This website is dedicated to the Italian-Americans who served in the armed forces of the United States. Many children of immigrant Italians served in the military. Many gave the ultimate cost of serving. My mother’s brother, Philip Square, served his country during Word War II. My uncle was affectionately known as “Bauch” to his family. Uncle Bauch was a genuine hero. He was awarded a Silver Star, two Bronze Stars, and received a battle field commission.
Philip was drafted into the Army of the United States in May, 1942. He was assigned to the United States Fifth Army, 85th Division, 339 Infantry Regiment, Company G. His unit fought in Italy from March 27, 1944, until the end of World War II. He was discharged from the Army at Fort Knox, Kentucky, on December 5, 1945. He was awarded campaign stars for participating in the Rome-Arno, Po Valley, and North Apennine Campaigns. He rose to the permanent rank of technical sergeant (date of grade: October 10, 1944). Philip Square died on February 16, 1978 at Lake County Memorial Hospital, Painesville, Ohio, at age 59 of an acute myocardial infarction. His body is interred at Riverside Cemetery, Painesville.
“Philip A. Square, (35305869), Technical Sergeant, Infantry, Company “G”, Infantry Regiment, United States Army. For gallantry in action on 22 October 1944, in Italy. When his platoon, leading the attack upon an enemy held village, was subjected to intense machine gun fire, Technical Sergeant SQUARE, determined to continue the assault, took command of a squad and led it in an attack upon enemy dugouts located within the town. Skillfully deploying his men as they moved upon the enemy emplacements, he personally killed three and captured five German soldiers and enabled the attacking forces to occupy the objective without loss. ”
COMBAT APPOINTMENT to the GRADE of LIEUTENANT, INFANTRY
On 11 December 1944, Philip Square was promoted to Second Lieutenant from Enlisted Man status: “T/Sgt Square, Second Platoon, Company “G”, is a natural leader. He has proved it to the satisfaction of his officers and men under the most difficult combat conditions. He has made certain that he has thoroughly understood the company’s mission in each engagement in which he has participated. When his assigned leaders have been wounded, he has assumed command of the platoon and has never become confused or indecisive. He has performed the duties of Platoon Sergeant and Platoon Leader with assurance and distinction. His knowledge of infantry platoon tactics, initiative and aggressiveness have been invaluable in furthering the success of his company.
“When his Platoon Leader was wounded on 16 October 1944 in the vicinity of Ca Nova, Italy he assumed command of the platoon. At this time his platoon was isolated from the rest of the company by intense mortar and machine gun fire. He organized and supervised the withdrawal of the platoon through this curtain of fire to aid his company in repelling an enemy counterattack. He succeeded in withdrawing his platoon and carrying the wounded Platoon Leader to the company position without suffering any more casualties. Upon reaching the company position, he organized his platoon in a defensive position. The enemy counterattack was repulsed and the possibility of an enemy breakthrough was eliminated.
“On 18 October 1944 he was ordered to take a combat patrol to a defended farm house at Francinatico, Italy, and occupy it. A platoon had previously been captured in this town. He led his platoon over a difficult route in the darkness. Upon reaching the group of buildings he personally led the First Squad around the buildings to attack from the rear, meanwhile holding the rest of the squad in reserve. The unexpectedness of the attack surprised the enemy and they surrendered after firing a few scattered shots. Eight prisoners were taken. He then ran back to his platoon under an intense mortar barrage and led it to the position which he organized defensively. The strong point was taken and held until his company advanced to it.
“On 23 October 1944 in the vicinity of Casetta di Vignale the Second and Third Platoons were organized into one platoon as both platoons were under strength. T/Sgt Square led this platoon in the attack on the town. Under cover of the fog it overrun the enemy positions and captured twenty-two prisoners and destroyed two machine guns. He personally killed three of the enemy and captured one who was carrying vital information of the enemy’s intended operations.”
“2d Lt Philip A. Square, 0-1999030, Co “G”, 339th Infantry. For heroic achievement in action during the period 1 January 1945 to 10 March 1945, in Italy. As platoon leader of a rifle platoon during this period, Lieutenant Square distinguished himself as a capable leader by his devotion to duty and efficiency [sic]. Frequently checking his platoon in their forward positions despite sporadic mortar and artillery fire, he displayed unremitting effort to see that all members were always adequately supplied. His actions have been a source of inspiration to his platoon and has greatly contributed to their high morale.”
Philip Square was awarded a second Bronze Star Medal. This citation was before September, 1944, and has not been found.
“Company G, 339 Infantry Regiment is cited for outstanding performance of duty in action, from 11 to 14 May 1944, near Tremensuoli, Italy. Company G was assigned the mission of wresting from a determined enemy a hill which was the key feature of the left flank of the German Gustav Line. The two assault platoons, closing rapidly before he could recover, killed sixty and captured forty of the defenders, demolishing eight bunkers, reduced seven pill boxes and captured twenty-five automatic weapons. The company suffered heavy casualties, and because of its isolated position, went without food and water for over 36 hours. With heroic determination, the infantrymen of this company held every inch of ground gained.”
“Awarded 21 June 1945 by the President of the Provisional Government of the French Republic – A magnificent unit, inspired by a wonderful spirit in combat. In the battle of Garigliano and during the greater part of the offensive which led the Allied Armies to the Tuscan Apennines, in spite of heavy losses, it maintained close contact with units of the left flank of the French Expeditionary Corps. It contributed immeasurably to the brilliant series of successes which remain the common heritage of the American and French Armies.”