In Memory of
Cecil Melvin Andrews
Hill City, South Dakota
December 25, 1916 – September 18, 1944
Killed in Action in Belgium
Cecil Melvin Andrews was born on
December 25, 1916, in Bloomfield, Nebraska, to Burt C. and Lottie L. Andrews.
Cecil had six brothers; Lyle, Lester, Curtis, Burt, Dean, and Gene, and two
sisters; Fern and Loris. Cecil attended schools in Nebraska and South Dakota,
as the family moved to Hill City. Cecil liked to fish and enjoyed sports. He
worked in the woods, on the railroad, in mining and at Mt. Rushmore. Cecil
attended church every week.
Cecil was drafted into the army on
November 23, 1942 and reported for active duty on November 30. He first trained
at Fort Crook, Nebraska, and then transferred to the Enlisted Reserve Corp at
Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He held the rank of PFC (private first class), and
was sent to Europe on July 2, 1944. PFC Andrews was stationed in France and
Belgium. He was part of the 9th Infantry Division, and the 60th
Infantry Regiment, Company L. In a letter written to his mother while he was
stationed in France (dated 9/3/44), PFC Andrews stated, “I am still ok and
praising the Lord for what he has done for me. The people here are sure happy
to see the American soldiers and to know that they are free again.”
PFC Cecil Melvin Andrews was fatally
wounded in the line of duty on September 15, 1944, and died three days later on
September 18, in a Belgium hospital. In the official telegram (October 8, 1944)
from the War Department notifying Mrs. Andrews of her son’s death, Major General
J.A. Ulio stated: “The significance of his heroic service to his country will be
preserved and commemorated by a grateful nation, and it is hoped that this
thought may give you strength and courage in your sorrow.”
PFC Cecil Melvin Andrews was laid to
rest at the Henry Chapelle US Military Cemetary in Belgium. Private Andrews
was awarded the Purple Heart for his brave actions.
PFC Cecil Melvin Andrews served his
country well, and we will remember the sacrifice he and so many other soldiers
like him made to keep our nation free.
was respectfully submitted by Garr Smith, John Nachtigall, and Michael Kroells,
12th grade, Wall High School, Wall, South Dakota, April 30, 2002.
Information for this entry was provided by Lyle Andrews, Vancouver, Washington,
brother of PFC Cecil M. Andrews.