In Memory of
U.S. Army Corporal Burbank, South Dakota
Clay County

May 15, 1924 --February 5, 1951
Killed in Action in Korea


Donald Wigdahl Thompson was born May 15, 1924, in Greenfield, South Dakota, to T.A. and Anna (Wigdahl) Thompson. He had a brother, Clayton R. Donald graduated from Augustana Academy in 1941 and then farmed before entering the service.

He enlisted in the Army and served at Fort Bliss, Texas, for about a year. He married Betty Jean Baker of Charlotte, North Carolina, on December 31, 1949, at Las Cruces, New Mexico. His duty status then changed to inactive in January of 1950. Thompson was recalled to active duty in October of 1950 and was sent to Fort Lewis, Washington; from there he left for overseas duty on November 15, 1950. He was a part of the 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division. According to the newspaper, Corporal Thompson spent several weeks hospitalized at Tokyo General and then rejoined the 1st Cavalry.

Corporal Donald W. Thompson was killed in action in Korea on February 5, 1951. His wife who was living in Vermillion at the time was informed of his death. Both of his parents were deceased. It is believed that the body of Donald W. Thompson was later returned to South Dakota and buried with military honors at the St. Peter Cemetery in Greenfield.

Donald was awarded the Purple Heart, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, and the National Defense Service Medal.

This entry was respectfully submitted by Christopher L. Stone, 8th grade, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish, South Dakota, May 14, 2004. Information for this entry was provided by Vermillion Plain Talk 3/1/51 and 3/8/51 issues and the South Dakota National Guard Museum. No family contact made.