Powers, Darrell, S/Sgt

Deceased
 
 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Staff Sergeant
Last Service Branch
Infantry
Last Primary MOS
745-Rifleman
Last MOS Group
Infantry (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1942-1945, 745, E Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment (PIR)
Service Years
1942 - 1945

Staff Sergeant


One Service Stripe



Five Overseas Service Bars


 Last Photo   Personal Details 

10 kb

Home State
West Virginia
West Virginia
Year of Birth
1923
 
This Military Service Page was created/owned by LTC Roger Gaines (Army Chief Admin) to remember Powers, Darrell ("Shifty"), S/Sgt.

If you knew or served with this Soldier and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
 
Contact Info
Home Town
Not Specified
Last Address
Clinchco

Date of Passing
Jun 17, 2009
 
Location of Interment
Temple Hill Cemetery - Castlewood, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

101st Airbone Division Belgian Fourragere Infantry Shoulder Cord Netherlands Orange Lanyard

Honorably Discharged WW II Meritorious Unit Commendation 1944-1961 French Fourragere


 Unofficial Badges 

Airborne




 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

E Company (3rd Platoon), 2nd Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division.
 "currahee!"



Darrell Cecil "Shifty"Powers was born in Clinchco, Dickenson County, Virginia and volunteered for the paratroopers with his good friend, "Popeye" Wynn. Shifty spent a great deal of time in the outdoors hunting game prior to joining the service. This would later prove useful as many of the skills he obtained helped him as a soldier.

Powers jumped into Normandy on D-Day, missing his drop zone. He eventually came in contact with Floyd Talbert and the two made their way to Easy Company. He participated in the assault of Carentan and every major battle Easy Co. was involved with until the end of the war. He was considered by many to be the best shot in the company.

Powers, a United States Army paratrooper and sharpshooter, belonged to Easy Company, part of the legendary 101st Airborne Division. He recalled a bitterly cold day in the Ardennes when he was able to draw down on a German sniper, sighting his target by the misty cloud of the man's breath. He killed him with one shot.

"Right there," he said, touching his forehead. "Between the eyes."

Because many men serving in the 101st lacked the minimum points required to return home, a lottery was put in place. Shifty Powers won this lottery and was set to return stateside. During the trip to the airfield, the vehicle Shifty was in was involved in an accident and Shifty was badly injured. He spent many months recuperating in hospitals overseas while his comrades in arms arrived home long before he did.

Darrell "Shifty" Powers was portrayed in the HBO miniseries Band of Brothers by Peter Youngblood Hills and appears in all 10 episodes.

He is listed as one of 20 men from Easy Company who contributed to the 2009 book We Who Are Alive and Remain: untold stories from the Band of Brothers, published by Penguin/Berkley-Caliber.

"Shifty" Powers died June 17, 2009, of natural causes in Dickenson County, Virginia

   
Other Comments:

AWARDS:
-Combat Infantry Badge 1st Award
-Combat Jump Wings 3 Combat Jumps
-Bronze Star (2
-American Campaign Medal
-European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal w/Arrow Head and 4 Campaign Stars
-World War II Victory Medal
-Presidential Unit Citation w/2 Palms

MOS: 745
ASN: 13066266
4 years of high school
Semiskilled machine shop and related occupations, n.e.c.
Single, without dependents
Enlisted in RICHMOND VIRGINIA , Infantry
Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Army of the United States - includes the following: Voluntary enlistments effective December 8, 1941 and thereafter; One year enlistments of National Guardsman whose State enlistment expires while in the Federal Service; Officers appointed in the Army of the United States under Army Regulations 605-10

 

His nick name is Shifty, and was a most amazing man. Even as a child Shifty would shine shoes so we would have money for 22 shells. He said he became such a good shot he could throw a coin and hit it, and thats probably true! He lived and worked in Norfolk, VA with "popeye" Wynn and they both signed up to the Paratroopers together. He went to Airborne school at Toccoa, GA and was placed in Easy Company, the best company in all the 101st. At Toccoa he was push, along with all the other men, doing the "three miles up, three miles down" run on currahee and doing countless marches and upon completion they would have to empty their canteens. The bond that Shifty and the other men had was one that most people will never have or understand, the men of Easy were beyond brothers! Shifty Powers made it thought the war Shifty has been and will always be an amazing Hero!

   
 Photo Album   (More...



WWII - European Theater of Operations/Ardennes Alsace Campaign (1944-45)/Battle of the Bulge
From Month/Year
December / 1944
To Month/Year
January / 1945

Description
The Battle of the Bulge (16 December 1944 – 25 January 1945) was a major German offensive campaign launched through the densely forested Ardennes region of Wallonia in Belgium, France and Luxembourg on the Western Front toward the end of World War II in Europe. Hitler planned the offensive with the primary goal to recapture the important harbour of Antwerp. The surprise attack caught the Allied forces completely off guard. United States forces bore the brunt of the attack and incurred the highest casualties for any operation during the war. The battle also severely depleted Germany's war-making resources.

The battle was known by different names. The Germans referred to it as Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein ("Operation Watch on the Rhine"), while the French named it the Bataille des Ardennes ("Battle of the Ardennes"). The Allies called it the Ardennes Counteroffensive. The phrase "Battle of the Bulge" was coined by contemporary press to describe the way the Allied front line bulged inward on wartime news maps and became the best known name for the battle.

The German offensive was supported by several subordinate operations known as Unternehmen Bodenplatte, Greif, and Währung. As well as stopping Allied transport over the channel to the harbor of Antwerp, Germany also hoped these operations would split the British and American Allied line in half, and then proceed to encircle and destroy four Allied armies, forcing the Western Allies to negotiate a peace treaty in the Axis Powers' favor. Once that was accomplished, Hitler could fully concentrate on the eastern theatre of war.

The offensive was planned by the German forces with the utmost secrecy, minimizing radio traffic and moving troops and equipment under cover of darkness. Despite their efforts to keep it secret, the Third U.S. Army's intelligence staff predicted a major German offensive, and Ultra indicated that a "substantial and offensive" operation was expected or "in the wind", although a precise date or point of attack could not be given. Aircraft movement from the Russian Front and transport of forces by rail, both to the Ardennes, was noticed but not acted upon, according to a report later written by Peter Calvocoressi and F. L. Lucas at the codebreaking centre Bletchley Park.

Near-complete surprise was achieved by a combination of Allied overconfidence, preoccupation with Allied offensive plans, and poor aerial reconnaissance. The Germans attacked a weakly defended section of the Allied line, taking advantage of heavily overcast weather conditions, which grounded the Allies' overwhelmingly superior air forces. Fierce resistance on the northern shoulder of the offensive around Elsenborn Ridge and in the south around Bastogne blocked German access to key roads to the northwest and west that they counted on for success; columns that were supposed to advance along parallel routes found themselves on the same roads. This and terrain that favored the defenders threw the German advance behind schedule and allowed the Allies to reinforce the thinly placed troops. Improved weather conditions permitted air attacks on German forces and supply lines, which sealed the failure of the offensive. In the wake of the defeat, many experienced German units were left severely depleted of men and equipment, as survivors retreated to the defenses of the Siegfried Line.

About 610,000 American forces were involved in the battle,[2] and 89,000 were casualties, including 19,000 killed. It was the largest and bloodiest battle fought by the United States in World War II.
   
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Month/Year
December / 1944
To Month/Year
January / 1945
 
Last Updated:
Mar 16, 2020
   
Personal Memories
   
Units Participated in Operation

644th Tank Destroyer Battalion

 
My Photos From This Battle or Operation
No Available Photos

  397 Also There at This Battle:
  • Accattato, Rocco, PFC, (1943-1945)
  • Adams, Herbert, Pvt, (1941-1945)
  • Arther, Edward, PFC, (1944-1945)
  • Bahlau, Frederick Arthur, 1LT, (1942-1945)
  • Battaglia, John, Pvt, (1942-1945)
  • Beck, Carl, M/Sgt, (1942-1963)
  • Belan, Elmer, T/5, (1943-1948)
  • Berg, Cletus, Pvt, (1944-1945)
  • Bizefski, Joseph Paul, Pvt, (1943-1944)
  • Boehme, Karen
  • Bolio, Robert, Cpl, (1943-1945)
  • Bouck, Lyle Joseph, 1LT, (1940-1945)
  • Bray, Ralph, PFC, (1942-1945)
  • Brenzel, Frank, T/4, (1944-1946)
  • Burch, Gilbert, T/5, (1944-1946)
  • Burek, Stanley F, PFC, (1943-1945)
  • Burford, Chris
  • Burns, Henry, PFC, (1941-1944)
  • Bush, William Douglas, 1LT, (1942-1951)
  • Campbell, Clifford, Cpl, (1942-1945)
  • Carey, Aaron, PFC, (1942-1945)
  • Carlson, Martin, T/5, (1943-1944)
  • Carmer, Richard, T/Sgt, (1943-1946)
  • Carpenter, Archie Eldon, COL, (1943-1973)
  • Chase, George, Sgt, (1943-1945)
  • Clemente, Frank, MAJ, (1942-1945)
  • Cole, Chauncey David, LTC, (1938-1960)
  • Consiglio, Vincent J., S/Sgt, (1941-1945)
  • Costanzo, Anthony, PFC, (1942-1945)
  • Dallas, Frank J., LTC, (1942-1970)
  • Davol, Rupert
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