In Memory of
U.S. Army Private First Class Fort Thompson, South Dakota
Buffalo County

February 13, 1913 – August 16, 1950
Killed in Action near Chindong-ni, Korea


Mark Shields was born on February 13, 1913, at Fort Thompson, South Dakota, to George and Grace Shields. Mark was a civil servant for the U.S. Government for many years, working on the Crow Creek Indian Reservation. He married Doris Colet on May 22, 1933, at Chamberlain. They had four sons: Edward, Mark, Jr., Leonard, and Delbert, all born at Fort Thompson. Mark first served his country during WW II from October 27, 1944, until February 13, 1946.

On March 30, 1948, Mark Shields entered the military again; he was a part of the 72nd Engineers Combat Company, 5th Infantry Regimental Combat Team. Private First Class Mark Shields was killed in action at Chindong-ni, South Korea on August 16, 1950. On the Korean War Project Internet site, David Zimmerman, from the same unit posted a remembrance of Mark:

We never had the chance to know one another very well, but it didn’t matter if we were friends or not. We were comrades in the same unit, doing what had to be done on a daily basis. Our jobs were dangerous and we’re sad that you became part of the statistics. We grieve for you now as there wasn’t time then. Rest in peace comrade.

The body of Pfc. Mark Shields was not recovered. He was one of two casualties from Buffalo County in the Korean War.

Among his awards were the Purple Heart, the Korean Service Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, and the Korean Presidential Unit Citation.

This entry was respectfully submitted by Cali Ewing, 8th Grade, Spearfish, Middle School, Spearfish, South Dakota, July 29, 2004. The information for this entry was provided by the Gann Valley Chief/, 9-14-50 issue, an application for South Dakota veteran’s bonus, the ABMC, the SD National Guard Museum, and http://www.koreanwar.org/. (P/S/F/A 8/9/04.)