Staff Sergeant Herbert Verderber
– 39th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division –
Herbert Was born on January 22nd 1922 in West Virginia, where he lived in Monogalia County.
He grew up and worked as a manufacturer of automobiles.
Even before the attack on Pearl Harbor, Herbert enlisted at Fort Hayes, Columbus, Ohio on August 28th, 1940.
After his training he took part in the fighting in North-Africa. From here he continued to Tunisia, where he found himself in the middle of the battle for El Guettar. At “H-Hour”, 6 A.M. on March 28th 1943, 1st Battalion of the 39th Infantry Regiment was committed to help out elements of the 47th Infantry Regiment as it was caught in a murderous crossfire, but became lost in the maze of hills. With Hill 369 still in German hands, the attack bogged down. Off on the edge of the Ninth’s zone, another Hill dominated the area, Hill 772. It had been occupied by American troops but these had been moved off just before the El Guettar offensive began. The German troops then re-occupied the hill, but none of the other commanders thought to tell this important information to any members of the Ninth Division! General Eddy soon realized that Hill 369 could only be taken by gaining Hill 772 again. For five days the battle raged in an attempt to break through the El Guettar Pass. Each attack was a coordinated push of “Benson’s Force”, an Armored Task Force and the 3rd Battalion of the 39th Infantry Regiment.
During these heavy fighting days, on March 30th 1943, Staff Sergeant Verderber went missing in action after being killed at the age of 21.
A newspaper article was published after he went missing.
Today, Staff Sergeant Verderber’s name can be found on the Wall of Missing at Carthage, Tunisia.
We must never forget the great sacrifice of Staff Sergeant Verderber, who was awarded a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart Medal for his actions.
Special thanks to Angelo’s Angels Researchers Christina Carlton and Francesca Cumero, Ancestry member kcurrent124, and Frederic Blais.