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Listoe 1 ~tian Listoe

March 20, 2014 Professor Raymond Short Research Project Evolution of War Weapons Through completing my family tree project I found that all of the men on my father's side were in the military. This consistency dates back to my great-great grandfather Soren Listoe. All of the males were in the army and held high ranks. Finding this information, I was interested in learning more about how each of them battled in war. By this I mean, the weapons and equipment they had to use in battle. My great-great grandfather served in the military from 1891-1901 and achieved the rank of Colonel. In World War fthe main destructive weapon was mustard gas used

by the Germans. Mustard gas was very poisonous and extremely harmful on the inside of whoever breathed in the chemical. The main effects of the gas were "irritated eyes, blistered skin, and internal and external bleeding." "The main weapons used in VWVt: was the airplane and machine gun. VWV~was the first time that airplanes were a factor of war and caused heavy destruction and impac~ Airplanes brought a

whole new aspect to warfare that was not there before. Being able to look at your enemies from overhead provided a big help to the troops on the ground. Also, the planes were capable of dropping bombs on the opposing side which was never done before. The airplane caused troops to be aware of their surroundings on the ground and in the sky. My great-great grandfather was a medic in the military and gave his gas

Listoe 2 mask to one of his patients to protect them from the mustard gas. Unfortunately, he died from his exposure after the war was over.

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Alexander Eugene Johnson Listoe Jr, my grandfather, fought in World War II ~ and received the rank of Two Star General. He also was a recipient of the

Purple Heart for being wounded in battle. World War II was fought against Germa~ again and "the most common weapons were the M1 Garand and the grenade" (Kyle). Before WWII, the infantry soldiers used bolt action rifles. This means that after every shot, the soldier had to open the chamber and reload another bullet. The M1 Garand took care of that problem because it was a semi-auto rifle. Semi-auto means that the gun will fire as quick\~s you pull the trigger and it would keep going until you ran out of bullets. Being able to keep shooting helped soldiers by giving them more than one chance to kill the enemy. Another big advantage to soldiers were the use of grenades. Grenades were helpful by being able to injure or kill your enemy from a distance. The grenade was as useful as far as you could throw it. Being able to hurt or kill your enemy from that kind of distance saved many lives by avoiding close combat with the M1 Garand. Kent Listoe, my father joined the military after having a full ride through college with an ROTC scholarship at Oregon State University. Kent achieved the rank of Colonel and was a Green Beret, Special Forces soldier. He fought in Desert Storm, and was deployed to Somalia and Bosnia. My dad said, that "the most common weapons that he used were the M16 rifle and the M19 automatic grenade launc er. The M16 was the most common rifle because it was light and very accurate" (Listoe). Carrying a rifle for a long distance or time can cause fatigue and lower the accuracy of the soldiers

Listoe 3 shot. Having a gun that is lighter and easier to shoot changed the way that close combat was fought by having more soldiers that had more energy to fight. The M 19 grenade launcher was a major weapon because it was automatic. Having an automatic grenade launcher was a game changer because you could throw the grenades a further distance. Also, it would throw multiple grenades in the same location and be able to destroy a group of men in seconds. The only problem with the M19 automatic grenade launcher was the fact that it was stationary and heavy. ''The grenade launcher had to be carried by in pieces by multiple soldiers. The grenade launcher then had to be set up

and could not be moved in one whole pie~

(Liioe) The bad part about the M19 not

being mobile meant that there was always a chance it could get blown up. The M19 is manned by one person but must have other soldiers to stay around and protect the soldier running the grenade launcher. Overall, military was a huge part of my father's side of the family tree. Seeing the progression from having to manually insert each bullet to semi-auto rifles, to finally having fully automatic weapons is truly remarkable. Knowing what my ancestors had to go through and watch out for in battle is scary and shows how brave they were. Also talking with my father about his dad brought back many memories for him and many great stories. Talking with my father about his service brought back many stories and emotions about the hardships he went through. Knowing some of what my father had to endure to become a Green Beret or Colonel makes me want to work harder in my schooling. My father did not have to join the military but felt that he needed to support his country which is very respectable. Finally knowing that my name has had such power and experience associated with it, makes me proud to be a Listoe.

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Works Cited


American Gun: a history of the U. S. in ten firearms. New York: HarperCollins,

2013. eBook. Kent.Personallnlerview. 08 Mar2014. "World War One- Weapons." History on the net. Spartacus Education, 30 Apr 2010. Web. 17 Mar 2014.



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