Wednesday, December 11, 2013 12:00 AM
The year 1923 brought a stroke (or two) of luck to Jim T. and Zula Gamblin Adcock of the Arlington community with the birth of identical twin boys, whom they named James Brodock Adcock and Samuel Rudolph Adcock.
The two young men graduated from high school together, both moved to Memphis, Tennessee, and both worked for the same nationally known retailer.
The duo also decided to join the service together, but for some reason, only Samuel R. decided to visit the "draft board man" in Memphis on December 5, 1942, seventy-one years ago.
At the draft office, Samuel signed on the "dotted line" and then blurted out, "I want to enlist for my brother."
When the official learned about another 5' 10" tall, 132 pound-man with brown hair and brown eyes, he said, "permission granted," and off they went.
The Neshoba twins first served with the 693rd Ordnance Ammunition Company at Fort Lewis, Tacoma, Washington, before the War Department transferred their unit in early 1944 to a large munition depot near Flora, Mississippi, about 30 miles northwest of Jackson, Mississippi, "as the crow flies."
At Flora, the men of the 693rd dubbed the 20-year-old men as "Daily Doubles," and even the local newspaper ran an article about their exploits.
Company Commander K.G. Butler continually confused the boys, often speaking to one when he intended to talk to the other.
Both GIs carried the identical stripes of sergeants and both ranked from the same day.
Also, neither of the two had ever been "gigged" or received any type of demerits.
Their main claim to fame came, however, in the double-dating game.
The Neshoba pair became so proficient on their dates that they usually switched partners during the course of a rendezvous, without either female knowing what the mischievous pair had done.
The only event that could ever separate the young men occurred in the Asiatic-Pacific Theatre of Operation during the battle on Okinawa, Ryukyu Islands, when Samuel Adcock perished in action on September 16, 1945.
Two other Neshoba County brothers faced Lady Luck, also, on an island in the Southwest Pacific Ocean.
In the first week in January 1943, 22-year-old Rueben Frank Estes joined the United States Army at Camp Shelby, Mississippi, while Charles Everett Estes, age 20, joined the United States Navy at Jackson, Mississippi, a week later.
The male sons of Reuben Vernon and Lizzie Werkheiser Estes would not see one another until a chance meeting in 1944.
Corporal Frank Estes, a blueprint and photostat operator, served on a remote island in the Southwest Pacific with an engineer battalion.
Radarman Second Class Charles Estes sailed aboard the ammunition ship, U.S.S. Shasta, which docked at the port on the same island.
Knowing only that his brother was stationed on an island in the vast Pacific Ocean, Charles Estes took shore leave to inquire about his sibling.
Toward the end of his leave, Seaman Estes located Frank's battalion and visited the barracks only to find Frank was away from his billet.
Extremely disappointed Charles returned to his ship and revealed his predicament to his vessel's officers.
Immediately the officers sent a sailor to the island, who returned later with Frank in tow.
Frank boarded the Shasta and the Estes brothers spent a happy day together.
Thanks to a lot of luck and the helpfulness of the Shasta officers, this visit proved that maybe it isn't such a big world at all.
Another 20-year-old Neshoba man, Carpenter's Mate Third Class William Randolph Fox, wrote on April 22, 1944, to the Neshoba Democrat to educate the homefolk on the role that his Navy unit played in the Asiatic-Pacific Theatre of Operations.
According to Fox: "I am with the 141st Naval Construction Battalion and at present we are in the Hawaiian Islands. I would like to say a little about the navy 'Seabees.' Our battalion was formed... [at] Camp Endicott, Rhode Island. Here we learned rigging, construction of oil tanks, building of air strips, etc. Many people are under the impression that the "Seabees" is not a fighting outfit.
"The 'Seabees' are building and fighting all over the world in Italy, Guadalcanal, Bougainville, Tarawa, and everywhere there is fighting going. There have been cases in the South Pacific where we landed before the Marines and fought and built until we had a warm welcome for them."
Seabee Fox finished his letter by noting that the "Seabees" had mottos of a fighting unit, "We build for the fighters, we fight for what we build," and "Can do, will do, did!"
Civil War Veterans
Cooper, Thomas J. - Private to Third Corporal; enlisted April 24,1861 at Philadelphia, Mississippi, in Company D, 11th Mississippi Infantry Regiment; age eighteen; farmer; Muster Roll, June 30, 1861: "Sick in Winchester, Va. on leave;" wounded at Malvern Hill, July 1, 1862; hospitalized with a gunshot wound at the Palmyra Hospital at Richmond, Virginia; appointed third corporal by at least April 1863; killed at Gettysburg, July 3, 1863; death claim of $86.83 paid to Elijah Cooper, his father, May 10, 1864; described as six feet tall, fair complexion, dark hair and blue eyes.
World War II Veterans
Adcock, James Brudock - Private to Staff Sergeant; enlisted on November 6, 1942, at Memphis, Tennessee, in the United States Army; age nineteen; retail store employee; served and trained in the American Theatre of Operations with the 693rd Ordnance Ammunition Company at Fort Lewis, Tacoma, Washington, September 1943 to January 1944; stationed at Flora, Mississippi, March 1944; served also in the Asiatic-Pacific Theatre of Operations with the 693rd Company ; participated in the campaigns in the Ryukyu and Philippine Islands; awarded the American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, Good Conduct Medal, World War II Victory Medal and the Philippine Islands Liberation Medal (with one bronze service star); discharged at Camp Shelby, Mississippi, January 4, 1946, demobilization; described as five feet ten and one-half inches tall, weighing 132 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.
Philadelphia-Neshoba County Historical Museum
Steven H. Stubbs, Curator
303 Water Avenue South Philadelphia, Mississippi 39350 (601) 656-1284
10 a.m. - 3 p.m.;
Monday thru Friday