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Montgomery, 1st Lt. Harry Ralph 1916-1944


Posted By: Linda Ziemann, Volunteer (email)
Date: 12/1/2012 at 13:33:27

Algona Upper Des Moines
August 8, 1944

1st Lt. Harry Ralph Montgomery, Swea City, Killed In Action
By Mrs. Walter G. Smith

According to a War Department message to relatives, 1st Lieut. Harry Ralph Montgomery, of Swea City, was killed in action in the battle lines in France on July 13. The message was dated Aug. 5. According to earlier letters from Lieut. Montgomery, he was on duty at the front, the letters having been written from foxholes. He had been overseas only three months.

In England On D-Day
Lt. Montgomery had seen three years in the service. He was born in Swea City June 24, 1916, the oldest son of James and Bina Walker Montgomery. Surviving are also two younger brothers, Sgt. Edward in England, and SM Floyd, in the Merchant Marine. The three boys were in England on D-Day. Two sisters, Mrs. Kenneth Letcher, of Alexandria, S.D., and Lucille, at home, and three brothers, Keith, Allen, and Mervin, at home, with the parents survive.

Inducted In 1941
Following his induction on June 25, 1941, he was sent to Camp Roberts, Calif., with Co. B. 78th Infantry. He was promoted to Corporal on Jan. 14, 1942. His rating in aptitude tests and general qualities of leadership made him eligible for Officers Training School and at Fort Benning, Ga., on Aug. 8, 1942, he was graduated and given a Second Lieutenant commission. Soon afterwards he was home on furlough and following this he and his wife, the former Beulah Gladstone, of Lone Rock, who had been a 6th grade teacher in Swea City schools several years, went to Camp Butner, N.C., where he was assigned to Co. K, 210th Infantry. He was promoted to a First Lieutenant on March 25, 1943.

Wife, Daughter Survive
In the fall of 1943, a daughter, Susan Jane, was born to Lt. and Mrs. Montgomery. Later Mrs. Montgomery and the daughter came to Lone Rock to make their home with her parents for the duration. Easter weekend of this year, Lt. Montgomery was given a leave and he arrived home for a surprise visit. He had only been home a few hours when he was recalled to report to camp immediately. As he boarded the train at Algona that evening his sister, Mrs. Letcher, of Alexandria, S.D., arrived on the same train to visit him, hence there were only a few moments for them to be together. Following his return to camp, his outfit was sent overseas immediately and he was stationed there until the invasion.

He was a graduate of Swea City High School and a member of First Baptist Church.


Kossuth Obituaries maintained by Linda Ziemann.
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