Brookline War Memorial
Howard F. Dempsey

Private Howard F. Dempsey
United States Army (1942-1945)

United States Army (1775-present)

Howard Francis Dempsey was born on June 23, 1922 to parents Clara and James L. Dempsey of 911 Berkshire Avenue. The Dempsey family were members of Resurrection Church, where both Howard and his sister Alice went to Elementary School. A graduate of South Hills High School, Howard was employed by the Charles Bruning Company before entering into the U.S. Army on November 10, 1942.

Howard F. Dempsey

After completing basic training, Private Howard Dempsey was assigned to the 219th Infantry Regiment, which was ordered into active military service on April 15, 1943 and reorganized at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. The regiment was to be part of the 75th Infantry Division and would be part of the U.S. First Army.

The Regiment participated in the Louisiana Maneuvers in January 1944, and departed Camp Shanks on October 22, 1944 for the New York Port of Embarkation. The 75th Division arrived in Britain on November 22, 1944, and after a brief training program sailed for France and landed on December 13. They bivouacked at Yvetot the following day.

                 

When Germany's Von Rundstedt Offensive (The Battle Of the Bulge) broke on December 16, the 75th Division was rushed to the front and entered defensive combat on December 23, 1944, alongside the Ourthe River. From there, as the tide of the battle turned against the Germans, the Division advanced to the Aisne River and entered Grandmenil on January 5.

75th Infantry Division    75th Infantry Division
75th Division soldiers advance towards a French town (left) and round up German prisoners.

During Operation Nordwind, the Germans final major offensive in the west near Strausborg, the Division relieved the 82nd Airborne Division along the Salm River on January 8, 1945 and strenghthened its defensive positions until January 17, when it attacked, taking Vielsalm and other towns in the area.

Shifting to the Seventh Army, under the direction of the French First Army, in Alsace-Lorraine, the 75th crossed the Colmar Canal and took part in the reduction of the Colmar Pocket and the French liberation of Colmar. The 75th Division entered the front lines on January 31, between the U.S. 3rd and 28th Infantry Divisions.

Attacking on February 1, the Division cleared Horbourg and advanced on Andolsheim occupying the town the following day. The 75th Division made further diversionary attacks to cover the Allied drive on the city of Colmar, adjacent to the division's western sector.

On February 3, 1945 the 75th Division cleared the Forêt Domaniale (National Forest). It was during this battle to clear the forest south of Colmar, on February 3, 1945, that Brookline's Private First Class Howard F. Dempsey was killed in action.

75th Infantry Division    75th Infantry Division
Sharpshooters of the 75th Infantry Division cover a unit's creeping advance over open terrain (left), and
soldiers take cover behind snow covered trees during the clearing of the National Forest near Colmar.

After Private Dempsey's death, the 75th Division participated in the fighting between the Rhine River and the Vosges Mountains. It crossed the Marne-Rhine Canal and reached the Rhine on February 7. After a brief rest at Lunéville, it returned to combat, relieving the 6th British Airborne Division on a twenty-four mile defensive front along the Maas River, near Roermond, in the Netherlands, on February 21.

From March 13 to 23, the Division patrolled a sector along the west bank of the Rhine from Wesel to Homburg, and probed enemy defenses at night. On March 24, elements crossed the Rhine by April 1 had cleared the Haard Forest. Then the Division crossed the Dortmund-Ems Canal and cleared the approaches to Dortmund. After taking Herdecke on April 13, the Division moved to Braumbauer for rest and rehabilitation, then took over security and military government duties in Westphalia.

75th Infantry Division

Back home in Brookline, word of Private Howard Dempsey's death reached the family not long after he fell in battle. On February 22, the Pittsburgh Press reported that a high Mass of requiem was being sung for Pfc. Howard F. Dempsey at Resurrection Church on February 26. While the Dempsey family and the community of Brookline mourned Howard's passing, a Gold Service star appeared on the window of the Dempsey home at 911 Berkshire Avenue.

Howard's body was returned to the United States in April 1948. His casket was laid out at Slater & Sons Funeral Home in Beechview, followed by a solemn Mass of requiem at Resurrection Church on April 17. Military Services were conducted afterwards by American Legion Post #540 at Saint Anne Cemetery in Castle Shannon.

Saint Anne Cemetery

* Written by Clint Burton: May 15, 2018 *




The Brookline War Memorial

The Brookline Veteran's Memorial.

Listed below are many of the sons of Brookline who gave their
lives to preserve freedom and contain aggression during
World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam.

“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather, we should thank God that such men lived.”
General George S. Patton
 

United States Army (1775-present)  United States Army Air Services (1917-1947)  United States Navy (1775-present)  United States Marine Corps (1775-present)
United States Coast Guards (1790-present)  United States Air Force (1947-present)  United States Merchant Marine (1775-present)

World War I (1917-1919)

Percy Digby

Digby, David P.
Mayville Avenue
Army

Details

Raymond P. Cronin

Cronin, Raymond P.
Berkshire Avenue
USMC

Details

Charles Luppe

Luppe, Charles
Ferncliffe Avenue
Army

Details

WW1 Memorial - Washington D.C.
The World War I Memorial - Washington D.C.

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World War II (1941-1945)


Alm William H.
Pioneer Avenue
Army

Details


Arensberg, Roy T.
Fernhill Avenue
Army

Details


Brickley, Edward G.
Woodward Avenue
Army

Details


Bruni, Lawrence A.
Berkshire Avenue
Army

Details


Capogreca, James J.
Merrick Avenue
Navy

Details


Copeland, Clarence R.
Creedmoor Avenue
Navy

Details


Cullison, Thomas J.
Birtley Avenue
Army

Details


Dempsey, Howard F.
Berkshire Avenue
Army

Details


Dempsey, Walter F.
Milan Avenue
Navy

Details


Diegelman, Edward R. Jr
Norwich Avenue
Army

Details


Dornetto, Frank P.
Jacob Street
Navy

Details


Fagan, Gerald B.
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


Falk, Harold E.
Pioneer Avenue
Army

Details


Fehring, Robert M.
Fernhill Avenue
Army

Details


Hynes, Richard E.
Waddington Avenue
Army

Details


Jackson, Robert E.
Brookline
Army

 


Kestler, Paul C.
Creedmoor Avenue
Navy

Details


Ketters, Robert C.
Berkshire Avenue
Army

Details


Mahoney, Michael J.
Oakridge Street
Army

Details


Majestic, Arthur B.
Starkamp Avenue
Army

Details


Mayberry, Alexander G.
Breining Street
Army

Details


Mazza, John
Alwyn Street
Army

Details


McCann, Robert F.
Edgebrook Avenue
Navy

Details


McFarland, Hugh R.
McNeilly Road
Army

Details


Miller, William J.
Norwich Avenue
Army

Details


Napier, Edward J.
Brookline Boulevard
Army

Details


Nicholson, John D.
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


O'Day, John R.
Creedmoor Avenue
Navy

Details


Orient, Andrew D.
Fordham Avenue
Army

Details


Pisiecki, Raymond A.
Wolford Avenue
Army

Details


Reeves, Alfred M.
Brookline Boulevard
Army

Details


Reitmeyer, John P.
Bellaire Avenue
Navy

Details


Rhing, Vern M.
Norwich Avenue
Army

Details


Shannon, Harry C.
Midland Street
Army

Details


Shannon, Jack E.
Midland Street
USMC

Details


Simpson, James D.
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


Spack, Harry
Linial Avenue
Army

Details


Vierling, Howard F.
Fordham Avenue
Army

Details


Wagner, Ralph G.
Shawhan Avenue
Army

Details


Wentz, Walter L. Jr
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


Zeiler, Harold V.
West Liberty Avenue
Army

Details

WW2 Memorial - Washington D.C.
The World War II Memorial - Washington D.C.

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Korean War (1950-1953)

Patrick Gallagher

Gallagher, Patrick J.
Bodkin Street
Army

Details

James Gormley

Gormley, James W.
Brookline Boulevard
Army

Details

Gerald Hilliard

Hilliard, Gerald G.
Edgebrook Avenue
Army

Details

James McKenna

McKenna, James E.
Bellaire Place
Army

Details

Korean War Memorial - Washington D.C.
Korean War Memorial - Washington D.C.

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Vietnam War (1965-1973)

James Robert Bodish

Bodish, James R.
Plainview Avenue
Army

Virtual Wall
Additional Details

James Gilbert Collins

Collins, James G.
Dunster Street
Army

Virtual Wall
Additional Details

James Charles Wonn

Wonn, James C.
Mayville Avenue
Navy

Virtual Wall
Additional Details

Vietnam War Memorial - Washington D.C.
Vietnam War Memorial - Washington D.C.




The Brookline Monument - The Cannon

Brookline Veteran's Park - April 26, 2014.

<Brookline War Memorial> <> <Brookline History>