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Mecca, Joseph T.

Joseph T. Mecca U.S. Army WWII
Joseph T. Mecca U.S. Army WWII

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Date of Birth: 10/21/1914
Died On: 3/13/1983
Street Address: 386 Midland Avenue
Service Number: 32024419
Branch of Service: U.S. Army-WWII

Veteran Code: USARMY-431

Joseph T. Mecca

Joseph T. Mecca was born Oct 21, 1914 in Portchester, the son of Nicholas and Vita Corba Mecca. In Rye his family lived at 386 Midland Avenue and were members of the Church of the Resurrection. Joseph was a Rye High School Graduate, Class of 1934.

He enlisted on March 5, 1941, in Jamaica NY. He was 26 years old and served in the U.S. Army during World War II.

During World War II Joseph served with the 3rd Cavalry Regiment. His Army tour of duty included service in Algeria, French Morocco, Normandy, Sicily, Northern France and the Rhineland. A technical sargeant Joseph received the American Defense, European African Service, Middle Eastern Service and Good-Conduct medals.

After the war Joseph worked as a clerk at the Rye Post Office for 37 years before retiring in 1975. He married Madeline Ceclia Haviland on August 20, 1954, in Rye, New York. They had three children during their marriage.

Joseph T Mecca of Rye Colony Apartments, died Sunday March 13, 1983 at United Hospital. He was 68.

Posted by son Brian Mecca

This Sunday marks the 66th anniversary of D-Day. My father landed on Omaha Beach at 6:10 in the morning. So did scores of thousands of American, Canadian and British soldiers. Having stood several times at the landing point of those forsaken French beaches, I can attest to the power of seeing German Field Marshall Rommel's beach fortifications, half overturned German half-tracks and Sherman tanks strewn across the sands, as a reminder of what happened that day. In this place began the liberation of Europe, and it pays tribute to what America does at its best.

My father never spoke of the deeds he did that day—but I have his Silver Star (in true Mecca fashion, he lost his Bronze Star and Purple Heart somewhere in Berlin) that he was awarded in what the citation read "for outrageous bravery in the face of fire on Omaha Beach June 6, 1944." I just wanted to remember my dad and all those who fought that day. It forever taught me about leadership and overcoming overwhelming adversity.

On a recent visit to Normandy, when I told the usually reserved French people that my father "COMBATU A DEBARQUEMENT," their faces lit up in smiles. These 60-plus years later in towns and cities like Arromanche, St. Mere Eglise, Grandcamp and Caen, there are still signs that read, "Welcome to our American liberators." Someday I will bring my daughters, Lily and Annabelle, to swim in these waters of the now peaceful English Channel. I think my father would like that.

Brian Mecca is a facility supervisor at NYU's Department of Athletics. He has lived in Maplewood for three years. His father Joseph Mecca was a caption in the 3rd Calvary, the division started by General George Armstrong Custer. On June 6, 1944, Capt. Joseph Mecca landed at Omaha Beach with 72 men in his boat.

Links to this Veterans History

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5 of 5 Joseph T. Mecca January 30, 2021
Reviewer: Brian Mecca from b.mecca@nyu.edu  
My father served for four years(1941-45) and received the Silver and Bronze
stars for courage in the line of fire,  having seen action on Omaha
Beach(Debarquement!), St. Mere Eglise, then in Berlin, as part of the allies
liberating army.

He was fond of his Army time and often called them his greatest years. To this
day I keep his Bronze Star, Silver was lost somewhere in Europe. I envy his
partaking in such a watershed and game defining event. His piece of American
history has led directly to my studying this subject in the course of my higher

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