Corsicana Daily Sun
Odell Green, 89, of Cedar Creek Lake passed away Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013, at East Texas Medical Center in Athens.
He was born Feb. 4, 1924, in Bullard, to parents, George Washington and Mattie Inez Green.
He grew up at the Texas State’s Orphan Home in Corsicana. On April 11, 1942, at the age of 17, he enlisted in the Army. At the end of his basic training, he applied for the paratrooper school which paid $50 a month additional for jumping. His application for jump school was approved subject to his gaining three pounds while en route from California to Fort Benning, Ga. He left California with a big sack of bananas and a bad thirst for water and he arrived at Fort Benning weighing 130 pounds, which was just what he needed to be approved. After completing the rugged paratrooper training, he was sent to Alabama for instruction in the delicate handling of demolition. He was then assigned to the 505th Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division, located in Fort Bragg, S.C. On April 20, 1943, the division left Fort Bragg for the combat zone. They arrived in North Africa for more training. He traveled throughout many countries with his buddies of the 82nd Airborne. He was one of 12 who started with the division and went all the way through the war and was with the division at the end. He was wounded two times, made four major jumps, 11 river or beachheads, six campaigns, in Sicily, Naples-Foggia, Normandy, Central Europe, Ardennes, and the Rhineland. His campaign Medal has seven Bronze Stars and one Bronze Arrowhead. He was also awarded the Bronze Star medal for Meritorious Achievement in Ground Operations against the enemy. He received a Letter of Commendation from the regimental commander. The 82nd AA received the Dutch order of Willem; French Fourragere; Parachutists wings with four combat jump stars and a Presidential Citation.
He also was awarded two purple hearts.
He would later tell his good friend, Hank Wyatt, the story behind the bombing of Phoenix City, Ala. After the war, he came home and became the owner of a dry-cleaning business. Later, he and his wife Joy owned and operated a beauty salon for 15 years. After that time, he became a salesman, then sales manager for Tom White’s Chevrolet. Throughout his life, he had many colorful adventures and friends. One of Joy’s favorite stories about Odell is that he left home one day to join his buddies for a day of bird hunting. Hour by hour went by and he still had not returned home. Late into the night, he returned home with his bounty. Joy was expecting a sack full of birds, instead he handed her a bag of frozen frog legs. Joy and Odell were married for 67 years. He celebrated his 89th birthday on Feb. 4. He loved his family, friends, and everybody will miss him.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and a brother, C.R. Green.
Survivors include his wife of 67 years, Joy Green; daughter, Sheila Herod and husband Robert of Corsicana; son, George Green and wife Donna of Corsicana; granddaughters, Erika Franklin and April Loewe and husband Heath; grandsons, Jason and Matthew Herod; great grandchildren, Tristan Jace Herod, Brantley Loewe, Madison Franklin, Mason Franklin, and Ryland Franklin; numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Graveside services were held at 11 a.m. Monday, Feb. 11, 2013 at Oakwood Cemetery with Bro. Bill Honea officiating. Interment with military honors followed the service.
An online guestbook is available at www.corleyfuneralhome.com by selecting the Odell Green obituary.
Arrangements by Corley Funeral Home, Corsicana.