James "Jim" Vincent Christiano was born on September 7, 1916 in Waterbury, CT. He was the son of Constantino Cristinziano (changed to Christiano) and Bambina Lanese and attended Webster Grammar School. He would later go to work as a milling machine operator with the Seth Thomas Clocks Company of Thomaston, CT.
Service Time: He entered the service (Waterbury American Article) on Feb. 19, 1942 at Ft. Devens, MA but recieve his early training at Ft. McClellan, AL where he was assigned to Company D, 23rd Infantry Battalion (Group photo). Jim can be seen in the first standing row from the front, 14th from the left. He would travel to Camp Cooke, CA and Camp Hood, TX becoming part of the 705th Tank Destroyer Battalion and later transfer to Company C, 603rd Tank Destroyer battalion in which he remained until the end of the war. He and the unit traveled to Shreveport, LA, Camp Shelby, MS and then Camp Maxey, TX, for training before moving to Camp Kilmer, NJ for final preparations before shipping from the New York Port to England in April of 1944. Jim received credit for each of the 603rd's 5 campaigns, including the Battle of the Bulge. He would also partiicipate in the liberation of the Buchenwald Concentration Camp. He received a Bronze Star (Article 1 and Article 2) for Heroic Achievement for actions in Bad Klosterlausnitz, near Jena, Germany. It was at some time prior to shipping home that Jim was transferred to Company C of the 823rd Tank Destroyer Battalion as identified on his Discharge Papers. He reached the rank of Sergeant before leaving the service in October of 1945.
When he returned to civilian life, he went to work at one of Waterbury's Brass manufacturers, but his spare time he loved spending with his family and friends. One of his favorites meeting spots was Polletto's on North Main Street. He also enjoyed playing cards, bocce, scrap-booking, going to Jai-Alai in Milford and watching his favorite team, the Red Sox. He was also a member of the Disabled American Veterans Commanders Club, where he was recognized for his devotion and generosity.
Jim passed away on June 26, 2006 and was laid to rest at the Calvary Cemetery in Waterbury, CT.