L to R: VFW Post Commander Paul Whytsell, Tech
4 Junior Godfrey and vet's representative Paul Thomas
It has been a while since Laymon Junior Godfrey saw the battlefield's of
western Europe, in the great war against Hitler and his Nazi's.
He left his country-boy life in 1943 to join the U. S. Army, to re-enlist in 1945
for two more years after victory was declared.
"We do not know exactly why, but Tech 4 Godfrey never got the medals due
him," said VFW Post Commander Paul Whytsell.
The 78-year-old soldier finally got his due Friday morning. In a quiet
ceremony at the Calhoun Courthouse, VA representative Paul Thomas and
Whytsell simply said "These belong to you Junior."
Medals like Army of Occupation and the Victory Medal.
There must have been a hundred tales and graphic pictures in Junior
Godfrey's memory, but with muted voice and misty eyes, he just said "Thank
"I do remember the cold feet, wet back and c-rations," he said. "I remember
riding behind in an ammo truck and seeing the Sergeants arm, sticking from
a truck window, being shot off by a 20mm."
"There were times dust popped on my pant-legs from gunfire." He said "I
remember that well."
Junior's mom and dad, Laymon and Mary Smith Godfrey, had five sons and
three daughters. His living siblings, Wanda Kelley and Donald Godfrey of Grantsville.
His deceased brothers are, Dolan,George and Paul; his deceased
sisters are, Delta Hayhurst and Gladys Hoskins.
"It has been an honor to know this old soldier," said Commander Whytsell,
"and recognize him for his service to America."
Godfrey, 82, passed away June 17, 2007.
Born in Calhoun County, he was a son of the late Laymon and Mary Smith Godfrey. He was a carpenter and was a US Army Veteran of WWII serving in Rhineland and Central Europe.