Honor your hero with thoughts, memories, images and stories.
For 68 years my family did not know the exact circumstances of my great uncle's death until I received the following information from the 29th Infantry Division on 13 January 2012:
"Private Baldwin joined Company E, 115th Infantry, on Sept. 4, 1944 as a replacement, in the middle of the regiment's attack on the city of Brest, France. He was lightly wounded on Sept. 18 and returned to duty about a week later. He participated in the 115th Infantry's attack on the German town of Siersdorf on November 18, 1944, during which Company E suffered heavy casualties. The next day, the company attacked the German town of Durboslar. Private Baldwin was listed as "missing in action" during that attack, but a few days later his status was changed to "killed in action."
My mother, Lura C. Robinson Baldwin, had actually dated Ira on several occasions before he went overseas. She bequethed to me two V-Mail letters he had written dated 2 November 1944 and 13 November 1944. In addition, she bequeathed a letter written in 1947 from the Beekman family in Maarstricht, Holland, who had adopted his grave. She and my father, Arthur H. Baldwin (Ira's nephew) were married in 1946.
To be able to finally find out some of the details of his death has provided some personal closure for me as I have wondered about the circumstances of his death since childhood. I was always intrigued by his hat that my great grandparents, Benjamin and Sally Baldwin, left hanging in their home until they and my great, great aunt Martha died (age 105).
Although I never knew him, he will never be forgotten for the sacrifice that he made for his country and to those he helped liberate!
Note: Private Ira Otis Baldwin is buried in Plot J, Row 16, Grave 10 at the Netherlands American Cemetary in Margraten, Netherlands. He was awarded a Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster.