Vince was born on March 23, 1925 to Frank and Frances Speranza in the Hells Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan, New York. He grew up on Staten Island in a large and extended Italian family during the depression. He also had three brothers (Rocco, Joseph, and Albert) and four sisters (Nancy, Frances, Concetta, and Rosemarie). He graduated from high school in January 1943 and enrolled at the City College of New York.
Vince went to the draft board after he had turned eighteen. He was drafted into the United States Army on October 25, 1943 and officially entered the service on November 15, 1943. He was sent to Camp Upton in New York where he stayed until he was sent to Fort Benning in Georgia where he trained for the Infantry with the 87th Infantry Division. He volunteered for the Parachute Infantry and was sent back to Fort Benning for training. He was sent overseas with Company H, 3rd Battalion, 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division from Camp Shanks on board the Queen Mary. His unit arrived in France and would later fight in the Battle of the Bulge.
Life after the war
Vince married Iva Leftwich in 1948 and they would go on to have a daughter and a son. Iva passed away on March 6, 2017.
Awards and decorations
- Combat Infantryman Badge
- Parachutist Badge
- Bronze Star Medal
- Purple Heart
- Army Good Conduct Medal
- American Campaign Medal
- European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with 2 campaign stars
- World War II Victory Medal
- French Croix de Guerre
- Legion of Honour
- Presidential Unit Citation with Oak leaf cluster
- Honorary medal in bronze, gemeente (Municipality of) Nuenen, Gerwen en Nederwetten