Newark had no regiment in World War II.
The closest thing was Newark's Essex Troop (the 102nd Cavalry Group).
The Newark Evening News military affairs writer, Warren H. (Harry)
Kennet was assigned for war duty by his paper with the 102nd.
Kennet's Travels in the War
This is Kennet's story of his travels to and through Europe during
World War II for the Newark Evening News.
Kennet had asked Colonel Donald W. McGowan, Essex Troop Commander
and Deputy Adjutant General of New Jersey, for permission to travel
with his troop as the troop's war correspondent.
The Colonel had told Kennet that he favored his suggestion, but
that he could not move on it until he had cleared it with his hierarchy.
By the time the approval came through channels to Colonel McGowan
in September 1942, the troop ship had already sailed for England.
McGowan had anticipated that it would be weeks or even longer before
he would see the Newark Evening News reporter again.
But it happened much sooner, as I will explain.
Newsman as Stow-Away
With inside help from a few friendly Troopers, Kennet had boarded
the departing troop ship and had "stowed away".
The Colonel, it was later reported, was beside himself with anger.
He had feared that his superiors would find out about Kennet and
accuse the Colonel of flaunting orders.
Kennet arrived with the Essex Troopers in England in October 1942.
He filed regular reports to the Newark News as the Troop grew to
full strength through the addition of draftees and other replacements.
First Real Action for Troop
The troops trained constantly, but their first real action would
be delayed until June 6, 1944. On that date -- "D-Day"
-- they spearheaded the invasion of Southern France by courageously
storming ashore at Omaha Beach in Normandy1.
On June 8, 1944, Kennet reported that two days after the landing
of the 102nd Regiment, Troops A, B, and C had established their
first Command POst on Omaha Beach near the outskirts of Colleville-Sur-Mere.
On June 9, 1944 -- D-Day plus 3 -- the Essex Troopers captured
their first German vehicle, a German Scout car, near the landing
site. They presented the vehicle to Kennet, later lettering the
front bumper with the "Newark Evening News" logo in English
script (photo above).
Kennet Makes History
Kennet accompanied the 102nd from its D-Day landings on Omaha Beach
in Southern France2 on their triumphant campaign to Germany and made
history while doing it.
The car he drove became the first German vehicle captured in Normandy
after the landings to be driven back to Germany by an American.
Kennet, embedded with the Essex Troop cavalrymen -- now riding
in tanks instead of on horses -- rolled into France, Belgium, Luxemburg,
Germany, and Czechoslovakia. Kennet's vehicle was the German scout