Mark Bando (l) and his son Chris with Lester's sister Betty.

After we got in contact with each other, Lester Taylor's sister Betty was very industrious looking for everything that had to do with her brother. She visited Airborne reunions, met Mark Bando who was of great help for her in finding Lester's buddies.

The left photo (above) shows Lester (front row right) with his buddies in England, March 1944. Front left is Paul Cooney. Standing fltr: Glenn Moe - John Lachkovice - James Franklin. During the 2002 reunion Betty spoke with their spouses.

John Lachkovich was the one who was saved by Lester on D-day from drowning in a canal. Because of that action he got the Bronze Star.

fltr:Hershner - Mobley - Hartzell

At the 101 reunion in Florida Betty met the vets on the photo above: fltr: Marvin Cartwright, Patrick Callery, Ray Hershner, and Ed Mobley.

After the war, several of Lester's buddies wrote letters to Lester's sister Lola. This one is from Glenn Moe who wrote it in 1945. Glenn is the left one standing on the upper left photo on this page. Mid 2001 Betty was trying to get in contact with Glenn. She did not succeed, according to the little note she wrote me:
Mr. Hershner giving his signature
26 januari 2005
"...Well.. Too late. Just learned that Glenn Moe passed away just a few weeks ago on July 16. He was one I thought might tell me more. In the newsletter was a story about him being in a nursing home and having Parkinson's Disease in advanced stages. I tried calling his home last evening and this morning, no answer... so I checked local nursing homes in Toppenish Washington and talked to the administrator of one who gave me the news. Will keep trying and talk with his wife, Lillian, soon I hope. I have two very nice letters from him written in Nov. 1944..."
Betty managed to get in contact with Glenn's wife Lillian and daughter Kathy. This is what Betty wrote about it:
"....Just have to share with you a great phone conversation with his wife Lillian and his daughter Kathy Moe in Toppenish, Washington this evening. Glenn Moe was a close friend of Lester's and was with him when he was killed. He was one of the two men mentioned in Champ Baker's letter. Lester and the other man, John R. Clark, were killed. They were in the small group sent to Best where they encountered the large contingent of Germans already there. Lillian said that Glenn always felt guilty for having made it through, when his two best friends didn't, and that he spoke of them often. Glenn fought into Belgium where he was wounded. He was in the Lutheran ministry after returning home. He formed the organization "Laborers for Christ", and he personally assisted in the construction of several churches in the US One of them is nearby here in Bay City, Texas. Glenn died a few weeks ago on July 16. Lillian, Kathy and I were pretty emotional on the phone this evening and we plan to talk again soon and to write to each other. I told them of your gratitude, kindness and honor you give to the paratroopers, and I will share with them more of the information you have given me. I continue to gather information...."

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pictures on this page courtesy Betty Taylor.

© Peter van de Wal