BiographyUsera Battistini, Vicente (Vincent); b. December 10, 1908 Ponce, Puerto Rico, to NYC with family; Puerto Rican; Father José Vicente Usera Santiago, Mother Adriana Battistini; Prior service in the US Marine Corps, joined April 7, 1927, Served in China and Nicaragua, promoted to Lieutenant, officer in Nicaragua, His probationary appointment was revoked while he was attending his officer basic course; Single; Insurance Salesman; No political affiliation; Received Passport# 380055 on March 29, 1937 which listed his 280 Riverside Drive, NYC; Sailed April 28, 1937 aboard the Normandie; Arrived in Spain on May 30, 1937; Served with the XV BDE, Washington BN in training as a Company 3, Commander, transferred to Lincoln BN, BN Adjutant, Rank Teniente; Served at Brunete; Relieved by Steve Nelson on July 15, 1937; Sent back to Albacete; On August 1st was given ten days leave in Benicasim; Went to Barcelona and contacted the American Consul about leaving; Was arrested and sent to Camp Lukas; Shortly after arriving he was assigned to the American Training Base as second in command to Major Johnson and as an instructor; Sent to the front in charge of 800 recruits on February 12, 1938; Placed in charge of a company; Deserted March 10, 1938 during the Retreats; Returned to the US on June 5, 1938 aboard the Blackhawk; WWII US Army Airforce, joined National Guard as a 1LT, promoted to Major during the war, he was reduced back to Captain after the war and remained on active duty retiring as a Colonel; d. January 1982, Washington, DC.
Sources: Sail; Scope of Soviet Activity; Washington; RGASPI Fond 545, Opis 2, Delos 264, 265, 127; Opis 6, Delo 829, ll. 74-79; Opis 6, Delo 849, ll. 1, Special List for Personnel Service, I. Political Susect and Bad Element List, January 16, 1938; Opis 6, Deloi 1004, ll. 67-81, includes a four page interview of Usera by P. W. (Paul Wendorf) likely for the Historical Commission; Also a document called Visit to Tarazona Oct. 31 to Nov. 5, A Morning Tour with the Training Staff, November 3, 1937, no author listed; USSDA 2:0998, 61:0215; José Alejandro Ortiz Carrión and Teresita Torres Rivera, Voluntarios de la Libertad, Puertorriqueños en Defensa de la República Española 1936-1939. Code A
Photograph: Major Umberto Galliani, Bill Parker and Vincent Usera, Alcorisa, January 1938. The 15th International Brigade Photographic Unit Photograph Collection; ALBA Photo 11; ALBA Photo number 11-0792. Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives. Elmer Holmes Bobst Library, 70 Washington Square South, New York, NY 10012, New York University Libraries.