Whenever we talk about the Native Americans and their participation during World War II, perhaps the first thing that comes up to our minds is the Navajo code talkers and their significant contributions to the war effort by using and sharing their language to create an undecipherable and complicated code, which is no doubt brilliant. However, they were not the only natives who put themselves in danger and helped the country during the crisis.

Navajo Code Talkers, Saipan, June 1944.

Here are some other brave Native American warriors of World War II.

Robert Arnold

Robert Arnold was born on January 21, 1923, the youngest son among the eight children, also the quiet one. The Arnold siblings grew up with another tribal family, the Sandaines, and lived together on a farm on Kelly Hill. Arnold decided to join the military when he turned 18 to help his family’s strenuous life, as there would be one less mouth to feed when he was away.

Arnold became a paratrooper and a member of the 82nd Airborne Division, an elite parachute infantry that was part of the Normandy Invasion, with a mission “to destroy vital German supply bridges, and capture causeways leading inland across the flooded areas behind the Normandy beaches where seaborne forces would land to gain control of roads and communications,”

Their division fought for 33 days straight without any relief, pushing them to their limits. As a result, thousands died either by being shot in the air while fighting or sometimes in isolation. All in all, 756 82nd were missing, 156 were killed, and 347 were wounded.

As for Arnold, he survived the D-Day Invasion. However, he died three months later, on July 3, from the injuries he sustained during the battle.

Albert Sandaine

Could he be one of the Sandaines that Arnold grew up with in Kelly Hill? Who knows.

The Tribune attempted multiple times to reach several members of the Sandaine family, but they got nothing in return. As for Albert, he was born on March 3, 1921, and their family lived in the Boyds/Kelly Hill area. Albert was 19 when both of his parents died.