Donald L. Eheler (1951/12/31)

"Army Reports Donald Eheler died in Red Hospital," announced the Santa Cruz Sentinel.

Donald LeRoy Eheler was born on November 2, 1928, in Alameda County, California, to Clarence and Bertha Eheler. During the 1930s, Bertha, accompanied by Donald and his brothers Glenn and Ralph, moved into the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Nakken, in Santa Cruz. Don grew up in Santa Cruz in the late 1930s, attending Gault Elementary School and Branciforte Junior High School. While he was at Santa Cruz High School, his mother remarried and Don moved to Coulee City, Washington.

After leaving high school in that Eastern Washington community, Eheler went to Oregon and worked for two years before moving to Kitsap County, Washington, near Seattle.

In the fall of 1950 Donald Eheler was drafted into the US Army and sent to a basic training facility. After completing training as a light weapon infantryman, Corporal Eheler was sent to Korea and assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment of the 1st Cavalry Division. When he joined his unit following the 1951 Chinese spring offensive, it was located near the 38th parallel.

In September 1951, the Fifth Cavalry Regiment moved into the Punchbowl area just across the North Korean border. On the night of October 7, 1951, Corporal Donald L. Eheler volunteered for a reconnaissance and raiding party into enemy lines and never returned. It was later discovered that he had been captured, imprisoned in a POW camp and died on December 31, 1951. His body was never recovered.

(ABMC; NARAK; The Korean War Almanac Page 120, SCSn November 30, 1951, January 28, 1954 1:4)

Creator: Nelson, Robert L.
Source: Remembering our own: the Santa Cruz County military roll of honor 1861-2010. Santa Cruz, CA: The Museum of Art & History, c2010.
Date: Undated
Type: OBIT
Coverage: 1950s
Rights: Reproduced by permission of Robert L. Nelson and The Museum of Art & History.
Identifier: RO-EHELER

Citation

Nelson, Robert L. “Donald L. Eheler (1951/12/31).” Remembering our own: the Santa Cruz County military roll of honor 1861-2010. Santa Cruz, CA: The Museum of Art & History, c2010. SCPL Local History. https://history.santacruzpl.org/omeka/items/show/4799. Accessed 20 Mar. 2019.