CORPORAL WALTER K.
WILBRAHAM was born in Palmyra NJ on January 26, 1919 to Rueben and Emma
Wilbraham. The family lived at 3311 Mickle
Street in East Camden
in the late 1920s and early 1930s before moving to Collingswood NJ. He
graduated from Collingswood High School in Collingswood NJ in
1938, where he was on the varsity basketball and track teams in junior
and senior years, and also was a student PTA representative. He was also
an excellent swimmer, and liked dancing. His dislikes, as stated in his
high school yearbook, were "Geometry and cauliflower". The
Wilbraham family lived at 920 Collings Avenue while Walter was in High
School, later moving to 1312 Walnut Avenue and then to Atlantic City.
After high school, he attended Mississippi State College, where he
starred in football and basketball. He was drafted, and entered the Army in April of
1941, and was assigned to a Coast Artillery unit at Fort Eustis VA. In
July of 1941 he was re-assigned to
Battery G, 10th Coast Artillery Regiment at Fort Adams at Newport
the pages of
The Morning Post
Camden, N.J. June 11, 1942
Camden Co. Soldiers, One Dead,
High School Graduate
Two Camden county men were among 14 members of the armed forces awarded the Soldier’s Medal For Bravery signifying heroism over and above the call of duty, it was announced yesterday by the War Department.
One of two local awards was posthumous to Corporal Walter K. Wilbraham, former Collingswood High School and Mississippi State College athlete.
The other was to Private William H. Sharp of Camden. Both were cited for the same a ct is rescuing a woman from a burning cabin cruiser in Narragansett Bay, RI, several months ago.
Wilbraham’s parents, Mr. And Mrs. Ruben Wilbraham formerly lived at 1312 Walnut Avenue, West Collingswood. Their home now is in Atlantic City where they received word January 15th their son had been killed in the line of duty at Fort Adams, RI.
Others cited with Wilbraham and Sharp are Thomas J. Sheridan, Jr. of Bronx NY; Robert I. Fitzhenry and Henry J. Acker, both of New Rochelle NY
Technical Sgt. Chris A. Green, Lancaster KY was cited for his bravery in saving an army kitchen truck from destruction when the range exploded and spilled a large amount of burning gasoline.
Air Corps Corporal Fred D. Parler, Dorchester SC. saved a man from a burning airplane at the Canal Zone. During a take-off the plane crashed and burst into flames. The seat canopy jammed and the pilot was trapped. Parler mounted the airplane wing, forced the hot canopy open, and rescued the flying officer.
Corporal James K. Wright of Tullahoma TN., rescued a drowning man from the waters of Myrtle Beach SC.
Privates Wilson S. Smart, Tibbets MO, and Harold V. Keahey, Pickens AR, were decorated for rescuing the pilot of a burning plane when the escape hatch was enveloped in flames.
Private Morris E. Hicks, Camargo OK was cited for his attempt to rescue a drowning comrade from the Columbia River in Oregon.
Private Wilson P. O’Brien, Steubenville OH, jumped into the East River at New York and succeeded in bringing a drowning man to shore despite floating cakes of ice.
Privates First Class Lewis A. Willis, Wilmington DE, and Everett D. Keim, Neptune City NJ saved a man who was in danger of drowning or suffocating in a swamp near Fort Monmouth.
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