Jack Werner

Vienna, Austria
U.S. Army Sergeant
PACIFIC THEATER: Attu, Kwajalein, Leyte Gulf, Okinawa
RANK & DIVISION: Entered as a Private, earned stripes after Kwajalein. 1st Sergeant, Army 7th Infantry, 13th Combat Engineers, H and S Company

A politically aware Jewish émigré, Jack fled from Austria after Hitler took over the country. His real name is Hans Werner, but when he arrives in America he changes it to Jack. “Hans just sounded far too German, and I certainly didn’t want that.” Jack enlists in the U.S. Army months before Pearl Harbor, determined to fight the fascism that forced him from his home. But once he enlists, his distinctly European views about obedience and leadership cause him to see many American troops as “undisciplined” and he is stunned by other soldiers’ open criticism of military leaders. As he enters the Pacific theater to fight against the Japanese he realizes his “undisciplined” fellow soldiers are also fiercely independent, a trait that he comes to respect.