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Material for this page contributed by David Romanowski
September 24 2004
  

Nanty Glo World War II casualty
Mike Stefanick remembered

Letter by David Romanowski:

I recently looked up your web site out of idle curiosity because of a personal connection a member of my family has to Nanty Glo. My father, Edmond J. Romanowski Sr., a World War II veteran originally from Scranton, Pennsylvania, served with the U.S. Army's 40th Division, 108th Infantry, Company C, in the Pacific and became best friends with a man in his company from Nanty Glo, Mike Stefanick (photo at right). My father was with Mike when he was mortally wounded on Mindanao in the Philippines, on June 3, 1945.

Mike's death devastated my father and has haunted him all these years. I was glad to find mention of Mike's name on your web site's list of "Blacklick Valley's World War II Casualties Remembered." The pictures of Mike included here are from my father's photo album from the war. I believe they were taken in Hawaii, where the 40th was stationed during training. I wrote an article that appeared in the Washington Post in 1990 about my father's experiences in the war, and it relates what little I know about Mike's death. I've never pressed my father for details about his wartime memories, because he still finds it so difficult to talk about the war.

I visited the World War II Memorial in Washington with my father when it opened last May (photo above). There, before the memorial's field of gold stars commemorating those who died, my father, wearing his Purple Heart, presented a tearful salute to honor all his fallen buddies, including, and perhaps especially, Mike Stefanick. My father had come to the World War II Memorial in hope of finding closure, to try and put to rest the painful memories from that time that have tormented him all his life. Whether he finally found peace or not, only he knows.

David Romanowski
Bethesda, Maryland
dromanowski@nasm.si.edu

The photos below are of Mike Stefanick

 


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