Carl Williams, a friend and supporter of many Nisei World War II organizations, was appointed on July 18, 2023, by the Mayor of Bruyères as the U.S. volunteer for the project, “Heroes of the Vosges Museum.” He is currently raising money and collecting artifacts for the exhibit.
Carl's wife’s uncle, Kiyoshi Ono, served in Battery B, 522nd Field Artillery Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team, and participated in the Battle of Bruyères and the Rescue of the Lost Battalion (1st Battalion, 141st Regiment of the 36th “Texas” Infantry Division).
Among other initiatives, Carl led a Nisei Legacy Tour to France in 2019, is a historian with special interest in World War II and the 100th/442nd, and led the effort to restore the Hill 555 monument in Bruyères and design/construct a larger memorial.
From Carl Williams:
“We have received approval from the town of Bruyères to create a start-up museum that will preserve the stories and artifacts of the Nisei soldiers of the 100th/442nd Regimental Combat Team (RCT) and those of the irregular soldiers of the French Forces of the Interior (FFI). Members of the Resistance risked their lives to guide the Nisei, report on the enemy’s strength and disposition and provide valuable military intelligence.
The exhibition hall is tentatively named the ‘Heroes of the Vosges Museum.’ To that end we have created a webpage, https://vosgesheroes.org/, where the details of the museum plan and the formal approval document from Bruyères may be viewed.”
The objectives of the Heroes of the Vosges Museum is to preserve, protect, and display the artifacts and stories of the members of the 100th/442nd and the French Resistance, who together, liberated Bruyères, Belmonte, and Biffontaine, and rescued the Lost Battalion. The museum aims to teach future generations that freedom is never guaranteed and often calls for great sacrifice, and to keep alive, for all who visit Bruyères, these heroic stories and lessons that are part of the Vosges. To find out more about this project, please visit the Heroes of the Vosges Museum website at https://vosgesheroes.org/
Carl Williams has also authored a children's book titled, "Marie of Bruyères," about a little French girl who meets the Japanese-American soldiers who gave her back her freedom. He is donating all proceeds to the museum. The book can be purchased online at https://vosgesheroes.org/book/
Please contact the Clubhouse at email@example.com, if you would like to help to fund or donate artifacts to this new museum.