In Memory of
Leo Alfred Callahan
Elk Point, South Dakota
March 21, 1918 – February 19, 1943
Died of Wounds in North Africa
Leo Alfred Callahan was born on March 21, 1918, on a farm
3 miles east of Burbank, South Dakota. He was the son of William and Louise
(Trudeau) Callahan. Leo was a graduate of Vermillion High School. He was
popular with friends and the community.
After graduating he farmed with his father and brothers.
His hobbies were hunting, trapping and fishing. He fished in the Missouri in
the summer with his brothers and friends.
He owned a Model “A” Ford with a rumble seat and one room
trailer house on wheels. In the winter he and his friends waited for the
Missouri River to freeze over, and they would then load the trailer with food
and coffee. After hooking the trailer to the model “A” Ford, they would drive
the car and trailer across the frozen river to hunt and trap most of the
winter. They returned across the frozen river before the spring thaw. Winters
were colder then and the river froze hard. He enjoyed the outdoor life with
family and friends.
Leo left Elk Point on July 26, 1942, going to Fort
Leavenworth, Kansas, and later to Camp Wallace, Texas, for training. Leo then
went on to Newport, New Jersey. He left the United States on December 11,
1942. He was killed in the North African Campaign. The telegram received by
his parents did not give the date of his death, but said he had been buried in a
cemetery in Tunisia on February 20, 1943.
Leo was a good son and a much-loved brother. The family
was very proud to have had him for even that short time. Leo had four brothers
and six sisters. Two of his brothers also served in the Armed Forces in
different areas overseas. They both returned safely.
Leo received the Purple Heart and other medals during his
service to his country. His name is also inscribed on the Wall of Liberty. His
sisters include, Emma, Irene, Mary, Betty, Elaine and Florence. His brothers
include Raymond, Richard, Bill, and
Leo Alfred Callahan was a great soldier. He was loved
greatly by his family members. We will always remember him as a soldier who
sacrificed his life for the United States of America.
This entry was
respectfully submitted by Eric Buehner and John Ness, eighth grade Elk
Point-Jefferson Middle School, Elk Point, South Dakota, March 1, 2002.
Information for this entry was provided by Mrs. Betty Swanson, Alcester, South
Dakota, sister of Private Leo Alfred Callahan.