A few days later we received our grave. We received the adoption certificate, some addresses to write and a note that we were to young to adopt a grave but for us he made an exception. I wrote a letter to the three addresses I received and got only from one address useful information after at least one year, the others said they could not give any information because there was a privacy law made in 1974, that made my request impossible. With that information I started a internetsearch in my Christmas holiday's. I spitted trough the guestbook of the internetsite of the 102nd US infantry division and send an e-mail to every person who maybe could have known Julius S. Hass. Most people could not help me. A few others started to help me in my search, I very appreciate those people like David Steely the Division Manager and Maureen Jakubisyn a daughter of a 102nd infantry div. Soldier, thanks to them I got a major breakthrough in my research..."


Eldon Raleigh (from Oklahoma) and Julius S. Hass (from Arlington, Nebraska)
Image is from the collection of Mr. Rick Mommers and is not dated nor location stated.
From the image, one can assertin that this image is probably taken Stateside because neither young man is wearing any campaign ribbons or decorations nor is any rank indicated on their uniform.


    Along with the information that was supplied to us by Rick is the following newspaper exerpt which ran at his request in the Arlington Citizen.

    Julius Hass was from Arlington, (Washington County) Nebraska.


    The newspaper article reads as follows:



Blair, NE




Wednesday, January 07, 2004


Veteran gone but not forgotten

Youth seeks information on fallen Arlington veteran


By Melissa Rice

Editor, Arlington Citizen


For the past several years, Rick Mommers of The Netherlands has been the caretaker of Julius Hass' grave. His search for information on the Arlington soldier led him to contacts in the United States. He hopes to write to Hass' relatives for more information.

Pfc. Julius S. Hass Arlington native Pfc. Julius Hass is a long way from home.

Although he was killed in action almost 60 years ago, he has not been forgotten.

Hass' grave lies in the American Military Cemetery near the town of Margraten, the Netherlands. In 1946, his gravesite was adopted by a local family, who planned to maintain it in remembrance of the American's liberation of the country.

Now, years later, a 17-year-old boy has taken on the role of caretaker.

"Three years ago, my friend and I went with my brother's school journey to the military cemetery in Margraten and heard that it was possible to adopt the graves," said Rick Mommers of the Netherlands. "After the guide showed and told us some things about the cemetery, we asked him the necessary person to contact to receive a grave."

Mommers said within a few days of writing, they received their "adoption certificate."

Along with the certificate, he also received a note that "he was too young to adopt a grave, but for us, he made an exception."

Hass was born in Arlington on May 17, 1924, and joined the U.S. Army in 1943.

He was with the 407th Infantry Regiment, and the 102nd Infantry Division, and had been overseas for five months when he was killed.

Mommers was interested in finding out more about the young American soldier, who died on Feb. 24, 1945. He tried to track down information through several addresses he had been given, but found his progress blocked by privacy laws.

Mommers turned to the Internet for help in his search and eventually found the website for the 102nd Infantry Division.

"I sent an e-mail to every person who maybe could have known Julius S. Hass" said Mommers. "Most people could not help me. A few others started to help me in that search."

Among those who aided the young man was Maureen Jakubisyn of Wallingford, Conn., daughter of a soldier from the 102nd Division.

"I really appreciate your offer to help me and I am very thankful that there are still people like you who help people they don't know and live at the other part of the world (me as example," Mommers told Jakubisyn.

After agreeing to help Mommers, Jakubisyn contacted the Arlington Citizen on Monday, Jan. 5.

From there, staff at the Citizen turned to the Washington County Genealogical Society. Pat Hunsche, who has been researching Washington County veterans for the Veterans Tribute Plaza, already had a number of articles about Hass, which she provided to the Citizen. Copies of the articles will be forwarded to Mommers. Hunsche also knew of two of his surviving relatives.

One was a cousin, Arlene (Hass) Stork, of Arlington.

Stork was only 16 years old when her cousin was killed in Germany. She remembers "Junior" as being a very serious young man.

Newspaper reports about Hass from 1945 and 1946 note that he was a 1942 graduate of Arlington High School. He had been baptized Oct. 19, 1924, and was confirmed May 15, 1938, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. Prior to entering the Armed Forces, he had worked at the ordnance plant in Mead.

Just three days before his death, he had written to his parents; his letter told them that he was well and happy, and for them not to worry, and that he was being sent to the front in a few days, accounts report.

Stork was surprised and pleased to find out that someone was still taking the time to tend to Hass' grave.

In addition to Stork, Hass is also survived by another cousin, Lois (Hass) Jorgensen, of Omaha, as well as a younger brother, Leroy, of Fremont.

Leroy was aware that another family had originally adopted Julius' grave years ago.

"We heard from them once or twice within a year after he died, but there's been no contact since then," Leroy said. He remembered that the letters his family received had to be translated.

Leroy was only about 10 years of age when his brother was killed.

"He was the oldest and I was the youngest," Leroy said. "He was actually pretty quiet. He was quite religious and carried a Bible with him all the time."

Mommers had originally planned to advertise for information, but was afraid the costs would be too high. In an e-mail to Jakubisyn, he indicated his hopes to learn more about Hass.

"It would be great if relatives or friends of the Hass family respond on the advertisements," Mommers said. "Because for me, every little reaction/detail (is) a part of the enormous puzzle of my research for the life of Julius S. Hass."

Now that he has more information, Mommers told the Citizen staff he plans to contact family members about his soldier.

"My next step is to write the brother of Julius S. Hass and get my questions answered," Mommers said. "And then, maybe I (will) know more about the person whose grave I take care of and lay flowers every week."

Meanwhile, Leroy is looking forward to a letter from Mommers.

"I think it's great," Leroy said. "I'd love to hear from him."



Some of the newspaper clippings about PFC. Julius S. Hass that ran in the local newspaper following the death in combat of this Arlington soldier.


    Rick Mommers is searching for answers.

    He is hoping to learn more about the man who's final resting place has been put into his care.

    He would like to make contact with anyone who might have known Julius S. Hass as a soldier in the 407th Regiment, 102nd Division. If possible he is interested in learning about the events leading up to the 24th of February 1945 when PFC. Hass met his death at the hands of the counter attacking Germans "in the vicinity of Glimbach, Ruhr area (Germany).

    Rick also has a copy of a letter written to his younger brother, LeRoy and the letter is dated February 2, 1944:


Pvt. Julius S. Hass

Company "A". Brks. "J" (or maybe I)

2510 Service Unit (A.S.T)

University of Maryland

College Park, Maryland


    The address on the letter above indicates that Julius Hass was apparently inrolled in the ASTP Program at the University of Maryland and that like so many educated young men, were taken out of this program which was eventually to lead to a military commission in the Army, and put them into the ranks of front line soldiers.

    What a waste of good minds.

    So, if anyone has information that may be of assistance to Rick, please contact this web master and I will happily pass on the information to Rick and have him contact you.



The materials depicted on this page were reprinted with kind permission of Mr. Rick Mommers of Voerendaal, The Netherlands.

We, at the World War II Stories - In Their Own Words web site wish to offer to Mr. Mommers our most profound THANK YOU for his service in tending the final resting places of some of the young soldiers who gave their lives in the liberation of Europe -- during World War II and especially for allowing us to share those memories. We will always be grateful for Mr. Mommers' contributions in helping to world remember the deeds done by young men, not much older that he so many years ago.


Original story transcribed from an e-mail message received beginning on 19 July 2004.

Story added to web site on 19 July 2004