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Frederick Heyliger
Nickname The Moose
Born (1916-06-23)June 23, 1916
Died November 3, 2001(2001-11-03) (aged 85)
Place of birth Acton, Massachusetts
Place of death Concord, Massachusetts
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army seal United States Army
Years of service 1940-1947
Rank US-O2 insignia.svg First Lieutenant
Unit Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division
Battles/wars

World War II

Awards Bronze Star ribbon.svg Bronze Star
Purple Heart BAR.svg Purple Heart
American Campaign Medal ribbon.svg American Campaign Medal
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign ribbon.svg European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal
Military Cross ribbon.png Military Cross[1]
Relations Mary (wife)

First Lieutenant Frederick Theodore 'Moose' Heyliger (June 23, 1916 - November 3, 2001)[2] was an officer with Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, in the 101st Airborne Division of the United States Army during World War II. He took part in D-Day and Operation Market Garden.

Heyliger was portrayed in the HBO miniseries Band of Brothers by Stephen McCole.

Youth[]

Heyliger was born in Concord, Massachusetts, a small suburban town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts.[3] Heyliger worked as a farm hand throughout his youth, he completed high school and went to college.[4] Heyliger completed three years of college where he served with the Army National Guard.[4] On November 25, 1940, he enlisted in the Air Corps (USAAC) and trained as an aviation cadet before entering and graduating from Officer Candidate School.[4] In 1941, when the USAAC was abolished as an organization and transformed into a branch subordinate to the U.S. Army Air Forces (USAAF), Heyliger transferred to the US Army and volunteered for the Paratroopers where he was eventually assigned to Easy Company.[4]

Military service[]

After Richard Winters was promoted to Battalion XO, First Lieutenant Heyliger took command of Easy Company from Winters' first replacement because that man failed to measure up.[5][6] As First Lieutenant, Heyliger was in command of Easy Company during Operation Pegasus on October 23, 1944 and oversaw the rescue and evacuation of the some of the British 1st Airborne Division that were still stranded on the German side of the line after the failed Operation Market Garden across the Rhine.[7][8] After the successful rescue of 138 men from the British 1st Airborne Division, for which he received the British Military Cross, he was accidentally shot by one of his own men, a nervous new replacement, on October 31, 1944 while on patrol and talking with Richard Winters about commanding Easy Company.[9] He then underwent skin and nerve grafts before being discharged in February 1947.[10]

Later years[]

After Heyliger returned home to Massachusetts, he enrolled at the University of Massachusetts and graduated in 1950 with a degree in ornamental horticulture.[10] He married in 1964, to a woman named Mary. Heyliger died in 2001 in Concord, Massachusetts, at the age of 85.[3]

References[]

  1. DeAngelis, Frank. "Heyliger's shadowbox". http://www.frankdeangelis.com/Captain%20Fred%20Heyliger.htm. Retrieved 2009-10-06. 
  2. Social Security Death Index record
  3. 3.0 3.1 Social Security Death Index SSN 384-01-8932
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 WWII Army Enlistment Records: on-line NARA Archival Database
  5. Ambrose (1992), p.154.
  6. Ambrose (1992), p.157.
  7. Malarkey (2008), p.137.
  8. Ambrose (1992), p.162.
  9. Ambrose (1992), pp.161-162.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Ambrose (1992), pp.296-297.

Bibliography[]

  • Ambrose, Stephen E. (1992). Band of Brothers: Easy Company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne from Normandy to Hitler's Eagle's Nest. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 978-0-7434-6411-6. 
  • Malarkey, Donald G., with Bob Welch (2008). Easy Company Soldier: The Legendary Battles of a Sergeant from World War II's "Band of Brothers". St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-0-312-37849-3. 

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