Scott County

Col. Kenneth Holmes Kinsler



Kenneth Holmes Kinsler was born at Deep River, Iowa on June 22, 1901, the son of Edward and Nellie Rosa Holmes. On November 2, 1929 he married Katherine Devore Thompson at Southport, North Carolina.

Kenneth entered the United States Army and was assigned to Headquarters, 503rd Parachute Infantry Regiment which was organized on August 21, 1941 at Fort Benning, Georgia. The unit was transferred to Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The 503rd left San Francisco aboard MS Poelau Laut, landing at Cairns, Australia December 2, 1942.

Under Col. Kinsler’s command, the 503rd achieved the first successful airborne combat jump in the Pacific Theater on September 5, 1943 at Markham Valley in New Guinea.

Col. Kinsler died October 22, 1943 at Port Moresby of a gunshot wound.  Speculation was that he had committed suicide. Col. Kinsler’s body was re-interred on January 10, 1949 at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, Honolulu, Hawaii, Plot A, Grave 78.

Col. Kenneth Holmes Kinsler was the recipient of the Bronze Star.