Memorial Day is a day for remembering and honoring those men and women who gave their lives to preserve the liberties that we enjoy in this country. Today’s post will be a tribute to a family from Perry County who lost two young men as a result of World War II. I would like to thank Tim and Colleen Mueller for providing material for this article.
Below is a photograph of something that no parent would ever want to receive.
This telegram informed the Anton Mueller family that Ruben Mueller had died as a result of an air crash over India on January 2, 1944. The telegram was received on Saturday, January 8 with the bad news of Ruben’s death on the previous Sunday. This was after the celebrations of Christmas just weeks earlier. In fact, the family had received this Christmas greeting from Ruben about a month before his death.
Documents such as this must have been brought back horrid memories of this tragic event. The words “may this happiness overflow into the New Year” must have haunted them. However, that is part of what Memorial Day is all about. We should not forget the tragic loss of soldiers defending our country. They must never be forgotten.
Two things happened in the years after this event took place. First, Ruben had another brother who served in the war by the name of Richard Mueller. His leg was injured when a shell fell on it as he served in the infantry. He never really recovered from that injury and in 1948, he died as a result. So the Mueller family ended up losing two sons to this war. The Mueller family had many other children, and most of them were sons, so this branch of the Mueller family continues on.
By the end of 1944, the father of these two sons, Anton Mueller, had died. Then after Richard had died in 1948, Ruben’s remains were brought back to Altenburg to be buried here.
Since we have referred to so many Mueller families in our blog posts, you should know that these brothers were grandsons of Zacharias Mueller, and sons of Anton Mueller. We did a post about Zacharias not long ago called A to Z – Amalia to Zacharias.
I cannot help but think about how difficult it was during both WWI and WWII for soldiers from this area to be sent to war to fight against Germany, the home of their ancestors. However, it was also important for these people to show their loyalty to this country. The rest of the country needed to see where their loyalties were. There are stories like this to be found all over our country. So many soldiers have lost their lives protecting our freedoms. Let us never forget their service. Take the time to remember them this Memorial Day.
UPDATE: Here is another post closely related to this one: