In Memory of
U.S. Army Private Salem, South Dakota
McCook County

February 1, 1932 -- June 6, 1953
Killed in Action in Korea


Eugene “Gene” Joseph Heumiller was born February 1, 1932, near Salem, South Dakota, to Anton and Lena (Kobberman) Heumiller. He had five brothers: Edward, James, Richard, Joseph, and Dale; and one sister, Doris. He went to school at St. Mary’s in Salem and later worked in farming and as a construction worker.

Eugene was inducted into the army on September 9, 1952. He received four months of basic training at Fort Ord, California, before he was sent to Japan in February of 1953 for medic training as part of the 31st Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division.

According to the local newspaper, Eugene’s parents received a letter prior to his death where he wrote of fighting the enemy on “Old Baldy,” but thought he would be leaving the front lines for Japan on June 6. The day he was to be sent to Japan, June 6, 1953, Private Eugene Joseph Heumiller was killed in action in Korea.

His body, along with those of 115 other casualties, arrived in America and then a week later on July 17, 1953, came home by rail with a military escort. He was buried July 20, 1953, with full military honors.

Private Heumiller 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.

His survivors were his mother and father, five brothers, and one sister.

This entry was respectfully submitted by Brett M. Ross, 8th grade, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish, South Dakota, May 11, 2004. Information for this entry was provided by the ABMC, an application for a veteran’s bonus, the South Dakota National Guard Museum, and the Salem Special, July 16, 1953, and July 23, 1953, issues. Profile approved by Dale Heumiller, brother.