PFC Charles Maurice Crawford Name : Charles M Crawford
Rank : Private First Class
Regiment : 395th Infantry Regiment
Division : 99th Infantry Division
Entered Service from : California
Date of Birth : 25 March 1925
Date of Death : 2 December 1944
Place of Death : vicinity of Wahlerscheid
In Henri-Chapelle : Plot A, Row 13, Grave 12
Awards : Purple Heart

Charles Maurice Crawford's Story ...

Charles Maurice Crawford was born and raised in Stockton, California. Charles and his older brother Harley where the two children of Bess and Stanley Crawford.

a Birney-car in Stockton California

Maurice, as Charles M Crawford was known, graduated from Lottie Grunsky Grammar School and then Stockton High School in 1943.


        Lottie Grunsky Grammar School                      Stockton High School

While in school he delivered the local newspaper for several years. He was an excellent student in high school and was very interested in the sciences. While in high school he learned everything he could about photography. He had many photos in his class yearbook. He also had a small hand printing press that he used to print small business sized cards for his friends.

Maurice at his printing-press

He never learned to drive a car because of gas rationing and during the summer of 1943 Maurice worked in a cannery canning peaches before going into the Army later in the year.

Canning in a factory in Stockton

Maurice as his brother Harley both joined the ranks ... Maurice joined the Army, Harley went to the Navy ...Maurice went to basic training in the Army and then to Arkansas State College for ASTP (Army Special Training Program). This program was closed down and all the students were sent to Fort Benning, Georgia, for infantry training.

Maurice (Army) and Harley (Navy) Crawford

Maurice was asigned to the 99th Infantry Division, where he was attached to the First Battalion of the 395th Infantry Regiment, Company A.

Maurice Crawford with a bazooka

Early December of 1944 the 99th Infantry Division was fighting in the vicinity of Elsenborn (Belgium), trying to crack the Siegfriedline. On a ("succesful") mission to locate minefields and pillboxes near Wahlerscheid, Maurice was killed on patrol, on 2 December 1944. Living just four months short of twenty years, Maurice Crawford accomplished a lot.

In May 1946 Maurice's parents received a letter from a close friend of Maurice, Howard Dahlgren from Minnesota ... The first part of the letter describes when and where Maurice and Howard became friends ...

the beginning of the Dahlgren-letter ...

Further on in the letter, Howard Dahlgren explains to Maurice's parents the circumstances of Maurice's death ...

the end of the Dahlgren-letter ...

Harley Crawford lost his brother in the war, but he met his wife Shirley in the Navy. These days Harley and Shirley Crawford reside in Santa Rosa, California.

Harley Crawford (middle) and the Woolley family,
who were cousins of the Crawfords (picture taken after the war)

These days Maurice Crawford rests in the beautiful American Military Cemetery at Henri-Chapelle ... He is remembered and honored by his brother Harley and Harley's wife Shirley, the Crawford family and the Woolley family.

June 5, 2006: Pamela, Bill, Henry and Jean Woolley
(Bill is the older of the two little boys in the previous picture)
the family visited Maurice Crawford's final resting place
Special thanks to Maurice's brother Harley, Harley's wife Shirley
and to Jean and Bill Woolley.
published March 28, 2006
updated July 3, 2006