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Joseph Philip Endris Jr.

T/SGT in 603rd Engineer Camouflage Bn : Co C


Born 1918 in IL, Died 1975

County of residence at enlistment: Bourbon County, KY
Other residence(s): Chicago, IL; Paris, KY; Lexington, KY
United States Army, European Theatre of Operations
Occupation before the war: engineers, mining
College education before the war: Univ. of Kentucky 4 years
Notes: Certificate of Merit; CG SP TRS, 12th A Gp, 22 Jun 45; rank changed from CPL in GA roster to T/SGT per headstone (see US Headstone Applications for Military Veterans)
Source: 603rd Camouflage Engineer Roster provided by W. Anderson; Awards and Decorations; Company C roster; photo courtesy University of Kentucky yearbook and Ancestry®

Joseph Endris was born on June 29, 1918 in Chicago, IL. He was an only child born to a mother from Kentucky, and a father who worked as a motorman for the Chicago Surface Lines, the street railway system. His parents' marriage was short-lived. Sometime in the 1920s Joseph and his mother moved back to his mother's hometown, Paris, KY, and she got a job as a schoolteacher. There his mother eventually remarried.

After graduating from Paris High School in 1937, Joseph went on to study at the University of Kentucky's College of Engineering, and earned his undergraduate degree there in 1941. As a student, he was active in the Norwood Mining and Metallurgical Society, an organization founded to promote interest in those two disciplines.

He registered for the draft on October 16, 1940, when he was still a student, and enlisted on April 2, 1942. At the time, he was still living in Paris with his mother and stepfather, and his occupation was listed as mining engineer.

After enlistment, he was sent to the engineer replacement training center at Fort Leonard Wood in New Jersey. At some point he was assigned to the 603rd Engineer Camouflage Battalion.

Joseph married Doris Robinson on October 8, 1943 in Baltimore, MD, and went to Europe with the 603rd in 1944. He was discharged from the Army with the rank of T/SGT on August 29, 1945, and returned to Kentucky.

Joseph and Doris had two sons: Hugo and Joseph III. In the 1950s, he was working as a construction engineer in Lexington, KY. Sadly, young Joseph died of a car accident in 1968; he was a working artist who had just completed two years with the Army in Germany.

Little else is known of Joseph's life or work. He died on June 28, 1975 in Lexington, KY and is buried at the Paris (KY) Cemetery.


1918 birth record

1920 census

1937 article in The Lexington Herald (KY) re his high school graduation

1938 University of Kentucky yearbook (he was freshman)

1940 census

1940 draft card

1941 University of Kentucky yearbook

1942 enlistment record

1942 article in The Lexington Herald (KY) re his military career

1955 city directory for Lexington KY

1968 son Hugo's application for membership in the Sons of the American Revolution

1968 son Joseph's obituary

1975 death notice in The Lexington Herald (KY)

1975 VA death record

1975 US Headstone Applications for Military Veterans

1975 Social Security applications and claims index

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