Ubert and Lampton (L.C.) Terrell are brothers. They have been close all of their lives and remain so today. Ubert is 100 years old and L.C. is 97. They grew up in Red River Parish, Louisiana, where, during the Depression, they learned some of the skills that would come in handy for them as soldiers during WWII. Both brothers took part in the D-Day Normandy Invasion but in very different ways.
Their father died when they were young. They were poor, but they had land and shotguns, and their mother would send them out to “get dinner” for the family with one shell a piece and would tell them, “Don’t waste it.” They “wasted” very little, having become excellent hunters and marksmen over time.
When they got older, L.C. joined the Army before WWII began. He apparently settled into it like a duck into water. He advanced in rank and in the respect of his officers, quickly becoming a Staff Sgt. He was with the 1st Engineer Special Brigade. Just before the Normandy Invasion, L.C. was chosen by his commanding officer, a colonel, to lead a 36-man engineering team ashore in one of the Higgins landing craft boats to clear an area for a field hospital on Utah Beach. L.C. asked why he chose him instead of one of the many other men. The Colonel responded simply, “You’re the only man I’ve got that I can trust to do that.”
L.C. and his 36 men would go ashore that day and complete that mission. 12 of his men were cut down in the first few minutes after the Higgins boat’s doors went down as they rushed to get ashore.
Ubert took another path. He was drafted after Pearl Harbor and went into the Army Air Corps as an aerial engineer and crew chief on C-47 transport planes. On entering the military, took the exams for MOS placements, and it was discovered that he could speak three languages: Cajun French, Spanish and Italian. As a result, Ubert would be called on to carry out and participate in some very special missions, often alone. Before the D-Day invasion, he was parachuted into France on intelligence gathering missions five separate times. He would hook up with French Resistance Forces on those occasions.
On another occasion, he would infiltrate a German Army camp located on a farm in an open field. He got in and took out a guard silently, gathered what he could, then had to get out of there over the open ground before sunrise. He did so as quickly as he could, wiping away his footprints as he went, but the sun came up and he had to conceal himself. He actually dug a small trench and covered himself with dirt and grass.
On yet another occasion, Ubert went with British agents to disrupt a pipeline that supplied fuel to a German submarine base. They also lowered a submarine net across the mouth of the harbor. Ubert would be called on five more times over the rest of the war, because of his language skills and his obvious covert military skills, to carry out missions in places like Rome-Arno, the Rhineland, and in the Ardennes Forest. Ubert was something else!
On D-Day, he flew two missions, one at around 12:30 a.m. the morning of the landings. On that mission, they dropped paratroops of the 82nd Airborne Division behind the lines. The second mission began at noon that same day. His plane would tow two gliders carrying small bulldozers that were to be used to make landing strips for aerial resupply planes. He says that that mission did not go so well. They were shot up pretty badly and he said it was a “bad drop.”
While Ubert was doing all of that, L.C. fought with his unit from the beaches of Normandy to Cherbourg and was then assigned with his engineer company to a supply depot for the rest of the war.
The two brothers are still close. They live near one another now in Sun, a small town in St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana.
The Veterans Site honors and thanks these two brothers, Ubert and Lambert (L.C.) Terrell for their service to the nation in its time of greatest need. These brothers, country boys from rural Louisiana, are clearly great examples of this country’s Greatest Generation. Hooah!Whizzco