Please help me to find my Father RICHARD GRAY

I am french.
I have recently learned that I am Franco-American.
My name is Claude Richard and I live in the southern part of France.
The circumstances surrounding my birth were concealed from me until recently.

My father is Richard Gray and this is what I know about him:
He was in Oran, Algeria, until November, 1943.
He may well have been in the US Army. His garisson was not near the harbor or the airport.
His military camp was situated IN Oran, between the Choupot area and the Cuvelier area (near Cite Petit).
'Nob Hill' was the name given to the camp by the men, but not necessairily what the Army called it.
A road separated the camp from a big Algerian market hall
named LES HALLES. This building is nammed "Les Halles" and in 1943 it was referred to as Ordnance Depot 150-0. I have known rolling stock (jeep, truck, motor-driven, etc.. except tank or plane) were unloaded in Oran then conveyed to the camp where was my father. This rolling stock were conveyed from US in separate pieces. In this Depot, american soldiers and french men reassembled rolling stock. My father Richard Gray had access to both a mototcycle and a jeep at various times. He also left Oran from time to time for duty that was associated with either accompanying or locating munitions.
His dress uniform was a khaki jacket made of silky cloth. He had a cap.
His friends called him Dick and he had a friend called Mike.
He was almost 6 feet, with light brown hair, and blue eyes.
He apparently came back to the States, it seems before the end of the war.

I have tried to find my father without success. The results of my research are condensed below.
In the fall of 1943, an American soldier named Richard Gray, between 20 and 23, was based at Oran in Algeria.
There he met a young woman, my mother : Lucienne Martin, 17 years old.
They became very fond of each other and planned to be married. Richard received wedding dress photos from his sister who lived in the U.S.
At the end of 1943 (end november, beginning december), Richard Gray was transfered to another, unknown to me, place to continue the war.
He should have been informed by mail of my birth, probably in September, 1944.
I have heard that my father was came back to Oran, between September 1944 - February 1945, without leave and quickly he was been caught by MP. He hasn't have time to see us.

This story might be common place, but some troubling, complicating events intervened in this love story.
Richard wrote often to my mother during the war and after he returned to the US. He said that he wanted to marry her; he expressed it in his letters.
Unfortunately, my grandmother intercepted and destroyed all of his letters. She did not want this marriage to take place - it would mean that her daughter and grandson would move to the USA.
I recently learned in March, 1998, from my mother the circumstances surrounding my birth.
During this 54 year period, my mother thought she had been deserted, in a cowardly manner, by her fiance .
To be deserted pregnant at a tender age was very difficult. I made several inquiries in my family in 1998 and I began to learn several things from an aunt.
Before her death in 1977, my grandmother confided to my aunt that she had destroyed all correspondence between them as well as a few papers belonging to my mother.
While she never knew Richard Gray, the account of my aunt was a good one and all of her explanations were later verified.
In September, 1998 I finally learned the truth to my mother (the destroying of letters).
The burdening facts that she was a deserted woman and an unmarried mother were out and, at that time, she told me my father's name.
The passing years and the efforts to forget have resulted in fading memories.
I have created this site, attempting to look for my father. Here I have placed a photo of my mother at that time.
I continue to use all the opportunities of the internet in my search.

I have already sent more than 4,500 emails to Gray families and others

The surname Gray is a very common one in the US.

If Richard Gray can be located, if he wishes, he will be able to contact me.

I only want to know if he is alive, any details of my American family, and if he has been informed of my search.

It's very important to know the name of his Company.
Is there a veteran who was in Oran during the WWW II and would answer me ?

It's possible my father was associated at Ordnance Motor Vehicle Assembly Company. :

PERHAPS IN ONE OF THESE Ordnance Motor Vehicule Assembly Companies
-- 101st - in Oran Algeria
-- 105th - in Algiers Algeria (not in Oran)
-- 112th - in Oran Algeria
-- 149th Mtr Vehicule Assembly (Portable) - In Oran Algeria
-- 156th Tire Repair - In Oran Algeria

Please excuse me for any improprieties.
I would like very much to find him still living .
Yours sincerely,
Mr. Paez Claude Richard
12 bis, Rue de la Touche
78610 - LE PERRAY France
phone: +33 1 34 84 92 20 (France)


20 years old


Claude Richard

(in 1957)  13 years old, I look like my father

Claude Richard 33 ko

1999 - My family

my son     my daughters

Claude Richard          My wife


(in 1943)   building referred to as Ordnance Depot 150-0 (front of the military camp)

Les Halles

Email : Claude Richard
Phone :  +33   4 94 58 75 09   (france)
Author : Claude Richard
State : 78 - LE PERRAY (France)
Last modif : April,  06 , 2004
Created web site    : 1/10/1998

Nb visits


Recherchons RICHARD GRAY

Vous trouverez, à juste titre, ma requête très impertinente et je vous prie de bien vouloir m'en excuser.
Il se trouve que je me heurte à un problème insoluble et, peut-être, avec votre aide, je pourrais enfin obtenir une réponse pour poursuivre mes recherches.
J'ai appris, il y a quelques mois et à 54 ans, que mon père biologique était un soldat américain. Il était basé, en 1943, à Oran (en Algérie).
Son camps militaire était situé, dans le sud est d'Oran, entre les quartiers de Choupot et cuvelier (proche de la Cité Petit) et faisait face à un grand marché couvert appelé "Les Halles".
Son nom est Richard Gray, il avait une vingtaine d'années, grand, chatain clair et yeux bleus.
Il portait quelque fois un brassard "MP" (police militaire) et il lui arrivait d'utiliser une grosse moto militaire pour se déplacer.
Je passe très rapidement sur cette triste histoire d'amour détruite par une grand-mère qui se refusait à voir partir sa fille aux Etats Unis. En deux mots, ma grand-mère, à l'insu de ma mère, a réceptionné, lu et détruit toute la correspondance de mon père. Celui-ci voulait ardemment ce mariage et aurait continué à présenter sa demande après son retour aux USA.
Ma mère et moi avons appris cette triste vérité, il y a quatre mois, par une tante à qui ma grand-mère s'était confiée avant sa mort.
Depuis j'ai ouvert un site internet et je corresponds avec des centaines de familles Gray aux USA qui m'ont offert spontanément et avec une délicatesse extrême, de m'aider dans cette recherche. Ils n'hésitent pas à contacter tous les médias de tous les états.
Nous N'ARRIVONS PAS A TROUVER le nom de ce campement, de cette unité d'armée. Si nous pouvions obtenir ces renseignements nous aurions fait un grand pas dans notre recherche. Pourriez-vous me venir en aide à travers vos relations ? Je vous en serais éternellement reconnaissant et mes nouveaux amis américains seraient ravis d'apprendre qu'en France les français se tiennent les coudes.

Merci de nous aider à le retrouver .
Claude Richard

Tel. : 01-34-84-92-20

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