Dickinson County

Duane Grant Newman



Duane Newman returned on Tuesday night to Camp Chaffee, Ark., after a 10-day furlough at home.

Source: The Milford Mail, Milford, Iowa, Thursday, November 09, 1944, Page 7

Receive Letter From Duane Newman In Europe

Mr. and Mrs. Ray Newman have received a letter from their son, Duane. He is with the same outfit that Robert Nordli is with. He went overseas Dec. 12, and according to this letter, he had been in action and back at a rest camp within that short period. The letter follows:

Somewhere In Belgium
Jan. 6, 1945.

Dear Mother: This is the second day that we’ve been fortunate enough to live in a barn since we came back to the rest area. They people of this town are very cordial and I’m writing this in a house, but as yet my hand’s haven’t gotten limbered up to writing.

We have three hot meals instead of two now with pancakes most every morning. I washed and shaved yesterday, first time since Dec. 26; felt pretty good, too. You can send me a package with mostly anything edible and maybe a pair of sox. Something I can use in a couple of days.

There isn’t much to write about so I guess I’ll sign off. Keep the home fires burning. Don’t worry, I’ll be O. K. Love, Duane.

Source: The Milford Mail, Milford, Iowa, Thursday, February 08, 1945, Page 8



A memorial service for Duane Newman, 19, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ray Newman, who live west of Milford, was held in the Federated church Sunday afternoon.

The war department notice of his death reached the Newman family last Thursday afternoon. He had been last known to be in Belgium with the outfit to which Robert Nordli of Milford is attached. [NOTE: An article regarding Robert Nordli being wounded in action may be found on his individual webpage within this site.] [Duane’s] parents had a letter from him on the day’s mail Thursday, written Jan. 17. The war department wire stated he was killed Jan. 22.

The Methodist churches in Milford and Excelsior, and the American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary, and the United Service Women of America, Inc., cooperated with the memorial. Each patriotic group attended the service in a body.

The American flag, presented to the parents of a son killed in action, by the government, was presented by the Legion officials during the service. The Rev. A. R. Cuthbert, pastor of the country church, read a scripture and prayer. The Rev. J. O. Smith, local pastor, read the obituary and the tribute to the youth from his graduating class at Okoboji consolidated high school, and preached the memorial sermon.

Music for the service was furnished by two of his high school classmates, of the class of 1942, Misses Venita DeWitt and Lela Williams, students at Morningside college, with Mrs. D. H. DeWitt at the piano.

Six youths from the Okoboji township school area, who were his classmates, served as honorary pall bearers. The church was packed to overflowing with friends of the youth and his parents.

The flowers for the service were sent to shut-ins at the request of the youth’s mother. Two memorial funds were announced. One was made up of $51 by the family and relatives of the youth. The other was $113.67 donated by neighbors and friends of the family. The money is to be sent to the Salvation Army after a memorial plaque is purchased for the Okoboji school. The first has been sent to Walter Winchell for the Army-Navy Relief fund.

The life sketch of the youth, whose 19th birthday would have been Tuesday, Feb. 13, was read by the pastor, as follows:

Duane Grant Newman, son of Roy and Vernetta Newman, was born, Feb. 13, 1926, in Herdland township, Clay county. He was killed in action somewhere in Belgium Jan. 22, this year.

He was baptized in the Methodist church when he was a baby. When he was one year old, his parents moved to Delton township, Cottonwood county, Minn., and lived there for eight years. He, with his family, moved back to Iowa and have lived in Clay and Dickinson counties since that time.

Duane attended high school at Okoboji consolidated school and graduated with the class of 1942, when he was sixteen years old.

During his high school [years] he was active in baseball and basketball. He was also active in 4-H club work. The next two years after graduating, he attended Estherville junior college. He was graduated from that school last spring. He was a member of the Future Teachers of America at Estherville.

In January, 1944, he enlisted in the army reserve and was called to active service June 1. He was stationed at Camp Blanding, Fla., until the last of October. He was home then, on a delayed enroute furlough on the way to Camp Chaffee, Ark. He left Milford Nov. 7 and nine days later left for Fort George Meade, Md. He went overseas sometime in mid-December.

Three letters were received from him after he arrived overseas. One was written Jan. 1, another Jan. 6, and the last one on Jan. 17. To our knowledge he received but one letter, from his fiancée, Miss Colleen Reynolds of Estherville.

He leaves to mourn his passing, besides his parents, his brother, Arlo Wayne, his fiancée, and his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Grant Pelly of Ruthven and T. H. Newman of Seattle, wash., great grandmother, Mrs. John Pelly of Minnesota, several uncles, aunts and cousins.


A tribute to our former classmate, Duane, whose memory we will always cherish because of his willingness to help in all activities and his happy spirit and sense of humor which won for him a prominent and enviable place in all social gatherings.

He was always one of us and took an active part in school activities. He was in the mixed chorus, boys’ glee club and quartet. He took a leading part in [remainder of article, supposed to be on page 8, was missing].

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Family Party Honors Pvt. and Mrs. Wallace

About 50 relatives gathered at the town hall Sunday noon for a picnic dinner and miscellaneous shower in honor of Pvt. and Mrs. Duane Wallace, who are here from Asbury Park, N. J., visiting Pvt. Wallace’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. M. E. Wallace and
Daughter, Sylvia . . . Most of the group attended memorial services for Pvt. Duane Newman in the afternoon . . . .

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Mr. and Mrs. James McDonald attended the memorial services Sunday for Duane Newman.

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Mrs. Reynolds and daughter, Colleen, of Estherville came on Friday to the Ray Newman home and attended the memorial services Sunday for Duane Newman. They returned home Monday.

Source: The Milford Mail, Milford, Iowa, Thursday, February 15, 1945, Pages 1, 4, & 6

Newmans Receive Medal Awarded to Son After Death

Mr. and Mrs. Ray Newman have received a Purple Heart decoration awarded posthumously to their son, Duane, 19, and a letter from Henry l. Stimson, secretary of war. The medal arrived Monday, although the Newmans had been appraised of their son’s death some weeks ago. The letter follows:

March 3, 1945.

My Dear Mr. Newman:

At the request of the President, I write to inform you that the Purple Heart has been awarded posthumously to your son, Private Duane G. Newman, Infantry, who sacrificed his life in defense of his country.

Little that we can do or say will console you for the death of your loved one. We profoundly appreciate the greatness of your loss, for in a very real sense the loss suffered by any of us in this battle for our country, is a loss shared by all of us. When the medal, which you will shortly receive, reaches you I want you to know that with it goes my sincerest sympathy and the hope that time and the victory of our cause will finally lighten the burden of your grief.

Sincerely yours,
Henry L. Stimson.

Source: The Milford Mail, Milford, Iowa, Thursday, March 15, 1945, Page 1

Memorial For Pvt. Duane Newman
Is Given To School

A beautiful plaque was presented to the Okoboji consolidate school by Mr. and Mrs. Ray Newman in memory of their son, Pvt. Duane Newman, killed in action Jan. 22, 1945.

This plaque is made of walnut wood and all the inscription is in bronze lettering. All the names placed on it are pupils who have graduated pr this was their last school they attended before they left for service. The plaque was purchased with the money presented by his classmates and friends. The inscription on it read, “Roll of honor in memory of Pvt. Duane G. Newman, Killed in action Jan. 22, 1945. Dedicated by his classmates and friends . .”

Space is left to be filled in of all the others leaving for service in the future who have graduated of attended their last school year here. This plaque will be kept in the high school assembly room and may always be referred to as Memories of World War II.

Source: The Milford Mail, Milford, Iowa, Thursday, July 12, 1945, Page 1