Marshall G. Lassek

Becomes Colonel in Italian Theater
Marshall G. Lassek has been promoted from Lieutenant Colonel to Colonel, according to word received Monday by his wife, who resides at 1524 East Madison Street.

Colonel Lassek is Chief of Petroleum for Allied Force Headquarters and is stationed at Naples, Italy.

On Eisenhower's Staff in Affrica
Marshall G. Lassek, who entered federal military service as Captain in command of Company B, 128th Infantry, Wisconsin National Guard in October 1940, is now a Lieutenant Colonel on General Eisenhower's staff with headquarters in North Africa. 

Lieutenant Colonel Lassek is, at present, Chief of Transportation of the Petroleum Section and is responsible for distribution of all petroleum products in the war area. This includes direction of all water, rail, and road transportation; maintaining tanker positions and routings to ports, and statistics on petroleum products in transit up to arrival, and discharge, in North African ports, and statistics on rail tank car and tank truck availability. He is also responsible for positioning and loading of coastal vessels carrying petroleum products. 

Mrs. Marshall B. Lassek and their son, Denis, reside at  1524 East Madison Street.

Lieutenant Colonel Lassek was relieved of his command in Company B six weeks after being mustered into service and sent to Fort Benning, GA and Fort Leavenworth, KS for special training.

He served on General Headquarters Staff in England, before going to the Mediterranean Theater.

Eau Claire Officers in Italy
Four officers from Eau Claire, all stationed somewhere in Italy, rendezvous in Naples. (Left to right) Lieutenant Colonel John R. Nygaard, Headquarters, Fifth Army; Lieutenant Colonel Roy W. Bailey, Headquarters, Peninsular Base Section; Lieutenant Colonel Marshall G. Lassek, Petrol Section, Allied Force Headquarters; and Major Robert P. Kromrey, Headquarters Peninsular Base Section.

Gets Visit Home on Special Trip to Washington from the Mediterranean War Theater
Lieutenant Colonel Marshall G. Lassek, home from the European fighting front on a trip to Washington, is visiting his wife and son Denis at 1524 East Madison Street, after 22 months in the British Isles and North Africa, as a member of General Eisenhower's Headquarters Staff.

Colonel Lassek left his headquarters office in Algiers, North Africa on February 10 on a clipper. Two days later, they left the African coast on the flight across the South Atlantic and landed in New York on February 15.

He reported to Washington on a special mission and then came to Eau Claire. He expects to spend a week or perhaps two weeks here and then return to Algiers, flying either the same route or by way of London, depending on cable instructions.

Colonel Lassek left Eau Claire as Captain in command of Company B, Wisconsin National Guard, when it began federal service in October 1940. 

About a year later, he was sent to Fort Benning, GA for special training and returned to the Headquarters Staff of the 32 Division. He was then sent to Command Staff School at Fort Leavenworth and, after graduation, was selected for foreign service and left for England on April 10, 1942.

He served on General Eisenhower's staff in London, helped plan the African invasion, and left for the African Theater in December 1942.

The ship he was on was torpedoed at 2:30 in the morning in the Mediterranean Sea about 80 miles from the African shore. The torpedo struck near the engine room, killing members of the crew there and disabling the ship. Fire broke out, and the ship had to be abandoned. Some 5,000 persons were aboard, including 200 British and 50 American nurses, and all except those killed by the explosion were landed safely in Africa. All baggage had to be abandoned, however, and Colonel Lassek lost all his possessions except what he had on or could carry in a small bag.

Colonel Lassek is Chief of Transportation of the Petroleum Section at Allied Forces Headquarters and is responsible for distribution of all petroleum products in the Mediterranean area, routing tankers and coastal vessels carrying these products, and keeping these supplies coming into the area and moving to proper bases.

In this capacity, he has visited all ports used by the Allied Forces in that theater of operations, including those in Sicily, Sardinia and Italy. He was on the receiving end  of numerous German raids, while the Germans and Italians were being driven out of Africa, and experienced others in Italy. Chief among these was the surprise raid on Bari, Italy, in which 17 Allied ships were sunk in the harbor. That was about the worst one he was in, Colonel Lassek said. 

Colonel Lassek said that, of all the parts of the world he has visited, none look as good to him as Wisconsin, and especially Eau Claire. He saw several Eau Claire men in Africa, he said, and it was always a pleasure to meet someone from the home town.

"There isn't any exaggeration about the importance of mail from home in maintaining soldier morale," Colonel Lassek said. "We all look forward eagerly for letters and papers and news from home, even if a couple of months old, is the most exciting thing in the soldier's life."