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A book that tells the story of the Alton POW

Alton — The memoir of Henry Eugene “Jean” Moll, a lifelong resident of Alton, has been released by LuLu Press, Inc.

The Diary of Henry Eugene Maul, Prisoner of War was edited by his eldest daughter, Diana Maul Halstead, who graduated from Alton High School in 1970. The Mohr family were regulars at Alton dating back to the late 1830s.

Jean Mohr was affected and angered by the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Shortly after Marquette graduated from his Catholic high school, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and was trained to take on one of his most dangerous positions as a gunner West. A member of the 96th Bomb Group and the 338th Bomb Squadron, he completed eight of his missions before his plane was shot down by enemy fire on May 8, 1944, and he and his crew were killed. was captured by German scouts.

This diary is not a typical daily chronological story, but a visual picture-by-picture, poem-by-poem, note-by-note diary. Gene Mohr draws on the intense loneliness of captive life to paint his thoughts, observations and fears. Within each painting, poems and notes symbolize what he, his crew, and his fellow POWs have endured.

The book contains letters from home, photographs, and previously classified documents about Allied POWs of World War II in Germany. Documents describe how prisoners were treated—from starvation to appalling food, loneliness, poor sanitation, and the communities they built. According to Leo Hornstedt, a former classmate of Marquette in Jean Mohr, the march was his most difficult ordeal. A timeline of his one of those marches is included.

What Gene Maul brought home from his years as a POW affected not only the rest of his life, but also how he raised his daughters.

Diana Moll Halstead is the eldest of the three daughters of Henry Eugene and Dixie Davis Moll. From childhood, she and her sisters were taught not to question her father about anything during the war. they never did.

Her journey to create this memoir began as a small project to preserve war diaries she had never seen and only knew existed for the past few years. When she read her father’s poems and saw it for the first time, touching each picture page, she realized that there was more to her father’s story than the words and pictures in front of her. rice field.

She began learning this never-before-mentioned story about her father’s journey as a POW. Her own journey is about World War II, Nazi Germany, family, faith, what men can endure when they have companions, and why fathers don’t want to relive or share hell with their daughters. This man, a quiet soul who spoke little and always listened, was one of the bravest men she knew and loved dearly.

The Diary of Henry Eugene Maul, Prisoner of War is available at Barnes & Noble, Amazon,, or on social media @TheKriegiesDaughter. A copy can also be read at the Hayner Public Library in the Department of Genealogy.