17th Armored Engineer Battalion in World War 2

17th Engineers during World War Two

Charles W Mantha - Roll of Honor

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Charles W Mantha

Unit: 17 Engr Bn 2nd Armd Div, Company C Rank: CorporalBorn: 02/07/1912
Photo of Charles W Mantha

Biographical Info

CPL Charles W. Mantha Headstone

Sayville War Memorial – Wide View

Sayville War Memorial Marker – Center Ground Panel

Location grave Corporal Charles W Mantha at the Saint Lawrence Martyr Roman Catholic Cemetery, New york:

Where was  Corporal Charles W Mantha killed in action?

Phase: Phase II – Breeching the Siegfried Line

The 2nd Armored Division was active on the Rhineland Campaign, at the 2nd phase, called “Breeching the Siegfriedline”.
The companys from the 17th Armored Engineer Battalion were assigned to different Combat Commands, A, B ,C and D, between the 3rd and 7th October they were located at the Palenberg -Ubach area in Germany.
On 3  October the tanks with the Company “C” 17th Engineers moved from Palenberg to Ubach and advanced to the North to capture Pillboxes, Command Posts were set up in the neutralized pillboxes. During this time the heaviest enemy artillery  and mortar fire yet experienced was coming in, naturally resulted in casualties and slaughterd animals.
On 5 October Company “B” moved with the main body through the east of Ubach, destroying numerous enemy weapons and using tankdozer to cover pillboxes.
Engineer platoons set up minefields in forward locations, wire- an boobytraps at the forward tankpositions. Company A moved with CC “A” into the area near Ubach on October 7 and some platoons went with the forward tanks into the frontlines. Remaining platoons checked roads for mines, none were found until 10th of October.

(Source: 17th Armored Engineer Battalion Unit History)




Corparal Charles W Mantha was assinged to Company C, as we can read in the Gravestone Application Card. We know that Company C moved with the Armored Units from Palenberg to Ubach.
They advanced to the North, Captured CP’s and Pillboxes were the set up. They were batterd with artillery and Mortar barrages and caused heavy casualties.


Location where Corporal Charles W Mantha  was killed in action:





Newspaper Article about the death of Corporal Charles W Mantha

Mantha CPL Charles W. Article newspaper

Mantha CPL Charles W. Article newspaper


Transcribed version:


Mantha dies in action in German battle

Veteran of 2Invations was previously wounded


Corporal Technician Charles W. Matha, 31 years old, only son of Mr and Mrs Charles F. Mantha of North Main Street Sayville, and veteran of the African and Sicilian campaigns whas killed in action somewhere in Germany on October 5th.
Word of their loss was received by Mr and Mrs Mantha on Tuesday when a telegram from the War Department reached them. While no confirmation is possible, it is believed Corporal Mantha lost his life at Aachen with the 2nd Armored Division which is popularly known as Hell on Wheels. He had been in Germany for 3 weeks previous to October 5th. Having fought his way through Belgium and Holland. His last letter to his family was dated September 29th. Corporal Mantha was the owner of the Purple Heart, that order having been bestowed upon him in August after he had suffered two bullet wounds in his shoulder while engaged in combat in France on August 10th. A tough fighting men who have been on the initial D day landings on the coast of France, he made a quick recovery from his injuries, and returned to active duty on September 3rd. Inducted into the army on March 9th 1942 Corporal Mantha was soon assigned to the engineers and placed in the 2nd Armored Division which took part in the invasion of France Morocco in November, 1942. He was in Casablanca for a time but when the preparations for the push through Sicily started, he moved on to do his part in the tough Campaign. In December of last year he was shipped to England to get ready for the invasion of France and on D-Day in June moved across the Channel. His division earnt fame and glory in the attack on St. Lo when it broke the German Line. Before being  shipped overseas, Corporal Mantha spend some time at Camp Dix as instructor,  as he did at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. Before his induction corporal Mantha was a light maintenance Foreman for the New York State Highway Department, but have a position in the United States post office awaiting him upon his return to this country, having passed a civil service examination with a rating of 96 and 2/3. He was a graduate of st. Laurence Parochial school and off Sayville High School where he was active in sports. He was a communicant of st. Lawrence R. C. Church of Sayville, where he served as an Usher; a member of the local knights of Columbus Council, and of the Holy Name Society. A requiem mass for the dead soldier will be sung by the Rev. Raymond J Smith in St. Lawrence on Monday morning at 9 o’ clock. Besides his bereaved parents he leaves two sisters, Mrs William Harrer of Livingstone Lane, Bellport, and Miss Evelyn Mantha of Sayville.

(Transcribed by Martijn Brandjes)







Official casualty list

Official casualtylist detail

Official casualtylist detail

Official casualtylist

Official casualtylist


Headstone Application Card

Mantha CPL Charles W. Headstone Application Card

Mantha CPL Charles W. Headstone Application Card

(Note; date of Death is the year 1944, not 1945)

Charles W Mantha

United States Headstone Applications for U.S. Military Veterans, 1925-1949

Name: Charles W Mantha
Event Type: Burial
Event Place: Sayville, , , United States
Death Date: 05 Oct 1945


The location of the house in the year where Charles W Mantha lived with the family, as an 27 year old “ Highway Laborar”:
Adress:  316 North Mainstreet, Sayville, New York, United States

US Sensus 1940

Charles Mantha

United States Census, 1940
Name Charles Mantha
Event Type Census
Event Date 1940
Event Place Islip Town, Suffolk, New York, United States
Gender Male
Age 27
Marital Status Single
Race White
Race White
Relationship to Head of Household Son
Relationship to Head of Household Son
Birthplace New York
Birth Year (Estimated) 1913
Last Place of Residence Same House
Charles Mantha Head M 60 New York
Margaret Mehigan  Mantha Wife F 58 Ireland
Helen Mantha Daughter F 29 New York
Charles Mantha Son M 27 New York
Evelyn Mantha Daughter F 25 New York

Charles W Mantha works as a “Laborer in the Highway Company”



Enlistment details

Charles W Mantha

United States World War II Army Enlistment Records
Name Charles W Mantha
Event Type Military Service
Event Date 09 Mar 1942
Term of Enlistment Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Event Place Cp Upton, Yaphank, New York, United States
Race White
Citizenship Status citizen
Birth Year 1912
Birthplace NEW YORK
Education Level 2 years of high school
Civilian Occupation Semiskilled chauffeurs and drivers, bus, taxi, truck, and tractor
Marital Status Single, without dependents
Military Rank Private
Army Branch Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Army Component Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source Reference Civil Life
Serial Number 32224677
Affiliate ARC Identifier 1263923
Box Film Number 04832.147







Research © by: Martijn Brandjes
Text © by: Martijn Brandjes
Photos © by: Findagrave.com, familysearch.org


Categories: 17 Engr Bn 2nd Armd Div - C Company