Richard Hickman U.S ARMY
Staff Sergeant - Squad Leader
Richard Hickman enlisted in the Army prior to Pearl Harbor, at the age of seventeen. On June 9, 1941 at Inglewood, CA, he attended Basic Training at Fort Ord and was in the 17th Infantry, 7 Infantry Division, Company F. After Basic Training, on December 13, 1941 he went to Fort Lewis, WA. It is believed that he was soon sent to Anzio, Italy. As part of the3rd Marine Division, he and several others built an elaborate dugout with simple materials. This structure was so prized that Ernie Pyle wrote an article about it and gave Richard sole credit in providing a comfortable home for his squad.
They were stranded on the beachhead which was over looked by the Germans from the mountains. Many attempts were made to advance but, always failed and suicides were common. After being trapped for 1 1/2 years, a major drive to break off the beachhead was attempted on May 27, 1944. This is when it is believed Richard was killed in action at the age of 21. Due to two separate fires that destroyed military records in St Louis, MOs is this is all the family knows of Richard who gave his young life for his country.