Robert C. Billington was born in Port Chester on Aug 11 1924, the son of Ann Beary Billington and Percy Billington. He had a younger sister Claire and in Rye his family lived at 19 Natoma Street. Robert was a Rye High School Graduate, Class of 1943. He enlisted in the Army on February 19, 1943, in New York City, New York, when he was 18 years old and served in the U.S. Army during World War II.
During World War II Robert served with the 394th Infantry Regiment. It was called to active duty on 15 November 1942 and reorganized at Camp Van Dorn, Miss. During 1943-44, the 394th trained at various camps and maneuvers in the southern part of the US.The 394th arrived at Camp Miles Standish, MA. in mid-September and within two weeks the regiment made its way onto transport ships to England.
Between mid-October and early November the 394th was in Dorset, England before arriving on 6 November 1944 in Le Havre, France. The 394th engaged in a variety of campaigns, including the Battle of the Bulge and the Ardennes Forest, Remagen Bridge, the Rhineland, and the Ruhr.
Pfc. Robert C. Billington Reported Slightly Wounded
"A War Department telegram has been received by Mr. and Mrs. Percy R. Billington, 19 Natoma Street, stating their son, Pfc. Robert C. Billington, twenty years old, was slightly wounded in Belgium. Letters received from him by his parents indicated the wound was not serious. Veteran of the Sicily campaign, Pfc. Billington was transferred with his infantry unit to England for the invasion."
PAGE FOUR THE RYE CHRONICLE Friday, October 6, 1944
After his honorable discharge on November 19, 1945, Robert returned to Rye. He married June P Newing on April 5, 1953, in his hometown. They had four children during their marriage.
Robert was a paid driver for the Rye Fire Department and was a member of the Poningo Engine and Hose Company. He belonged to Local 2029 of the International Firefighters Association and the New York State Fireman's Association.
Robert C Billington a paid firefighter with the Rye Fire Department for 22 year died Thursday November 20, 1980 at United Hospital. A lifelong resident of Rye, he was 56. Flags in Rye were flown at half-mast in his honor.
At the time of his death Robert was survived by his wife June Newing Billington, four sons: Michael, Jeff, Matthew and Andrew and a sister Claire Toohey of Staten Island.