Picture courtesy of Fred Holub.


Technical Sergeant
Libor "Lee" J. Holub

U. S. Army Air Forces
Ser. #
6260790

December 18, 1915 - March 24, 1944
Guardian Angel Catholic Cemetery
Wallis, Austin County, Texas

Gold Star Mother
Frances Pisklak Holub
 



Technical Sergeant Lee Holub's crew picture.
(Thomson crew on upper left)
 


Staff Sergeant Libor “Lee” James Holub, U.S. Army Air Forces [December 18, 1915 – March 24, 1944] was born to Vincent “Vinc” Ludwick Holub [January 21, 1886 – December 14, 1951] and Frances “Grandma” (Pisklak) Holub [April 30, 1888 – January 23, 1967] at Wallis, Austin County, Texas. Lee had served a three year prior enlistment and had been in the Army Reserves for three months when he was recalled to active duty. Before going overseas he was in the Aerial Engineer Corps as an instructor stationed at Alexandria Army Air Base, Alexandria, LA. At the time of his death he was assigned to the 532nd Bombardment Squadron (Very Heavy), 381st Bombardment Group (Heavy), 8th Air Force as a Flight Engineer.  His unit consisted of B-17 bombers and was stationed at Ridgewell Air Base, (Station 167) Ridgewell, England. On March 24th, 1944, returning from a bomb run to Schweinfurt, Germany, the aircraft he was in was struck from below by another aircraft. Group Intelligence had received a report to the effect: “Coming off the target the weather became very cloudy and misty. It was very difficult to fly in formation, and through no fault of his own, Lieutenant Harrington’s plane got caught up in the slip stream of his leader. It forced him upward and into the element above where he collided with Lieutenant Thompson’s (spelling variant:
Thomson’s) ship (this was the plane Lee was on). Thompson's ship crashed almost immediately, while Lieutenant Harrington's plane lost his number four engine and the tip of his right wing.  LT Thompson's aircraft crashed near Volkershausen, Germany. Six of the crew members were killed, two survived (1 taken POW, fate of the other unknown) and two were missing. Lee was first buried at the city cemetery of Volkershausen. At the end of the war his remains were recovered and re-interred at Saint Avold Cemetery, Metz, France. In 1949, upon the request of his parents, his remains were repatriated to the United States. The funeral mass was held at Guardian Angel Catholic Church in Wallis, TX, officiated by his brother Father Benjamin Holub, and assisted by the pastor of the church, Father A. Nesvadba. He was buried in the Guardian Angel Catholic Cemetery. Lee had participated in 23 combat missions over Germany and was among the bomber group that made the first attack on Berlin*. He had been awarded the Air Medal with three oak leaf clusters and the Purple Heart.  Survivors included his parents:  Vincent and Frances; sister: 1st Lieutenant Beatrice Holub Lambert [1981] USA NC; and brothers:  Rev. Benjamin Vincent [1966], Fred Paul and William Joseph [1954] Holub. He was preceded in death by his sister, Georgia, in 1932 and brother, Arnold Paul, in 1935. His parents were living in Bay City, Texas at the time of his death.

 

*This was the first daylight attack, the RAF had been bombing Berlin for several years at night. On March 6, 8 and 9, 1944, over 700 heavy bombers from the Eighth Air Force along with 800 escort aircraft made the first daylight bombing runs on Berlin. Altogether, the Eighth Air Force dropped over 4,800 tons of high explosive bombs on Berlin during the first week in March.


 


Lt. Beatrice Holub and Brother Are In Army Together For Victory

The Tribune is glad to learn of a second brother-sister team from Matagorda county in service with the armed forces of the United States, this team entering the war even earlier than the Drake brother-sister team, according to William Holub, their brother.

Another brother and sister whose common aim now is working for victory are 1st Lt. Beatrice Holub and her brother, Staff Sergeant Lee Holub. Lt. Holub is at Station hospital, Aviation Cadet Center, San Antonio. She was taken into the Army Nurses' Corps in January, 1943, after graduating from St. Joseph's Nurses' Training School in Houston and doing six months of advanced work in San Antonio.

S/Sgt. Holub is in the aerial engineer corps as instructor, stationed at Alexandria, La. Following a three-year enlistment more than five years ago, he came home and was in the Army reserve for three months before being called back to a stretch of service that has covered two and a half years.

Parents of these young people are Mr. and Mrs. Vincent Holub of Bay City.

Incidentally, William Holub states that in his particular family there are three brothers-in-law in the service: Pvt. Louis Hickl, who has seen foreign service; Pvt. Edward Hickl, believed to be in the Far East probably China, and Pvt. Jessie Hickl, now in training at Victoria. They are the sons of Mr. and Mrs. John Hickl, Sr. of Elmaton, Texas.

The Daily Tribune, October 1943
 


Libor J. Holub Is Missing In Action Over Germany

Vincent L. Holub of Bay City was informed Monday by the Secretary of War in Washington, D. C., that his son, T/Sgt Libor J. Holub, has been reported missing in action over Germany since March 24.

The Daily Tribune, April 10, 1944
 


COLLISION MAY BE REASON CRASH LEE HOLUB CREW

The event which caused the War Department to inform the parents of Lee Holub of this city that he was missing in action as of March 24, 1944, appears to have been a collision in the air of two Allied planes. Tuesday his family received a letter from a lad who had been a member of the crew until he was hospitalized by an accident. It was written to Rev. Ben Holub of Cameron, Texas, brother of Lee. It reads in part:

Dear Father Holub ― I want to say that first, if anything unavoidable happened, those fellows were prepared to meet their Maker. There were four of us in the crew that always made it a point to receive God in Holy Communion before each mission, the pilot, radio operator, Lee and myself. I guess that’s what made them the swell crew that they were. Every time they flew they had all the confidence in the world and even knowing what danger laid ahead of them, they were never the least bit afraid to meet the worst. I was certainly proud to be able to fly with fellows such as they.

March 7, which was the day after our first Berlin mission, my radio operator spilled a bucket of boiling water on my right leg and I was put in the hospital for 18 days. The rest of the fellows kept flying during that time and when I was released had 22 missions in. The very next day after I got back to the base (March 24) I saw them off on their mission and that was the last I saw of them.

After learning that they had not returned I inquired at Group Intelligence and received a report which ran similar to this:

“Coming off the target the weather became very cloudy and misty. It was very difficult to fly formation and through no fault of his own, Lieutenant Harrington’s plane got caught in the ship stream of his leader. It forced him upward and into the element above where he collided with Lieutenant Thompson’s ship ― the one my crew was in. Harrington’s ship split in two while Thompson lost his number four engine and the tip of his right wing. He dropped some distance back from the formation but still had the plane under control. When last seen, he was headed for cloud coverage and was on his way home.”

The writer of the letter, S/Sgt. Edward Lazarski, stationed in Italy, goes on to pay high tribute to the courage of the lost crew. He writes, “Have faith and, if it is God’s will, Lee will come back to you. If otherwise, your Mother and Dad can be proud that they have given their son to fight for what they think is right.”

He concludes the hopeful letter with the information that he has been spared to complete 48 missions.

In view of the fact that Lee’s plane was last seen seeking cloud coverage, his family and friends believe it might have been attacked by German planes in its crippled condition and so crashed. They have learned from various sources that some of the crew are dead and some are prisoners of war, while others still are unaccounted for except as “missing in action.”

The Daily Tribune, August 23, 1944
 


Father To Receive Awards Given To Missing Sergeant

Vincent L. Holub has been informed by the United States War Department that the air medal and two oak-leaf clusters, representing two additional awards of the same decoration, have been awarded his son, S/Sgt. Libor J. Holub who has been reported missing in action since early in 1944.

An officer of the Eighth Service Command, Dallas, will be named to present the awards in person to Sgt. Holub's father, according to the announcement from Brig. Gen. Robert H. Dunlop of the War Department.

The citation reads as follows:

"For exceptionally meritorious achievement, while participating in 15 separate bomber combat missions over enemy occupied Continental Europe. The courage, coolness and skill displayed by this enlisted man upon these occasions reflect great credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of the United States."

The Matagorda County Tribune, January 25, 1945
 


SGT. LEE HOLUB DIES IN GERMANY, CRASH VICTIM

The year-long period of waiting by the Holub family for definite word of their missing son, T/Sgt. Libor (Lee) J. Holub, ended this week when they received a letter from the U. S. War Department confirming the news of a preceding telegram that he died in the crash of his B-17 March 24, 1944, and was buried in a German cemetery at Volkershausen, Germany, the same day. The crash, it is learned occurred at 10:00 a.m. Burial was at 6:00 p.m.

A letter from the mother of the co-pilot of the B-17 in which Lee was aerial engineer states that six of the crew died in the crash and two escaped death, one of whom was taken prisoner, the fate of the other being unannounced. Two of those who died were identified but the others were not, and until the two missing men were located, the identity of the other four could not be ascertained. The intricate problem of identifying war casualties cleared itself a year after the crash and word comes that a son of Bay City has been sleeping in German soil for almost a year.

Mr. and Mrs. Vincent Holub, parents of Sgt. Holub, received his Air Medal Feb. 7 of this year.

The Daily Tribune
, March 9, 1945
 


KILLED IN ACTION

Mr. and Mrs. Vincent L. Holub, of Bay City have just received word from the War Department informing them that their son, T/Sgt. Libor J. Holub was killed in action, February 24, near Volkershausen, Germany.

He is survived by his parents and brothers and sisters.

Here is a copy of the letter received by Mr. Holub.

Mr. Vincent L. Holub, Route 2, Box 116, Bay City, Texas             

25 February 1945

Dear Mr. Holub:

It is with regret that I am writing to confirm the recent telegram informing you of the death of your son, Technical Sergeant Libor J. Holub, 6260790, Air Corps.

Your son was a member of the crew of a B-17 type aircraft, Flying Fortress, reported missing in action over Germany on 24 March 1944. The War Department has now received an official report which establishes the fact that you son was killed in action on 24 February 1944 as the result of the destruction of his plane near Volkershausen, Germany.

I know the sorrow this message has brought you and it is my hope that in time the knowledge of his heroic sacrifice in the service of his country may be of sustaining comfort.

I extend to you my deepest sympathy.        
J. A. ULIO,  Mayor General,  The Adjutant General

The Matagorda County Tribune, March 15, 1945
 

REBURIAL RITES FOR SGT. HOLUB WED. AT WALLIS




 

      Reburial rites for T-Sgt. Liber J. Holub, 28, who was killed in action of Germany, March 24, 1944, will be held Wednesday at Wallis, following services at Brenham in the Guardian Angel Catholic Church.

T-Sgt. Holub is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Vincent Holub of Brenham; three brothers, the Rev. Ben Holub of Marak, William J. Holub of Bay City, and Fred P. Holub of San Antonio; and one sister, Mrs. Jack L. Lambert of Stillwater, Okla.

Sgt. Holub was killed while serving in the 381st bomber group of the Eight Air Force. He had participated in 23 combat missions over Germany and was among the bomber group that made the first attack on Berlin. He had been awarded the air medal with three oak leaf clusters and the purple heart.     

The Matagorda County Tribune
, January 13, 1949



Technical Sergeant Holub
is recognized at
Guardian Angel Church
and Cemetery
on these three memorials.



Wallis Funeral For Mrs. Frances Holub

Mrs. Frances P. Holub, 78, passed away this morning at Matagorda General Hospital. Rosary will be at 7:0 p.m. tonight in the Taylor Brothers Funeral Chapel. A rosary will also be held at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Knesek And Sons Funeral Home in Wallis.

Mass will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday in Guardian Angel Catholic Church in Wallis and interment will follow in Guardian Angel Cemetery. Rev. C. J. Martin of Holy Cross Catholic Church in Bay City will officiate.

The wife of the late Vincent Holub and mother of the late Rev. Ben Holub of Sealy, Mrs. Holub is survived by one daughter, Mrs. Beatrice Lambert of Manhattan, Kansas, and one son, Fred Holub of Bay City; three sisters, Mrs. Louise Trlicik of LaGrange, Mrs. Mary Sulak of Rosenberg and Mrs. Annie H. Sliva of Bay City; one brother, Edward Pisklak of Houston; eight grandchildren and six great grandchildren.

Pallbearers will be Gilbert Sliva, Frank Sliva, Ed Pisklak, Johnny Siurk, Dan Sulak, Robert Polansky, Jr. Honorary pallbearers will be all of her nephews.

Mrs. Holub had been a resident of Bay City for the past 13 years. She was a member of the KJZT and KD, Gold Star Mothers and Legion of Mary Auxiliary Altar Society.

The Daily Tribune, January 23, 1967
 


Father of Wm. Holub Dies at Brenham

Mr. Vinc Holub, father of Mr. William Holub of this city, died at his home in Brenham early this morning following an illness of a few days.

Mr. William Holub has been at the bedside of his father for the past week. At the present time funeral arrangements are pending.

Mr. Vinc Holub, who was formerly a resident of Bay City, is survived by his wife, three sons, William of Bay City, Father Ben Holub of Marak, and Freddie Holub in the armed service; one daughter, Mrs. Beatrice Lambert of Manhattan, Kansas and five grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held at Wallis, Texas Monday 10:00 a.m.

The Daily Tribune, December 14, 1951
 


All cemetery pictures were taken at Guardian Angel Church and Cemetery, Wallis, Austin County, Texas
by
Kim Nichols and Grace Holtkamp.
 

 

Copyright 2006 - Present by Carol Sue Gibbs
All rights reserved

This page was created
Jan. 28, 2006
This page was updated
Feb. 6, 2009
   

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