Louis J Rehnert
PVT in 3133rd Signal Service Co
Born 1925 in PA, Died 2020
County of residence at enlistment: Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania
Other residence(s): Pottsville, PA; Battle Creek, MI; Fort Monmouth, NJ
United States Army, European Theatre of Operations
Occupation before the war: semiskilled chauffeurs and drivers, bus, taxi, truck, and tractor
Louis Rehnert was born on December 23, 1925 in Pottsville, PA, the third of four sons. His father died of heart failure when Louis was three, leaving his mother to bring up the four little boys alone. Louis attended Catholic schools in Pottsville.
When he registered for the draft on his 18th birthday, December 23, 1943, he was still living with his family in Pottsville and working at Pomeroy's Department Store. When he enlisted a couple of months later, on February 28, 1944, he stated that he had a grammar school education and was working as a driver.
Louis served as a member of the 3133 Signal Service Company Special, which conducted sonic deception in Italy during the war. He was overseas from March, 1945 to March 1946, and discharged on June 25, 1946. Louis had found that Army life was to his liking, however. He re-enlisted and would go on to serve in the Army for a total of 25 years.
On September 11, 1948, he married Alycea L. Savage in Battle Creek, MI. Alycea brought a son with her to the marriage who became the first of Louis' stepchildren. They lived in Battle Creek for several more years.
Louis and Alycea would move several times during their marriage—he did a tour of duty in Austria in the mid-fifties, and served at Fort Monmouth, NJ after that. Alyce died suddenly in 1959, while they were living in New Jersey, stricken at work.
In 1962, Louis married Gertrude "Toni" Anderson, who was the mother of four children.
Louis retired from the Army in 1969, with the rank of SGT 1st Class, and moved back to Battle Creek where he took a job with the Postal Service, working there for another 20 years.
Toni died in 1994, and the following year Louis married Marguerite Juenger. They were together for 15 years.
Louis was a lifelong member of VFW Post #1784, American Legion Post #298, and Moose Lodge of Illinois, He was also a member of St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Battle Creek. He enjoyed camping, traveling, woodworking, walking, and reading--especially about the western US and World War II.
He died on December 29, 2020, and is buried at Fort Custer National Cemetery in Augusta, MI.
1943 draft card
1944 enlistment record
1948 marriage record
1950 Pennsylvania WW2 Veterans Compensation File
1959 wife's obituary in Battle Creek Enquirer (MI)
1994 second wife obituary in Battle Creek Enquirer (MI)
1995 marriage license notice in Battle Creek Enquirer (MI)
2010 third wife obituary in Battle Creek Enquirer (MI)