Wesley D. Glassell
U. S. Army
WWII US Military
Dates of Service: 08/04/1943 - 01/1946
Heavy Equipment Operator , 365th Combat Engineer Regiment

Wesley was born in Shreveport, Louisiana in 1925 to Ashton and Wesley Glassell. He and his two sisters were raised during the Depression and although times were hard he had a wonderful childhood. His father's construction company was involved in building Barksdale Field, the Caddo Parish Courthouse, the Municipal Auditorium and England Air Force Base in Alexandria, Louisiana. Wesley graduated from Byrd High School and then Texas A&M a year before he went into the Army. Before the war he and his friends would go to the Washington-Youree Hotel and watch people dance on the roof top dance floor. Segregation was still common at that time and when Duke Ellington and his band played there they were only allowed to stay at a black owned hotel. Wesley later met with Duke Ellington in Chicago and talked about his time in Shreveport and the Public Safety Commissioner, George D'Artois. He entered the Army in 1943, volunteered to go overseas and after basic training at Camp Livingston outside of Fort Polk, sailed for England where he served in the 1271st Battalion, 365th Regiment, an engineering battalion. While he was overseas, the unit built Bailey Bridges, Pontoon Bridges and roads as well as doing other construction work. They were about three weeks too late for D-Day but they crossed the channel on a Higgins boat and landed at Omaha Beach in Normandy. There they excavated mines at Saint-Lo and then went to Le Havre and excavated land mines from that area. Wesley was in Brenner Pass when the war was over and he stayed in Bavaria near Augsburg, Germany where Dachau was located just outside of the city limits. On May 8th the war was officially over and the soldiers had a big party. Many of them went on to Paris and stayed at a hotel at the Port of Embarkation. From there they boarded a ship and headed for New York and from New York they were sent to Camp Fannin, Texas where Wesley was discharged in January of 1946. After college he opened the W. D. Glassell Construction Company specializing in the building of large metal buildings and warehouses. Wesley and his wife Laurie Schober were married in 1948 and had three children, John, Michael and Wesley, Jr., seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Wesley retired in 1995 and passed away in 2014.