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James registered for the draft in Burlington, NC on 16 October 1940 and ws inducted into the Army at Fort Bragg, NC on 6 April 1944.

On 6 October 1944, Pvt Woody was transferred from 92 Airborne Division HQ to Service Company, 508th PIR.  He was transferred to Company B on 21 November 1944.

James apparently sat out the Battle of The Bulge as he was admitted to the 50th Field Hospital, Camp Sissonne, France as a non battle casualty on 30 November 1944 and was returned to duty on 21 December 1944.  The regiment had moved out three days earlier.

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