MONTVILLE, NJ – Montville resident and WWII hero Herbert Terner died May 28. He was 99.

Terner was a member of the Army’s 101st company, the “Screaming Eagles” – later called Special Forces. He was a radio expert who would parachute out of C47s and notify the troops of viable landing positions, and then engage in combat. Terner landed on D-Day and called in the troops to Utah Beach. His company then liberated Paris and Belgium and fought in the Battle of the Bulge and Operation Market Garden. Terner traveled throughout Belgium, Austria and France on his tour of duty.

He was also part of the companies that liberated prisoners from Nazi extermination camps; he urged people to never forget the cruelty he witnessed first-hand.

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Terner had three children with his wife Frances, eight grandchildren, and 12 great grandchildren. His daughter Carole said he loved singing, making Tik Toks with his great grandchildren, Cadillacs, chocolate, and meeting the students in town and telling them about the war first-hand.

He was a member of Montville VFW Post 5481 and Post Commander Ken Hanzl plus nine members attended the funeral, which was held via Zoom.

Hanzl called Terner a “spark plug” at the monthly meetings and said Terner often volunteered for fundraising activities and the post’s annual poppy drives. He was saddened that the COVID-19 pandemic prevented the post’s normal ritual of conducting an honor guard ceremony at the funeral, he said.

“Our heartfelt condolences go out to Herb‘s family, especially to his dedicated daughter Carole,” Hanzl said. “She always made sure he attended our functions. He will be missed by all of us at the post. Herb’s passing leaves a permanent void at Post 5481. We have lost someone who was able to share first-person stories. I will miss Herb and his great sense of humor.”

According to his obituary, “He was always smiling, charming, talkative and had interesting stories to tell.  He was a ‘people person’ and loved to go out to dinner, where he would talk to everyone in the restaurant. He was a living legend and part of the ‘Greatest Generation.’  He emphasized camaraderie, patriotism, being kind and looking out for one another.”

Last year on Memorial Day, he met Representative Mikie Sherrill, who tweeted the following of his passing:

I'm saddened to hear about the passing of WWII Veteran and Montville resident Herb Terner. Herb served in the 101st Airborne during WWII. I spoke to him last year ahead of the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

His advice? "Look out for the guy next to us forever and ever." pic.twitter.com/sJvEhxXNeZ

— Rep. Mikie Sherrill (@RepSherrill) May 30, 2020
 

 

Read more about Terner here.

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