1st Battalion 22nd Infantry

 

Longino Little

Company A 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry (Company Commander)

Company D 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry (Company Commander)

Headquarters Company 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry (Battalion S-3)

 

 

Longino Little

Photo courtesy of the Longino Little family via Jack Quine

 

 

Longino Little was born on November 17, 1915 in Milledgeville, Georgia.

He attended the Georgia Military College at Milledgeville, completing High School and some college curriculum
after which he received a Commission in the Officers Reserve Corps as a 2nd Lieutenant.

In December 1941 he received orders for active duty and on January 3, 1942 he reported to Fort Benning, Georgia
where he took the Basic Officers Course at the Infantry School. Upon graduation from the course he was assigned
to the Infantry Replacement Training Center at Camp Croft, South Carolina as an instructor in small arms and demolitions.
He remained at Camp Croft for 18 months being promoted to 1st Lieutenant and then Captain.

He then returned to the Infantry School at Fort Benning as a student officer to undergo the Advanced Officers Course.
After graduating from that course he returned to Camp Croft for a short period. He was then assigned to the 63rd Infantry
Division at Camp Van Dorn, Mississippi. He assumed Command of Company A 253rd Infantry of the 63rd Infantry Division
and led the Company through training and field manuevers. On April 6, 1944 Little departed the United States bound for
the European Theater of Operations as a replacement officer, arriving in England on April 20, 1944.

Captain Longino Little as Commander of Company A 253rd Infantry 63rd Infantry Division
at Camp Van Dorn, Mississippi 1944. Little departed for the European Theater of Operations
on April 6, 1944 so this photo was taken prior to that date.

Photo from the 63rd Infantry Division website

 

 

As casualties mounted in the 4th Infantry Division in the days immediately following D-Day Little was sent across the
English Channel to France on June 12 and assigned to 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry on June 13. He was temporarily placed in the
position of Battalion S-2 Officer and on June 17 was assigned as a reserve officer for Company D. On June 21 he was given
command of Company A which had been scattered and had their advance broken by enemy artillery. He reorganized Company A
and led them in the continuation of their attack. By June 25 Little had been given command of Company D,
the heavy weapons Company for 1st Battalion.

He commanded Company D in the attack against the airfield at Maupertus and the drive toward Cherbourg. During this time
he was wounded by shrapnel and received his first Purple Heart Medal.

On July 14 Little was assigned to Battalion Headquarters as Battalion S-3 Operations Officer. On or about that date he was tasked
with gathering information about the disposition of 1st Battalion units and enemy units on the battlefield. Leading a small group of
soldiers Little moved along the front lines under continuous enemy fire and completed his mission even though German artillery
landed dangerously close wounding one of the men in his group. For his actions over the period July 10 to July 16 he was
awarded the Bronze Star Medal.

 


Citation for the award of the Bronze Star Medal to Captain Longino Little.
Little was awarded this medal in 4th Infantry Division General Orders # 89 dated December 6, 1944.

Courtesy of the Longino Little family via Jack Quine

 

 

Captain Longino Little (far right) with the 22nd Infantry "somewhere in France" 1944.

Photo courtesy of the Longino Little family via Jack Quine

 

 

Little continued in his position as Battalion S-3 through the battle for Perriers, the breakout from St. Lô,
the race across France and through Paris and the advance into Belgium. In the second week of September 1944
the 22nd Infantry made its first penetration into Germany and met formidable resistance at the Siegfried Line
in the area around Brandscheid and Sellerich.

Company A was ordered to attack on the morning of September 17 through an open area and came under withering fire from
German artillery, mortars and automatic weapons. Suffering heavy casualties Company A was cut off and communication between
the Company and Battalion Headquarters was lost. When the Battalion Commander Major Robert Latimer prepared to move
to the scene of the action to re-estabish communications with Company A, Little convinced him to remain in command
at Headquarters and offered to go in his place.

Captain Little was crossing the dangerously open area between Headquarters and Company A's position accompanied by
a couple of enlisted men as runners when he was struck in the shoulder by enemy machine gun fire. He ordered his runners
to the rear before they too could become casualties, and in preparing to leave the field himself was struck again, as many as
four more times. He lay on the battlefield pinned down and unable to move for a time until American artillery fire provided him
with a chance to head back toward the safety of the American lines. He moved back some distance and found cover in a shellhole
for a bit until he decided to negotiate the remaining distance to where the 1st Battalion and their tank support was concealed
in the safety of the woods. Unknown to him a patrol had been formed to undertake his rescue and it had been moving about
the battlefield looking for him when he made his way back to where he could receive medical aid.

Little was taken to an aid station then a field hospital and finally to a general hospital in Paris, eventually being sent to hospitals
in England. His wounds were deemed too serious for return to front line duty and he was shipped back to the United States
aboard the Queen Mary arriving in New York on March 11, 1945.

 

Captain Longino Little's name as entered in the Casualty List of the After Action Report of the 22nd Infantry
for the month of September 1944. The SWA indicates Seriously Wounded in Action.

Courtesy of John Tomawski

 

 

 

Major Longino Little's decorations.

Top: Combat Infantryman Badge

Center row left to right: Bronze Star Medal with oak leaf cluster (to denote two awards of this medal),
Purple Heart Medal with oak leaf cluster (to denote two awards of this medal), American Campaign Medal,
European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with three bronze service stars (to denote the Normandy,
Northern France and Rhineland campaigns), World War II Victory Medal

Bottom row left to right: Officer rank insignia of Major, Presidential Unit Citation, Honorable Service Lapel Button,
Squad Drill Award from the Georgia Military College named to Longino Little with date of 1934.

As a member of the 4th Infantry Division he also earned the Belgian Fourragere.

 

 

 

Little remained in the Army on convalescent duty at various hospitals in New York, Georgia and Florida
and on sick leave for the remainder of 1945. The extent of his wounds made him ineligible for full time duty
and on December 31, 1945 he was retired from the Army with the rank of Captain. A few years later he
was promoted to the rank of Major.

Little went to work for the Veterans Administration and later accepted a position as a civilan employee
with the United States Air Force.

He died on October 19, 1982 and is buried in West View Cemetery, Milledgeville, Baldwin County, Georgia.

 

 

Longino Little being presented with an award upon his retirement
from civilian employment at Warner Robbins Air Force Base.

Photo courtesy of Jack Quine

 

 

 

Grave marker for Major Longino Little

Photo by Jack Johnson from the Find A Grave website

 

 

In his wartime letters home to his wife and and in a series of recorded tapes made later in his life
Longino Little provided a wealth of historical information concerning the day to day events of the 22nd Infantry
Regiment in World War II as it moved across France and Belgium and into Germany from June - September 1944.

His letters home reveal detailed descriptions of the experiences of the Regiment in the Normandy campaign
and give personal insight about the life of an Infantry Officer during the campaign. His observations concerning
leaders of his Battalion and other officers he worked with are candid and add a lot to our understanding of their
personalities. His writings add detail and substance to the entries recorded in the 22nd Infantry After Action Reports
of the activities of the Regiment during those first months on the European Continent.

The tapes recorded by Little give his biography and his memories of his experiences as an Army Officer leading up to
his assignment to the 22nd Infantry. In those tapes he recounts actions he was involved in with 1st Battalion
22nd Infantry and together with his letters home Little has added significantly to the wartime history of our Battalion and
Regiment. Among the many legacies of Longino Little is his incredibly valuable account of the 22nd Infantry during WWII.

These letters and recordings of Longino Little have been transcribed and presented on a website by Little's nephew Jack Quine
as a tribute to a gallant soldier and a beloved Uncle. To view the extensive biography of Longino Little and to read the immensely
detailed history of his wartime service with 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry click on the link below:

 

The Longino Little letters and tapes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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