Dickinson County

Pfc. James S. Cline

Born 14 Mar 1919
Died 25 Jul 1943



The July 1 quota for CCC in Dickinson county is three. The following three boys have been accepted: James S. Cline, Spirit Lake; Crotty Griffin, Arnolds Park; and Glen Nelson, Terril.

Source: Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, June 27, 1940, Page 12

Local News

Pfc. James Cline came Thursday evening from Ft. Riley, Kansas, to visit until Saturday with friends in Spirit Lake. He is also visiting his grandmother, Mrs. I. J. Fox of Estherville and his sister, Mrs. John Hitchcock, at Jackson, Minn.

Source: Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, May 27, 1942, Page 7

Local News

Pvt. James Cline, who is stationed at Ft. Riley, Kansas, arrived Monday for a fifteen day furlough visit with relatives and friends. Pvt. Cline is a tank driver in the armored division at Ft. Riley.

Source: Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, October 08, 1942, Page 7

Spirit Lake Soldier Lost Life In River

“Dicky Fox” Drowned in Colorado River While On Maneuvers

P. F. C. James S. Cline, better known in Spirit Lake as “Dicky Fox,” was drowned in the Colorado River near Camp Young, California Sunday according to word received by his aunt, Mrs. Harry A. Jones, of 601 N. 4th St., Estherville. Death came while he was on maneuvers with his training group in the California desert area, near Topock, Arizona.

News of Dicky’s death came as a great shock to his many Spirit Lake friends as the youth had always been a great favorite in Spirit Lake. He was home on a furlough late in May just before leaving Ft. Riley for his relocation and he had made the rounds of all his friends’ homes to greet them, as was his custom. Dick’s friends were his greatest assets – and he never failed to see them all when he got back to Spirit Lake. His greeting on the street meant just as much to his friends, who realize the spirit of friendliness back of his cheery greeting and his happy, broad smile.

Dick’s death has cut short his army career of over two years before he saw actual combat service, but those who knew him well know that he put as much into his work there as he would have had he been defending his country overseas.

Body Recovered Tuesday

Mrs. Jones had made arrangements to have the body shipped to the Donovan Funeral Home here and services were to be held in Spirit Lake, when the body was recovered. She received a wire this morning that the body was recovered from the treacherous Colorado river Tuesday, but that due to its condition it would be impossible for it to be shipped to Spirit Lake. The government has made arrangements for the body to be interred at the beautiful Sawtelle National Cemetery at Los Angeles, Calif., one of the largest government cemeteries in the United States, where it will receive perpetual care from the government.

James Cline was born March 14, 1919 at the home of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Cline, who lived near what is now the McBurney Cabin Camp north of Spirit Lake. His mother died at the time of his birth and his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Ira Fox took him into their home and he spent his entire youth in their care. He attended the Spirit Lake schools and in 1936, started working in the oil station for Lester Stephenson. His grandfather who was a great favorite with Dick, died in the spring of 1939, but the grandmother continued to make a home for Dick and his sister Norma.

On March 3, 1941 Dick was inducted into the service through selective service, going with the fourth quota from Dickinson county, along with Jack Traum, Luther Moore and George Froendt. They were inducted at Sioux Falls [Page 10] S. Dak. He was stationed at Camp Funston, Kansas for a time and then at Tucson, Arizona, later being transferred to Ft. Riley, Kansas where he spent about two years of his period in the service. He left Ft. Riley about June 8 for desert maneuvers, after having enjoyed a furlough visit in Spirit Lake. He was a tank driver with the third battalion, 14th Armored Regiment. Shortly after his induction his grandmother broke up housekeeping and is in the Jones home in Estherville.

Mrs. Lester Stephenson, in whose home he visited during his furlough here, received a letter from him Monday this week that was written on Friday, in which he stated he was leaving on an eleven day maneuver trip.

Dick is survived by his grandmother, Mrs. Olive Fox of Estherville, two sisters, Norma, Mrs. John Babcock of Jackson and Oliver, Mrs. Lars Anderson of Estherville, and by the following aunts and uncles, Mrs. Harry A. Jones of Estherville, Mrs. J. E. Woods of Oklahoma, Mrs. Orville McCracken of Lincoln, Nebr., and O. S. Omundson of Charter Oak.

Source: Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, July 29, 1943, Pages 1 & 10 (photo included)

Memorial Services For P. F. C. James Cline
Sunday, August, 15

Plans are being completed for a patriotic memorial service in honor of the memory of P. F. C. James Cline, better known as Dick Fox, who drowned Sunday, July 25 in the Colorado River. The service will be held at the Methodist church on Sunday afternoon, August 15 at 2:30 o’clock, with the American Legion and patriotic groups participating.

Rev. J. E. Feller, pastor of the church, who will preside at the service, will announce the complete program next week.

Source: Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, August 05, 1943, Page 1

To Honor Memory of Local Service Man Sunday


Memorial services for our first world war casualty, P. F. C. James F. (sic) Cline, better known as Dickie Fox, will be held at the Methodist church Sunday afternoon, August 15 at 2:30 p.m. Rev. J. E. Feller, pastor of the church assisted by Rev. Cox of the Presbyterian church, will conduct the services. The patriotic organizations of the town will also participate in the service. The public is most cordially invited.

Following is the complete program.

Advancing the Colors.
Invocation, The Reverend George Cox.
Prayer, The Reverend J. E. Feller.
Message on behalf of the patriotic organizations, Walter B. Bedell.
Memorial Message, The Reverend J. E. Feller.
Roll Call and placing of Gold Star.
Taps, Charles McClintock.
Presentation of Flag to the family, William Bruh, commander of the Legion.
Retiring of the Colors.

The American legion and Auxiliary and Boy Scouts will attend the service in a body. Auxiliary members are asked to meet at the library hall at 2:15.

Source: Spirit Lake Beacon, Spirit Lake, Iowa, Thursday, August 12, 1943, Page 1