Veterans of World War II



Military History of CLAUDE R. BURTON, Lt. Col. (Ret)
Veteran World War II & Korean Conflict

Claude R. Burton was born 31 May 1924 in Edinburg, Ohio. He started school at Harris Elementary school Akron, Ohio. After attending many Elementary schools, due to the family moving so many times, he completed elementary school at Henry School in Akron, Ohio. He then attended Central High School and graduated in 1942. He entered the Army Air Corps in November 1942 during WW2 and completed 99 combat missions over Italy, France and Germany, flying P-40 and P-47 fighter aircraft.

After the war, he returned to Akron, Ohio and worked at the McNeil Machine and Engineering Co. During this time he was married to Carol Lucille Wiland. In 1947 he was recalled to active duty with the United States Air Force in Bangor, Maine. In 1949 he was sent to Okinawa and was there when the Korean War began. He was then sent to Japan and Korea where he flew 100 combat missions flying the F-80 fighter aircraft during the Korean Campaign. After he returned to the States he was stationed at Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter, SC and Langley AFB in Virginia. He was then sent to Wethersfield, England, flying F-84 fighter aircraft for 3 years. After returning from England he was stationed at Del Rio, Texas AFB as the Squadron Commander of the 3645th Combat Crew Training Squadron and at Randolph AFB, Texas as the Squadron Commander of the 3510th Flying Training Squadron. In 1961 he was again sent to Korea where he was Chief of the Air Operations Center. He returned in 1962 and was sent to Byrd Field, Richmond, Virgina where he was the United States Air Force Advisor to the Virginia Air National Guard. He retired from the Air Force as a Lt. Colonel in 1964. After retirement he moved his family to San Antonio, Texas where he worked for Snelling & Snelling Employment Agency before joining the Federal Aviation Administration in 1967. While with the FAA he was assigned to duty in Austin, Houston, El Paso, Texas before being sent to New Orleans, La. After 4 years in New Orleans he was sent to Midland, Texas as the Manager of the Midland Flight Service Station. He retired from the FAA in 1986. In 1983 his wife Carol passed away and he then married Virginia M. Armstrong in 1984. They moved to Dallas, Texas area after his retirement from the FAA where they presently reside.


Distinguished Flying Cross with two clusters.
Air Medal with 18 clusters.
Air Force Commendation Medal
Many campaign medals and citations with Air Force
Units to include the French Croix-de-Guerre


Claude R. Burton's ancestor who fought in the American Revolution was Thomas Gorby. He was a private in Capt. Stokley's Company of Frontier Rangers, Westmoreland Co., Pa.

Supplement #1 Lazarus Rine who fought in the Revolution with the PA Militia.
Supplement #2 Henry Yoho who fought in the Revolution with the PA Militia.
Supplement #3 Peter Yoho who fought with the PA Militia and was a scout for the military.
Supplement #4 Capt John Baker fought in the Dunsmore War and in the Revolution building the Fort at Cresap, WV.


Meritorious Service Medal
Bronze Good Citizenship Medal
War Service Medal
Certificate of Distinguished Service


William Burton; Henry Parsons; Thomas Gorby; Capt. John Baker


Allen E. Clark, born 27 Oct 1919, was the son of Charles Foster and Alta McCardle Clark. He entered active duty for the U.S. Army on 7 Jan 1942. He was married to Eileen Davis. While in the service as a PFC T-5, he was a light truck driver and heavy equipment operator. He served with the 432nd Army Air Force Base Unit in the United States and the Pacific Theaters of Operation. He drove a tractor trailer, hauling heavy equipment on both long and short hauls, sometimes at night over mountainous country. He was honorably discharged 20 Jan 1946 & died 5 Oct 1973.

Submitted by Sandra Clark.

JOHN WILLIAM CLARK. See biography.

U. S. NAVY (1942-1945)

Born 1 February 1924, Boggs Run, Marshall County, WV. Son of John Wilbur and Mary Angela Pearl Cunningham. Enlisted 1942; served at NAVY Operating Base, Palermo, Sicily. Ships: LST-4, USS DONNER, USS NEW YORK. Discharged 15 Oct 1945. Married Ruth E. Smith 22 May 1945. Children: Samuel Joseph, Linda Lee, Lori Lynn, Lisa Jo. Died 7 May, 2000, Boggs Run, Marshall County, WV; buried Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Rt. 88, Marshall County, WV.


Born 6 Sept 1905, Ned, PA. Died 12 Sept 1978, Glendale, WV.

Service # 6643770 and # 35 744 640
Service Record:
National Guard 5/28/1926 to 6/25/29
National Guard 8/1/1931 to 7/21/1932
WW II - Joined the U. S. Army 11/28/1942 at Clarksburg WV. Assigned to the 550th Bomb Sqd. 52nd Medical Div. Stationed in England; discharged 1 June 1944. Married Virginia Noland 14 Nov 1942 and lived in Moundsville until his death. Buried at Buckhannon Hills Cemetery Limestone, WV.

Submitted by Dean Fordyce.

JOSEPH F. FREY - U.S.Army - South Pacific & Japan, 1943 - 48


KILLED IN ACTION June 14, 1944, in Saipan.

Obituary of Vernon R. Hughes, Jr.

(Source unknown; probably a Cameron, WV Newspaper)

Cameron Marine

     Memorial services were held last Sunday evening in the Saltsburg, PA Presbyterian Church by Rev. C.J.L. Bates for Vernon R. Hughes, Jr., formerly of Cameron. He was killed in action June 14, 1944, in Saipan. Entering the service in November of 1942 in the U.S. Marine Corps, he attended the Training Center at Parris Island, S.C., Camp Lejeune, N.C. and Camp Pendleton, Calif. On June 21 he was united in marriage to Helen May Houston of Indiana, PA.
     His mother, Mrs. W.D. Iseman and a brother, Harold R. Hughes reside in Saltsburg, his father, Vernon Hughes in Cameron. He was born in Cameron, and educated in the schools there and was best known as "Junior." He was the grandson of Mrs. Margaret Hughes and Mr. and Mrs. H.C. Reigle of Cameron.

Submitted by Virginia Simms Toney.


Benjamin L. King was born 18 Jan 1922 in Moundsville, Marshall County, West Virginia. He served in the U. S. Army and was stationed in Africa; he actually delivered mail for a General de Gaulle. Following the war, he moved to South Carolina, where he lived until his death in January 1998.

Submitted by Rose King Chapman, daughter.


Carl N. Neehouse, son of John and Mary Etta Winter Neehouse, was inducted into the Army on 27 Oct 1941. He was in the 168th Infantry-Service Company of the 34th Division and was a light-duty truck driver, delivering supplies & ammunition to the men on the front lines. BATTLES & CAMPAIGNS: Algeria-French, French, Tunisia, Naples-Foggia. Wounded in Val Turner, Italy 19 Nov 1943. DECORATIONS & CITATIONS: Purple Heart, American Defense Service Medal, European African Middle Eastern Service Ribbon. Honorably discharged 10 Aug 1945.

Submitted by Sandra Clark.


Submitted by James Ray, s/o Eugene.

ORVAL RAY - U.S. NAVY Seaman, killed in the Pacific aboard the USS New Orleans in November 1942. He was the brother of Eugene Ray.

Submitted by James Ray, nephew.

SIMMS, MELVIN PORTER, JR. - Obituary from Cincinnati paper; death Feb 26, 1943

     Staff Sgt. Melvin Porter Simms, Jr. of the 508th Bombardment Squadron was killed in a B-17 that crashed 5 miles east of Air Force Base, Biggs Field, TX. He was born March 21, 1918 in Cameron, WV. Sgt. Simms had volunteered to become a member of a crew of a heavy bomber, where he was serving as aerial gunner and radio man. He had had a meteoric rise in service since his induction, Aug. 28, having shown such ability that he was asked if he would be willing to skip the first phase of his training so that he could see combat service sooner, his mother said. He had graduated as a gunner at Las Vegas, NM (sic) and in radio at Salt Lake, Utah, and was to have left soon for Colorado for cross-country flight training. The officer was to have had a furlough this month. Besides his mother and sister he is survived by his father, Melvin Porter Simms, B & O R.R. engineer, Wheeling, WV; a sister Mrs. Harry Elbin and a brother, Clyde E. Simms, both of Wheeling, and a brother, Hubert C. Simms of Huntington, WV. Clyde Simms is a member of the civil air Patrol.
     Funeral services will be held Friday from the home of his brother-in-law, Dr. W. H. Culley, Bethel, OH with services at the Kennedy funeral home at 2 p.m. Burial at Bethel, OH.

Note: Sister unnamed was Mrs. Ethel Creelman of Cincinnati. The Melvin P. Simms family lived in Cameron, WV in the Crawford addition.

Submitted by Virginia Simms Toney.

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