Melvin Louis Zwernemann
PFC in 23rd Headquarters Co
Military occupational specialty: 695
Born 1917 in TX
County of residence at enlistment: Fayette County, TX
Other residence(s): Waldeck, TX; Carmine, TX; Pflugerville, TX
United States Army, European Theatre of Operations
Melvin Zwernemann was born on October 7, 1917 in Waldeck, TX; he was the oldest of three children. His father stated that he was a farmer in Round Top when he registered for the World War I draft, but by the time of the 1920 census, the family was living in neighboring Carmine (all three small towns being midway between Houston and Austin). The area had been heavily populated by German immigrants in the late 19th century.
Melvin attended the Carmine schools, and completed two years of high school. He married Alida Marie Priebe on October 16, 1938, the week after his 21st birthday.
He registered for the draft on October 16, 1940; at the time he was working as a salesman at Zwernemann Lumber Company in Carmine. His father owned and operated the business.
Sadly, Melvin and Alida's first child, a daughter, died during birth from "obstetrical trauma" in 1941. Their son, James Melvin, was born safely in 1942.
Melvin enlisted on July 19, 1943; he was assigned to the 23rd Headquarters Company, and saw service in Europe during the war.
He was discharged from the Army on October 22, 1945 with the rank of PFC; he returned to Carmine, and presumably back to work at the lumber company. He and Alida had two more children: Ross and Joanne.
He was a member of the Quade-Werchan American Legion Post #338, the Carmine Volunteer Fire Department, the Cedar Creek Schuetzen Verein (a gun club), the Carmine Lions' Club, the Carmine Chamber of Commerce, and Martin Luther Lutheran Church. During the 1950s he also served as secretary/treasurer of the tri-county baseball league.
The Zwernemanns lost a second child when their son Ross died at the age of 28 in a hang gliding accident.
Alida Zwernemann died in 2001, and in 2003 Melvin went to live at Pflugerville Care Center in Pflugerville. He died there on November 23 2005 and is buried at Carmine Cemetery.
1938 marriage record
1940 draft card
1941 first child's death certificate
1942 son's birth record
1943 enlistment record
1947 son's birth record
1953 daughter's birth record
1958 article in the Austin American (TX) re his involvement w/baseball league
2005 Find a Grave record
2005 VA death record
2005 Texas death certificate
2005 obituary in The Banner-Press (Washington County, TX)