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Woodlief Family « North Carolina's WWII ExperienceNorth Carolina's WWII Experience

Woodlief Family

Hometown: Hillsborough, NC
Branch of Service: Army & Merchant Marines
Location of Service: Europe

Father and Son Meet In Belgium…
The Story of Carl Samuel Woodlief and William (“Billy”) Blane Woodlief

“Billy” Woodlief was so emotionally charged by World War II that he joined the Army at the tender age of sixteen, falsely claiming to be eighteen.

Billy was the youngest Woodlief child and the only son. Billy’s mother Hazel was frantic and begged her husband, Carl to “go find Billy.” Carl Woodlief joined the Merchant Marines and what followed was a miracle.

Father and son met in streets of Belgium were they reunited briefly! A single photo memorializes that miraculous reunion.

Of course, Billy Woodlief remained and went on to fight in France.

Many years later while looking through a family album, Billy’s daughter, Tanya Burch, discovered this photo and wanted to know the story behind it. Unfortunately, by that time both Billy and Carl had died in an automobile accident. In the years to come, Hazel Woodlief would relay their amazing war story through her tears to Billy’s daughter, Tanya.