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Harold LeRoy Skuldt

1LT in 603rd Engineer Camouflage Bn : Co B, 2nd Platoon


Born 1914 in WI, Died 2009


County of enlistment: Camp Grant, IL
Other residence(s): Blue Mounds, WI; Madison, WI; West Bend, WI
United States Army, European Theatre of Operations
Occupation before the war: draftsmen
College education before the war: Univ. of Wisconsin 4 years
Notes: Rank changed from 2LT in GA roster to 1LT per December 1943 newspaper article (Army press release)
Source: 603rd Camouflage Engineer Roster provided by W. Anderson; Roster of 23d HQ officers, from family of Oscar Seale;  Company B Names and Addresses roster; photo courtesy The Capital Times, Madison, WI, July 9, 1945

Harold Skuldt was born on October 5, 1914 in Primrose, WI, the youngest of five children. His father was a dairy farmer; his mother, and all four of his grandparents, had been born in Norway.

Photo courtesy Ancestry®, University of Wisconsin yearbook, 1940

By 1930 the family had moved to Madison, WI where Harold's father worked as a gardener in a city park. Harold had a paper route in Madison from the 7th grade until he graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1940 with a degree in art. While at the university he met his future bride, Cordelia "Cordy" Wernecke. He also spent four years as a member of the Norse Club there.

When Harold registered for the draft, on October 16, 1940, he was working for the National Youth Administration, a New Deal agency. Shortly thereafter he took a job with the Capital Times newspaper in Madison, working in the advertising department; this was the same newspaper where he had served as a newspaper carrier all those years.

He enlisted in the Army on August 10, 1941. He was rapidly promoted to the rank of CPL, and six months after he enlisted he was transferred to an officer's training track at Fort Belvoir, VA. (As with other soldiers in the same situation, this involved a discharge on one day and an immediate reenlistment on the next.) He was commissioned as a 2LT in May 1942.

Shortly thereafter Harold married Cordy, on June 5, 1942. He went on to earn a promotion to the rank of 1LT in December 1943, and served in the 603rd Engineer Camouflage Battalion.

Along with other soldiers from the 603rd, Harold found himself stationed at a displaced persons camp in Germany near the end of the war. Vernon Kennedy, a representative of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA), reported that, on a five-day trip through Third Army territory, he visited the camp in Wittlich where Lt. Skuldt served as the executive officer, reporting to the camp commander. Kennedy wrote: "Lt. Skuldt had the highest praise for the work of UNRRA and was apparently giving them complete freedom in the operation of the camp. Thomas [a member of the UNRRA team at Wittlich] said that they found conditions very bad when they came but had succeeded in organizing the displaced persons into administrative and work details and that things were processing satisfactory [sic]. One of the problems incurred was the keeping of children from playing with hand grenades. Lt. Skuldt said that they had removed several tons of live ammunition the day before and were getting a mine detector detail in to go through the basements of the barracks."

Harold also had two brothers in the military during the war, Robert in the Army Air Force and Hjalmar in the Marines as a photographer.

Harold was discharged from the Army on December 9, 1945, and returned to Wisconsin and his family, which included twins Karen and Eric, born in 1943. In 1948, the family moved to West Bend, WI where Harold took a job as a commercial artist with the West Bend Co., a manufacturer of aluminum utensils. He and Cordy went on to have four more children: Dale, Kristin, Ann, and Mary. During those years the family hosted two AFS students for a year each—Yoshi from Japan in 1965 and Christy from Belgium in 1970. Harold would remain with West Bend for 29 years, retiring in 1975.

Harold and Cordy were members of Immanuel United Church of Christ for many years. Harold also enjoyed woodworking, making furniture and carving ducks. He and Cordy moved to Cedar Community in 1992 where he continued his woodworking in the woodshop there.

Harold died on January 27, 2009, and is buried at Washington County Memorial Park in West Bend.


1940 yearbook photo

1945 military photo (see 1945 article below)


1914 Baptismal record

1920 census

1930 census

1935 Madison WI city directory

1937 Madison WI city directory

1940 draft card

1941 enlistment record

1942 engagement announcement in the Capital Times (Madison, WI),0.059231006,0.8549833,0.2048366&xid=3398&_ga=2.9377973.1098584759.1686776550-996537863.1686666614

1942 marriage record

1942 article in the Capital Times (Madison, WI) re his commission as 1LT

1942 article in the Capital Times (Madison, WI) about him and his brother in the military

1943 article in the Capital Times (Madison, WI) re his promotion to 2LT

1945 Report of the UNRRA Liaison Officer, 12th Army Group (see p. 29)

1945 article in the Capital Times (Madison, WI) re his return to states

1950 census

1965 article in the Fond du Lac Commonwealth Reporter (Wisconsin) about Harold & his family hosting a Japanese student for the year

1992 US Public Records Index

2009 VA death record

2009 Social Security death index

2009 Find a Grave record*prarki*_gcl_au*MzcwNDgwODkxLjE2ODY2NjY2MTQ.*_ga*OTk2NTM3ODYzLjE2ODY2NjY2MTQ.*_ga_4QT8FMEX30*YzI1MmRjOWMtOTIxNi00N2NhLTk2M2YtNDFlYjczNzBjMThmLjI2LjEuMTY4Njc3ODUzOS41MS4wLjA.

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