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Owen J. Jones-First Lt. C Company 187th Engineer Combat Battalion

Owen J. Jones-First Lt. C Company 187th Engineer Combat Battalion
Owen J. Jones

World War II · US Army · First Lieutenant

Company C, 187th Engineer Combat Battalion

Owen J. Jones was born on November 27, 1917 in Oneonta, New York. His father was John C. Jones (1898-1966) and his mother was Ethel I. Loreman (1900-1996). They were married on May 9, 1917, in Otsego County, New York. Based on the 1920 U.S. Census and New York State 1925 Census the family, including Owen’s younger brother, Alson B. Jones, was residing in Oneonta. The 1926 City of Binghamton Directory has John and Ethel residing in Binghamton, New York. He was working as a trainman. However, by 1930 some changes occurred in the family. The 1930 U.S. Census has John listed as living by himself as a “roomer” in Binghamton, New York. He is a railroad conductor. Owen and Alson are listed separately from their parents and are identified as “boarders” with a family in Owego, Tioga County, New York. They were 12 and 10 years old, respectively. Ethel does not appear in the 1930 U.S. Census but she is listed in the 1930 City of Oneonta Directory as a waitress residing in Oneonta. In the 1934 City of Oneonta Directory, she lives at 35 Otsego Street and works in a laundry company. Owen appears in the same directory and is residing at the same address as his mother. He was now 16 years old and considered an adult. The 1936 Oneonta High School yearbook has him participating in the Chorus, Music Club, and Debating Club. The 1940 U.S. Census shows that Owen was employed as a restaurant worker in Marshfield, Coos County, Oregon. The Census indicated that he had resided in Oneonta, New York in 1935 and had completed four years of high school. On his 1941 World War II Draft Card, he was living in Juneau, Alaska, and was employed by the Alaska Juneau Gold Mining Company.

Owen joined the Army in October 1941 (Service number 01557619) and was sent to Fort Belvoir, Virginia for his basic training. Over the next few years he was assigned to Camp White, Oregon, Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland, and Elkins, W. Virginia. While at Camp White he married Esther Buford Walters on January 14, 1944. They had a son, Roger Dale Jones, who was born on January 18, 1945 in Napa County, California. After serving 19 months in Alaska, Owen was sent to officer school at Camp Pickett, Virginia. In October 1944 he was assigned to Company C of the 187th Engineer Combat Battalion and sent overseas to the European Theater of Operations. On February 22, 1945 he was killed with three other men from an anti-tank mine in Waldfeucht, Germany. On September 20, 1986 a bronze plaque recognizing the death of the four men was installed on the building next to the historic Waldfeucht Windmill.

Click on the X to bring up Gravestone and Plaque

Gravestone and Plaque Image

Gravestone and Plaque

Initially, his body was buried at the Netherlands American Cemetery outside of Maastricht, Holland but on April 28, 1949 Owen was brought back to the United States. He now rests in Glenwood Cemetery in Oneonta, New York. He was 28 years old at the time of his death.

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