In Memory of
U.S. Army Private First Class Wolsey, South Dakota
Beadle County

May 24, 1929 -- October 6, 1951
Killed in Action in Korea


Harry Baxter Fitzgibbons was born in Wolsey, South Dakota, on May 24, 1929. He was the only child of Thomas Baxter and Eunice Mary (Christensen) Fitzgibbons. Harry attended grade school in Wolsey and graduated from Wolsey High School in 1948. He loved music and played the drums in his father’s small band. They played for dances in Wolsey and in many of the small towns in that area. When he was 21, he married Doris Kuehl in Huron, South Dakota. Before he entered the service, he was a manager of part of the hardware department for Sears Roebuck in Huron. He is remembered for being “a sharp dresser” and “a kind and thoughtful person.”

Harry Fitzgibbons was drafted to the US Army on February 2, 1951, at Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He was sent to Fort Riley in Kansas for training. He went overseas on July 5, 1951, as part of the 14th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, first landing in Japan. He arrived in Korea around August 20th and fought on the front lines from then on.

Private First Class Harry Fitzgibbons was killed in action on October 6, 1951, while fighting in Korea. His body was returned to the United States for a military burial at the Riverside Cemetery in Huron. He was awarded the Purple Heart, the Combat Infantryman's Badge, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, and the Korean War Service Medal.

Harry was an only child; his father died in 1989, and his mother in 1998, so there are no surviving immediate family members. His widow, Doris, later married Ken Swaney, who also had served in the Korean War.

I will remember the service and sacrifice of Harry Baxter Fitzgibbons.

This entry was respectfully submitted by Missa Oien, 8th grade, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish, South Dakota on May 12, 2004. Information was provided by the South Dakota National Guard Museum, the ABMC, an application for a veteran’s bonus, and a newspaper clipping. Additional information and profile approval by Doris Swaney, widow of Harry Fitzgibbons.