John H. Bassler, First Army Man, Comes Home
October 15, 2020
Publisher's Note: Seventy-five years ago this week, my grandfather came home from World War II.
John H. Bassler was born in a farmhouse outside of Martinsburg and barely 21, the United States government sent him overseas to fight the Axis powers.
He "toured Europe, paid for by the U.S. government," he used to say.
He went ashore on D-Day, accompanied an artillery unit across Europe, was badly wounded, lost good buddies and ultimately ended up in the Battle of the Bulge.
Some of my best memories are nights when we would sit at the kitchen counter of his modest...