In Memory of
Army P.F.C.
Leonard Ernest Camin
Naper, Nebraska
Listed as a Gregory County
September 30, 1924-April 8, 1945
Killed in Action at Okinawa

Leonard Ernest Camin

Leonard Ernest Camin was born on September 30, 1924, in Naper, Nebraska.  He was one of eight children born to Henry and Ella Camin.  He had four sisters and three brothers.  Leonard received his education up to the eighth grade at the Country School at Naper, Nebraska, where his family was living at the time. Leonard was baptized and confirmed at the Lutheran Church, also in Naper.  He was a very hard worker and well-liked young man.  In the summers, Leonard would work on the local farms as a hired hand.  During the fall, he would go to pick corn for people at Beemer, Nebraska. 

Leonard entered military service on June 21, 1944. He received his training at Camp Roberts and then came home on furlough. He was then sent over seas in November of 1944. There he was stationed at Okinawa, Ryurkus Island.

The last words that Leonard left were, “I don’t think I’ll make it back home because the battle is bad.”

On April 8, 1945, Leonard Camin was killed in a battle at Okinawa. Leonard was awarded a medal for best gunner. According to his brother Duane Camin, the body was supposed to be shipped home for burial at Naper, NE, but the sergeant that accompanied the body didn’t think that the cemetery was suitable enough for Leonard. Therefore, the body was buried at the Rosebud Cemetery in Bonesteel, SD, where Leonard’s family was residing at that time.

Survivors at the time of his death were his parents, Henry and Ella Camin; brothers: Edward, Duane, Leonard, and Eddie; and sisters: Bertha, Leona, Clara, and Irma. In a letter received from Bertha Halverson, she stated, “Leonard was really missed by all.”

This entry was respectfully submitted by Tara Kehn, 10th grade, Bonesteel-Fairfax High School, Bonesteel, South Dakota, April 3, 2002. Information for this entry was provided by Duane Camin, brother; Edward & Irene Camin, brother and sister-in-law; and Bertha Halverson, sister.