James Montross Burt was born in Hinsdale, Massachusetts on July 18, 1917. He attended Norwich University, graduating with the class of 1939. Burt was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Armor Branch of the United States Army.
Hulon Brocke Whittington was born on July 9, 1921 in Bogalusa, Louisiana. He was residing elsewhere in the state when he enlisted in the United States Army on August 21, 1940. I have reason to believe he was a member of the Louisiana National Guard federalized along with other guardsmen in the run-up to World War II, but could not confirm that (more below).
Whittington was a member of the 2nd Armored Division (“Hell On Wheels”) and fought with its 41st Armored Infantry Regiment in both North Africa and on Sicily. Three days after D-Day, the 2nd Armored landed in Normandy for that campaign.