Colonel Quinton P. Sunday joined the Oklahoma National Guard in 1933 at the age of thirteen. His commander’s knew his age but allowed him to stay because there were nine children at home, his mother had been widowed four years earlier and his family needed the money. For his service he and his two brothers brought home twenty-seven dollars every three months.
By the time he attended the ‘Louisiana Maneuvers’ he was a Corporal in ‘M’ Company, 158th Infantry, Oklahoma National Guard and a machine gunner on a .30 caliber, water cooled machine gun.
In 1941 the Oklahoma National Guard was activated and sent to Ft. Sill, Oklahoma for preparation to be deployed to WWII. While standing guard in a rain storm he was summoned by the Sergeant of the Guard and told he had one hour to gather his gear and report back to headquarters to get on a troop train headed for Fort Benning, Georgia and OCS. While at Ft. Benning he saw a movie with Buddy Ebson called “Parachute Battalion” and decided that was what he wanted to do. Since he was already at Ft. Benning he volunteered for Airborne training and got accepted.
Upon graduation he was assigned to the newly formed 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment and deployed with the unit to Alliance, Nebraska where they underwent further training to prepare them for war.
He then deployed to England with the 507th where he became a pathfinder for the regiment but while preparing for the D-Day jump was injured and didn’t get to make that jump.
He returned to the unit just in time to get alerted to prepare to go to Bastogne and spent Christmas in a battle to help hold Bastogne.
He made the ‘jump across the Rhine’, as he called it, into Germany during Operation Varsity and was assigned an area in Essen to control.
When the war was over he was returned home and mustered out at Ft. Devens, Mass.
He tried civilian life but was among the first volunteers when Korea erupted and then remained in the Army, serving with the 11th Airborne Division, 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team, 508th ARCT, 101st Airborne Division, and 10th Special Forces until his death in 1969. He died of a heart attack while making a jump with the Special Forces in Indiana.