[The Times, Munster, IN, Wed., July 5, 1944, Page 13]
Elmhurst Chutists, Knocked
In French Invasion, Becomes Hero
SOMEWHERE IN ENGLAND --- (INS) --- Cpl William L. Lyles of Elmhurst,
Ill, who was knocked unconscious when he dropped into France with his
squad [of] paratroopers but recovered sufficiently to cover himself with
glory in the ensuing battles, told the story of his unique experience.
Young Lyles, the son of Lee Lyles, assistant to the president of
the Santa Fe railway, is recovering from bullet wounds he received when
he led his squad in a daring attack to eliminate snipers from a key
When he dropped into France on D-Day, the corporal landed on the
doorstep of a farmhouse with such force that it knocked him out
"When I came to," Lyles recalled today, "there was a Frenchman
pouring cold water over my had to revive me. Then he brought me a
glass of cognac and that really did the trick."
The Frenchman told Lyles that the road beyond the farm was covered
with German machineguns. It was the road he was supposed to cross
in order to contact his battalion
command post which was
scheduled to be established in that vicinity.
The Frenchman drew a rough map for the American youth, showing him
how to avoid the Nazi machineguns in reaching his destination.
Lyle [sic] contacted his battalion commandeer and other members of
his unit just in time to join them in blowing up a German-held bridge.
"Then we made two forced marches across the river and got another
bridge which we were supposed to hold while our engineers repaired it,"
Lyles recalled. "We held it all right."
"After that, our unit was designated to attack a village where the
Germans were strongly entrenched."
Lyles and his squad advanced across fields under heavy fire and
broke into the center of the village where they met a hail of snipers'
Lyles led his squad into one end of the village to clear out the
snipers. They advanced slowly to avoid mines and booby traps.
Near a small bridge there, Lyles was hit in the left leg by several
snipers' bullets and fell.
A second version of this article appeared the same day on
page 6 of the Tipton Daily Tribune, Tipton, IN. It reads exactly the
same but adds some pertinent closing paragraphs after the point where
Lyles fell wounded.
. He was given
first aid by Private Leo McShane of Erie, Pa. and first Lieut. Hoyt
Goodale of South Carolina attended to Lyles' wounds immediately.
The lieutenant used a rifle as an improvised splint. With the
help of Private Joseph Thornton of Atlanta Ga., Goodale and McShane
moved Lyles to a roadside ditch. Then they got a wooden door from
a damaged house and used it as a stretcher to carry the corporal to an
occupied part of the town where the medical corps gave him additional
treatment. He was taken back to the beachhead and returned to
England aboard an LST ship for hospitalization.