Dog tags of WWII soldier found, returned to Rockmart

The nephews of Eugene Brackett, Max Chambers and Ronald Brackett, show off one of their uncle’s dog tags found in Italy and was returned back to Rockmart. / Contributed

Family plans to donate dog tags to Rockmart History Museum

Recently through social media, the family of Eugene Terrell Brackett was informed that one of his dog tags long lost and forgotten during World War II was found in where he lost it in Italy.

Angelo D’amico was walking in a field near Alife, Italy when he made the discovery. Through a research organization, he was able to contact the family and return the dog tag, beautifully framed.

Eugene Terrell Brackett served in the United States Army from February of 1943 until November 1945. Not much was available online for the general public for his service records, but it did report that he entered the Army like many at the time as a Private at Fort McPherson in Atlanta. His enlistment like all men who were called to serve at the time was for the duration of the war, plus six months.

Contrary to what the finder thought, Brackett survived and returned home along with two of his older brothers, Charlie and Carl.

Brackett is survived by three nieces and two nephews.

Alife, Italy is on the Italian peninsula directly north of Naples, and sits in the same region as the first of several defensive lines held by German and Italian forces between the beginning of the Allied Invasion of Italy.

The Volturno line — named for the river north of Naples in the Italian countryside that formed a western natural defensive barrier — was the first that Allied armies faced during a two year long campaign. The ultimate goal of that campaign was to keep Axis forces from being used to block a mainland invasion in June 1944 in Normandy, along with taking Rome and knocking Italy out of the war.

Brackett was a survivor of a campaign in Italy that by the end of the war cost the lives of 119,200 American personnel out of nearly 336,000 suffered by the Allies, and the estimated 1.5 to more than 1.75 million Germans and Italians who also died in the conflict.