Richard W. Becker
In memorial services for Pfc. Richard W. Becker rites of the church were performed and tribute of the community was paid Monday morning at St. Stephen's Catholic Church.
Rev. A. Antochowski, pastor, as celebrant of the Mass, was assisted by the Rev. John Ekeler of Crete as deacon and Rev. Henry A. Scholtens of Friend as sub-deacon. Father Scholtens, who serves as a chaplain at the Fairmont Army Air Field, delivered the sermon. He paid a tribute to the young man, a St. Stephen parishioner, who gave his life for his country in this great struggle for human freedom and called upon all present to do all in their power to see that this sacrifice is not in vain. Father Scholtens was able also to offer for the church words of comfort to the family and friends.
Soldiers of the Fairmont Air Field served as a guard of honor. Discharged veterans of World War II, members of the American Legion and Auxiliary were present in a body.
Honorary pallbearers were were discharged veterans of World War II, including Raymond Geiger, Frank Barkmeier, John Hassler, Emil Filip, Jacob Casper, William Styskal, and William Ekeler; the latter on active duty was home on furlough.
Richard W. Becker, son of Henry and Christine Becker, was born April 23, 1924, at Geneva, but had spent most of his life before entering military service at Exeter. He joined the Army, April 23, 1943, on his nineteenth birthday. After six months of basic training at Fort Riley, Kansas, he spent a 15-day furlough with his mother in September of 1943. Then, he reported to Fort Ord, California for overseas duty. Richard was a member of Company F of the 132nd Infantry Regiment of the American Division when he made the supreme sacrifice on Cebu in the Philippine Islands on March 30, 1945.
For his performance of duty in action against the enemy on Bougainville, he was awarded the Combat Infantryman Badge.
He is survived by his mother, three brothers and nine sisters, his father having died in October 1940. The brothers and sisters are Robert of Los Angeles, Mrs. Anastasia Early of Chicago, Mrs. Mary Burns of Ulysses, Mrs. Agnes Cudaback and Mrs. Rose Morris of Exeter, Sgt. Linus Becker in the Philippines; Jo Ann, Francis, Mrs. Dorothy Madre, Bertille and Annabel of Exeter, and Zita of Chicago. All were present for the memorial service excepting Robert, Linus and Zita.
Fillmore County News