Posted on December 27th, 2016 by:

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By Sgt. Dale Kramer

YANK Staff Correspondent

LUZON, THE PHILIPPINES—None of the Form 20s in the files of the 90th Ordnance Heavy Maintenance Company (Tank) say anything about dogs, but probably army classification never managed to get together a more thoroughgoing outfit of dog fanciers. Dogs owned or attached for rations and quarters at one time or another during the 90th’s 28 months in New Caledonia, Bougainville, and Luzon total nearly 50. There would have been more except that the 90th does not like a dog very well unless he is a character.

Take Dud, a gum-chewing, beer-drinking, but nevertheless intellectual dog who is able to answer to remarks in Tagalog, Spanish, English and probably Japanese. Dud joined up on Luzon with the 102d Bomb Disposal Squad, which is attached to the 90th.

11th airborne division luzon war dog

“Jumper” the war dog says good by to 11th Airborne Division paratrooper George Vespa before he jumps into Luzon.

There is some reason to believe that Dud is sorry for his choice. His obviously delicate and already frayed nerves are not benefitted by going around with people who slip up behind untrustworthy bombs.  Nowadays Dud’s face carries a perpetual worried expression. Great wrinkles furrow his forehead and the space between his eyes is cut by steep gullies.

The biggest dog the 90th possesses is Chico, an enormous, deep-chested black character evidently part German police. Acquired back in New Caledonia, he is owned by T-5 John Matuszak of Philadelphia. Chico is a great fighter, but he is an even greater lover.

Sometimes after months of quiet brooding he disappears and for a week the air of the countryside is rent with the indignant roars of respectable dogs trying to defend their homes, of the rapacious bellows of Chico, and the delighted whimpering of females.

The 90th is rather proud of the virtue of a brown and white Australian shepherd, or shepherdess named Queenie. One night in New Caledonia someone got drunk and next morning when he emptied his pockets it turned out he’d acquired a pup somewhere. It was Queenie.

When the 90th landed at Lingayen on D-plus-two, Queenie met a flashy character named Henry, a rat terrier, and the result was six pups.

“Queenie is all right,” Sgt. Blood says, looking at her a little sadly, “except she’s a pushover for rat terriers.”

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