March 28, 1915 (Jeannette, PA) – July 11, 2005 (Norwalk, CT); 90 years old
Married to Virginia Moscariello Pote (1923-2008) on May 13, 1944 in Norwalk.
Children are Fred (1946-?), John (1947-2004), and Vincent (1954-?).
Last local address: 40 Spring Street, Norwalk and 7 Chestnut Hill Road
Enlisted on June 3, 1942
Serial number: 31123777
Unit: 9th Infantry Division, 60th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Battalion, Company E
Born to Antonio Poti (1886-1969) and Emmanuela Sferrizzi Pote (1885-), both born in Italy. Eight brothers are Peter (1910-1989), Donato (1912-?), Frank (1917-1995), Alfonso (1919-1994), James (1924-1998), Carmine (1926-2016), and George (1929-1981). One sister, Ann Pote Blauvelt (1921-2017).
Awarded the Distinguished Service Cross and Purple Heart Medal.
Citation to accompany the award of the Distinguished Service Medal
Headquarters, U.S. Army-North African Theater of Operations, General Orders No. 80 (August 19, 1943)
Private First Class Ferdinand Pote, United States Army, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed enemy, while serving with Company E, 60th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division, in action against enemy forces on 5 April 1943, in Tunisia. Private First Class Pote’s intrepid actions, personal bravery and zealous devotion to duty exemplify the highest traditions of the military forces of the United States and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.
From The Norwalk Hour May 27, 1943
FRED POTE GETS PURPLE HEART
Spring St. Private First Class, Wounded in North Africa; Has Three Brothers In Service
Private First Class Ferdinand “Fred” Pote, son of Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Pote of 40 Spring Street was awarded the Purple Heart at Halloran General Hospital, Staten Island, New York, on Tuesday, it was announced today. In an impressive ceremony, the wounded soldier was given the medal by Colonel Ralph G. DeVoe, commanding officer at the hospital. The Purple Heart was established originally by General George Washington at Newburgh, August 7, 1782, during the War of the Revolution. The decoration was revived by the War Department on February 22, 1932, the 200th anniversary of Washington’s birth. It is awarded to persons, who while serving in any capacity with the Army of the United States are wounded in action against any enemy of the United States or who die as a result of wounds received in action. Private First Class Pote was wounded seriously in action in North Africa. He lost a leg at Maknassy, Tunisia on April 6, 1943. He is said to be improving nicely. Previous to joining the Army, he was employed by the Hat Corporation of America. Three of PFC Pote’s brothers are also serving Uncle Sam. Frank is a Seaman First Class in the Navy; Al is also a Seaman in the Navy, and James, who is in the Army Medical Corps.
From The Norwalk Hour February 22, 1944
PFC POTE, HERO, IS HOME
Loses Leg In War; Discharged; Tells How New Limb Was Supplied
Private First Class Ferdinand “Fred” Pote, 28-year-old Norwalker is “home from the wars,” having received his medical discharge on February 10 following several months in hospitals as a result of wounds sustained in the Battle of Maknassy, Tunisia, on April 6, 1943, where his left leg had to be amputated. He was awarded the Purple Heart. He now has an artificial limb and is pleased and proud that he has made adjustments to enable him to take up civilian life. He grins broadly as he tells of his experience in becoming accustomed to the new leg. “For two weeks I felt very strange just as if I were learning to walk, but after a while I didn’t mind it — and the first time I wen down some stars, boy was I proud!” He walked around and he walked quite naturally. “The soldiers who were wounded and have received their medical discharge aren’t looking for sympathy – they want jobs to help them become civilians again,” he said. “We can work like anyone else. We want to work and be just as we used to be in our community.” Private First Class Pote is staunch in his praise of the use of blood plasma provided through the Red Cross, and the sulfa drugs. “I wonder how many people realize how quickly those nurses and doctors make use of plasma and sulfa? They are prepared for all emergencies. And I know that I owe my life to the quick use of the plasma.” Private First Class Pote was high in his praise also of the wonderful treatment by the nurses, doctors and hospital personnel — all with skill, tact and understanding — a combination he said, that keeps up the morale of wounded servicemen. The young soldier, a son of Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Pote of 48 Spring Street, who was in the service for 20 months and eight days, left the United States on October 23, 1942, arriving in the African theatre of war on November 8, 1942. He left the African area on April 18, 1943, less than two weeks after he was wounded, arriving in this country on April 30. He was first admitted to Halloran Hospital in Staten Island, but soon after he showed improvement, he was sent to the Walter Reed Hospital in Washington D.C. He recounts his feeling of utter dejection when he was informed that his leg had to be amputated if he wanted to live. “I don’t care — I’d rather die,” was his disheartening retort. But when one of the doctors cited instances where persons with artificial limbs have had outstanding careers, and when it was pointed out that his injuries might have been far worse, he agreed to the amputation. “And, I’m not a bit sorry — I know that I’ll get along — but I’m going to rest up for about two months before I go back to work.” Before he went into the Army, Private First Class Pote was with the Hat Corporation of America and, he said, it is quite likely that he will go back there. It is of special interest that he and three other soldiers who were also wounded at Maknassy were the first to receive “mustering out” allotments in accordance with legislation recently passed. Private First Class Pote is a prospective bridegroom, is engagement to his neighbor, Miss Virginia Moscariello, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Moscariello, having been announced during the Christmas holidays. Three brothers are also in the service — Seaman First Class Al Pote in the South Pacific War Zone, Private James Pote, at Camp Ellis, Illinois, and Frank Pote, United States navy, in South American waters. A cousin, Angelo DeClement, who for several years has made his home with Mr. and Mrs. Pote, is with the Army in North Africa.
Buried in Willowbrook Cemetery, 395 Main Street, Westport, Connecticut; Section LCM, Grave No. 35. Photo by webmaster.