(Charlie) Ronald Choate
This was my Uncle that I never
really knew. Uncle Ronald was always a quiet man. He was big and scary
to me as a kid, Iím sorry to say, that I was just too young to ask him
the questions, I now regret not having asked. People say that bad people
lurk on the internet, but Iím here to say, it has opened doors for me
that would never have opened in any other way.
When my wife and I bought our
first computer in 1999. I logged into the
Ranger Family website. When I did, it opened
a door into my Uncleís life that even my mother and her mother, my
Grandmother, Blanche Choate, had no knowledge of.
With just one note left on the
Ranger Family website guest book requesting contact from anyone who knew
my Uncle, I received a reply from Ranger Jim Harris, who in the
following three years, until his passing in 2002, shared his personal
experiences and times he shared with my
Transferring from the paratroops
into the Rangers at Nemours, North Africa, Tech. Sgt Choate proved his
worth from the Sicily invasion to Anzio. At Cisterna Italy, time ran out
for Col. Darby's men. He was captured and held as a POW at Stalag 2B
until he was moved to a forced labor farm in Northern Germany.
As the news of the Ranger
disaster at Cisterna was making the newspapers back in the States, my
Grandmother refused to believe her son, Ronnie, had perished. As the war
neared its climax, and the Russians got ever closer, his German captors
forced marched the prisoners across Germany until Uncle Ronald was able
to just walk way.
Uncle Ronald died in Santa Ana
California in 1978 and is buried at Fairhaven Cemetery.