Gene Hand was wounded in Germany attacking a German machinegun nest, Commonly known as a "Pillbox" during combat. He was struck in the knee with shrapnel from a grenade which he tossed at the machinegun. For this action, he was awarded the Purple Heart medal. It also ended his career as a left-handed pitcher. He met his brother, Ed Hand in Paris while recouperating. Ed was with the Quartermaster Corps, at the time: having come through North Africa and Italy invasions.