Helfrich/McCoy-Josey/Sims Lines


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M/Sgt. Herman Andrew HELFRICH
U. S. Marines
10/1923 to 08/1925
U. S. Army
12/1928 to 12/1965
Awarded Bronze Star

December 14, 1907 
 September 4, 1980
St. Mary's Episcopal Church
Tampa, FL 
72 yrs, 8 mos, 21 days
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M/Sgt. Herman Andrew HELFRICH
Charles Helfrich's dad

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This is a German Iron Cross Medal, aka Mother's Cross, that a German lady, in Germany, gave to  Herman and Betty Helfrich, immediately after WW II.  With the date on it, we thought some of you might find it to be of interest, and more can be learned about it at the web site below.

At the web site, go to the bottom of the center column, and you will see:

Mother's Cross-Bronze-Gold-Silver



We have not scanned in his headstone picture yet.


Lorenz W. (Lawrence)
May 03-1922-August 14, 1992
Son of
William and
Elizabeth Magdalena (Lena) HELFRICH
Lena was a sister of
Chuck's dad,
Herman Andrew Helfrich
Lorenz was apparently named after
his granddad and g-grandad,
Lorenz Helfrich

Lorenz was Chuck's 1st cousin



Robert (Bobby) GUENTHER

October 05, 1925
May 15, 1995
69 years, 7 months, 10 days

Bobby was a son of
Fred and Helen Helfrich Guenther
Helen was a sister of Herman Andrew Helfrich (Chuck's dad)

Chuck and Bobby grew up together in PA

Chuck and Bobby were 1st cousins


Robert (Bobby) Frank GUENTHER

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Purple Heart Award
Korean War
(Piece of shrapnel hit him 
in the head in a battle)

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James (Jimmy) Edward HELMANDOLLAR
7 Cavalry (Infantry)
Korea PH

May 24, 1934
October 05, 1951
Maplewood Cemetery
Tazewell, VA
17 yrs, 4 mos, 11 days

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Chuck grew up with Jimmy, his 1st cousin, in PA and VA.
Jimmy was killed in Korea at the age of 17,  and was awarded the Purple Heart.
Jimmy was the son of 
Julia (June) Aliaferro McCoy Helmandollar Dailey.  June was a sister of 
Mary Elizabeth (Betty) McCoy Helfrich
Jimmy was Chuck's 1st cousin

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Still need picture of headstone

Acie Jackson (Rub) McCOY
Tec4 508 Engr. Co.
World War II
Apr. 4, 1907
July 4, 1948
Maplewood Cemetery
North Tazewell, VA
41 years, 3 months, 0 days

Charles Goble and Nannie Hubble McCoy's son
Mary Elizabeth McCoy Helfrich's brother
Chuck's uncle


Curtis (left) with rifle
In Philippines-World War II

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Curtis and Chuck grew up together in VA and were 1st cousins.  Curtis was a son of Velva Mae McCoy Witten, sister of Mary E. McCoy Helfrich

Chuck's 1st cousin

Curtis Roland McCoy
U. S. Marine Corps
April 21, 1922
April 04, 1997
74 years, 11 months, 14 days

Death Location - Lady Lake - FL
(Cremated-Velva Roseanna McCoy Zywica/Janowski  has Curtis' ashes)

Curtis Roland McCoy

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Richard and Chuck grew up together in VA and were first cousins.  Richard was a son of Chuck's Aunt Nell, sister of Mary E. McCoy Helfrich

Chuck's 1st cousin

PFC Richard Harris WASCHLER
PFC Army Air Forces
World War II
June 28, 1926
January 16, 1973
Maplewood Cemetery,
Tazewell, VA

46 years, 6 months, 19 days

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Richard Harris WASCHLER

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Bobby and Chuck grew up together in Tazewell, VA and were first cousins.  Bobby was a son of Chuck's Aunt Velva Mae McCoy Witten, sister of Mary E. McCoy Helfrich

Chuck's 1st cousin

Robert (Bobby) Jack WITTEN
Private U. S. Marine Corps
World War II
June 23, 1928
February 19, 1949
Maplewood Cemetery
20 yrs, 7 mos, 27 days

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Robert (Bobby) Jack WITTEN 

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Subject: Fw: Origin of Taps

If any of you have ever been to a military funeral in which taps were
 played; this brings out a new meaning of it.
 Here is something Every American should know.. Until I read this,
I didn't know, but I checked it out and it's true
 We in the United States have all heard the haunting song, "Taps".
It's the song that gives us that lump in our throats and usually tears in our eyes.
  But, do you know the story behind the song? If not, I think you will be
 interested to find out about its humble beginnings.
 Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army
Captain Robert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia.
The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land
 During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moans of a soldier who lay severely wounded on the field.
Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier,
the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention.
 Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the
 stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his encampment.
 When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was
 actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead.
 The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb
 with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son.
The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out.
Without telling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.
 The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial,
despite his enemy status. His request was only partially granted.
 The Captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play
 a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral.
 The request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate.
 But, out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician.
The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper
in the pocket of the dead youth's uniform. This wish was granted.
 The haunting melody, we now know as "Taps" used at military funerals was born.
The words are ...
 Day is done ... Gone the sun .. From the lakes ... From the hills .
From the sky .. All is well ... Safely rest .. God is nigh.
Fading light . Dims the sight . And a star ... Gems the sky
Gleaming bright ... From afar ... Drawing nigh .. Falls the night.
Thanks and praise . For our days .. Neath the sun ... Neath the
stars...Neath the sky .. ! As we go ... This we know .. God is nigh.
 I, too, have felt the chills while listening to "Taps" but I have never seen all the words to the song until now.
I didn't even know there was more than one verse. I also never knew the story behind the song and I
 didn't know if you had either so I thought I'd pass it along.
 I now have an even deeper respect for the song than I did before.
 Remember Those Lost and Harmed While Serving Their Country.
 And also those presently serving in the Armed Forces. 
I pledge Allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to
the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible,
with Liberty and Justice for all.

 Interesting Flag Information

Did you know that at military funerals, the 21-gun salute stands for the sum of the numbers in the year


Have you ever noticed the honor guard pays meticulous attention to correctly folding the American flag 13 times? You probably thought it was to symbolize the original 13 colonies, but we learn something new every day!

The 1st fold of our flag is a symbol of life.


The 2nd fold is a symbol of our belief in eternal life.


The 3rd fold is made in honor and remembrance of the veterans departing our ranks who gave a portion of their lives for the defense of our country to attain peace throughout the world.


The 4th fold represents our weaker nature, for as American citizens trusting in God, it is to Him we turn in times of peace as well as in time of war for His divine guidance.


The 5th fold is a tribute to our country, for in the words of Stephen Decatur, "Our Country, in dealing with other countries, may she always be right; but it is still our country, right or wrong.


The 6th fold is for where our hearts lie. It is with our heart that We pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States Of America, and the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.


The 7th fold is a tribute to our Armed Forces, for it is through the Armed Forces that we protect our country and our flag against all her enemies, whether they be found within or without the boundaries of our republic.


The 8th fold is a tribute to the one who entered into the valley of the shadow of death, that we might see the light of day.


The 9th fold is a tribute to womanhood, and Mothers. For it has been through their faith, their love, loyalty and devotion that the character of the men and women who have made this country great has been molded.


The 10th fold is a tribute to the father, for he, too, has given his sons and daughters for the defense of our country since they were first born.


The 11th fold represents the lower portion of the seal of King David and King Solomon and glorifies in the Hebrews eyes, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.


The 12th fold represents an emblem of eternity and glorifies, in the Christians eyes, God the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit.


The 13th fold, or when the flag is completely folded, the stars are uppermost reminding us of our nations motto, "In God We Trust."

After the flag is completely folded and tucked in, it takes on the appearance of a cocked hat, ever reminding us of the soldiers who served under General George Washington, and the Sailors and Marines who served under Captain John Paul Jones, who were followed by their comrades and shipmates in the Armed Forces of the United States, preserving for us the rights, privileges and freedoms we enjoy today.

There are some traditions and ways of doing things that have important deep meanings. In the future, when you see flags folded, now you will know why.



Husband of 
Evangeline Josey Brocato
Jackie's sister
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John Anthony BROCATO
Cpl. US Army
November 22, 1932
November 30, 2001

Forest Park West Cemetery, 
Shreveport, LA
69 yrs, 0 mos, 8 days

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Cpl. John Anthony BROCATO

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Thomas Lake CLINE
World War II
December 23, 1920
June 04, 1980
Denison Cemetery
Idabel, OK
59 yrs, 5 mos, 12 days

Jackie's first cousin once removed
(Son of Vera Elizabeth SIMS and George Calvin CLINE)


Need a picture

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Abraham COLLINS (Serg.)
Jackie's great great granddad
Brownstown Cemetery
Brownstown, Arkansas
Headstone states:
1825 - 1879
But other records state:
1822 - 1877

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This was the old broken headstone
Abraham COLLINS was the dad of Elizabeth Collins Sims, the grandmother who raised Cleo Sims Josey.  We have no pictures of Abraham, only this headstone and documentation that we have discovered.

He was, apparently, a Sergeant in the Civil War 
Confederate States of America 
Company D
Arkansas Cavalry

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 Marshall is Jackie's 1st cousin once removed
We have the same great grandparents:
Jared and Leila Arkansas Davis

Marshall L. GREENE

B. February 15, 1910
D. December 15, 1999
Henderson, TN
Hardeman County, 
(Wesley Cemetery)

89 years, 10 months, 2 days

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Marshall L. GREENE
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Lloyd JEAN
January 18, 1908
July 13, 1994
86 years, 5 months, 25 days
Laws Cemetery
Atlanta, GA
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Cleo Sims Josey's half brother
Jackie's half uncle

Per Shirley Jean, daughter of
Lloyd Jean, this photo to the right was taken when he was stationed in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, when he was 26, which would have been in 1933

Lloyd JEAN
U. S. Marine Corps

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TO: Charles L. JOSEY

I deeply regret that I must confirm the information you have. An official report was received in this office, that Private Charles L. Josey was killed in France on the third of August 1944. The date he previously was reported missing in action. The records show that this information was furnished your son's mother, Mrs. Josephine McMillian. Since she was the person designated to be notified in the case of an emergency.
From War Dept.
Brig. Gen. Robert H. Dunlap 
2 January 1945 
Acting Adj. General
AGBC-G 201 
Josey, Charles L. 6 Dec.1944 18,050 272

We never even knew about Charles Leslie Josey until Uncle Charlie passed away - and this letter above was found in his belongings.
Leslie Josey (second son by second marriage of Uncle Charlie) never knew that he had a half brother, and I never knew that I had this first cousin!!!  Jackie

Charles Leslie JOSEY

The step is at the "curb" below the flat headstone and the vase is at the top of the plot.

November 15, 1923
August 3, 1944
20 yrs,  8 mos,  11 days
Paratrooper WW II

Memory Park Cemetery
Longview, TX
JOSEY, Charles Leslie
"Pvt. 1C - 9th Infantry Cannon Co. 2 Div."
"Killed in France"
Son of Charles Lafayette and
Josephine McMillian JOSEY
Half brother of Leslie Doyle Josey
Jackie's first cousin

Elaine and Etta, in TX, went to great lengths to get these photos of the headstone. 
Many, many thanks!

Click  picture above  to enlarge

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Charles Leslie JOSEY

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James Bradley Josey, Jr.
Apr. 22, 1957 - December 6, 2006
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Knoxville News Sentinal
Saturday - December 9, 2006
Son of James Bradley JOSEY
Jackie's nephew

49 yrs, 7 mos, 14 days

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James Bradley JOSEY, JR.

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Article in 
Shreveport, LA 
Shreveport Times
March 4, 1946
Roy JOSEY Family

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Pfc. Roy JOSEY
U. S. Army Air Corps
March 1, 1909
October 4, 1954
Mt. Gilead Cemetery, 
Vivian, LA
45 yrs, 7 mos, 3 days

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James Wallace "Son" SIMMS
 October 31, 1920
 November 08, 1978
 Buried in Centuries Memorial Cemetery
 Shreveport, LA

58 years, 0 months, 8 days

 (Jackie's first cousin once removed)

James Wallace "Son" SIMMS
Dan grew up next door to us.
His dad, Thomas Milton SIMS, was a brother of my mother's dad, James Bradley SIMS, Jr.

Dan was killed in a tragic auto accident

Jackie's first cousin once removed

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Dan Milton SIMS
February 19, 1933
March 12, 1964

Buried in Shreveport, LA
Greenwood Cemetery
Military Section on Stoner

Click to enlarge
31 yrs, 0 mos, 22 days

Dan Milton SIMS
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Background Music
"Echo Taps"



Interesting facts about the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Sentinels of the Third United States Infantry Regiment "Old Guard"

1. How many steps does the guard take during his walk across the tomb of the Unknowns and why?

21 steps. It alludes to the twenty-one gun salute, which is the highest honor given any military or foreign dignitary.

2. How long does he hesitate after his about face to begin his return walk and why?

21 seconds, for the same reason as answer number 1.

3. Why are his gloves wet?

His gloves are moistened to prevent his losing his grip on the rifle.

4. Does he carry his rifle on the same shoulder all the time, and if not, why not?
No, he carries the rifle on the shoulder away from the tomb. After his march across the path, he executes an about face and moves the rifle to the outside shoulder.

5. How often are the guards changed?

Guards are changed every thirty minutes, twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

6. What are the physical traits of the guard limited to?

For a person to apply for guard duty at the tomb, he must be between 5' 10" and 6' 2" tall and his waist size cannot exceed 30".

Other requirements of the Guard:

They must commit 2 years of life to guard the tomb, (untrue per snopes.com  - "Sentinels at the tomb don't have to commit to serving there for any fixed period, and the average tour of duty is about half the two years claimed.) they live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES. They cannot swear in public FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES and cannot disgrace the uniform {fighting} or the tomb in any way.  (Per snopes.com again, "There are no restrictions on guards' off-duty drinking and the claim that guards "cannot swear in public for the rest of their lives" is fallacious.")

After TWO YEARS, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn. The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin.

The shoes are specially made with very thick soles to keep the heat and cold from their feet. There are metal heel plates that extend to the top of the shoe in order to make the loud click as they come to a halt. There are no wrinkles, folds or lint on the uniform. Guards dress for duty in front of a full-length mirror.

The first SIX MONTHS of duty a guard cannot talk to anyone, nor watch TV. All off duty time is spent studying the 175 notable people laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery. A guard must memorize who they are and where they are interred. Among the notables are: President Taft, Joe E. Lewis {the boxer} and Medal of Honor winner Audie Murphy, {the most decorated soldier of WWII} of Hollywood fame. Every guard spends FIVE HOURS A DAY getting his uniforms ready for guard duty.  (Again, per snopes.com - "A tomb guard is not prohibited from speaking to anyone for six months, and guards may do whatever they want (including watching television) during off-duty hours."

The Sentinels Creed:
My dedication to this sacred duty is total and wholehearted. In the responsibility bestowed on me never will I falter. And with dignity and perseverance my standard will remain perfection. Through the years of diligence and praise and the discomfort of the elements, I will walk my tour in humble reverence to the best of my ability. It is he who commands the respect I protect. His bravery that made us so proud. Surrounded by well meaning crowds by day alone in the thoughtful peace of night, this soldier will in honored glory rest under my eternal vigilance.

More Interesting facts about the Tomb of the Unknowns itself:

The marble for the Tomb of the Unknowns was furnished by the Vermont Marble Company of Danby, Vt. The marble is the finest and whitest of American marble, quarried from the Yule Marble Quarry located near Marble, Colorado and is called Yule Marble. The Marble for the Lincoln memorial and other famous buildings was also quarried there.

The Tomb consists of seven pieces of rectangular marble:
Four pieces in sub base; weight - 15 tons;
One piece in base or plinth; weight - 16 tons;
One piece in die; weight - 36 tons;
One piece in cap; weight - 12 tons;
Carved on the East side (the front of the Tomb, which faces Washington, D.C.) is a composite of three figures, commemorative of the spirit of the Allies of World War I.

In the center of the panel stands Victory (female).

On the right side, a male figure symbolizes Valor.

On the left side stands Peace, with her palm branch to reward the devotion and sacrifice that went with courage to make the cause of righteousness triumphant.

The north and south sides are divided into three panels by Doric pilasters. In each panel is an inverted wreath.

On the west, or rear, panel (facing the Amphitheater) is inscribed:


The first Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was a sub base and a base or plinth. It was slightly smaller than the present base. This was torn away when the present Tomb was started Aug. 27, 1931. The Tomb was completed and the area opened to the public 9:15 a.m. April 9, 1932, without any ceremony.

Cost of the Tomb: $48,000
Sculptor: Thomas Hudson Jones
Architect: Lorimer Rich
Contractors: Hagerman & Harris, New York City
Inscription: Author Unknown

(Interesting Commentary)

The Third Infantry Regiment at Fort Myer has the responsibility for providing ceremonial units and honor guards for state occasions, White House social functions, public celebrations and interments at Arlington National Cemetery and standing a very formal sentry watch at the Tomb of the Unknowns.

The public is familiar with the precision of what is called "walking post" at the Tomb. There are roped off galleries where visitors can form to observe the troopers and their measured step and almost mechanically, silent rifle shoulder changes. They are relieved every hour in a very formal drill that has to be seen to be believed.

Some people think that when the Cemetery is closed to the public in the evening that this show stops. First, to the men who are dedicated to this work, it is no show. It is a "charge of honor." The formality and precision continues uninterrupted all night. During the nighttime, the drill of relief and the measured step of the on-duty sentry remain unchanged from the daylight hours. To these men, these special men, the continuity of this post is the key to the honor and respect shown to these honored dead, symbolic of all unaccounted for American combat dead. The steady rhythmic step in rain, sleet, snow, hail, heat and cold must be uninterrupted. Uninterrupted is the important part of the honor shown.

Recently, while you were sleeping, the teeth of hurricane Isabel came through this area and tore hell out of everything. We had thousands of trees down, power outages, traffic signals out, roads filled with downed limbs and "gear adrift" debris. We had flooding and the place looked like it had been the impact area of an off-shore bombardment.

The Regimental Commander of the U.S. Third Infantry sent word to the nighttime Sentry Detail to secure the post and seek shelter from the high winds, to ensure their personal safety.


During winds that turned over vehicles and turned debris into projectiles, the measured step continued. One fellow said "I've got buddies getting shot at in Iraq who would kick my butt if word got to them that we let them down. I sure as hell have no intention of spending my Army career being known as the damned idiot who couldn't stand a little light breeze and shirked his duty." Then he said something in response to a female reporters question regarding silly purposeless personal risk... "I wouldn't expect you to understand. It's an enlisted man's thing." God bless the rascal... In a time in our nation's history when spin and total b.s. seem to have become the accepted coin-of-the-realm, there beat hearts - the enlisted hearts we all knew and were so damn proud to be a part of - that fully understand that devotion to duty is not a part-time occupation. While we slept, we were represented by some damn fine men who fully understood their post orders and proudly went about their assigned responsibilities unseen, unrecognized and in the finest tradition of the American Enlisted Man. Folks, there's hope. The spirit that George S. Patton, Arliegh Burke and Jimmy Doolittle left us ... survives.

On the ABC evening news, it was reported recently that, because of the dangers from Hurricane Isabel approaching Washington, DC, the military members assigned the duty of guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier were given permission to suspend the assignment. They refused. "No way, Sir!"

Soaked to the skin, marching in the pelting rain of a tropical storm, they said that guarding the Tomb was not just an assignment; it was the highest honor that can be afforded to a service person. The tomb has been patrolled continuously, 24/7, since 1930.


Sources from various Internet locations

Additional information from the Tampa Tribune:

The urban legends site says that from 1926 through 1937, the tomb was guarded only during daylight hours.  Since 1937, the tomb has been continuously guarded 24 hours a day, every day of the year.  Tomb guards are changed every 30 minutes between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. April 1 to September 30 and every hour between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. the rest of the year.  At all other times (i.e., while the cemetery is closed), the guard is changed every two hours.