South Dakota Casualties of WWII

Completed Biographies List of Causalities Printable List of Causalities - PDF


On September 15, 2001, South Dakota dedicated a memorial to the 68,000 plus South Dakota men and women who participated in World War II.  During the planning for the memorial and dedication, Governor William J. Janklow became aware of a project of the Spearfish Middle School known as The Fallen Sons and Daughters of South Dakota in World War II. The Spearfish Middle School, under the leadership of teacher Sheila Hansen, had undertaken a project to memorialize South Dakota's war casualties by having students research and compose a biography on each of these soldiers. 

As of June, 2001, the students of Spearfish Middle School had completed the biographies of approximately 350 of the 2141 casualties.  Governor William Janklow invited Sheila Hansen to coordinate a statewide project utilizing teachers and students across South Dakota to complete the project of all of the casualties.  Sheila Hansen worked with the Department of Education and Cultural Affairs, teachers and students across South Dakota to complete this project.

The Fallen Sons and Daughters of South Dakota in World War II was a yearlong effort to memorialize the South Dakota men and women who died in World War II.  High School and Grade school students researched, and compiled biographies of the South Dakota casualties.  By providing a written record for past, present and future generations of South Dakotans, students performed a valuable civic duty.  By researching across the state and generations, students formed indelible bonds with the families who shared their personal memories and memorabilia so that these profiles could be written. 

The project implemented not only the state's language art standards but also reinforced social studies standards by affording South Dakota students a personal tangible perspective of war and an appreciation for the responsibilities of citizenship.  In addition, by using an array of electronic technologies, students had the chance to actually gather, write, and edit information and then see it produced, packaged and published, thus creating a permanent record. 

Every effort was made to contact family, friends, and others who could provide information on these noble men and women.  Information is provided on every casualty that we were able to verify that indeed lived in South Dakota.  Most importantly, the contributors to this book acted now to capture these stories.  We invite you to read about the unselfish sacrifice that these men and women made so that we might enjoy freedom today.