The United States had a total of 405,399 casualties during World War II. Of those, 176,399 are either buried in American Battle Monuments Commission cemeteries around the world or are listed on the various Walls of the Missing.
Below is information on Ashley County’s veterans who died in the war.
Henry Kenneth Adcock
U. S. Navy Torpedoman's Mate Third Class Henry Kenneth Adcock was the son of Mr. and Mrs. William Wade Adcock of Route 1, Parkdale.
His official death date was October 26, 1945, and he is listed as missing at the memorial at Fort William McKinley at Manila in the Phillippines. He received the Purple Heart.
Ernest Lee Alston
Stewart's Mate (Mess Attendant) First Class Ernest Lee Alston, son of the late Charlie Alston, a farmer who lived near Parkdale, was reported missing by the War Department during the first week of October, 1942. He had volunteered for the Navy in about 1940 and had been on active duty ever since. He was reported missing in action somewhere in the Pacific and became the first Ashley County Negro casualty after Pearl Harbor. He served on a battleship and had been as far north as Iceland, he told his parents while on furlough in June, 1942. The records indicate he died August 10, 1943, and he is listed as missing in action or buried at sea on the Tablets of the Missing at Manila American Cemetery, Manila, Philippines. He won the Purple Heart. His wife, Burnerdene Alston, had moved to Harrisburg.
Ralph Truman Black
Ralph Truman Black, 26, was reported missing in the sinking of the oil tanker Alan Jackson off the coast of Norfolk, VA, on Sunday morning January 18, 1942, and was given up by the Navy as lost at sea. He had served in the U. S. Navy for three years before joining the marine department of Standard Oil Company.
He left Baton Rouge, LA, his home base, on Christmas Day and then talked from Norfolk, VA, with his mother saying he was going to be out of the United States. The Alan Jackson sank after being torpedoed with only 13 out of the crew of 26 surviving, and some of them suffering serious injuries. He was born in Ashley County and educated in Bastrop and Monroe, LA. He was the grandson of Rev. and Mrs. Adolphus Jarvis of Hamburg. His tombstone at the Antioch Cemetery includes an engraving of a ship, with USS Alan Jackson, and the inscription, "He Died as He Lived… A Brave Soldier."
On January 18, 1942, the unarmed tanker Alan Jackson was proceeding independently without routing instructions about 60 miles ENE of Diamond Shoals, North Carolina, when she was hit by two torpedoes from U-66 at 0833. The first hit the starboard side forward of the bridge in the forward tank and the second hit the starboard side aft of the deckhouse between #2 & #3 tanks and broke the ship into about 25 feet forward of the midship house, nearly in line with the foremast. This caused both parts of the burning tanker to sink within 10 minutes. Flaming oil spewed from the tanker's side and spread over the water hundreds of feet around the ship, making it hazardous for the crew to abandon ship. Many of the men burned to death because only the #3 boat with eight men could be launched. Five men jumped into the water and clung to wreckage. The lifeboat picked up the radio operator after 15 minutes. Destroyer USS Roe picked up the 2nd mate, the 3rd mate and an able seaman four hours later. The destroyer then picked up the occupants of the lifeboat and found the master after seven hours in the water. On 19 January, all survivors were landed at Norfolk, Virginia. Of the eight officers and 27 men aboard, only three officers and 10 men survived, eight of them injured
Quinton Thomas Bonds
Seaman Second Class Quinton Thomas Bonds of Hamburg was in the U. S. Naval Reserves before going on active duty. He died February 21, 1945, and is listed as missing in action or buried at sea. He is included on the Tablets of the Missing at Honolulu Memorial, Honolulu, Hawaii. He received the Purple Heart. He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Walker Vernon Bonds of Route 2, Hamburg.
Buford E. Brown
Pvt. Buford E. Brown, 21, was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Ed Brown of Crossett, and a graduate of Drew Central High. He entered the Army Airborne Infantry December 1, 1943, and trained at Fort Benning, Georgia. He served overseas in England, France and Holland, earning the Good Conduct Medal and the Purple Heart. A paratrooper, he was killed in action September 18, 1944, in Holland. At the time of his induction, he was a carpenter at the paper mill in Crossett.
William Hiram Burgess
A memorial service was held at the Parkdale Baptist Church on Sunday, December 10, 1944, for Machinist Mate Second Class William Hiram Burgess, who was listed as missing on November 28, 1944, and possibly buried at sea. The son of John Edwin and Metta Line Burgess, he was born in Hamburg on May 5, 1924. He attended the Parkdale Public Schools and enlisted in the U. S. Navy on December 15, 1941, as an apprentice seaman. He received his boot training at the San Diego Naval Training Station and was assigned to the USS Platte. He is listed on the tablets of the missing at Fort William McKinley at Manila in the Philippines.
The Platte was built by the Bethlehem Steel Company, Baltimore, Maryland; launched on 8 July 1939, and commissioned at Norfolk on 1 December 1939. Platte was at San Diego when the Japanese struck Pearl Harbor. On 7 December 1941, Platte put to sea with a convoy for Pearl Harbor and was underway on 11 January 1942, in company with the famed aircraft carrier Enterprise (CV-6), spending the next few months in the Coral Sea. On 28 May 1942, Platte fueled the Enterprise Task Force and the Yorktown Task Force just before the Battle of Midway. Platte then began her support of the Solomons operations. She was in the ocean approaches to the Solomons in the morning of 10 August. She subsequently fueled the Saratoga, Wasp and Enterprise carrier task groups. After a return to the west coast, she resumed her vital support to fleet units engaged in the bitter struggle for Guadalcanal and other Solomon Islands.
Platte departed San Pedro on 9 April 1943 to provide vital logistic support in the campaign to regain control of the western Aleutians from the Japanese. Platte was underway for the Marshall Islands the afternoon of 31 January 1944, fueling Pennsylvania and six destroyers. On 6 June, Platte cleared Majuro Atoll with Fast Carrier Task Forces for the Marianas. Platte loaded fuel and cargo at Eniwetok, then made passage to Seeadler Harbor, Manus, Admirality Islands. This harbor was her base of logistic operations in support to combat ships in the forward area to the northeast of the Marianas Islands, Iwo Jima, and the supporting carrier strikes on Tokyo.
Platte stood out to sea on 13 March to commence support of Fast Carrier Task Forces in the conquest of Okinawa. On 15 August, word was received that President Truman had announced the agreement of Japan to surrender. Platte earned 11 battle stars for World War II, six battle stars for Korea, and five battle stars for her Vietnam service.
Enoch Elisha Callaway
This man’s name is spelled “Calloway” on the Ashley County Veterans Memorial, but is spelled as above in the records.
U. S. Navy Electrician's Mate Third Class Enoch E. Callaway died October 25, 1944. He is listed as missing in action or buried at sea on the Tablets of the Missing at Manila American Cemetery, Manila, Philippines. He was awarded the Purple Heart. His parents, Mr. and Mrs. William R. Callaway, had an address of Route 2, Ashdown.
W. J. Calloway
S/Sgt. W. J. Callaway, son of Mr. and Mrs. William Richard Callaway, was born October 12, 1919, in Idabel, Oklahoma. His family moved to Arkansas in 1928.
He enlisted in the Army in October, 1938, and trained at Fort Sam Houston, TX, and later qualified as squad leader and communications sergeant. He left the United States for Northern Ireland on September 27, 1943, and took part in the Normandy invasion. He was killed in action on June 18, 1944. His wife, Ruby, lived in Texarkana.
Delton O. Carpenter
Private First Class Delton O. Carpenter was the son of Newton "Newt" and Carrie Carter Carpenter of Route 1, Hamburg. Born July 10, 1915, he was reported missing in action on January 29, 1945, when he was 29. He enlisted on November 10, 1943, and received basic training at Camp Robinson and Camp Fannin, Texas. He went overseas in September, 1944.
On December 15, 1944, he wrote to his family that he was in Belgium. Prior to his induction, he lived with Mr. and Mrs. W. S. Corder of Route 1, Montrose. The War Department later announced that he had died of wounds on January 29, 1945, while in a German prison camp. He fought in the Battle of the Bulge. He served with the 112 Infantry Regiment, 28 Infantry Division and is buried at Plot K, Row 32, Grave 14, at the Lorraine American Cemetery. St. Avold, France. He received the Purple Heart. His enlistment record indicates that he was single with no dependants.
Johnnie Frank Carter
Pfc. Johnnie F. Carter, born in 1925, and the son of Mrs. John E. Carter of Crossett, attended school at Waller's Chapel and Crossett. He entered the Army May 18, 1944, at Camp Robinson, Arkansas. He trained at Camp Fannin, Texas, and Ft. Meade, Md, and served overseas in France, Belgium, and Germany. He was awarded one Presidential Citation and Purple Heart.
He was killed in action, fighting with the First Division of the U. S. Army on March 24, 1945, in Germany at age 20. His remains were originally buried in Belgium, but were returned to Ashley County on December 5, 1947. He served with the First Division from 1944 until his death. His enlistment record indicated that he was an automobile serviceman. Burial services were at the Unity Cemetery near his home northwest of Crossett with the Johnson-Moore VFW post and Rev. R. E. Simpson of Hot Springs officiating. He was single with no dependants.
Roy Glen Cartledge
Seaman first class Roy G. Cartledge, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ruthford Cartledge of Crossett, a 1943 graduate of Crossett High School and two year football letterman at Crossett High School, entered the Naval Air Corps on June 2, 1943. He trained at Corpus Christi, Texas, Albert Lee, Minnesota, and Miami, Florida, and Norman, Oklahoma, where he attended the school of aviation ordinance and earned the Gunner Badge.
Based in Miami, he was killed in action in a plane crash on March 10, 1945.
Military funeral services were held at the Baptist Church in Crossett on Saturday, March 18, 1945, with The American Legion and a Navy contingent from Arkansas A&M in charge. Before induction, he worked at the Crossett Lumber Company.
Ralph S. Clark
Staff Sgt. Ralph S. Clark, son of Mrs. Tobe C. Bawcom of Trafalgar and Carl Clark of Dyess, was a 1939 graduate of Portland High School, and entered the Army Air Corps October 5, 1941. He trained at Camp Robinson, Arkansas, Sheppard Field, Texas, Scott Field, Illinois, Morrison, Florida, and Langley Field, Virginia. A flying radar mechanic, he received his wings as a non commissioned officer in October, 1942. He served overseas in Newfoundland, Iceland and England. He was killed in a plane accident June 16, 1944, at Langley Field, Virginia. Funeral services were at the Sardis Baptist Church in Trafalgar with military personnel from the prisoner of war camp in Monticello. He worked for the Gardner Lumber Company in Lake Village prior to his induction.
Charles T. Cockrell
Pvt. Charles T. Cockrell from Parkdale. served in the 6th Infantry 1st Armored Division. Pvt. Cockrell was the son of Tom and Myrtle Cockrell, and his father was a barber in Parkdale. His parents are both buried in the Parkdale Cemetery.
He attended school in Parkdale until the eighth grade and then worked on a farm while living at home. He was single. Shortly after his eighteenth birthday, he was drafted. Pvt. Cockrell was on board a ship which sank with no survivors on November 8, 1942, about two miles off the coast of North Africa. He was listed as missing in action or buried at sea on November 8, 1942, in North Africa. He earned the Purple Heart and Bronze Star.
His name is included on the Tablets of the Missing at North Africa American Cemetery, Carthage, Tunisia.
Two of his brothers, W. L. and Marvin Ross Cockrell, also served in World War II and returned home safely. Part of this information was contributed by another brother, Rand Cockrell, of Mer Rouge, LA. Given the date and location of his death, it is certain that Pvt. Cockrell died as part of Operation Torch, the Allied operation to land 110,000 men in North Africa.
Powell B. Compere
Sgt. Powell B. Compere, second son of Brig. Gen. E. L. Compere, state director of Selective Service, was killed in action in France on January 5, 1945. He was born in Hamburg on October 18, 1918, while his father, then a colonel, was serving overseas near Hehun, France, during World War I. He was inducted on May 5, 1942, after completing his BA degree at the University of Texas. After serving in the reception center at Camp Robinson for about a year, he attended the Army languages school and was a language specialist until transferring to the infantry in April, 1944. He served with the 324th Infantry, 44th Division, Seventh Army, and had been overseas since September, 1944. His division was in action at Foret de Parroy, Boil de la Garenne, Avincourt, Sarrebourg and Saverne Gap and was cited by Lt. Gen. Alexander M. Patch, commander of the Seventh Army, for outstanding accomplishments. His enlistment record indicated that his civil occupation was a motion picture actor, director or entertainer. He was single with no dependants. He is not listed on the Ashley County Veterans Memorial.
Eldridge Hugo Cooper
U. S. Coast Guard Seaman Second Class Eldridge H. Cooper entered the service from Louisiana. He died March 9, 1944, and is missing in action or buried at sea on the Tablets of the Missing at Cambridge American Cemetery, Cambridge, England. He earned the Purple Heart. He was serving on the USS Leopard (DE 319) which had the mission of escorting convoys to Great Britain and the Mediterranean to protect the convoys from German submarines.
On March 9, 1944, the Leopold was on such a mission and came under attack by German U-255. USS Leopold was the first destroyer escort to be sunk by the German U-255 torpedo, which was one of the German's new munitions and at that time not detectable. After being struck by a torpedo late in the day on March 9, the ship finally sank early the next morning in the stormy icy waters in 30 to 50 foot seas south of Iceland on March 10, 1944. 170 sailors were killed with only 28, all enlisted men, surviving.
Charles H. Corder (Cordrey)
No information was found for Charles H. Corder. The name probably should be Charlie H. Cordrey of Ashley County, who enlisted on September 14, 1943, in Little Rock for the duration of the war plus six months. The name is listed as Corder on both the new veterans' memorial and the old flagpole base on the courthouse square. An automobile serviceman in civilian life, Cordrey was married.
Marshel Foch Cothren
A Fireman, Third Class, in the U. S. Navy, Marshel Foch Cothren died February 18, 1942. He is listed as Missing in Action or Buried at Sea on the Tablets of the Missing at the East Coast Memorial in New York City.
Ralph L. Croswell
An U. S. Marine Corps field musician first class, Ralph L. Croswell, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. (Will) E. (Bonnie) Croswell of Crossett, died September 20, 1943, on Guadalcanal "somewhere in the Southwest Pacific area." A 1941 graduate of Crossett High School, he received the Gates Award as the best all around athlete and was a four year member of the Crossett High band.
He entered the Marines on August 24, 1942. He trained at San Diego, California, and finished the School of Music. He served overseas in New Zealand and Guadalcanal. Memorial services were on Thursday, September 23, in the First Baptist Church of Crossett. He was the first Crossett man and the first Ouachita Baptist College student to die in foreign service.
At the time of his death, Croswell was a member of Company D, First Battalion, Third Marine Regiment, Third Marine Division, USMC. Marine Casualty Report records show that by September 1943, the Island of Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, was safely in the hands of American troops. On Sept. 20, 1943, Pfc. Croswell's company was running a field problem on the Guadalcanal mortar range when a faulty mortar shell fell short of its target, killing him.
Pfc. Croswell was originally buried in the Navy and Marine Cemetery, Henderson Field, on Guadalcanal. At his mother's request, however, he was permanently interred in the National Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii.
Elwood Dean Curry
Sgt. Elwood Dean "Dick" Curry, age about 24, was killed in action on December 26, 1944, somewhere in the Dutch East Indies. He joined the Army Air Forces in June, 1937, and then reenlisted.
He lived with Mr. and Mrs. O. C. Norrell as foster parents and then returned to live with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. L. A. Curry.
The American Battlefield Monuments Commission records show his name as Dean E. Curry. Those records indicate that he served with the 823th Bomber Squadron, 38th Bomber Group, (Medium). He is listed as Missing in Action or Buried at Sea on the Tablets of the Missing at Manila American Cemetery, Manila, Philippines. His awards included the Air Medal and Purple Heart.
Lamar D. Degges
Staff Sgt. Lamar D. Degges, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ira. D. Degges of the Crossett Camp community, Hamburg, was killed in an airplane accident on July 3, 1943, at White City, Kansas. A member of the Camp Kearney Air Corps, he was trained as a flight engineer and a tail gunner on a B-17 Flying Fortress. The accident happened during a routine training flight.
He had trained at Sheppard Field near Wichita, TX, in aviation mechanics to be qualified a crew chief on a bomber. Before entering the service, he was a timber worker. He had also been stationed at Middle River, Maryland, where he was trained as a flight engineer. Born in 1921, he enlisted on July 10, 1942, in Little Rock. He had been a tractor or truck driver in civilian life and was listed as single with dependants.
Kloyce Wesley Dennard, 26, a gunner's mate first class in the U. S. Navy, was listed as missing in the performance of duty in December, 1944.
Born August 30, 1918, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Dennard, he graduated from Hamburg High School in 1936. He was serving on the naval ammunition ship Mount Hood when the ship accidentally blew up at an advanced base in the Central Pacific on November 10, 1944. He entered the Navy on June 10, 1937, and spent time as an instructor in gunnery at Miami, Florida, and was on his second trip to the Central Pacific.
His family had moved to Bastrop, LA, about 1942, and he enlisted in Louisiana. He had two other brothers in the service, Lt. Merrell C. Dennard of the Army Air Corps and Cpl. Bobby M. Dennard, serving in the army with an artillery unit. He died November 10, 1944, and is listed as missing in action or buried at sea on the Tablets of the Missing at Manila American Cemetery, Manila, Philippines.
Patrick B. Dillon, Jr.
Pfc. Patrick B. Dillon, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. Patrick B. Dillon, was born in Portland January 13, 1925. A graduate of Wilmot High School who attended A&M College, he entered the Army July 21, 1943, after enlisting on July 7 in Little Rock. Trained at Camp Wolters, Texas, he was sent overseas on January 16, 1944, and served in England, France, Belgium, Holland and Germany.
He was killed by enemy artillery fire on November 30, 1944, while his unit was approaching Prummern, Germany. He was buried in the American Military Cemetery near Margraten, Holland. He was awarded the Purple Heart. He was single with no dependants and had been an electrician or mechanic in civilian life. Double memorial services for him and his cousin Hawkins Dillon, Jr., were held in the Wilmot Baptist Church on February 25, 1945. Their deaths came only 13 days apart on the European front.
William Hawkins Dillon, Jr.
Pvt. William Hawkins Dillon, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. William H. Dillon of Wilmot, graduated from Wilmot High School in June, 1943, and was a student at Louisiana State University majoring in agriculture when he was inducted in the Army on March 9, 1944, at Camp Robinson. He trained at Camp Fannin, Texas, and Fort Bragg, NC, where he earned the Expert Rifleman Medal.
He was serving in the infantry in General Patch's army when he was reported missing in action on December 11, a designation which was changed to killed in action two days later. He had been overseas since October, 1944. He was born in Jones, LA, on January 25, 1925. At LSU, he was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity. He was sent to the European Theater of Operations on October 5, 1944, and participated in the campaigns of the Vosgnes Mountains, Raon L'Etope and Senomes areas before being killed in action in France on December 13, 1944. He served overseas with 100th Infantry Division, 7th Army. His decorations included the European Theater Ribbon with three Battle Stars, the Combat Infantryman Badge, and the Purple Heart posthumously.
Double memorial services for him and his cousin, Patrick Benjamin Dillon, Jr., were held in the Wilmot Baptist Church on February 25, 1945. Their deaths came only 13 days apart on the European front.
George Thomas Douglass
Seaman Fire Controlman Third Class George Thomas Douglass, 35, was aboard the destroyer USS Turner when it entered the New York harbor in January, 1944, and a disastrous explosion of unknown origins blew the ship into pieces and killed a score of crew and officers.
He served as a fire controller, helping to determine ranges during a battle and also served as a lookout. The son of N. G. Douglass of near Hamburg, he graduated from Hamburg High School in 1931. He was employed by the Brown Paper Mills Company before he enlisted in the Navy.
He had planned to make the Navy a career. He died January 3, 1944, and is listed as missing in action or buried at sea on the Tablets of the Missing at East Coast Memorial at Battery Park in New York City. His wife was Mrs. Ruby Mar Shields Douglass of Route 5, Hamburg.
Harry Leon Englerth
Harry L. Englerth, U. S. Navy water tender first class, was reported killed in action in June, 1945. He had been previously reported missing. He had been aboard a destroyer in the South Pacific since 1943 and had been in the Navy since 1940.
He was the son of C. A. Englerth of Wilmot. His remains were returned home for burial in the Wilmot Cemetery. His name is incorrectly spelled on the local veterans memorial.
Sam Houston Evans
Pfc. Sam Houston Evans, 29, of Crossett was reported killed in action in Europe, according to reports received on March 5, 1945. Born in Bastrop, he was working at the Crossett paper mills when he was inducted in the army on December 30, 1943, after enlisting in Shreveport a week earlier. He was the seventh Crossett man to die in the war. Listed in the American Battlefield Monuments Commission as Houston S. Evans, he served with the 359th Infantry Regiment, 90th Infantry Division. He was killed on November 9, 1944, and is buried at Plot C, Row 18, Grave 5, at the Lorraine American Cemetery in St. Avold, France. His awards included the Purple Heart. He was married, and his enlistment records indicate that he was a tractor or truck driver.