T-4 George Luz is a Paratrooper from Easy Company, famous for his talent of mimicking others.
Luz was born in Fall River, Massachusetts on June 17, 1921 to Portuguese parents. He had six sisters and three brothers. He later moved to and grew up in West Warwick, Rhode Island.
He dropped out of high school as a junior to help support his family during the Great Depression.
Luz decided to join the Airborne on August 25, 1942 at Providence, Rhode Island; he went to Camp Toccoa, Georgia for Paratrooper training and was assigned to Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division as a radioman. He was trained under the harsh leadership of 1LT Herbert Sobel, the Company CO.
He earned his jump wings at Fort Benning and, after extra training, deployed with the rest of the 506th to England. While there, Luz was able trick a lost CPT Sobel into cutting a farmer's fence, after some encouragement from his fellow soldiers, by mimicking MAJ Oliver Horton, getting Sobel into trouble. Luz was never found out.
During the drop for D-day into Normandy on June 6, 1944, Luz traded seats with Roy Cobb. A smart thing on Luz's part, because a German AA round blew up near where Cobb's seat, wounding him and making him unable to drop. Luz dropped and grouped with his company at Ste. Marie-du-Mont the next day.
At the town of Carentan, Luz and others charged the town; however, a German machine gun opened up and cut down two other paratroopers. Only Luz and 1LT Welsh made it. When asked by Welsh where the others were, Luz responded "I have no idea!", bewildered such a question was asked while under fire by the Germans.
They eventually regrouped with everyone else and began taking the town over. While clearing buildings with Hoobler, Luz heard French voices inside one building and unknowingly had save their lives, as Hoobler wanted to grenade the building.
After Normandy, Luz was seen playing darts with 1LT "Buck" Compton, and a replacement named PVT Edward Heffron. Luz and Compton executed the perfect grift on Heffron. Compton losing the first game whilst playing left handed, was "reminded" by Luz that he was in fact, right handed. Compton switches to his stronger hand and the con is complete when they win two packs of cigarettes.
Luz and Easy then dropped into Holland for Operation Market Garden on September 17. They all got a warm welcome at Eindhoven, but met a fierce attack at Nuenen on September 20. From there, they moved to "The Island" on October 2. Luz then helped take out two SS Companies at The Crossroads on October 5.
He then headed to Mourmelon, France on November 26. While watching a movie during a lull in action, Luz began pestering 1SG Carwood Lipton and SGT Joe Toye by mimicking his favorite line, "got a penny?", in a deep and exaggerated way. Before the movie's end, they were pulled off the line and headed to Bastogne, Belgium on December 17 to relieve the Nazi-battered 28th Infantry Division.
During a bombardment which took off SGT Toye's leg, replacement CO Lt. Norman Dike approached Luz and Lipton, saying he was going to get help, before running off. Luz exchanged a look of disbelief with Lipton and said "What the fuck?". He then made fun of Dike by mimicking what he said to a group of guys, before being reprimanded by Lipton. As he was walking away, another German bombardment hit their position and Luz was knocked to the ground. He began crawling towards SGT Warren Muck's and PFC Alex Penkala's foxhole, when they took a direct hit and were killed. After the bombardment, Luz dug frantically at what was left of their foxhole, finding only a few body parts.
He took part in the attack on Foy, acting as Dike's radioman. He followed Dike’s orders nervously, seeing, just like everyone else, how suicidal his orders were. He then became 1st Lieutenant Speirs radioman when Dike was relieved due to shell shock. He and Lipton witnessed Speirs run through open ground to hook up with I company, then come back despite how dangerous it was.
Luz then proceeded to Hagenau in January, where Easy Company bombed the German positions on the other side of the river that split the town, and later sent a patrol to gather prisoners for intelligence. He tried to organize many Hershey bars that were shipped in but eventually gave up when the men kept harassing him for one.
Easy entered Germany on April 2, where Luz and the others discovered a Nazi Concentration Camp, leaving him and everyone else in deep shock. The Company later captured Hitler's Eagles Nest at Berchtesgaden in Austria.
After the war, Luz moved back to West Warwick, Rhode Island. He married Delvina, and had two sons named Steve and George Jr., and a daughter named Lana. In the 1970s, he went back to school to atone for quitting his junior year, and got his GED. He found work as a maintenance consultant for Little Rhodie Machine Shop.
On October 15, 1998, while working, he was killed when an industrial dryer fell on him; he was 77 years old. Luz was buried in Exeter, Rhode Island, where 1,600 people attended his funeral.