Black Hawk County

Cpl. Riley W. Williams




3 Waterloo Army Men Killed

War department messages Wednesday had informed families that three Waterloo soldiers dies recently in the service of their country. The dead included:

Cpl. Riley W. Williams, 24.
Tech. 5th Gr. Kenneth Horner, 38.
Pfc. Robert C. Free, 19.

[NOTE: Portions of this article regarding Tec5 Horner and Pfc. Free have been omitted but may be found on their individual webpages within this site.]

Tragic news of the accidental death of their soldier son in Czechoslovakia on July 1, came to Mr. and Mrs. M. R. Williams, Millerdale addition, only a week after they had received a letter in which he told them he would be home the latter part of July.

Corporal Williams was fatally wounded in the heart by a bullet from an accidentally discharged gun while stationed with the 987th field artillery at Klatovy, Czechoslovakia.

A letter explaining his death was received by Mr. and Mrs. Williams from the chaplain of his company, who reported that full Christian and military honors were tendered him before burial in a military cemetery.

Born at Waterloo on Sept. 25, 1920, he had spent his entire life in this city until he entered the army on June 12, 1942. As a boy he attended Cedar No. 3 rural school.

After receiving basic training at Camp Bowie, Tex., Corporal Williams went overseas on Mar. 12, 1944. His artillery unit served with the First army, and was one of the first heavy gun outfits to enter Germany.

Surviving are both parents; one sister, Laurenia Williams, at home, and one brother, Pfc. Floyd B. Williams, stationed at Bakersfield, Cal.

Source: Waterloo Daily Courier, Waterloo, Iowa, Wednesday, July 18, 1945, Section Two, Page 14 (photo included)