ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — John “Jack” Foy was studying engineering at Cornell in 1943, but answered the call to duty as part of the Greatest Generation. He spent most of his time serving in Europe under General George Patton as a machine gunner in an infantry company.
Now 98, Foy says the Battle of the Bulge is a particularly miserable memory.
“The war the most horrible thing I ever had in my life,” Foy said.
In the bitter cold, marching and fighting the Nazis through France, Belgium, and into Germany.
“We ran into the cream of the German Army coming down,” Foy said, “mostly SS Troopers. We had a hell of a battle.”
Foy, not looking at the enemy lives he took over those weeks lightly. One particular instance haunts him of a German popping up out of a foxhole.
“He came up, and I cut him in half,” Foy said.
Foy said about 85 of 200 Americans alongside him died.
“I lost a lot of my best friends there,” he said.
In 2019, then-President Trump invited Foy to be the main speaker at a ‘National Veterans Day Talk’ in New York City.
“It was almost beyond belief to have the President of the United States say what a wonderful soldier I am.”
Those hellacious experiences he shared in June of this year on the beaches of Normandy.
Foy certainly gets around at 98 years old. Through it all he, while proud of his service, does not want his grandchildren to ever enlist and experience the horrors of combat.
“I’d hate to see them go into the Army,” he said.