In Memory of
U.S. Army Private First Class Marion, South Dakota
Turner County

October 8, 1931 -- September 6, 1950
Killed in Action in Korea

Ruben Schoenwald was born in Marion, South Dakota, on October 8, 1931. His parents were Marie (Eugbrecht) and Ferdinand Schoenwald. Ruben had ten siblings: Jake, Tena, Abe, Rose, Bill, Dave, Hank, Ferdinand, Jr., Mary, and Johnny, who died in infancy. Ruben was raised and educated in the Marion area, attending Marion High School for one year. His schooling was interrupted by his enlistment into the Army.

Ruben Schoenwald entered the Army on March 1, 1950, at Sioux Falls; Schoenwald was trained at Fort Riley, Kansas, as a heavy weapons infantryman with the 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division. Before he was sent overseas, Ruben returned home for his brother’s wedding in June and then left for overseas duty on July 19, 1950, and arrived in Korea several weeks later. One week after his arrival he was on the front lines. In his last letter home, he wrote these words: “If your time is up you have to go. God be with you all till we meet again.”

A short time later, on September 6, 1950, Private First Class Ruben Schoenwald was killed in action while fighting the enemy when “his Company’s defense positions had been attacked and over-run by the enemy along the Naktong River in the vicinity of Yongsan, Korea.” He was only 18 years old. His body was returned to the United States and buried with military honors in July of 1951, at Schartner Cemetery in rural Marion.

Private First Class Schoenwald 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.

He is currently survived by four siblings: Rose, Bill, Ferdinand, Jr., and Mary.

This information was respectfully submitted by Timothy Norman Reed and Austin Curtis Kuenzel , 8th grade, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish, South Dakota, on May 21, 2004. Information for this entry was provided by an application for a SD veteran’s bonus, the SD National Guard Museum, and the Marion Record, including the November 16, 1950 issue. Additional information and profile approval provided by Bill Schoenwald, brother.