Gene Vollrath entered the U.S. Army voluntarily on May 22, 1943. He achieved the rank of Staff Sergeant and did his training at Fort Benning, Georgia, and Fort Bragg, North Carolina. When asked about his most memorable war story, he replied simply, "There aren'y any atheists in foxholes."
Of his combat experience, he said this: "I was in combat with the 100th Infantry Division mortar section from November 1944 to March 1945. Our division took Bitche, France, from the Germans in March 1945. We were south of the Battle of the Bulge on December 31, 1944, when we lost our position near Bitche, France, to the Germans but were able to take it back on January 8, 1945." Of his best buddies, Gene recalls, "My buddy and I stayed in one foxhole at night, laying back to back for warmth from our body heat."
Gene's mortar section received the Bronze Star for eliminating a German machine gun nest. His experiences made him more thankful for the living conditions he had in his hometown of Marysville, Ohio.