Short biographies of veterans who received the French Legion of Honor on Nov 14th 2018
Raoul Jacques DeLier
Raoul Jacques [pronounced Jack] DeLier [pronounced duh-leer] was born on July 10, 1919 in Minot, North Dakota to French Canadian and Irish parents. As a young child he lived in several upper Mid-Western cities and graduated from Holy Name Grade School in Omaha, Nebraska in 1933. He then went to Creighton Preparatory, a Jesuit High School, also in Omaha, Nebraska and graduated in 1937. While at Creighton Preparatory, he served as student council president and participated in many sport activities.
After high school, Jacques attended the University of Oklahoma and then enlisted in the Army Air Corps and was called to active duty in November, 1941. After graduating from navigation school, Jacques was assigned as an instructor with the 335th Bomb Group stationed at Barksdale Field, Shreveport, Louisiana, preparing replacement crews for overseas duty. Jacques was married to Barbara Ann Wilkinson in April, 1942. In October, 1943 Jacques was assigned to the 394th Bomb Group, Battle Creek, Michigan, and prepared for active duty.
Jacques’ group initially flew missions out of the south of England. On a mission over Normandy on June 13, 1944, Jacques and two of his crew members were wounded but continued and completed their mission. Jacques’ group was moved to Normandy in August of 1944 and then to Orleans and eventually to Cambrai, France.
In the course of the war, Jacques completed 65 combat missions as lead navigator flying B-26 Bombers as part of the 586th Squadron of the 394th Bomb Group. At the time of his discharge from service, Jacques had obtained the rank of Captain.
For his service in WWII, Jacques has been awarded the Purple Heart, the Air Medal with 12 Oak Leaf Clusters and 2 Bronze Leaf Clusters, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with 4 bronze stars, the ETO Ribbon, 4 Battle Stars, the American Defense Ribbon and a Presidential Unit Citation.
The 394th Bomb Group in which Jacques served was awarded the Croix de Guerre with Palm by the French government.
After the war, Jacques worked for Universal Motion Pictures as a sales account executive. In 1954 he joined KWTV, a CBS affiliate, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. He retired as President of Griffin Television, Inc., the owner of KWTV, in 1982. After his retirement, Jacques was involved in several civic organizations including President of the Oklahoma Air and Space Museum, President of the Better Business Bureau and as a Trustee of St. Gregory’s College in Shawnee, Oklahoma. Barbara DeLier passed away in 2004. He has two children : Michael John DeLier and Michelin Ann Hobbs, three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Joe Guerrero spent his first year in the military with the 45th Infantry Division while training in the United States. Joe landed on Utah Beach in Normandy, France on 6 June, 1944 as part of the Allied invasion of Europe. A month later, Joe and his comrades fought to liberate the Port of Brest. Joe provided both ground and air communications as a Communication Specialist and Lineman. Joe’s service took him to Belgium, where his unit came under attack in the action known as “the Battle of the Bulge.” He saw service in Holland, where he was wounded by a sniper while checking communications lines, and in Germany, where Americans joined with Russian forces at the River Elbe in April, 1945. Joe returned to France, where he was assigned Military Police duties before his return to the United States in December 1945.
For his military service Joe Guerrero was awarded
the American Campaign Medal
the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with three Bronze Service Stars
the World War II Victory Medal
the Honorable Service Lapel Button World War II
the Good Conduct Medal, and
the Marksman Badge with Rifle Bar
After Joewas separated from service he went to work at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and retired in 1988.
Joe is the son of Joe Guerrero, Sr. and Patricia Elias, and husband of Grace Torres. Here today are his son Steve, grandson Steve Junior, and great-grandson Steven III, along with several nieces, nephews and friends.