Park Plaza Apartments, Larchmont

Age: 19
Redford High School, Detroit, Michigan
Student at Columbia University when inducted into the U.S. Army. After being in  the ASTP program, he served in 1st Platoon, Company K, 376th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division, 9th Army.
Pfc. MacDonald was killed in action while on a foot patrol on November 11, 1944, in Bouvron, France. He is buried in the Pine Hill Cemetery, West Bridgewater, Mass.

           PFC John A. MacDonald was an aspiring writer when he was a student at Columbia University. According to a nephew, Doug Babington, he had “written numerous short stories and radio scripts, some of which he sent to NBC”.  However, while still a student at Columbia, on February 5, 1943, he received his Order to Report for Induction.  He was only 18 years old. He went through basic training at Fort Hood, Texas, and then, after passing a rigorous exam, was sent as an ASTP student to the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Mississippi. (ASTP stood for the Army Specialized Training Program, “which selected the best and brightest draftees for technical and professional education in civilian colleges”.) With the impending invasion of France, the ASTP program was curtailed and MacDonald was sent overseas with the 94th Infantry Division, where he served in the 376th Infantry Regiment, Company K, 1st Platoon.
            MacDonald’s unit landed at Utah Beach on September 8, 1944. Tragically, PFC MacDonald was later killed while on a foot patrol near Bouvron, France. Bill Montgomery, first cousin of K Company’s Jack Marsden, writes that "K" company “was involved in a combat patrol on a drizzly cold morning on November 11, 1944 when the first platoon was sent into Bouvron to assess the German strength.  The object was to engage the enemy, then withdraw, hoping that the Germans would follow. The third platoon was guarding the flank hoping to catch the Germans in a crossfire.  After an intense firefight the patrol withdrew with a single casualty - PFC John Mac Donald was killed.” At the time of his death, MacDonald was 19 years old. He is buried in the Pine Hill Cemetery in West Bridgewater, Massachusetts.

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