The Bow Ramp

Friday, April 22, 2005

A Little Family History

I'm third generation military. The first generation was this man.

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At the outbreak of WW-I my grandfather, Charles E. Powell, Sr. was a recently married chemist living in Atlanta, GA. He joined the Army along with his Brother-in-Law, John Grice. 1st LT Powell and Capt. Grice served together in the 77th. Field Artillery. Grandpa was wounded in the Ardennes Forest, but was able to return to his unit. After the war, Grandpa switched to the Corps of Engineers. We are fortunate to have a number of his personal effects from the war. The most valuable is a pocket-sized notebook that my Grandmother filled with photos and commentary that he kept in his breast pocket. That is where the above photo of the two of them came from. We also have his dog tags (and Capt. Grice's,) insignia and uniform buttons. Finally, we have this:

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This is Grandpa's sidearm. It is a 1917 Smith & Wesson DA .45 revolver. After the war, it was modified to shoot APC rounds as they were cheaper and more plentiful.
I only met my Grandfather once, when I was about 10, shortly before his death. I wish I could have gotten to know him better. He was a great man and it certainly rubbed off on my father.